Mention desktop replacement PCs, and the first thing that comes to mind are chunky notebooks that run hot and noisy. While this is still true for high-end gaming desktop replacements, the mainstream ones like the Dell Inspiron 16 Plus now come in relatively svelte dimensions, and offer good performance, too.
- 16-inch 3K (3,072 x 1,920 pixel) screen
- Intel Core i7-12700H processor with 16GB system memory and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 graphics
- Thunderbolt 4, 2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, HDMI, SD card slot, audio jack
But like gaming notebooks, the Inspiron 16 Plus becomes fairly warm during more intensive apps. It's not exactly built for gaming, but its Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 graphics can handle most games at more modest, medium settings. For instance, the Dell managed a smooth 64fps in Watch Dogs: Legion at 1080p and High setting. That's just a couple of frames fewer than an affordable mainstream gaming notebook like the HP Victus 16. The Dell's PCMark 10 score (7,147) is also closer to gaming notebooks than PCs designed for content creation, such as the Microsoft Surface Studio Laptop. Downside: You can definitely hear the Inspiron's dual fans when things get heated.
The Inspiron 16 Plus has an ample 16-inch screen with a crisp 3K display. It could be brighter, and the colours don't quite pop on this matte screen. But overall, it's decent enough, especially the resolution. The bezels, for one, are pleasantly slim. The webcam at the top bezel has a physical privacy shutter, which is good. So too is the 1080p quality of this 2MP camera, though some laptops are now featuring 5MP cameras. There's no face recognition. Instead, you'll have to tap the power button, which also serves as a fairly accurate fingerprint reader. However, the keyboard could be more tactile, and key travel is also middling. But I did like the smooth yet clicky touchpad.
Design-wise, the Inspiron is bland enough not to attract any attention. The aluminium chassis of my review unit is a solid dark green with just the Dell logo on the lid. Given its 16-inch dimensions, I was expecting more ports than two USB-A, a USB-C Thunderbolt 4, and a HDMI port. You do get a SD card slot, which isn't that common in laptops nowadays. But cooling vents take up quite a fair bit of the laptop sides. The Inspiron 16 Plus has four speakers, two at the top above the keyboard. They get loud, but still manage to sound balanced at higher volumes. There isn't much bass to speak of, though.
The Dell Inspiron 16 Plus clocked 6hr 19 min in our video-loop battery test. That's very decent all things considered (screen size, and dedicated graphics). Of course, you do get better stamina with laptops that have integrated graphics, such as the LG Gram 16. But if you need more performance, the Dell offers that, though it's a bit heavier, and chunkier. At S$2,099 for my Core i7 review set with Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 graphics, the Inspiron is also reasonably priced for what you get. There's also a higher-end model with a slightly more powerful GeForce RTX 3060 for about S$200 more. The Dell doesn't stand out visually, but you can definitely get a fair amount of work, whether it's office work, content creation, or even light gaming, out of it. Get it now from Dell, Lazada or Shopee.
Note: Review unit provided by Dell.
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