New Dell Precision 3550 & 3551: Last Precision laptops standing with a pointing-stick
Dell's Precision lineup includes three different categories: Thin & light (Dell Precision 5000), full-fat (Dell Precision 7000) and budget. The budget segment is covered by the Dell Precision 3000 series, which is updated today. The new models are called Dell Precision 3550 and Dell Precision 3551.
Dell Precision 3000: New chassis, still a dual-pointing option
The single-digit difference between the two models already signals that both are very similar. In fact, they share the same revamped design that is totally different from the preceding Dell Precision 3540 / 3541. Instead of silver, the new Dell workstations are mostly adorned in a greyish-silver color. Aside from the different color, the new models are lighter than their predecessors as well.
One thing has not changed: Both the Precision 3550 and the Precision 3551 feature a pointing stick. This makes them unique among all the available Dell Precision workstations, as the more expensive Dell Precision 7000 series has dropped the dual-pointing keyboard option.
Dell Precision 3550 is an Ultrabook workstation, Precision 3551 has workstation-class performance
While their outer design is identical, the innards of the two Precision 3000 laptops differ radically: The Dell Precision 3550 features power efficient Comet Lake U CPUs with a TDP up to 15 W as well as the Nvidia Quadro P520. The Dell Precision 3551 meanwhile contains the much more powerful Comet Lake H series (45 W TDP) including a Xeon option as well as the more powerful Nvidia Quadro P620.
Unlike the Precision 7000 series, both Precision 3000 models have only two RAM slots with up to 64 GB memory. There is also only a single storage slot for either one M.2 SSD or one 2.5 inch HDD. The maximum screen resolution of the 15.6 inch 16:9 screens is 1,920 x 1,080. Another difference between the Dell Precision 3550 and Dell Precision 3551: The battery capacity. The 3550 has a maximum of 68 Wh, while the 3551 offers a 97 Wh option.
Pricing and Availability
The new Dell Precision 3000 series are available starting today. The Dell Precision 3551 will start at $939, while the Dell Precision 3550 will be slightly more expensive ($1,049).