Finding the best laptop for yourself can be difficult. Especially with a myriad of choices presented among us, we often get confused about what to buy. Moreover, our conflicting interests also become a hurdle when choosing the laptop. However, if you are looking for a mid-range option, that looks cool and classy and a machine that you can use for your daily work while also doing some light gaming, then read ahead, because we’ve got an ideal option for you.
This article is the new Dell Inspiron 16 plus review. We usually review many budget-friendly machines, mid-range laptops, high-end laptops, and gaming laptops, but when we saw Dell release this new Inspiron 16 plus, we were instantly intrigued, it certainly didn’t look cheap or tacky like many other plastic Dell Inspiron laptops. This looked much more like it would fit in with the premium XPS range with the attractive blue mist metal chassis and a large 16 inch 16 by 10 screen and decent specs. So let’s take a look around this great mid-range multimedia laptop.
Read More : Dell Inspiron Laptop
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus specs at a glance
11th Generation Intel® Core™ i5-11400H (12MB Cache, up to 4.5 GHz, 6 cores)
(FREE Upgrade to Windows 11*)
Windows 11 Home, English
Intel® UHD Graphics
16.0-inch 16:10 3K (3072 x 1920) IPS AG Non-Touch, 300 nits, 100% sRGB
8GB, 2x4GB, DDR4, 3200MHz
256GB M.2 PCIe NVMe Solid State Drive
2 USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports
1 Thunderbolt™ 4 port with DisplayPort™ and Power Delivery
1 Universal Audio Jack
1 HDMI 2.0 port
1 power-adapter port
1 SD-card slot
Dimensions & Weight
Height (front): 0.66″ (16.80 mm) , Height (rear): 0.75″ (18.99 mm) x Width: 13.99″ (355.28 mm) x Depth: 9.74″ (247.50 mm) | Weight (maximum): 4.43 lb (2.011 kg)
720p at 30 fps HD camera
Case & Color
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Design
Let’s start by looking at the top. This is a very plain-looking laptop that would fit right in in a corporate environment. The blue mist color scheme looks great and retains that professional image. If you flip the laptop over, you will see the same blue mist base with a decent amount of air intake venting to allow this computer the cool air, which is important for the functioning of these powerful components
Moving to the left side we have some more exhaust venting, an HDMI 2 port, a USB 3 port, and then a thunderbolt 4 port. Lastly, there’s little status power light.
Switching around to the right-hand side we have more exhaust venting, a full-size sd card slot, another USB 3 port, and a headset jack. This in our opinion is the perfect amount of ports and this actually makes this laptop much more useful than the ports found on this year’s XPS range, which rely purely on thunderbolts or USB-C ports and an SD card. Moreover, let’s be honest, although USB-C is the future who still doesn’t need a USB 3 port for a mouse dongle or a keyboard or small fashion peripherals.
Looking at the rear of the laptop, it is used exclusively for the exhaust vents and although the design looks like it will exhaust the hot air into the screen, instead, like a MacBook, it actually pushed it out down below behind the laptop which is a much better solution. Opening the laptop up is pretty easy and can be accomplished with one hand. Although the hinges are a little stiff enough to cause the laptop base to lift as it opens, the hinges do feel very solid, and there’s no unwanted wobble when using the laptop.
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Trackpad and KeyboardMoving forward, talking about the trackpad and the keyboard of this new Dell Inspiron 16 plus, the palm rest also has the blue mist aluminum finish and we’re treated to a massive trackpad, which although feels like plastic, is still very responsive and the gestures work flawlessly.
The keyboard is a full-sized affair with a number pad and has a very dim white backlight as you expect from a laptop in this class. The typing feels comfortable with firm actuation and a reasonable amount of travel. The power button is located in the top right of the keyboard and includes the built-in fingerprint sensor. However, unfortunately, there are no windows but this fingerprint sensor works responsively, which is certainly better than nothing.
Above the keyboard is more intake venting to bring the cooler into the system and unfortunately, it isn’t for the speakers.
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Audio
To test the speakers, we first kept the volume at 40 and then gradually started increasing it. As we finished our test, we concluded that the speakers for a mid-range laptop, that is between the $1000 and $ 1500 range, these speakers actually aren’t that bad. However, we wouldn’t prefer to listen to music on it, but the speakers are good for watching a Youtube video or listening to a podcast. However, for music and movies, we would recommend using an external speaker.
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Display
Moving up to the screen, this is one of the stand-out features for this laptop as it includes a 16-inch 3072 by 1920 high dpi 16 by 10 panel. It’s also got a pretty good color gamut and brightness of about 320 nits so it’s more than usable as this is an actual matte panel.
Now unfortunately it’s not all good news. This being a mid-range laptop, it has only got a 60hz panel and that’s fine for most users looking for content creation or a multimedia laptop. However, if you want to utilize the RTX card for a bit of gaming you’re going to be seeing a lot of ghosting and trailing on any fast-paced games. The ufo in the ufo test website is a blurry similar mess indicating a slow panel response, which is fine for strategy games or RPG games but not so great if you’re into fast-paced or twitch shooters. After all, this isn’t a dedicated gaming laptop, it’s a multimedia laptop so this is usually the case with these 60hz screens, and the XPS range is no different.
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Webcam
Above the screen, you’ll find a webcam that also includes a shutter switch so the privacy-conscious among us can disable the webcam. However, the results of the webcam are not too impressive but can be recommended for work meetings and video chats with friends and family. The brightness is good, but the contrast is a bit too overwhelming. Moreover, the image appears to be a little blotchy. As for the microphone, it can eliminate background noise to a certain point.
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Performance
So now we’ve had a good look at the externals. Let’s get deep and see how it actually performs. We chose the 11800h 11th gen CPU for our review unit and this CPU has really impressed us this year and is a viable alternative to the top-end Ryzen CPUs that have been dominating the market at the beginning part of this year. So using our normal benchmarks, the CPU is giving inadequate performance results. Short bursts gave us the scores we expect from the CPU but any longer test shows the laptop’s slim design means it gets a cooling solution that cannot fully handle the wattage of 11800 under sustained load.
Graphics and gaming on Dell Inspiron 16 plus
Moving to 3d benchmarks, the RTX 3050 performed as expected for a 50-watt graphics card. Moreover, although you can upgrade to a 3060, we are not quite sure if it’s going to be worth it in this chassis as when a gaming laptop prioritizes the GPU wattage over the CPU, you’re definitely going to get the CPU bottlenecked when running apex, which is quite a light fps title. It’s certainly very playable when turning down the settings; this CPU maxes at 15 watts in the optimized profile and 20 watts in maxed profile, which means the CPU will be severely downclocked when gaming. If it is a heavy CPU title and you’ll be seeing clock speeds in the one to two gigahertz range. As we mentioned earlier this isn’t a gaming laptop, though as a work multimedia laptop it absolutely excels and you’ll get the bonus that you can game on the side now whilst we’re still looking at the apex. Another point to note is, how cool this laptop runs because they’ve capped the CPU. You get a cool and quiet laptop which maxes out about 46 decibels in maximum performance mode in gaming, which is pretty impressive. Usually, gaming laptops are 50 decibels or higher, this means that the keyboard remains pretty cool so no sweaty palms because nobody likes sweaty palms.
Dell Inspiron 16 Plus Battery life
So now that we’ve looked at the gaming and graphics, let’s talk about the battery performance and this is another win for this laptop. In our usual video streaming over wi-fi at 50 brightness tests, we managed to get just over nine hours of battery life. For a high dpi screen, this is an impressive score and also the performance on the battery is incredibly snappy with CPU scores not far off the main speeds and the RTX 3050 performance is also satisfactory. However, if you fire up the rtx card or maximize the CPU, you’re going to destroy that decent battery life.
Gaming on battery managed just over an hour, which is pretty normal considering the power of this machine.
Is the Dell Inspiron 16 Plus upgradable?
Since all laptops can become outdated, as technology paves its way, Dell, in this regard, is very smart with its machines. You can easily make a few upgrades in the system to make it as per your comfort.
Here is what you can upgrade in this mid-range Dell Inspiron 16 Plus. Firstly, we’ve got two m.2 ssds. Out of them, one is 30 millimeters and the other one is 80 millimeters. However, they have put 30 millimeters in an 80millimeter bay. If you get a configuration like this, we would suggest you take out your 30 millimeter and pop it in the 30 millimeter slot. This would spare you 80 millimeter bay for an upgrade. Moreover, there are two ram slots, so you can upgrade the ram. You get a 16 GB ram, which you can upgrade it with another 8 GB or double it with 16 GB. This upgrade would give you that extra performance. Apart from that, the wi-fi card is socketed, which means it can be upgraded in the future.
Our Two Cents
Being honest, this is the first instant laptop that we’ve actually been thoroughly impressed with. Before this Inspiron laptop, we’ve always considered them bargain-basement laptops for the budget-conscious. However, we think Dell is trying to break away from this image with this new range.
The body looks and feels impressive. The laptop has a great usable range of ports and ample power for most users. Moreover, it has an upgradable SSD and ram, which we think Dell may have gone a bit too conservative on the CPU power when talking about gaming, but at least that leads to a cool and quiet laptop when under load.
Now, if you’re mostly a gamer we wouldn’t recommend this system anyway, because with its 60-hertz panel it has a slow response and a heavily throttled CPU under load.
However, for the average user that prioritizes working media first and gaming as a secondary function then this is an absolutely brilliant machine with ample performance, great battery, and a great productive 16-inch high dpi screen, which is an absolute joy to use. All in all, we believe this is a great option for those who are looking for a mid-range laptop option.
If you ask us, we have already given our verdict, but what do you think about it after going through this detailed review of Dell Inspiron 16 plus? Let us know through your comments.