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

Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming Design And Features

The 15.6-inch display in the Inspiron 7000 is bright for a laptop in this price range, but we found that the laptop looked washed out if we weren’t looking at it directly head-on. When we invited other people to look at the display, we found that only the person sitting directly in front of the laptop was happy with the quality of the screen. That also goes for tilting the screen forwards or backwards too; when we didn’t have it just right, the image quality suffered. That said, the 1920 x 1080 resolution screen is crisp and bright when viewed head-on by a single viewer, so many gamers won’t begrudge the display’s viewing-angle shortcomings, but this is not a high-end IPS panel with wide viewing angles.

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As for its size, the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming is, understandably, on the large and heavy side. That said, Dell kept the laptop thinner (and lighter) than many of the gaming laptops we’ve seen. Dell has been at the forefront of the push to make laptops slimmer and lighter, but it’s bound by the same constraints other laptop makers face when building a gaming rig: discrete graphics (like the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti in our test system) demand extra space and quality cooling. The same goes for standard laptop hard drives, which the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming is designed to support.

The system is just 1 inch thick and 15.15 x 10.82 inches (W x D). And at 5.76 pounds, it’s easy enough to carry around. For gamers who want a laptop they can lug to faraway LAN events, the Inspiron 7000 Gaming’s size and weight will likely be just fine.

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Dell didn’t add macro keys or other gamer-friendly features to the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming’s keyboard, saving those treats for its Alienware brand. But the keyboard is backlit with a red glow that matches the Beijing Red lid and the critical W, A, S, and D keys are highlighted too, which is a nice touch. The island-style keys are responsive. We also like the touchpad, which is a little less important in a gaming laptop, considering that most users will rely on a mouse.

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The Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming doesn’t have any ports along its back, which is dedicated to dual cooling fans. The left-hand side of the laptop sports the power port, a USB 3.0 port, and a media card reader. The media card reader accepts SD cards only halfway (as opposed to pushing the card completely into the laptop), which is a little annoying because the card protrudes and doesn't sit flush with the case. Two more USB 3.0 ports (one with PowerShare) line the other side of the laptop, along with an HDMI port, a Gigabit Ethernet port, and the headphone/mic jack. A USB Type-C port would have been a nice addition here.

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The front of the laptop is also bare of ports, but Dell put a latticework accent here and added an LED, adding to the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming’s mojo.

One of the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming’s most underrated features is its expandability. A single screw holds the entire bottom plate into place, providing for stunningly-easy access to the laptop’s internals. Ordinary users aren’t likely to open up their laptops and upgrade the hardware, but a solid chunk of the gamer market might, so it makes sense that Dell designed this laptop to have certain components within easy reach.

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The two memory slots are right in the middle of the system. We had no trouble popping the two 4GB DDR4 2400MHz modules out of their slots, and reinstalling them was just as easy. Users who choose the SSD option have an empty bay for a 2.5-inch drive, meaning they can bulk up their storage if the 256GB SSD (or 512GB SSD, in the top model) proves to be too small for their game library.

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