A number of Dell Inspirons have been already reviewed on this site, and I don’t see an end to this. It’s a never-ending stream of budget laptops hailing out of Texas, with one of their latest models being the 13 inches Dell Inspiron i7347-50sLV computer. It’s actually a hybrid laptop whose screen turns whole 360 degrees, essentially making it a tablet. Well, here on Tech For Pennies we’re interested in this kind of gadgets, and below you’ll find our opinion about it!
The most prominent thing about this Dell is indeed the 2-in-1 concept, but let’s not give too much weight for that. Rather, the performance is also an important factor, dictating what you can and what you can’t do on this laptop.
To start with, this convertible features Intel Core i3-4010U, a processor of two cores and 1.7GHz clock speed. Being ultra-low voltage, it doesn’t require big power supply which makes sense for such a hybrid laptop. On the flipside though, it skimps on some performance but has easily enough oomph for everyday computing and also occasional demanding stuff.
4GB RAM is installed on Dell Inspiron i7347-50sLV, making it again fast enough for wide array of uses. According to the manual, the maximum memory is 8GB while in total there’s one SODIMM slot on the motherboard. In order to upgrade the memory, you’d have to swap the old 4GB module for a larger one.
Being a hybrid model one might wish the computer featured a solid-state drive. I have bad news for you, there’s just a regular 500GB 5400RPM hard drive taking care of your storage needs. It’s in no way a bad choice, just very basic one. There are no speed benefits that faster hard drives or SSDs offer, although half a terabyte is enough space for somebody who’s not too keen on storing huge files on his computer.
Screen and Graphics
If I had to name the defining factor of Dell Inspiron i7347-50sLV, it would definitely be the screen. In addition to being convertible, it also features touch. As such, operating the pre-installed Windows 8.1 (64-bit) should be convenient. The overall resolution of 1366×768 is nothing to celebrate, although on the small 13 inches screen it probably goes.
For graphics, this Dell offers Intel HD Graphics 4400. It’s a small level up from the slowest Intel HD chips, but still in no way comparable to dedicated graphics cards. Fancy games like Battlefield 4 and Thief would be barely playable on low settings. Sports games (F1, Fifas), Sims and older titles like World of Warcraft and Minecraft should however work well, even with some eye candy turned on.
Dell Inspiron i7347-50sLV has three USB ports, of which two are USB 3.0. The other USB 3.0 features PowerShare technology, which lets you to charge devices even when the laptop itself is powered off.
If you fancy a bigger screen than the 13 inches one, you can plug the laptop in to a HDTV through its HDMI output located on left.
This Dell supports only 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0, so you can’t connect it to Internet with a wire. To continue the list of missing features, there’s no optical drive for CDs and DVDs. An external one would have to be used for discs.
Media card reader supporting SC and MMC is however installed which is of course not a real substitute for an optical drive.
1280 x 720 webcam is available on the top of the screen.
What else to keep in mind?
As a nice detail, the keyboard is backlit so typing in dark is not a problem. There is no 10-key numeric pad on right, so the touchpad is pretty much centered and in my opinion, that is the best position a trackpad on laptop can have.
Dell Inspiron i7347-50sLV weighs only 3.7 pounds which I consider a traveler-friendly weight. The small overall size, and the height of 0.75 inches also adds to the great portability. Battery life is not directly listed, althoug it’s advertised as “all-day”, which probably means you can expect the battery last for good 5-6 hours easily. Charging time is however listed, and it should take maximum 4 hours to charge the laptop from dead to full.
This hybrid Dell, like all the convertibles, more or less try to combine ultrabook functionality and tablet portability. This Inspiron does good job with that, also adding some powerhouse elements of Intel Core i3 to the mixture. The performance is alright for many kind of uses, although the price/performance ratio seems to be higher than with traditional laptops.
Gamers should still not get excited due to poor gaming capabilities. However, that stands true for any laptop in the lower end. Overall, what I would like to have seen in this Dell were better connections, optical drive and Ethernet port to be precise, but as we’re talking about compromise here these quirks are understandable.
This Dell is a jack of all trades, however master of none. If you want to have touchscreen laptop and tablet in one package, giving this computer a try is probably worth it.