Notebookcheck

Dell Inspiron 15-3531 Notebook Review

Sascha Mölck, Stefanie Voigt (translated by Vinay Pradhan ), 11/24/2014

Cutting corners. A new day, a new notebook with Bing Windows. This low-price model has no fan and offers good battery life. On the inside, not surprisingly, the laptop has an Intel Bay Trail CPU.

For the original German review, see here.

Dell is offering a cheap 15.6-inch notebook in the form of the Inspiron 15 3531. Like most other manufacturers, Dell uses the Intel Bay Trail platform. In this in-depth review, we will check to see how the laptop performs in comparison to its competition. 

The competitors are all the cheap laptops we have tested in recent times: Lenovo G50-45, Packard Bell EasyNote TF71BM-C8R1, Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C, Acer Extensa 2509-C052 - to name a few.

Case & Connectivity

The case of our test model is made almost entirely of matte, black plastic. The only exceptions are the keyboard borders which are glossy synthetic material. The back of the display and the top of the base unit have a nice texture, which is made of small, interwoven hexagons. Sturdiness and workmanship are appropriate for the price class and similar quality can be found in other cheap models. The Inspiron has a maintenance flap which grants the user access to the hard drive and RAM. The laptop only has a single RAM slot and the battery is removable.

The operating system is the Bing version of Windows 8.1 (64-bit). A Recovery DVD is not provided, and it is possible to use Windows 7 as Dell provides the necessary drivers online.

Dell cuts every corner when it comes to connectivity: buyers will not have USB 3.0, Ethernet or Bluetooth. These are radical cuts which make little sense for consumers who have come to expect these features from any 15.6-inch laptop. For example, the competitors all offer these features. The Inspiron has a slot for an optical drive which is covered by a plastic flap. Sadly, we could not install the optical drive as we found no interface in this slot.

The Dell Inspiron 15-3531. (Image: Dell)
The Dell Inspiron 15-3531. (Image: Dell)
Dell uses a black case. (Image: Dell)
Dell uses a black case. (Image: Dell)
The display cover and the top of the base unit are covered by a nice texture. (Image: Dell)
The display cover and the top of the base unit are covered by a nice texture. (Image: Dell)
Left: power outlet, HDMI, 2x USB 2.0, audio combo (Image: Dell)
Left: power outlet, HDMI, 2x USB 2.0, audio combo (Image: Dell)
Right: slot for an optical drive (no connector) and a slot for a lock (Image: Dell)
Right: slot for an optical drive (no connector) and a slot for a lock (Image: Dell)
The front houses a memory-card reader. (Image: Dell)
The front houses a memory-card reader. (Image: Dell)

Input Devices

Input devices of the Dell Inspiron 15 (Image: Dell)
Input devices of the Dell Inspiron 15 (Image: Dell)

The chiclet keyboard of the test model has no backlight. The flat, slightly rough keys have a short stroke distance and a clear pressure point. The keyboard deforms slightly when typing, which does not negatively affect the experience. Overall, the keyboard is suited for typists. The multi-touch touchpad of the Inspiron measures 10.7 x 6 cm. The rough surface of the pad prevents the finger from sliding on its surface and the large measurements allow the user to comfortably use finger gestures. Dell does not employ a ClickPad in our test model, but rather uses a touchpad with two separate keys. The keys have a short stroke distance and clear pressure points.

Display

Dell provides a glossy 15.6-inch panel for our test model. The screen has a resolution of 1366x768 pixels. Neither the brightness (195.1 cd/m²) nor the contrast (189:1), or the resulting black value (1.16 cd/m²), are even halfway decent. Such values are expected of outdated models.

206
cd/m²
186
cd/m²
197
cd/m²
192
cd/m²
219
cd/m²
186
cd/m²
205
cd/m²
187
cd/m²
178
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Samsung 156AT
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 219 cd/m² Average: 195.1 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 81 %
Center on Battery: 219 cd/m²
Contrast: 189:1 (Black: 1.16 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 10.27 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6.1
ΔE Greyscale 11.85 | 0.64-98 Ø6.3
34% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.17

The average DeltaE 2000 deviation of our test model is 10.27. Such a high deviation is to be expected from models of this price class. It would be ideal if the deviation was less than 3. The display also has a clear blue tinge.

CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - Gray levels
CalMAN - Gray levels
CalMAN - Saturation
CalMAN - Saturation
Outdoors (clouded)
Outdoors (clouded)

It is possible to use the test model outdoors if the sky is clouded or the user sits in the shadows. Otherwise, the reflective panel will prevent comfortable reading. As typical of this price segment, the TN panel of our model has severely limited viewing angles.

Performance

The Inspiron is a simple, 15.6-inch office laptop suited for office and Internet use. Our test model is available for a mere 250 Euros (~$310) and Dell sells other models under the tag Inspiron 15 3XXX. However, Dell uses a different case for those models.

Processor

The Intel Celeron N2830 dual-core CPU (Bay Trail) operates at 2.16 GHz. Thanks to Turbo, the user can boost the speed of the processor up to 2.416 GHz. Full performance is available to the user whether the laptop is plugged in or running on battery. The CPU tests of the Cinebench benchmarks are run at 2.416 GHz. The results of the benchmarks show that the processor is at the lower end of the performance scale.

Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
2356
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
2291
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
1241
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
0.84 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
0.45 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
6.43 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
97.8 %
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
5.64 fps
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
71 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
39 Points
Help
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
39 Points ∼18%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
47 Points ∼22% +21%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
36 Points ∼17% -8%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
35 Points ∼16% -10%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
37 Points ∼17% -5%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
49 Points ∼22% +26%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
55 Points ∼25% +41%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
70 Points ∼32% +79%
CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
71 Points ∼2%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
159 Points ∼4% +124%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
67 Points ∼2% -6%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
123 Points ∼3% +73%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
66 Points ∼2% -7%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
165 Points ∼4% +132%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
105 Points ∼2% +48%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
187 Points ∼4% +163%
Geekbench 3
32 Bit Multi-Core Score (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1589 Points ∼5%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3564 Points ∼11% +124%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1559 Points ∼5% -2%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
2727 Points ∼9% +72%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1557 Points ∼5% -2%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
3715 Points ∼12% +134%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
2208 Points ∼7% +39%
32 Bit Single-Core Score (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
928 Points ∼19%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
1229 Points ∼25% +32%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
903 Points ∼19% -3%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
842 Points ∼17% -9%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
891 Points ∼18% -4%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1245 Points ∼26% +34%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
1283 Points ∼27% +38%
Sunspider - 1.0 Total Score (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
337.9 ms * ∼4%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
375 ms * ∼4% -11%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
378.6 ms * ∼4% -12%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
339.6 ms * ∼4% -1%

* ... smaller is better

System Performance

The notebook did not cause us any problems. It works quietly and fluidly. However, the results of the PCMark benchmarks rank it at the bottom end of our performance table. This is to be expected as most other Bay Trail laptops land in this segment.

PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
1232 points
PCMark 8 Creative Score Accelerated v2
998 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
1299 points
Help
PCMark 8 - Home Score Accelerated v2 (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1232 Points ∼20%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1214 Points ∼20% -1%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1231 Points ∼20% 0%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
1303 Points ∼21% +6%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
1492 Points ∼24% +21%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1967 Points ∼32% +60%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
2011 Points ∼33% +63%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
2092 Points ∼34% +70%

Storage Devices

The hard drive from Seagate has a capacity of 500 GB and runs at 5,400 rpm. It runs without distracting noises and can offer good transfer rates.

Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
Transfer Rate Minimum: 53.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 121.7 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 93.5 MB/s
Access Time: 18.8 ms
Burst Rate: 100.2 MB/s
CPU Usage: 5.4 %

Graphics Card

The Intel HD Graphics IGP in our test model places at the very bottom of our GPU performance table. It supports DirectX 11 and runs at up to 750 MHz. The results of the 3DMark benchmarks are at the low level we would expect. In other notebooks, like the Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C, faster variations of this IGP can be found (854 MHz). As such, those models offer better results in the 3DMark benchmarks. In any case, the Intel chip has fierce competition in AMD, which can be found in similarly-priced notebooks and offers much more performance: for example, the Radeon R4 (Beema) and the Radeon R5 (Beema).

3DMark 11 Performance
229 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
15913 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
1215 points
Help
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
229 Points ∼1%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
214 Points ∼1% -7%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
227 Points ∼1% -1%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
259 Points ∼1% +13%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
544 Points ∼2% +138%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
784 Points ∼3% +242%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
795 Points ∼3% +247%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
831 Points ∼3% +263%
3DMark
1280x720 Sky Diver Score (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
501 Points ∼1%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
495 Points ∼1% -1%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
492 Points ∼1% -2%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
557 Points ∼1% +11%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
2244 Points ∼4% +348%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
1819 Points ∼3% +263%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1215 Points ∼2%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1211 Points ∼2% 0%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
1196 Points ∼2% -2%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
1467 Points ∼2% +21%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
2141 Points ∼4% +76%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
3581 Points ∼6% +195%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
2825 Points ∼5% +133%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
2882 Points ∼5% +137%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
15913 Points ∼1%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
15921 Points ∼1% 0%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
16076 Points ∼1% +1%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
18953 Points ∼2% +19%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
23859 Points ∼2% +50%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
33875 Points ∼3% +113%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
31319 Points ∼3% +97%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
32088 Points ∼3% +102%

Gaming Performance

If you want to run 3D games, do not buy the Inspiron. This laptop could not run any of the games from the last few years with a decent fps rate. The notebook is only suited for casual games from the Windows Store.

low med. high ultra
Tomb Raider (2013) 14.77.64.9fps

Emissions

System Noise

Dell has not put a fan in this model. As such, the only noise emissions come from the quiet hard drive.

Noise Level

Idle
31 / 31 / 31 dB(A)
HDD
31.6 dB(A)
Load
31 / 31 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

The Inspiron in the stress test
The Inspiron in the stress test

The stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run together for an hour) always runs the same way on the test model: the processor operates at 2.416 GHz and the IGP runs at 720 MHz. Despite the missing fan, the case does not get too hot at any point in time. Even during the stress test, the laptop always stays below 40 °C at all points.

 22 °C
72 F
22.2 °C
72 F
21.6 °C
71 F
 
 22 °C
72 F
22.6 °C
73 F
21.6 °C
71 F
 
 21.9 °C
71 F
22 °C
72 F
23 °C
73 F
 
Maximum: 23 °C = 73 F
Average: 22.1 °C = 72 F
21.5 °C
71 F
22.6 °C
73 F
22.5 °C
73 F
21.5 °C
71 F
23.2 °C
74 F
22.5 °C
73 F
22.8 °C
73 F
22 °C
72 F
22.7 °C
73 F
Maximum: 23.2 °C = 74 F
Average: 22.4 °C = 72 F
Power Supply (max.)  22.7 °C = 73 F | Room Temperature 21.2 °C = 70 F | Voltcraft IR-360
(+) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 31.4 °C / 89 F, compared to the average of 29.4 °C / 85 F for the devices in the class Office.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 37.1 °C / 99 F, compared to the average of 33.9 °C / 93 F, ranging from 21.2 to 62.5 °C for the class Office.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 38.2 °C / 101 F, compared to the average of 36.4 °C / 98 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 22.1 °C / 72 F, compared to the device average of 29.4 °C / 85 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (34 °C / 93.2 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.1 °C / 82.6 F (-5.9 °C / -10.6 F).

Speakers

The stereo speakers of our test model are placed on the front edge. The sound output is nothing special and, like most other notebook speakers, it lacks bass. Furthermore, the speakers tend to have tinny sound.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The power consumption of the Inspiron is quite low. While idle, the laptop consumes less than 10 W. During the stress test, the consumption can rise up to 16.4 W. Similar values were measured in other laptops with the same processor.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0 / 0.1 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 4.3 / 6.6 / 7.4 Watt
Load midlight 13.3 / 16.2 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Life

In the practical WLAN test, we let a script load websites every 40 seconds. The power-saver mode is on and brightness is set to 150 cd/m². The test model runs for 5:18 hours, which is quite good.

Battery Runtime
WiFi Surfing
5h 18min
Battery Runtime - WiFi (sort by value)
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
318 min ∼74%
Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45
Radeon R4 (Beema), A6-6310, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
230 min ∼54%
Asus X551MAV-SX391B
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
244 min ∼57%
Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk
HD Graphics (Haswell), 2957U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
285 min ∼66%
HP 15-g005ng
Radeon R5 (Beema/Carrizo-L), A8-6410, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E680
291 min ∼68%
Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4
HD Graphics 4400, 4030U, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
391 min ∼91%
Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2930, Western Digital Scorpio Blue WD5000LPVX
414 min ∼97%
Packard Bell Easynote TF71BM-C8R1
HD Graphics (Bay Trail), N2830, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142
429 min ∼100%

Verdict

The Dell Inspiron 15 3531 is an addition to the extensive collection of cheap Bay Trail laptops. The special feature of this model is its fanless design. This means there are barely any noise emissions and despite the missing fan, the laptop does not heat up too much. A maintenance flap allows the user to quickly and easily swap out the hard drive. The battery life is also good. However, we did not like the screen: it is dark, offers poor contrast, has a blue tinge and it is glossy. Dell also threw out standard features like USB 3.0 and Ethernet which is annoying. We believe the manufacturer cut too many corners.

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In review: Dell Inspiron 15-3531. Test model provided by notebooksbilliger.de
In review: Dell Inspiron 15-3531. Test model provided by notebooksbilliger.de

Specifications

Dell Inspiron 15-3531 (Inspiron 15 Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail), Core: 313-750 MHz, 10.18.10.3621
Memory
4096 MB 
, DDR3, Single channel, one slot (occupied)
Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1366 x 768 pixel, Samsung 156AT, TN LED, glossy: yes
Storage
Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT012-1DG142, 500 GB 
, 5400 rpm, 430 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Valleyview SoC - HD Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: Audio combo, Card Reader: SD
Networking
Atheros AR9485 WiFi Adapter (b/g/n)
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 25.3 x 376 x 259 ( = 1 x 14.8 x 10.2 in)
Battery
41 Wh Lithium-Ion
Operating System
Windows 8.1 (64 Bit) + Bing
Camera
Webcam: HD Webcam
Additional features
Speakers: Stereo, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: no, McAfee LiveSafe Internet Security (trial), MS Office (trial), 12 Months Warranty
Weight
2.1 kg ( = 74.08 oz / 4.63 pounds), Power Supply: 353 g ( = 12.45 oz / 0.78 pounds)
Price
249 Euro

 

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Links

Price Comparison

Pros

+Runs quietly
+Barely heats up
+Good battery life
 

Cons

-No USB 3.0
-No Ethernet
-No Bluetooth
-No optical drive
-Only 12 months warranty
-Dark panel with poor contrast

Shortcut

What we like

The laptop runs quietly and has low temperature emissions.

What we miss

A better display with a matte surface, USB 3.0 and Ethernet.

What surprises us

Dell is offering a laptop without USB 3.0 and Ethernet.

The competition

Lenovo IdeaPad G50-45, Packard Bell EasyNote TF71BM-C8R1, Acer Aspire E15 ES1-511-C50C, Acer Extensa 2509-C052, Asus X551MAV-SX391B, HP 15-g005ng, Packard Bell EasyNote TE69HW-29574G50Mnsk, Acer Extensa 2510-34Z4, Lenovo G50-30.

Rating

Dell Inspiron 15-3531 - 11/13/2014 v4(old)
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
74 / 98 → 76%
Keyboard
72%
Pointing Device
81%
Connectivity
41 / 80 → 51%
Weight
62 / 20-67 → 89%
Battery
88%
Display
65%
Games Performance
37 / 68 → 54%
Application Performance
40 / 92 → 43%
Temperature
94%
Noise
94%
Audio
40%
Camera
40 / 85 → 47%
Average
64%
72%
Office - Weighted Average
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Archive of our own reviews > Dell Inspiron 15-3531 Notebook Review
Sascha Mölck, 2014-11-24 (Update: 2018-05-15)