While financial reports suggest Dell seems to be floundering a bit in the PC market space as a whole (losing market share to Lenovo, HP and others) the Inspiron 15R Special Edition is one of the bright spots in the Texas company’s lineup. The starting price point wobbles between $600 and $900 depending on how aggressive Dell is being with promotions any given week, if you can pick up this machine at the lower end of that price range, then you’re getting a true bargain.
The base specs include a premium Full HD 1920 x 1080 display, AMD 7730M 2GB graphics and 3rd generation Intel Core i5 processor. Add to that the more premium anodized aluminum design and impressive sturdiness of the Inspiron 15R 7520 along with other well-rounded features and it’s hard to go too far wrong with this purchase. Of course there are some downsides to consider. The weight of 6.4lbs and thickness of 1.34-inch means this notebook isn’t ideal for business meetings or frequent travel from class to class. It’s bulky and looks the part.
The battery life is also on the low side, under normal usage with good screen brightness you’ll be lucky to get even 3 hours. You’ll have to dim screen brightness along with other conservation measures to get 4 hours on the battery, for this reason it simply does not work well as a mobile machine. However, if you’re looking for a desktop replacement style laptop that stays around the home and can run demanding applications, or even 3D games, then the Inspiron 15R Special Edition is a diamond in the rough. So don’t overlook it and write off Dell based on some of the other, unimpressive Inspiron laptops.
- Beautiful 1920 x 1080 Full HD Screen
- Base configuration specs are very generous for the price
- Sturdy build quality and aluminum finish helps looks
- AMD 7730M graphics provides some gaming ability, stays cool
- Thick and bulky with a weight of 6.4lbs
- Battery life is limited to around 3 hours
- Slow 5400RPM hard drive is standard