The Dell G7 15 is a mid-size gaming pc with middle-of-the-road GTX 1060 Max-Q graphics, middling battery existence, and—you guessed it—a mid-range ticket of $1,200. However the program boasts a stellar function that units it except for the gang: a six-core, benchmark-crushing Core i7 processor that’ll thrill content material creators. Certainly, the G7 15’s general efficiency is just a step or two at the back of that of our present 15-inch gaming pc, the thinner and lighter MSI GS65 Stealth Skinny 8RE, whilst costing about $600 much less. Amongst our quibbles: a dim display screen and an on occasion too-hot chassis.
This evaluation is a part of our highest gaming laptops roundup. Cross there for information about competing merchandise and the way we examined them.
Worth & specs
We examined the $1,199 style of the Dell G7 15 (Style 7588), which comes with Intel’s six-core Core i7-8750H processor, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a 128GB solid-state boot power and a standard 1TB onerous power for information. With a complete of 12 processing threads (due to Intel’s Hyper Threading know-how), the G7 15 packs in an eye-popping quantity of multitasking persistent, as we’ll see when we get to our benchmarks.
At the visible aspect, the G7 15 boasts a 15.6-inch anti-glare full-HD (1920×1080) IPS-technology show, plus an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 processor with 6GB of GDDR5 RAM and Max-Q design (which places a lid on efficiency to chop persistent intake and warmth output). Sitting in the course of Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 10 Collection video playing cards, the GTX 1060 with Max-Q reliably delivers 60 fps and up for most present top-tier video games.
You’ll knock about $120 off the associated fee tag of our G7 15 evaluation unit through snapping up a style with 8GB of RAM moderately than 16GB, whilst the priciest model swaps in a beefier, overclockable six-core i9-8950HK processor. There’s additionally a G7 15 pc with a 4K show (plus the usual i7-8750H CPU) for $1,499. By the way, each pc in Dell’s G7 15 line comes with the similar GTX 1060 graphics card with Max-Q design.
Measuring 15.32 x 10.82 x zero.98 inches and weighing a considerable however now not prohibitive 6 kilos, four oz (or 7 kilos, 2 oz with the chunky 180-watt AC adapter), the Dell G7 15’s heft mockingly makes it really feel thinner than you’d be expecting. That mentioned, the G7 made for a good squeeze in my 15-inch pc bag.
To be had in “Licorice Black” and “Alpine White” flavors (we examined the Alpine White selection), the Dell G7 15 boasts a sporty but understated glance. The apparent, rather inconspicuous lid is offset through a slanted entrance edge that boasts a nifty black grille, whilst the dual cooling vents in again glance sublime and robust.
Opening the lid finds a fairly thick bezel (about three-quarters of an inch alongside the highest and facets, plus an inch on the backside) across the 15.6-inch show, plus a easy, jet-black palm relaxation that’s reasonably indented across the keyboard.
The Dell G7 15’s non-touch, 1920×1080 show boasts stable viewing angles. The show dims a little beginning round 45 levels from the edges, height and backside, without a indicators of inverse colours as you may see on an inexpensive pc display screen. That’s just about par for the path on the subject of an IPS show just like the G7’s.
Whilst the Dell G7 15’s viewing angles glance excellent, the similar can’t be mentioned for brightness. Measuring simply 234 nits (or candelas), the G7’s display screen brightness falls rather wanting the 250-nit minimal we want. In an place of work environment or a den, the G7 15’s dim display screen isn’t an enormous downside, however I had bother making out one of the most darker ranges in Diablo three whilst I used to be gaming close to a shiny window.
Keyboard, trackpad, audio system, webcam
The Dell G7 15’s chiclet-style keyboard is same old mid-range pc fare, with easy, flat keys, respectable trip and a handy guide a rough tactile bump in the course of each and every keystroke. The defined WASD keys did their respective jobs right through gaming, neither impressing me nor moving into my means. A 10-key numeric keypad sits at the proper, whilst same old function-enabled hotkeys corresponding to display screen lock, seek, brightness, media playback, and plane mode also are on faucet. The G7 eschews fancy LED backlighting schemes for a fundamental two-step blue glow.
Stationed slightly left of heart to stay it at once underneath the spacebar, the Dell G7 15’s mid-size trackpad spoke back to my swipes with no less than jitter, whilst additionally heading off fallacious inputs from my hands. Clicking feels slightly stiff, in step with standard, however that shouldn’t topic a lot to players, who it will likely be the usage of mice more often than not.
Whilst they’re no exchange for a excellent pair of headphones, the Dell G7 15’s top-firing audio system are a slight lower above the tinny, bass-deprived audio system you’ll to find in maximum laptops. Song sounded fairly detailed with out collapsing into mush. Whilst you shouldn’t be expecting any giant beats, a minimum of you’ll pay attention a touch of bass. You’ll additionally crank the G7’s audio system to an impressively top quantity—a excellent factor, because it seems, for the reason that cooling enthusiasts generally tend to spin themselves as much as a roar right through graphically intense video games. (Extra at the G7 15’s warmth problems in a second.)
Video captured through the Dell G7 15’s webcam (its lens sits within the height bezel of the show) appears to be like usually grainy and blotchy, albeit with respectable distinction and colour. Whilst the G7’s webcam is okay for Skype, players having a look to make waves on Twitch would do higher with a devoted lens.
The Dell G7 15 comes with a stable choice of ports, beginning at the left with an ethernet port, USB three.1 Gen. 2 Kind-A, and an SD reminiscence card reader. Additionally at the left aspect: a Noble lock safety port and a barrel-shaped power-in port.
At the proper aspect of the G7 15, you’ll to find HDMI 2.zero, a Thunderbolt three port, two extra USB three.1 Kind-A ports (with PowerShare), and a combo audio jack.
Whilst the Dell G7 15’s middle-of-the-road GTX 1060 Max-Q video card delivers expectedly mid-range graphics efficiency, its six-core CPU—a number of the first we’ve observed in a fairly skinny gaming pc, even supposing we will be able to be expecting many extra within the close to long term—cranked out some really spectacular numbers, best possible for players who wish to take a spoil from capturing issues to create different issues.
In our first benchmark, we use the loose HandBrake software to encode a 40GB video report into an Android tablet-compatible structure. It’s a CPU-intensive process that may take an hour or extra to finish, and it has a tendency to spin up cooling enthusiasts within the procedure. Whilst a excellent HandBrake rating doesn’t essentially equate to stellar gaming visuals (we’ll get to gaming efficiency in a second), it does bode neatly for YouTube content material creators, Twitch broadcasters, or any person else who plans on multitasking whilst gaming.
Processors with essentially the most cores most often do higher with HandBrake, and sure, the Dell G7 15 and its six-core Core i7-8750H CPU completely crushes it. Certainly, with its Handbrake rating of two,035 seconds, or just a bit over part an hour, the G7 15 trails handiest the an identical six-core MSI GS65 Stealth Skinny 8RE, a razor-thin gaming pc that prices $600 extra.
The following-fastest competitor in our comparability, the Dell G3 15 with a quad-core i5-8300H processor, took an extra 10 mins to finish the Handbrake check, adopted through a sequence of Core i7-7700HQ-powered laptops, demonstrating the adaptation the ones further cores make on the subject of CPU-intensive duties.
Subsequent up, our Cinebench check comes to every other disturbing computing activity: rendering a three-D symbol in real-time. As a result of Cinebench takes only some mins to accomplish, it provides us a good suggestion of the way a given pc handles quick bursts of intense task. We run Cinebench in each multi-threaded and single-thread modes, to hand for illustrating the efficiency advantages of extra cores and threads.
Unsurprisingly, the 12-threaded Dell G7 15 shines on the subject of Cinebench’s multi-threaded check, one once more notching a rating handiest reasonably at the back of that of the MSI GS65 Stealth Skinny 8RE, whilst handily dusting its quad-core pageant. We’re additionally happy through the Dell’s chart-topping single-thread outcome.
(Word: Effects for the Gigabyte Aero 15X, a gadget observed in different charts on this tale, weren’t to be had for this check.)
We’ll get started our gaming exams with FireStrike Excessive, a man-made benchmark that doesn’t at once translate to gaming efficiency however nonetheless provides us a excellent baseline for comparisons.
The Dell G7 15’s FireStrike Excessive rating lands in the course of the pack, which makes best possible sense given its GTX 1060 with Max-Q. The highest two finishers in our chart, the MicroCenter PowerSpec 15 and the Gigabyte Aero 15X P65Q, boast extra robust GTX 1070 playing cards, whilst many of the laptops that path the Dell have GTX 1050 GPUs. The MSI GS65 Stealth Skinny 8RE with a an identical GTX 1060 card (albeit the usage of a full-fat configuration, in comparison to the G7’s power-optimized Max-Q design) manages a reasonably higher FireStrike Excessive rating than the G7 15, however as we’ll see in a second, it doesn’t make a lot distinction on the subject of real-world gaming.
(Word: Effects for the HP Omen 15-ce0xx, a gadget observed in different charts on this tale, weren’t to be had for this check.)
Talking of real-world gaming, let’s start with 2013’s Tomb Raider reboot, a recreation that leans slightly extra on CPU persistent than newer titles.
We’d be expecting a pc with a GTX 1060 video card to squeeze out a Tomb Raider body price someplace within the 90s, and that’s just about what we were given from the Dell G7 15. Whilst the GTX 1060-powered MSI GS65 Stealth Skinny 8RE enjoys (as we simply noticed) a slight FireStrike Excessive benefit over the G7, it will get just a modest Tomb Raider body price bump over the Dell (97.2 fps as opposed to 92.7 fps). To look a extra important spice up in Tomb Raider body charges, you’d wish to cough up extra for a pc with GTX 1070 or higher graphics, such because the MicroCenter PowerSpec 15.
We see extra of the similar with Center-earth: Shadow of Mordor. All of the GTX 1060 Max-Q-powered laptops in our chart—together with the Dell G7 15—bunched up more or less within the 80-90 fps vary, whilst a couple of laptops with full-fat GTX 1060 graphics noticed a modest bump to 90-100 fps.
For Shadow of Mordor body charges above 120, you’ll most often wish to step as much as a gadget with GTX 1070 or higher graphics.
In any case, we fired up Upward push of the Tomb Raider, a graphically intense name that calls for a minimum of GTX 1060 graphics to reach a easy 60 fps.
The Dell G7 15 and its GTX 1060 Max-Q graphics flip in a stable 68.five fps, whilst the in a similar way provided Acer Predator Helios 300 and MSI GS65 Stealth Skinny 8RE sit down in the similar ballpark with 72.1 and 70.7 fps, respectively. Gaming laptops with GTX 1070 or higher graphics (just like the MicroCenter PowerSpec 15) can wring greater than 100 fps from Upward push of the Tomb Raider, whilst sub-$1,000 GTX 1050-powered laptops like Dell’s personal G3 15 usually accept between 30-45 fps.
Gaming laptops can get scorching. Stay studying for our enjoy with the G7 15.