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Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 Convertible Review

Sven Kloevekorn, Stefanie Voigt (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 07/29/2016

Office acrobat. Dell's Inspiron 13 7000 consumer series has a new member. The most recent convertible in a compact 13-inch size continues the tried casing design and is furnished with the latest Skylake hardware and an SSD. The silver-colored device convinces technically, but its input devices and screen are not completely free of some annoying weaknesses.

For the original German review, see here.

Dell presents a 13-inch convertible that can be used as both a traditional laptop and tablet thanks to its 360-degree hinge. The acrobat comes from the Inspiron 13 2-in-1 7000 lineup that had already been discontinued in Dell's German online store at test time. Thus, the usual configuration options are not available and buyers have to be satisfied with the few versions that are found in (online) stores. This PDF document lists the core components that Dell actually wanted to or did offer. The prices for the different models ranged from approximately 600 to 1100 Euros (~$671 to $1230) in a major Berlin price comparison at test time.

Our review sample belongs to the premium configurations and comes with a 256 GB SSD in addition to a strong Intel Core i7 and 8 GB of RAM. A dedicated graphics card is not offered within the entire range (likely for space reasons). Thus, the CPU-integrated Intel HD Graphics 520 that has to share the working memory with the CPU is active. The glossy touchscreen offers Full HD resolution and is based on the potentially superior IPS technology. A special feature is the included Stylus that can be stored in the casing.

We tried selecting some interesting, direct opponents for the comparison. Their prices do not differ too much from that of the review sample and, above all, they all cover the same purpose. The candidates are:

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Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 (Inspiron 13 7000 Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics 520, Core: 300 - 1050 MHz, shared memory, 20.19.15.4454
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR3L, 1600 MHz, one bank filled
Display
13.3 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 166 PPI, Samsung SDC864D / 133HL [Dell P/N: PVFF5], IPS, glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel Skylake-U Premium PCH
Storage
Liteonit LCH-256V2S, 256 GB 
Soundcard
Intel Skylake-U/Y PCH - High Definition Audio
Connections
1 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: combo audio in/out, 3.5 mm jack, Card Reader: SD/SDHC/SDXC, Brightness Sensor
Networking
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3165 (a/b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5), Bluetooth 4.2, GPS
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 19 x 330 x 222 ( = 0.75 x 12.99 x 8.74 in)
Battery
44 Wh Lithium-Ion
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD (0.92 MP)
Additional features
Speakers: stereo, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
1.66 kg ( = 58.55 oz / 3.66 pounds) ( = 0 oz / 0 pounds)
Price
1000 EUR
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

The casing has not undergone any significant modifications compared with the former Inspiron 13 7347 and Inspiron 13 7348 tested over the past two years. Slip-proof, matte-silver surfaces that almost completely hide fingerprints, and which add a stylish contrast to the rear-sided logo, black keys, and glossy, black display bezel are found again. Dell still does not reveal what material it uses, and thus we still assume that it is plastic. Dell would surely advertise a metal material.

We still have not discovered the reason for the rubber lip around the display bezel. More information about this can be found by following the first link in the previous paragraph. Fortunately, the convertible can be opened with one hand. In return, the hinges allow the lid to rock, perhaps a bit too long for a highly mobile device. There were no problems with keeping the different modes. The solid-looking base withstood our warping attempts using medium force while producing restrained cracking and grinding noises.

We did not find any manufacturing flaws, such as too wide or irregular gaps. We were astonished that the base plate protrudes a bit although evenly on all sides. A dent that feels misplaced was palpable between the space bar and ClickPad. Very aggravating (deduction): The screen instantaneously responds to manual influences with image distortions especially in the lateral areas. This also happens in routine use, for example when holding the convertible in one hand and pressing the bezel, or simply when opening the device or adjusting the display. The fact that the device will likely normally be used on a table or on the lap due to its weight lessens this phenomenon a bit.

Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359
Dell Inspiron 13 7359

Size Comparison

344 mm / 13.5 inch 231 mm / 9.09 inch 18 mm / 0.709 inch 1.5 kg3.31 lbs330 mm / 13 inch 222 mm / 8.74 inch 19 mm / 0.748 inch 1.7 kg3.66 lbs330 mm / 13 inch 228 mm / 8.98 inch 12.8 mm / 0.504 inch 1.2 kg2.62 lbs325 mm / 12.8 inch 218 mm / 8.58 inch 16 mm / 0.63 inch 1.5 kg3.21 lbs291 mm / 11.5 inch 201 mm / 7.91 inch 11 mm / 0.4331 inch 1.3 kg2.84 lbs

Connectivity

The necessities are installed. However, transferring data via a network is only possible via Wi-Fi due to the lack of an Ethernet port. VGA is no longer a priority, and it would likely have been difficult to accommodate it due to limited space. Only one of the three USB ports still works in the old 2.0 standard. HDMI version 1.4 is present so that external 4K monitors can only be operated at 30 Hz. Dell places the interfaces in the rear lateral areas in favor of ergonomics when cables and peripherals are inserted. Some typical for convertible features are found on the right: The power button followed by the volume control is situated in the front. The stylus is inserted far back. Noteworthy but likely not a problem: Inserting peripherals into the tight USB ports is quite difficult.

Left: Kensington, power-in, 2x USB 3.0, audio in/out, speaker
Left: Kensington, power-in, 2x USB 3.0, audio in/out, speaker
Right: On/off, volume control, speaker, USB 2.0, SD-card, stylus (inserted)
Right: On/off, volume control, speaker, USB 2.0, SD-card, stylus (inserted)

SD Card Reader

We use our Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II reference card for determining the card reader's performance. The very slow read speed of approximately 24 MB/s when copying standard JPG file of 5 MB each to the laptop and approximately 27 MB/s when reading a 1 GB file via AS SSD indicate that the card reader is connected to only a USB 2.0 interface. A bit of patience will be needed here.

SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
 
77.8 MB/s ∼100% +228%
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
 
23.7 MB/s ∼30%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
 
13.6 MB/s ∼17% -43%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
 
88.1 MB/s ∼100% +234%
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
 
26.4 MB/s ∼30%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
 
24.9 MB/s ∼28% -6%

Communication

The lack of cable LAN makes a good Wi-Fi connection all the more important. The installed Intel Wireless-AC 3165 (MIMO 1x1) module supports the still much less loaded 5 GHz band at a maximum gross data rate of 433 MBit/s and Bluetooth 4.2 (updating driver might be required). A higher speed could be achieved with, for example, the newer Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260, which supports two antennas in contrast to one and would theoretically double the possible throughput.

Networking
WiFi Speed Client 1m
WiFi Speed Server 1m
WiFi Speed Client 1m 512KB
WiFi Speed Server 1m 512KB
WiFi Speed Client 1m 4M x10
WiFi Speed Server 1m 4M x10 (-R)
WiFi Speed Client 1m 4M x10 (-R) - RU
WiFi Speed Client 1m 4M x10 - RU
1280x800 Lightsmark - 1280x800
1280x800 Lightsmark - 1280x800
1280x720 3DMark 06 - Standard 1280x720
1280x768 3DMark 06 - Standard 1280x768
1366x768 3DMark 06 - Standard 1366x768
1600x900 Crysis CPU - 1600x900 High
1600x900 Crysis CPU - 1600x900 Med
1600x900 Crysis CPU - 1600x900 Low
1600x900 Crysis GPU - 1600x900 High
1600x900 Crysis GPU - 1600x900 Med
1600x900 Crysis GPU - 1600x900 Low

Accessories

Like in seemingly 90% of all laptops, the manufacturer waives any accessories that go beyond the compulsory power supply and the usual manuals and warranty notes in the Inspiron 13 7359. This video conveys an impression of the convertible and presents Dell accessories, such as external speakers and a bag that would also function in conjunction with every other laptop.

Maintenance

Pleasingly, a maintenance hatch that is almost as big as the underside exists. Releasing the five screws was simple but the fit of the plate was so tight that we would have needed a tool to pry it off. Since it is a shop device, we did not want to risk damage and aborted our attempts.

Warranty

The warranty issue confused us a bit. The relevant information is not found on the German laptop website. A major German retailer states a "2-year bring-in service warranty" (pick-up and repair service). Then again, a "1 Year Limited Warranty Plus Mail-In Service after remote diagnosis" is stated on the US webpage of the Inspiron 13. Upon inquiry in Dell's chat, the manufacturer includes 1 year of basic support for the next business day. In any case, the legal retailer warranty of 2 years with shifting the burden of proof after 6 months applies in Germany.

Input Devices

Keyboard

The keyboard in Dell's Inspiron 13 is not lowered but is enclosed by a bulge that is lowered in the space bar's area. The construction looks a bit lopsided but solid. Although the keyboard can be flexed slightly in some places, it should hardly be noticed when typing normally on it. In view of the limited space, the input device is a bit smaller than a standard desktop keyboard but without affecting the key size and spacing. Cutbacks have been made in the size of some "special" keys like return. The rubber-coated and flat keys' lettering is impeccable. The keys have only a short drop and, except for the space bar, have a lightly cushioned stroke.

While we cannot criticize the relatively unsurprising layout, the two-level and unfortunately, slightly uneven backlight is not completely convincing. Since some of the bigger keys, such as space, clatter audibly, Dell's laptop is not suitable for noise-sensitive environments. In total, the keyboard made a satisfactory to good impression.

Touchpad

The ClickPad without separate keys convinces with its sufficient size, lightly roughened surface alongside impeccable gliding properties, inconspicuous (in the best sense of the word) precision and good responsiveness. Drag & drop via double tap always functioned reliably. Unfortunately, the cursor sometimes did not respond as intended when we pressed down one of the replacement mouse keys while swiping at the same time. Configuring gestures with up to three fingers is only possible with standard Windows 10 tools. The keys have a short drop and provide a decent feedback thanks to the crisp pressure point.

Touchscreen

Up to ten touch points are detected simultaneously. We cannot complain about accuracy and responsiveness here, either. That applies to using a finger or the non-pressure-sensitive stylus. However, the screen usually did not respond to initial touches in the outermost corners.

Display

Many users value high viewing angle stability and good color reproduction in higher-quality laptops and, of course, especially in tablets so that IPS panels are the only option - and Dell seem to agree. 1920x1080 pixels distributed over 13.3 inches equal a very decent pixel density of 166 PPI. This alongside the impeccable image sharpness should even satisfy critical users. Like in the majority of convertibles, a glossy screen surface is used for cleaning reasons.

Tablets are often used in changing and unfavorable light conditions or outdoors. Apple has realized this a bit more than Dell with its consistently extremely bright iPads. The review sample's maximum brightness of just 232 cd/m² is only mediocre to satisfactory, even for a purebred laptop. Apart from Lenovo's Yoga, the other rivals present a brightness of around 330 cd/m², which is a plus of over 40% and fulfills mobility requirements. On the other hand, the measured illumination is unremarkable and the naked eye could observe minor bleeding at most at the lower edge in a completely black image. According to Dell, an IPS panel with 1366x768 pixels is also available.

209
cd/m²
232
cd/m²
212
cd/m²
219
cd/m²
253
cd/m²
228
cd/m²
233
cd/m²
252
cd/m²
247
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Samsung SDC864D / 133HL [Dell P/N: PVFF5]
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 253 cd/m² Average: 231.7 cd/m² Minimum: 14.8 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 83 %
Center on Battery: 259 cd/m²
Contrast: 904:1 (Black: 0.28 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 6.36 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6
ΔE Greyscale 10.26 | 0.64-98 Ø6.2
60% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 38% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.28
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
Samsung SDC864D / 133HL [Dell P/N: PVFF5], , 1920x1080, 13.3
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
AU Optronics B133HAT02.5, , 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
Samsung L_LLTN133YL03L01, , 3200x1800, 13.3
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
LG Philips LGD0000, , 2560x1440, 13.3
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
Panasonic VVX12T041N00, , 2160x1440, 12
Response Times
-8%
4%
36%
15%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
38 (19, 19)
48 (13, 35)
-26%
36 (15, 21)
5%
24 (11, 36)
37%
20 (5, 15, detail 5 schraffiert)
47%
Response Time Black / White *
29 (6, 23)
26 (5, 21)
10%
28 (11, 17)
3%
19 (10, 28)
34%
34 (15, 19, [email protected]% mit/ohne PSU)
-17%
PWM Frequency
1330 (60)
1000 (100)
Screen
36%
20%
29%
16%
Brightness middle
253
339
34%
314
24%
324
28%
345
36%
Brightness
232
331
43%
294
27%
324
40%
328
41%
Brightness Distribution
83
90
8%
83
0%
90
8%
91
10%
Black Level *
0.28
0.22
21%
0.57
-104%
0.34
-21%
0.38
-36%
Contrast
904
1541
70%
551
-39%
953
5%
908
0%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
6.36
5.72
10%
2.18
66%
4.36
31%
8.4
-32%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
12.72
10.45
18%
6.48
49%
11.9
6%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
10.26
5.74
44%
2.45
76%
4.62
55%
4.3
58%
Gamma
2.28 96%
2.18 101%
2.39 92%
2.18 101%
2.63 84%
CCT
6500 100%
7393 88%
6745 96%
6857 95%
7368 88%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
38
59
55%
58
53%
60
58%
62
63%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
60
92
53%
89
48%
93
55%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
14% / 28%
12% / 17%
33% / 30%
16% / 16%

* ... smaller is better

Thanks to the pleasingly low black level of just 0.28 cd/m², it is still enough for a very good contrast of 904:1 despite the limited brightness. Acer's Aspire R13 even manages an outstanding 1541:1 here since a slightly lower black level meets a considerably higher maximum brightness. Roughly, the opposite is true for Lenovo's somewhat low-contrast Yoga.

Relatively serious image editing requires high color space coverage and DeltaE rates, which describe color shifts, of less than 3. These are too high with 6 (ColorChecker) and 10 (Grayscale) and almost untypical for modern IPS panels. Even the smaller sRGB color space that is found in the majority of image recording and rendering devices is only covered by a poor 60%. All opponents in the test do a much better job with the latter. The Yoga Pro 3 is most suitable for image editing here, but it will not go beyond hobby editing.

CalMAN Grayscale
CalMAN Grayscale
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN ColorChecker
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN Saturation Sweeps
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 vs. AdobeRGB
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 vs. AdobeRGB
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 vs. sRGB
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 vs. sRGB
Pixel grid
Pixel grid

The relatively low brightness cannot defy omnipresent reflections even in shaded places. Some effort is needed for finding an ergonomically favorable position. The right screenshot shows almost ideal conditions with a wall in the back.

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
29 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 6 ms rise
↘ 23 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 68 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (24.9 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
38 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 19 ms rise
↘ 19 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 37 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (39.7 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9352 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Particularly in view of the different modes, the user will want a viewing angle stable panel in a convertible, and Dell absolutely caters to this need. Colors, brightness, and contrasts are maintained exceptionally well and barely worsen in flat viewing angles even for IPS conditions.

Viewing angles
Viewing angles

Performance

An i7 CPU but only DDR3L single-channel RAM? Then an i5-6200U would have done the job in our opinion. The higher frequencies of the installed processor only bring small advantages when using higher-requirement software and excessive multitasking. That does not apply to the office environment and multimedia. Strongly parallelized software, such as many current games, would clearly benefit from more physical cores. Commercial software, even from the league of Adobe Photoshop, is coped with easily.

Processor

The installed Intel Core i7-6500U is a frugal Hyperthreading dual-core CPU from Intel's latest Skylake generation. Its base clock of 2.5 GHz can be boosted up to 3.1 GHz automatically via Turbo. However, that only takes effect when one core is loaded. 3.0 GHz is the limit when both cores are loaded. The CPU has to share the low TDP of 15 watts with the integrated Intel HD 520 GPU.

Skylake can deal with a DDR4 RAM for the first time, but the review sample (DDR3L) does not utilize this. Besides common office applications, the processor can also easily manage performance-driven software and intensive multitasking, but highly parallelized programs like many up-to-date games are too much for it. The Cinebench score does not change in battery mode.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
Intel Core i7-6500U
120 Points ∼55%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
Intel Core i5-6200U
115 Points ∼53% -4%
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
Intel Core i5-6200U
114 Points ∼52% -5%
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Intel Core i5-6200U
113 Points ∼52% -6%
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
Intel Core M-5Y70
92 Points ∼42% -23%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
Intel Core i7-6500U
310 Points ∼7%
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
Intel Core i5-6200U
289 Points ∼7% -7%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
Intel Core i5-6200U
286 Points ∼7% -8%
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Intel Core i5-6200U
284 Points ∼6% -8%
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
Intel Core M-5Y70
184 Points ∼4% -41%
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
120 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
310 Points
Help

System Performance

LatencyMon
LatencyMon

According to PCMark 8, our Inspiron does not have big advantages compared with the slightly slower Core i5-6200U in the Acer opponent. Again, Lenovo's Yoga 3 is defeated. The review sample is exactly midfield when comparing all laptops based on the i7-6500U and SSD. However, some devices with a dedicated graphics card are included here. The very lag-free operation was a lot of fun subjectively.

PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-256V2S
4207 Points ∼65%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, 2x Hynix HFS128G39MND M.2 (RAID 0)
4091 Points ∼63% -3%
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Kingston RBU-SNS8152S3256GG2
3996 Points ∼61% -5%
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y70, Samsung SSD PM851 MZNTE512HMJH
3121 Points ∼48% -26%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, Kingston RBU-SNS8152S3256GG2
3281 Points ∼54% +2%
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
HD Graphics 520, 6500U, Liteonit LCH-256V2S
3224 Points ∼53%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
HD Graphics 520, 6200U, 2x Hynix HFS128G39MND M.2 (RAID 0)
3198 Points ∼52% -1%
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
HD Graphics 5300, 5Y70, Samsung SSD PM851 MZNTE512HMJH
2307 Points ∼38% -28%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3224 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4207 points
Help

Storage Device

According to AS SSD, the sequential read transfer rates graze the limit of the SATA 3 interface of 500 MB/s. The SSD in Acer's Aspire R13 is connected via PCI Express and manages almost twice the speed. The performance when reading small, random blocks, which is particularly important for launching the OS and programs, is a bit weak. Most modern SSDs, such as Samsung's model in Lenovo's Yoga 3 Pro, achieve a good 30 MB/s minimum here. However, the Lite-On model in the review sample just misses that. The main thing is that an SSD is present.

Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
Liteonit LCH-256V2S
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
2x Hynix HFS128G39MND M.2 (RAID 0)
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
Samsung SSD PM851 MZNTE512HMJH
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Samsung SSD PM851 256 GB MZNTE256HMHP
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
Kingston RBU-SNS8152S3256GG2
CrystalDiskMark 3.0
22%
8%
-19%
-9%
Write 4k QD32
250.8
252.6
1%
236.7
-6%
73.9
-71%

73.9
-71%

197.1
-21%
Read 4k QD32
309.7
268
-13%
366.6
18%
31.85
-90%

31.85
-90%

272
-12%
Write 4k
85.3
56.11
-34%
99.86
17%
75.55
-11%

75.55
-11%

76.83
-10%
Read 4k
26.75
25.65
-4%
35.9
34%
30.88
15%

30.88
15%

29.3
10%
Write 512
283.5
383.4
35%
237.7
-16%
264.5
-7%

264.5
-7%

201
-29%
Read 512
337.5
509.9
51%
417.3
24%
396.2
17%

396.2
17%

374.9
11%
Write Seq
283.7
375.7
32%
238.6
-16%
264.5
-7%

264.5
-7%

199.9
-30%
Read Seq
486.3
1001
106%
521.3
7%
491.8
1%

491.8
1%

518.1
7%
Liteonit LCH-256V2S
Sequential Read: 486.3 MB/s
Sequential Write: 283.7 MB/s
512K Read: 337.5 MB/s
512K Write: 283.5 MB/s
4K Read: 26.75 MB/s
4K Write: 85.3 MB/s
4K QD32 Read: 309.7 MB/s
4K QD32 Write: 250.8 MB/s

Graphics Card

Intel's HD 520 is a processor-integrated GPU without dedicated memory that processes 2D tasks energy efficiently and easily. However, it quickly finds its limits in the 3D sector. It benefits greatly from dual-channel RAM and DDR4, but neither is found in the review sample. As expected, Dell's 13 takes one of the last places among the laptops with an i7-6500U tested to date in terms of graphics performance according to 3DMark 11. However, it is only outperformed by 13% at most in the test field. 3DMark 2013 (Cloud Gate) attributes leads of 24 to 30% to the 15-watt laptops. Intel's HD Graphics 5300 in the overall slower Lenovo Yoga based on a 4.5-watt CPU cannot keep up at all. The performance does not drop in battery mode.

3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
1428 Points ∼3% +13%
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
1351 Points ∼3% +7%
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
1326 Points ∼3% +5%
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
1326 Points ∼3% +5%
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i7-6500U
1268 Points ∼2%
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
Intel HD Graphics 5300, Intel Core M-5Y70
740 Points ∼1% -42%
3DMark - 1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
7652 Points ∼4% +30%
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
7439 Points ∼4% +26%
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
7439 Points ∼4% +26%
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i5-6200U
7307 Points ∼4% +24%
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
Intel HD Graphics 520, Intel Core i7-6500U
5896 Points ∼3%
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
Intel HD Graphics 5300, Intel Core M-5Y70
3202 Points ∼2% -46%
3DMark 11 Performance
1367 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
43629 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
5062 points
Help

Gaming Performance

With a processor-integrated graphics unit like Intel's HD 520, users will have to be satisfied with older and/or graphically undemanding games if they are to look better than in the often unsightly minimum settings at least in the 3D sector. This is all the more true for the clipped version (see above) in Dell's convertible.

low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 38.221.217.1fps
Battlefield 4 (2013) 28.621.67.6fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 11.8fps

Emissions

Loudness
Loudness

System Noise

The fan is noiseless in idle mode as well as during sporadic light load and Internet browsing. It takes quite some time before the fan becomes active with occasionally varying, but not in extreme steps, when the load is increased to an unrealistic measure via Prime95 + FurMark. The highest level of noise is not a problem but the accompanying buzzing noise unfortunately is. This buzz can still be discerned from the ambient noises (quiet office with running PC) at a distance of two meters (~6.5 ft). It did not bother the tester, but it is a subjective issue.

Noise Level

Idle
32.2 / 32.2 / 32.2 dB(A)
Load
34.1 / 34 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 32.2 dB(A)

Temperature

Prime95 + FurMark clock rates
Prime95 + FurMark clock rates

The harmless idle temperatures can be used as a guideline for normal use. We again reproduce an unrealistic scenario for the load temperatures. Everyone who actually tries to play "Witcher 3" with the convertible in their hands or on the lap will not be confronted with the maximum rate of almost 44 °C (111.2 °F) that we measured. The cooler keyboard unit is on the underside when using the convertible in Tablet Mode.

When loading Dell's convertible with Prime95 and FurMark, the core clocks fluctuate from 2.3 to 2.9 GHz. Minor throttling is present since the base rate of 2.5 GHz is sometimes undercut, but that should not have an impact on real world use.

Max. Load
 38.2 °C
101 F
39.1 °C
102 F
29 °C
84 F
 
 38.6 °C
101 F
36.6 °C
98 F
27.7 °C
82 F
 
 26.7 °C
80 F
26.6 °C
80 F
27 °C
81 F
 
Maximum: 39.1 °C = 102 F
Average: 32.2 °C = 90 F
27.1 °C
81 F
40 °C
104 F
40.2 °C
104 F
26.6 °C
80 F
43.6 °C
110 F
42.6 °C
109 F
25.3 °C
78 F
30.1 °C
86 F
29.8 °C
86 F
Maximum: 43.6 °C = 110 F
Average: 33.9 °C = 93 F
Power Supply (max.)  44.1 °C = 111 F | Room Temperature 22.1 °C = 72 F | FIRT 550-Pocket
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 32.2 °C / 90 F, compared to the average of 30.3 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Convertible.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 39.1 °C / 102 F, compared to the average of 35.4 °C / 96 F, ranging from 21.8 to 55.7 °C for the class Convertible.
(±) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 43.6 °C / 110 F, compared to the average of 36.5 °C / 98 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 24.5 °C / 76 F, compared to the device average of 30.3 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 27 °C / 80.6 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(±) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.9 °C / 84 F (+1.9 °C / 3.4 F).
Idle
Idle
Load
Load

Speakers

The speakers that radiate sound from the sides are not very enjoyable. The maximum volume that we use for performing our music tests is at most sufficient for medium-sized rooms. Although the sound is considerably more dominant and more pleasant with the tweaks enabled ex-factory, the required compression produces a flat, tinny, and unnatural sound that lacks real basses and emphasizes the midranges and trebles too strongly. Hints (!) of dynamic and surround were audible in some songs. Many instruments cannot be differentiated. We did not notice distortions or volume fluctuations.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2041.340.641.32541.635.541.6314033.4404042.132.442.15042.731.842.76342.833.642.88041.430.841.410043.53143.512547.528.347.516051.527.851.520054.427.554.425056.825.356.831557.624.657.640058.22458.250061.223.461.263064.322.364.380070.221.670.2100065.520.965.5125065.520.565.5160066.819.966.8200063.819.763.8250057.819.757.8315060.419.760.4400061.519.561.5500065.119.665.1630060.319.460.3800059.819.559.81000056.419.356.41250059.419.359.4160006119.261SPL7632.876N38.21.938.2median 60.3median 20.5median 60.3Delta2.62.52.635.335.132.931.831.83236.535.132.428.93328.936.328.848.32761.52752.924.860.92462.822.763.32269.521.267.82174.82075.919.472.718.97117.770.117.86917.671.817.668.117.671.417.673.717.670.417.571.617.671.617.669.617.459.717.583.630.662.51.5median 69.6median 17.84.62.4hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseDell Inspiron 13 7359-4839Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 audio analysis

(-) | not very loud speakers (68 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 8.4% lower than median
(+) | bass is linear (6.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.7% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (6.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 1.9% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (7.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (11.2% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 2% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 95% worse
» The best had a delta of 11%, average was 22%, worst was 53%
Compared to all devices tested
» 4% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 94% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (83.6 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 11.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (14.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.4% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (4.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (9.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 1% of all tested devices in this class were better, 1% similar, 97% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 20%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 1% of all tested devices were better, 0% similar, 98% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Frequency diagram in comparison (check boxes above can be turned on/off!)
Rate 1: Pink Noise 100 % volume; Rate 2: Audio off

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Unnecessary: Dell's Inspiron 13 still treats itself to 0.26 watts when shutdown, and 0.6 watts in standby. Since we do not have a database, it is not possible to compare 13-inch convertibles with the i7-6500U. Thus, we simply used all convertibles with the same size as the review sample. The consumption at least proved to be below average in three idle mode states; it is roughly on average during load. The power supply can always manage the load.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.26 / 0.6 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 4 / 4.8 / 7.6 Watt
Load midlight 30 / 29.3 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
6500U, HD Graphics 520, Liteonit LCH-256V2S, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
6200U, HD Graphics 520, 2x Hynix HFS128G39MND M.2 (RAID 0), IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
5Y70, HD Graphics 5300, Samsung SSD PM851 MZNTE512HMJH, IPS, 3200x1800, 13.3
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
6200U, HD Graphics 520, Samsung SSD PM851 256 GB MZNTE256HMHP, IPS, 2560x1440, 13.3
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
6200U, HD Graphics 520, Kingston RBU-SNS8152S3256GG2, IPS, 2160x1440, 12
Power Consumption
-27%
-25%
-12%
-42%
Idle Minimum *
4
5.1
-28%
4.8
-20%
3.9
2%
7.3
-83%
Idle Average *
4.8
7.2
-50%
10.7
-123%
7.4
-54%
10
-108%
Idle Maximum *
7.6
9
-18%
11.8
-55%
9.2
-21%
10.15
-34%
Load Average *
30
34.2
-14%
18.3
39%
28.1
6%
25.2
16%
Load Maximum *
29.3
37
-26%
19.7
33%
27.6
6%
29.3
-0%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Runtime

Again, we have to compare apples and oranges here because, besides the different battery capacities, we are also dealing with different processors. It is striking that Acer's Aspire R13 furnished with a slower CPU and a marginally bigger battery is slightly less enduring than the review sample. Our Acer Aspire Switch wastes a bit too much energy in view of the just 7 Wh lower capacity. The lag of 46% seems absurd for the nominal most frugal contestant in the form of Lenovo's Yoga (44 Wh) in the practical Wi-Fi test (Our test criteria). HP's Spectre has a whole 12 Wh more, but cannot take a lead on Dell's Inspiron. In summary, that is extremely impressive.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
14h 46min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
8h 06min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 49min
Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839
6500U, HD Graphics 520, 44 Wh
Acer Aspire R13 R7-372T
6200U, HD Graphics 520, 50 Wh
Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro 13 80HE004LGE
5Y70, HD Graphics 5300, 44 Wh
HP Spectre x360 13-4104ng
6200U, HD Graphics 520, 56 Wh
Acer Aspire Switch Alpha 12 SA5-271-56HM
6200U, HD Graphics 520, 37 Wh
Battery Runtime
-8%
-46%
3%
-20%
Reader / Idle
886
740
-16%
640
-28%
WiFi v1.3
486
441
-9%
263
-46%
500
3%
321
-34%
Load
109
110
1%
112
3%
H.264
401
468

Pros

+ stylish casing
+ stylus compartment
+ versatile in use (laptop, tablet, stand, etc.) thanks to 360 degree hinge
+ solid base
+ very good build
+ fingerprints are no problem
+ large maintenance hatch
+ good input devices
+ too dark screen
+ low black level but good contrast
+ superb viewing angle stability
+ no PWM

Cons

- screen unit much too sensitive for manual influences,
- which can cause image distortions during routine use
- awkward to remove hatch
- lid rocks too long
- too heavy for prolonged carrying in one hand
- slow card reader
- only one WiFi antenna despite absent LAN
- very limited color space coverage
- incorrect color reproduction
- somewhat tight RAM, no dual-channel

Verdict

In review: Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839. Test model courtesy of Notebooksbilliger.de
In review: Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839. Test model courtesy of Notebooksbilliger.de

At the end of the test, Dell's Inspiron 13 7359-4839 left us slightly disappointed. The main reason is the screen's build that makes it unsuitable for use as a tablet.

The fact that evident image distortions materialize just when opening and adjusting the lid normally induced us to a (benevolent) deduction of 10% in the casing's rating. Fortunately (...) the device is too heavy to be used with one hand anyway.

The other drawbacks named in the pro-con list are not as important. We have to criticize the too low brightness separately, especially for a highly mobile convertible. It could particularly be a problem outdoors.

Finally the multiple positive aspects: The base is stylish, solid, very well built, and includes a built-in stylus. The technical aspects are almost beyond reproach. The user can usually count on cool and quiet handling. Despite smaller issues with the touchpad and keyboard backlight, the input devices are well conceived. Users who want to perform maintenance will likely be pleased that the innards can be accessed excellently via the large hatch. Finally, the important viewing angle stability for a tablet is absolutely convincing.

Nevertheless, we cannot give the device a purchase recommendation for the reasons listed at the beginning.

Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 - 07/24/2016 v5.1(old)
Sven Kloevekorn

Chassis
73 / 98 → 75%
Keyboard
84%
Pointing Device
85%
Connectivity
45 / 80 → 56%
Weight
67 / 35-78 → 74%
Battery
90%
Display
79%
Games Performance
53 / 68 → 78%
Application Performance
83 / 87 → 95%
Temperature
93%
Noise
85%
Audio
59 / 91 → 65%
Camera
65 / 85 → 76%
Average
74%
81%
Convertible - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Dell Inspiron 13 7359-4839 Convertible Review
Sven Kloevekorn, 2016-07-29 (Update: 2018-05-15)