Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Content

  1. TECH SPECS
  2. Positioning
  3. Appearance
  4. Screen
  5. Keyboard and Touchpad
  6. Battery life
  7. Dell Power Manager
  8. Performance
  9. Conclusion and competitors

TECH SPECS

  • Processor: 7th Gen Intel® Core ™ i10750-12H, 6MB Cache, 2,6 Cores, 5GHz to 5GHz (i9, iXNUMX options available)
  • Screen: 17.3-inch, Full HD (1920 x 1080), 300 Hz, anti-glare, 100% sRGB color gamut, 300 nits brightness, wide viewing angle, non-touch
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Home or Pro
  • Video card:
    • Intel® UHD Graphics
    • NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX ™ 2070 Super 8GB GDDR6 (2070, 2060, 1660 Ti, 1650 Ti options)
  • Memory: 16GB Dual Channel DDR4, 2 x 8GB, 2933MHz (up to 32GB)
  • Storage: M.2 2280 Solid State Drive, PCIe Gen 3 x4 NVMe, 1TB, Options (SSD + HDD, SSD + Intel Optane)
  • Connectivity: Killer ™ AX 1650i, 2 × 2, MIMO, 2,4 / 5 GHz, Wi-Fi 6 (Wi-Fi 802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.0 (there are options Intel Wi-Fi 5 / Bt 5, Intel Wi-Fi 6 / Bt 5, Qualcomm Wi-Fi 5 / Bt 4.2)
  • Audio: Stereo speakers, 2 x 2W = 4W total with dual array microphones
  • Camera: High-definition (720p) RGB camera at 30 fps, two directional microphones included in the camera assembly.
  • Input: 4-zone RGB backlit keyboard, standard touchpad
  • Battery: Built-in, 97-cell, 56Wh lithium-ion, smart battery with ExpressCharge ™ technology (XNUMXWh XNUMX-cell option available)
  • Ports for all configurations:
    • 1 USB 3.2 Gen 1 port with PowerShare technology
    • 2 USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports
    • 1 headset port (headphone / microphone combo)
    • 1 HDMI 2.0 port
    • 1 power adapter port
    • 1 SD card slot
  • Ports only for laptops with GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, RTX 2060, RTX 2070 or RTX 2070 Super (sample on test):
    • 1 Thunderbolt 3 (USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C®)
    • 1 x Mini DisplayPort 1.4
    • 1 RJ-45 Killer Networks E2500v2 Gigabit Ethernet port
  • Body materials: plastic and aluminum
  • Dimensions: height (front) 19.3 x height (back) 20.7 x height (maximum) 22.9 x width 398.2 x length 290 mm, weight 2.85 kg, maximum configuration 3.29 kg

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Positioning

Dell has a gaming division with a separate Alienware brand. Alienware looks like it’s always a gaming device. Luminous logo, futuristic design, the laptop catches the eye. Alienware laptops use the best and most advanced Dell solutions. But the price tag is also appropriate. Dell’s G-series are also gaming laptops, but they are usually visually simpler (thicker, heavier), and there are fewer options for hardware. For example, in the new Alienware, the most powerful configuration is the 2080 SUPER Max-Q, while the G7’s top is the GeForce® RTX ™ 2070 Super Mobile. Another example is the ability to take the Alienware with a 4K OLED screen, the G-series only has IPS + Full HD.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

New Alienware looks deliberately aggressive

Accordingly, the G-Series is the gaming computer for the rational consumer. For those who want a powerful laptop, but are not ready to overpay for the very top. Plus, thanks to its more modest design, the G-series can pass for a typical office laptop, which will appeal to anyone who just wants a powerful device.

I have a lot of respect for the Dell G-series. In my opinion, these are some of the best laptops for the home in terms of price / performance ratio.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Appearance

  • Right side: slot for memory cards, USB 3.2 Type-A
  • Left-hand side: combo 3.5 mm jack, USB 3.2 Type-A, charging connector
  • Backside: Thunderbolt ™ 3, Mini DisplayPort, HDMI 2.0, USB 3.2 Type-A, RJ-45
Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Under certain lighting, the logo on the lid shimmers. It is usually mirrored dark blue.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

It may be that black is slimming, but at first glance, I decided that the new G7 was significantly slimmer and slimmer. This is partly the case. The previous model was 25mm thick, the new G7 is 19.3mm to 22.9mm thick. But the weight remained practically the same. Depending on configuration – from 2.85 to 3.29 kg. In short, we must commend the Dell designers. After playing around with the thicknesses, trimming a little here and there, they created a visual miracle that makes the 17-inch laptop look compact. For you to understand how Dell deceived me, I initially decided that the laptop would fit perfectly into my backpack for 15.6-inch laptops. And I was very surprised when it turned out that it didn’t work.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

4 legs, standard screws. In true Dell tradition: easy to remove cover, easy to swap memory and storage

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Combo 3.5 mm jack, USB 3.2 Type-A, charging port

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Memory card slot, USB 3.2 Type-A

The laptop is made of plastic and aluminum. This is also a kind of charade, because it is problematic to understand tactilely where what is. Precisely made of plastic “stern” where the main ports are. The back cover is also plastic, the inner surface of the keyboard and sides are aluminum.

From new visual solutions – screen mount. Now the screen seems to be on a leg.

It used to be like this:

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

And now like this:

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The laptop screen rests on a leg. This is a major visual change compared to the previous generation.

Other visual changes – the rejection of the fingerprint scanner, which was in the power button.

The cooling system is implemented in such a way that hot air is blown out only backwards, and most of the case is practically not heated.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Firstly, it’s beautiful

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Thunderbolt ™ 3, Mini DisplayPort, HDMI 2.0, USB 3.2 Type-A, RJ-45

In conclusion, a couple of features are worth noting. First, take another look at the specifications above. The port sets differ depending on the video cards.

As already mentioned above, the laptop cover is fixed with standard screws. And a manual is included with the laptop, which describes how to disassemble and replace anything – from a keyboard to a Wi-Fi unit. Because of this simplicity, Dell laptops remind me of a conventional Kalashnikov assault rifle in the laptop world: in 30 minutes you can disassemble, clean, repair and assemble.

And speaking of the upgrade. In a configuration with a 97 Wh battery, only the RAM + SSD can be replaced. If the three-cell battery is 57 W * h, then the laptop also has an HDD, that is, you can change the RAM, SSD and HDD. There are also configurations with Intel Optane memory. I’m sorry, but I don’t know anything about them. It often happens that RAM cannot be upgraded due to Intel Optane.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Maximum level of disclosure

Screen

First, I’ll express my emotion. I had a screen with a refresh rate of 300 Hz on my test. In my experience, this is the first such screen. The difference is felt immediately. The interface appears smooth, never before seen by me. The clarity is also a delight. For example, with fast scrolling of the text, you still have time to consider words and phrases, at 60 Hz or 144 Hz everything merged. In short, a complete delight!

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

And now on the case. The new G7 has several screen options:

  • 1920 x 1080 pixels, 120 Hz, 45% NTSC color gamut, 250 nits brightness
  • 1920 x 1080 pixels, 144 Hz, 72% NTSC color gamut, 300 nits brightness
  • 1920 x 1080 dots, 300 Hz, 100% sRGB color gamut, 300 nits brightness

All screens are matte with anti-reflective coating. 72% NTSC = 99% sRGB. The screens are fully consistent with the declared characteristics. Promised 300 nits? Here’s a sign for you!

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Honest 307 nits, everything as promised

Compared to the previous generation, the screens have not changed much, if you do not take into account the increased refresh rate. Perhaps the side frames have become a little narrower.

Which screen should you choose? In my opinion, in this case, such a question does not arise. The simplest screen shouldn’t even be considered: 250 nits and 45% NTSC. It’s somehow undignified. Probably, the most basic models will be equipped with such a screen. In any case, I do not advise saving.

The choice should be made between 144 Hz and 300 Hz. You can take anyone. Both will be good and will not disappoint. By the way, do not forget that in the settings you can always turn on the 60 Hz refresh rate and save a little battery. For myself, I can say that I don’t really notice the difference between a 60 Hz and 144 Hz screen, but I noticed the smoothness, which is noticeable even when scrolling text in Word, at 300 Hz right away. Probably, the top-end screen will only come with the most advanced hardware specifications. That is, the price tag will be appropriate.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

There is a webcam above the screen. Dell proudly states that this is a high definition (720p) RGB camera. This is the picture produced by a high-definition RGB camera (720p). In general, I believe that Full HD cameras can be installed in gaming laptops that do not care about size and weight too much. For example, at the last presentation, Nvidia introduced the Broadcast application to make it easier to stream. Agree that for such things you want a better picture. However, it is quite suitable for Skype and video chats. You can be seen, people recognize you, everything is fine.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

An example of a shot with a high-resolution RGB camera

Keyboard and Touchpad

I’ll start with the main thing. I put the Dell G7 laptop in the selection “The main gadgets of August” and when asked in the comments about the backlight, I replied that it is the same color there – turquoise – and cannot be changed. I was wrong.

In a laptop, the keyboard can shimmer with all the colors of the rainbow and beats into 4 zones. The keyboard can burn statically, it can pulsate, there are even stylish options such as “breathing” (that is, it slowly flares up and slowly fades out), “rainbow” and others. All settings are located in the Alienware Command Center app. As an excuse, I can only say that the interface is not very intuitive and did not figure out how to change it from the fly. It is necessary to select “Backlight”, and then put a checkmark on the left side of the lines with the names of the zones, and on the right side the color selected on the palette will be displayed. And by inertia I poked at the color on the right side. It is logical that nothing happened.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The laptop shines turquoise by default

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

But the backlight lends itself to any setting. For example, the highlight bar can be manually adjusted so that each of its 8 segments is a different color. I’ve created a blue-green stripe

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The keys also hit the blocks and lend themselves to color settings

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Color setting interface

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The laptop keyboard caused me positive emotions. Excellent key travel (1.4-1.5 mm), buttons are moderately elastic, separate arrow keys, which are not combined with other functions (for example, PgUp, PgDn are on the sides). There is a right Ctrl, which was combined with the button responsible for the right mouse click (Shift + F10 combination). There is a separate number block.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The gaming accessory of the laptop is given only by the macro keys above the number block. There are 4 of them. By the way, macro recording is quite powerful. They can also be adapted for household needs. For example, tie the launch of a program or open a folder or replace hotkeys.

There is a “G” button in the upper left corner. Pressing it puts the laptop into the maximum performance mode, and the fans start spinning at maximum. A nice little thing and a useful little thing that adds 5% to productivity. The button is lit only in active mode.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The touchpad in a laptop is slightly enlarged – 11.5 x 8 cm (usually 10.5 x 6.5-7 cm). Nice coating, a bit like a soft-touch. Supports gestures, pushed through, simulating the left and right mouse buttons. There are no questions or comments about the touchpad.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Battery life

The laptop comes with a 240 W power supply, because this is what the RTX 2070 Super video card wants. In addition to the appearance of the laptop, the power supply has also been updated. Visually, it has become thinner, but don’t let that fool you. It’s still the same brick. Together with the wires, the weight of the adapter is 1 kilogram without a couple of tens of grams.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Well, at least they made a beautiful glowing tip. From the photo, it may not be noticeable, but it burns with a rich deep blue color. Why it is needed is not clear, but very beautiful. Very nice.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The laptop’s battery life is good for a 17-inch screen. At medium brightness in economical mode in office affairs, it may well last 5-6 hours. Accordingly, Dell G7 is quite possible to take to work in a cafe. I mean that you will take him by car from home to the cafe. It’s not very interesting to carry 3.2 kg in a backpack just like that.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Dell Power Manager

Dell has a great power management app. Don’t ignore him. If you have a Dell laptop, but do not have this application, then do not be lazy to download. A necessary and useful thing.

However, most likely, Dell G7 will not leave the apartment. In this regard, I recommend paying attention to the Dell Power Manager application. Not the most noticeable thing, but there you can set restrictions so that, for example, the battery charging stops at 55%. There is also an option “for those who work primarily from an outlet.” What this option does, I still do not understand, on the Internet people are also guessing … After the G7 I will take a new Alienware for a test, along the way I will ask a question about this option.

Dell Power Manager also has the ability to turn on fast charging when the laptop is charged up to 1% in 80 hour. In normal mode, charging takes two hours.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop
Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The app also has an option to extend battery life, which limits processor performance, lowers brightness, turns off the backlight and sound.

Performance

In terms of performance, the Dell G7 is great:

  • I7-10750H processor
  • RTX 2070 Super 8GB Graphics
  • 16 GB of RAM
  • Superfast 1TB SSD

We need to make a comment. The laptop uses RTX 2070 Super 8GB graphics. There is a little trick here. This is not a Max-Q design, but it is not a desktop version either, but a mobile one. That is, the performance is lower than that of the desktop one, but 10-15% (depending on the tasks) higher than that of the Max-Q.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

In everyday life (browser, YouTube, office), the laptop is silent. In the maximum performance mode, the noise level does not exceed 50 dB. The fan noise is clearly audible. There is no feeling that the laptop will fly away. However, this kind of noise is perfectly filtered by any noise canceling headphones. Graphics performance is also affected by the work of the engineers who created the laptop.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The design of the notebook is optimized to keep all the areas touched by the user cool or slightly warm. But this does not mean that the laptop does not heat up. The core temperature rose to 100 degrees. There is a notch at the base of the screen leg, and there you can feel the laptop heating up. The metal becomes scalding hot without even touching it with a finger.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Perhaps the only area that gets hot

And there is a little secret here. Be sure to click on the “turbo” button in the upper right corner above the keyboard. Then the laptop, like the fans, goes into maximum performance mode. The laptop cools down and delivers 2-5% more performance. For example, here is the 3DMark Time Spy benchmark just in the maximum Windows performance mode (7 points) and in the “turbo” mode from Dell (705 points).

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop
Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The declared performance of the laptop is enough for any modern games. In Microsoft Flight Simulator at “ultra” settings with maximum rendering detail, the frame rate is 25-28 fps. This is a good indicator. The ideal maximum is 31-33 fps.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptopDell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

In Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, the game itself chooses the maximum graphics settings by default. The fps number is around 50. Quite a good indicator. The maximum figure for such a card is 61-63 fps. If you run the game with a 1440p screen connected, then it will be 45 fps, if real 4K, then 31-32 fps

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order at “ultra” settings of 90 fps.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Speaking about the performance in games, it can be noted that it is good and allows you to run any of the existing games. However, the engineers did not realize the maximum potential, and the laptop could be 15-20% more powerful. Relatively speaking, it turned out that if I took a laptop with an RTX 2070 Mobile, which has the maximum potential of the card, then it would give even slightly better performance than my test sample. Another point is that such a laptop will cost more, even now, despite the fact that it seems to be on an outdated schedule. And a similarly priced competitor on the RTX 2070 Mobile last year (for example, the Asus Strix Scar III G531GW) will give a 10% worse result.

However, for those who want all the juice squeezed out, there is Alienware.

It is worth noting that my test unit had a very fast SSD drive. Not Samsung, but also very good.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

Screenshots of the rest of the performance tests are below.

Pcmark 10 results.

I consider it appropriate to repeat the point about ports and upgrade options, which I already wrote in the “Appearance” section:

In conclusion, a couple of features are worth noting. First, take another look at the specifications above. The port sets differ depending on the video cards.

As already mentioned above, the laptop cover is fixed with standard screws. And a manual is included with the laptop, which describes how to disassemble and replace anything – from a keyboard to a Wi-Fi unit. Because of this simplicity, Dell laptops remind me of a conventional Kalashnikov assault rifle in the laptop world: in 30 minutes you can disassemble, clean, repair and assemble.

And speaking of the upgrade. In a configuration with a 97 Wh battery, only the RAM + SSD can be replaced. If the three-cell battery is 57 W * h, then the laptop also has an HDD, that is, you can change the RAM, SSD and HDD. There are also configurations with Intel Optane memory. I’m sorry, but I don’t know anything about them. It often happens that RAM cannot be upgraded due to Intel Optane.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop


Conclusion and competitors

I have not seen the laptop on sale yet, but I suspect that the price will be at the level of 150 thousand rubles. As a versatile home laptop for work and play, I liked the Dell G7. Nice screen, fast SSD, great processor / graphics combination.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

The main competitor for the Dell G7 17 will be, as I understand it, the new HP Omen with a price tag of 150-155 thousand rubles. Plus or minus similar specs, but HP Omen on RTX 2070 Super Max-Q card. And we have to look at what HP engineers did. If we compare the new G7 17 with the 2019 Omen, then the victory in performance (5-10%) for Dell.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

However, in my opinion, the main competitor for the G7 was the announcement of the 30-series cards from Nvidia. So far, only desktop versions have been announced and nothing is known about mobile versions. But the performance gain of the 30 series desktop samples is impressive and suggests that a mobile solution should provide a significant increase in capacity. However, waiting for mobile versions is probably another year, so if the question of buying a laptop is open right now, then the Dell G7 will not disappoint you.

Dell G7 17 review: a versatile powerful laptop

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