For as long as the Labs has been running, Dell has been a regular participant, and has also been a consistent performer.
For as long as the Labs has been running, Dell has been a regular participant, and has also been a consistent performer. This month is no exception, with the Inspiron 8200 benching well enough in our suite of tests to post an equal first place with the Toshiba in the overall rankings, with a weighted score of 3.07. Not only that, but the Inspiron is also significantly less costly: at $5,899 it is more than $1,000 cheaper. It is a little unusual for Dell to be that competitively priced on its premium products, suggesting that it has adopted a particularly aggressive approach to the high-end mobile space in order to snag a lions share of the market.
When it comes to specifications, the Dell is equipped with the goods, including an Intel Pentium 4-M 1.7GHz CPU, 256MB of DDR RAM and the incredibly fast NVIDIA GeForce4 440 Go, with 64MB of dedicated video RAM. The graphs show that both the Dell and the Toshiba really flex their 3D muscles compared to the rest of the roundup, with the Inspiron achieving a very fast 4,849 3DMarks and 68.7fps in Quake 3: Arena, pulling in just behind the Toshiba. Interestingly, the Toshiba runs the 32MB version of the mobile GeForce4, suggesting a difference in quality of the motherboard, allowing the Toshiba to pull infront.
Performance is complemented with a great sharp 15in TFT display, running at a native resolution of 1,600 x 1,200 pixels. Similarly, the Dell comes with a solid suite of features, including a 30GB hard disk, DVD/CD-RW combo drive, IEEE 1394 and S/PDIF digital audio port. The keyboard is well laid out, offering enough room to rest your hands and also offers you the choice of trackpoint or touchpad to manipulate the mouse pointer. Build-wise the Dell doesnt possess the solidity of the IBM or the Toshiba, and is a little on the chunky side, being larger in dimension and weighing in at 3.73kg. Despite this, the Dell makes for a very attractive proposition. If the price of the Toshiba
is out of your reach the Inspiron 8200 offers fantastic value for a top of the line portable machine.
This Review appeared in the June, 2002 issue of PC & Tech Authority Magazine
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