Dell Inspiron 15 7000 review: A gaming laptop at a decidedly non-gaming price – PCWorld

Inexpensive gaming laptops. They’re the order of the day, with component prices reaching new lows and non-gaming companies putting out quality products at a bargain. A few years back we were hyped about Lenovo’s selling its Y50 for $1,200. Now? You can pick up a Dell Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming notebook for $850. That’s with a 1050 Ti thrown in.

Sure, it might not be the most powerful gaming laptop, but getting a system with a dedicated graphics card at this price is crazy. And if it weren’t for one major caveat, the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming would be an insane deal.

Big red

The Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming looks damn good—at least on the outside. Dell put it into a fairly standard chassis, about an inch thick and with the iconic Dell logo on the outside. The fan vents do sport some flashy grills, but otherwise this Inspiron looks like an enterprise laptop. You could take it to work, use it in meetings, and people would say “Ah yes, a Dell. Clearly that person is entering data into spreadsheets.” At least, that’s what I assume.

That is, if you order the black version. Ours came in bright red (or “Beijing Red” as Dell puts it), and it’s much flashier than it needs to be. If you want this for gaming on the down-low, it’s better stick to something more traditional.

Dell Inspiron 15 7000 IDG / Hayden Dingman

While the chassis is inoffensive, that doesn’t hold true once you lift the lid. The Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming has only one real design issue, and it’s the screen.

Ah yes, the screen—bane of inexpensive laptops the world over. We had the same complaint about the aforementioned Y50 a few years back. It had excellent internals at fire-sale prices, but with a screen seemingly recycled out of the trash.

The Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming follows in those same footsteps. Its screen is ugly. We’re talking light bleed on all four edges, a viewing angle of roughly 15 degrees, muted color reproduction, and what I can only describe as “fuzziness”—even running at the laptop’s full 1920×1080 resolution, smaller text looks slightly blurry and indistinct. The display is only 15.6 inches, not a 30-inch monstrosity, so there’s no reason it should look fuzzy. Yet here we are.

It’s the only beef I have with this laptop. Appearance? Fine. Power? Fine—we’ll get to that in a second. Price? Excellent. But this screen is simply awful, and I can’t stress that enough. It’s a shame, whether you’d use this Inspiron as a cheap gaming laptop or for getting work done. In fact, the latter makes this notebook a particularly hard sell, given the number of quality work-oriented 15-inch laptops in the same price range.


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