Is the Dell Inspirion 15 5000 Series Worth It?
August 24, 2016 11:23 AM   Subscribe

I'm interested in the Dell Inspirion 15 5000 Series, but I'm not sure if Dell is worth the time. Chiefly, I need a good laptop for university, photography editing, blogging, writing essays, youtube, reddit, playing chess, downloading pdf files, computer programming, and possibly Minecraft.

I'm not sure which Dell Inspirion 15 5000 Series would best suit my interests listed above. I can spend up to $600 if that helps. I'm not a computer geek, so I'm not familiar with the computer jargon stuff. I think the problem with this series, is that you cannot upgrade to a better graphic card.

Does anyone have or had problems with the Inspirion 15 5000 Series?

Are there similar laptops with this price range and ideal?

Thanks Kindly,
posted by RearWindow to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You get what you pay for with them. I have one that's two years old that processes 36MB RAW files fast enough to be tolerable in Lightroom and does everything else you mention except gaming just fine, and I only say that because I don't game. The Intel 520 will run Minecraft just fine, so if that's as demanding as your GPU needs are, there's no strong reason to upgrade. The touchpad is usable but not great is my biggest complaint about it.

If you wait for the right sale, you can get them at very good prices on their Outlet site.

Lenovo makes similar ones at similar prices. They use some truly awful touchpads on their lower end systems, so read reviews of specific models before buying.
posted by Candleman at 1:41 PM on August 24, 2016

I am not an expert, but I just bought a similar Dell. What I do know is that you should be shopping for the processor and the RAM, not the product line.

I chose the i5 processor, 8G RAM, 256G SSD. With the same specs, the 5000 and 7000 series were both available and both basically the same price; I hear that the construction quality is better (more professional) for the 7000 than the 5000, and the 3000 is more toy-like.

For processors, I chose the i5 because I didn't feel like springing for the newer i7 but I felt that the i3 would age out too soon, and I tend to keep my devices a long time, long enough that multiple new OS get released and the old hardware starts to struggle.

I can't speak to video/graphics, because that wasn't something I cared about. I chose SSD over traditional hard drive because I wasn't anticipating storing a lot of music or photos (I use remote drives) - that might be different for you.

I am very happy with it. My one regret is that I don't find the trackpad very easy to use, it's a bit jumpy and very tap-sensitive, and my thumb keeps drifting off the "button" area. So I use the touchscreen a lot.

I did go to Best Buy and try out a lot of comparable-priced devices there. I used a notepad window and typed a fairly long paragraph to get a feel for the keyboard. I opened and closed it the lid in both configurations and picked it up and waved it around (that's how I ended up 13" instead of 15"). I compared Dell, Lenovo (Yoga), HP, and a couple I couldn't afford.

Expensive laptops are really nice, but that doesn't mean I can afford them. The Dell is doing just fine so far, I'd buy it again (but I'd re-test a few other brands first and see how the trackpads are).
posted by aimedwander at 2:17 PM on August 24, 2016

if you are on a budget it really pays to check out the outlets for Dell and Lenovo. Right now the Lenovo outlet has several computers that are likely better than the inspiron. also, if your are at all interested in graphics work, try to find a model with an IPS screen.
posted by at 5:23 PM on August 24, 2016

They are reasonably decent, if possible, upgrade to an SSD (Solid State) drive for a considerable improvement in performance across the board with windows 10 and all applications.
posted by nickggully at 6:32 PM on August 24, 2016

My response isn't about the specific laptop you're looking at. I'm just chiming in to say that in my experience with Dell Inspiron laptops, they are bombproof. They just make a great product. And my experience with their support has been stellar also. I guess I'm cheerleading Dell Inspirons here; wanted to do so because I've had such good luck with them.
posted by dancestoblue at 11:26 PM on August 24, 2016

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