The Dell Inspiron 14R is a new variation of the popular Inspiron line, with a new design to help it compete with some of its more sexy competition. With a 14 inch screen and the choice of an Intel Core i3 or i5 processor, this is a good – if not outstanding – all-round, every-day kind of laptop.
The Dell Inspiron R range is available in everything from 14 to 17 inches, all of which sell on the reasonable end of the pricing spectrum. While it may not be the best value on the market, the Inspiron 14R does manage to pack a lot into its $800 price tag. The new design of this laptop certainly helps matters as well, with some new curves and colours that make it almost seem like a Studio series design.
The Inspiron 14R is built of standard Dell plastic, although the outer cover and palm rest do their best to at least appear like brushed metal. Also in standard Dell fashion, there are a number of bright colour choices on offer, including Peacock Blue, Tomato Red, and Pink Promise. The keyboard is a flat design that is full-size and easy to operate, as is the large, matte surface touchpad.
The Dell Inspiron 14R features a 14.1 inch screen with a resolution of 1366 x 768, which is fairly average for a laptop of this size. The colours and contrast look good, and the sound is actually quite impressive with an SRS Premium Sound system. All of the usual ports and connectivity are on-board, with HDMI, eSATA , and even an internal Bluetooth antenna.
One impressive feature with the Inspiron 14R is the choice of a ATI Radeon HD 5670 GPU, which performs well when watching movies and playing games. While this is not a gaming laptop by anyone’s standards, it certainly performs well enough as a casual mobile gaming solution. However, the inclusion of quality graphics may be one reason the battery life is so poor, with some tests showing less than 3 hours of battery life in heavy use.
As always with Dell, there are a number of different configurations of the Inspiron 14R on offer, with prices starting out from below $800. However, once you include an Intel Core i5 processor and a some healthy RAM and hard drive options, your final bill may be considerably more.
up to Intel Core i5
14.1 inch HD screen
1366 x 768 resolution
up to 500GB hard drive
up to 4GB of DDR3 RAM
Intel HD or ATI Mobility Radeon graphics
Windows 7 Home
2 x USB 2.0
7-1 card reader