Product Type: Dell laptops
Newest Review: ... downside is the weight of this laptop. It is a very bulky laptop and comes in at 3.62kg (according to Dell's specification sheets). This... more
Good for an average user on an average budget
Dell Inspiron 1720
Member Name: Kentie
Dell Inspiron 1720
Advantages: affordable and medium-length lifetime, excellent battery life
Disadvantages: nowhere near a high-end laptop
As a computing scientist, my view on this laptop comes quite negative, as I am used to working with a variety of computers and components. However, my high standards of computing are nowhere near the average requirement of the general computer user, so don't be too put off by that!
My most positive view is the longevity of use I have had, and that this laptop still remains usable. I have had the Inspiron laptop for around 4 years. I bought an upgraded battery which still gives me more than 4 hours life on a low-power setting - excellent for a laptop of this period! I also bought it with extra RAM and a good graphics card, which means that it can still handle most new games on low settings, although it overheats very fast (within around 30 minutes). If you are a gamer, I would recommend instead a desktop computer. For a regular user, perhaps just using it for desktop productivity and internet, this laptop would certainly be more than adequate.
My main issue is that just after the warranty ran out, the laptop components started failing drastically - Dell are notorious for not piecing their components together reliably, which means that the boards inside are not connecting well anymore. On some days it takes several hours for the laptop to realise it still has a hard-drive and can actually switch on! This makes it impossible to use as a portable device, as turning it off does not guarantee it will turn back on. If I need to use it at a reliable time, I need to switch it on several hours before. Based on the timing of this, I would recommend that the user who wished to keep this as their main computer long-term should purchase an extended warranty, in order to cover this kind of problem. Dell are very good at replacing components when necessary, with no fuss!
There is also a little issue with a button on the keyboard which has a little picture of a house. Don't press it when the computer is off - it loads a dvd playing suite which in older versions can wipe your computer, and in newer versions can bluescreen it. Not a great design feature.
Having said these many negative things, I do think that for a user looking for an affordable laptop which will run their general programs, this is a great bargain. It saw me through university, despite the bad times!
Summary: For the standard user, a good bargain, but if you're looking for high quality buy something else
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