Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming Review: Great Battery Life, Strong Performance, Affordable Price

Dell Inspiron 15 7000 - Introduction And Specifications

The Dell Inspiron 7000 Gaming straddles the line between mainstream and gaming notebooks. It is offered in a few sizes, including a svelte 14" model, but after getting some hands-on time with the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming at CES earlier this year, we decided to check the larger laptop out. It sports a 7th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and a discrete NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti GPU, along with some fairly high-end internals.

Before we dig into the Inspiron 15 7000’s specs, we should point out that this particular system sits at the top of the Inspiron line. The entry-level 3000 series is easy on the budget, while the 5000 series and 7000 series offer improved power and features, but carry higher price tags. Solid gaming performance requires powerful hardware, however, so it’s not surprising that Dell’s Inspiron Gaming laptops are part of its higher-end Inspiron 7000 series.
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Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming
Specifications & Features
7th Gen Intel Core i5-7300HQ (6MB Cache, 2.5Ghz - 3.5GHz) 
Display 15.6-inch FHD (1920x1080) Anti-Glare, LED-Backlit Display
Graphics Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti (4GB GDDR5)
Memory 8GB 2400MHz DDR4 Memory
Storage 256GB SSD
Optical NA
Wired Ethernet
Gigabit Ethernet
Wireless Connectivity
802.11ac Dual-Band 2.4GHz & 5GHz, BT 4.2
Interface (Left)
Lock Slot, Power Port, USB 3.0 Port, Media Card Reader
Interface (Right)
Ethernet Port, HDMI Port, USB 3.0 PowerShare Port, USB 3.0 Port, Headphone/Mic Jack
Interface (Back)
Operating System
Windows 10 Home 64-bit
Dimensions 15.15 x 10.82 x 1 inches (W x D x H)
Weight 5.76 pounds
Extras Two color options (Black, Beijing red); 74Whr, 6-cell Integrated Battery, McAfee LiveSafe 12-Month Subscription
Warranty 1-Year Mail-In Service
Pricing $849.99 (as configured)

As we mentioned earlier, Dell pumped up its 7000 Gaming series with Intel’s 7th Gen, “Kaby Lake” processors, and the CPU is one of the defining differences between models. You can keep the price down by going with a Core i5-7300HQ (which appears in our $849.99 review system) or you can bump up to a Core i7-7700HQ, which Turbos to 3.8GHz and adds support for Hyper-Threading. Both CPUs are quad-core chips and both are solid choices for a gaming system, but if your budget has some leeway, putting your dollars into the Core i7-7700HQ isn’t a bad plan. Go this route and you’ll have a starting price of $949.99.

Another critical component that changes in the higher priced models is the NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU that's used. Dell puts a GTX 1050 in its lowest-priced model (which starts at $799.99) and steps up to the GTX 1050 Ti for the rest of its Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming series laptops. The GTX 1050 Ti features more CUDA cores and a base clock of 1493MHz, which is the same as the 1050’s Boost clock speed.

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You also have a few storage drive options, but the best are (understandably) in the pricier models. The entry-level Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming sports a 1TB hard drive, providing plenty of space, but unimpressive speed. The model we tested features a 256GB SSD, offering better performance, but limiting onboard storage space. While that’s not an issue for someone buying an everyday laptop, many gamers have enough titles to easily fill a 256GB SATA SSD. In fact, we ran into storage problems while loading the games (and other benchmarks) we use in our tests. In the end, we had to uninstall a game to make room for another.

Look to the pricier models, and you’ll have more choices, including a 128GB SSD / 1TB hard drive setup that gives your OS a speedy drive without sacrificing space for your games library. At the highest end of the series Dell offers a 512GB PCIe NVMe M.2 drive. That laptop starts at $1,299.99; if your budget can handle a bigger price tag than that, you’re not so much the target customer for Dell’s Inspiron Gaming series as you are its Alienware brand

Dell gives the top Inspiron 7000 Gaming models a QHD 3840 x 2160 IPS display, but it opts for a more standard 1920 x 1080 display in most models. Although we love the quality of high-resolution displays, sticking to a typical FHD monitor seems like a sacrifice worth making in the name of adhering to your budget, especially with a 1050 Ti pushing the pixels.

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