Dell is currently offering the Vostro 3555, the newest member of the Vostro family, for 500 euros. Anyone looking for a budget-ish notebook should stop reading and order one. We have taken a closer look at 13.3-inch Dell Vostro V131 lately. Let us now review slightly larger Dell Vostro 3555
Under the hood is as good a set of components as we’ve seen in what just about qualifies as a budget laptop. Actually, we should rephrase that. 500 euros cannot buy you a better config. Amongst the goodies are a quad-core AMD A8-3500M CPU with integrated Radeon HD 6620G graphics, and 6GB RAM. For storage the Vostro 3555 provides a 750GB 7200rpm hard drive, delivering an average transfer speed of 92MB/s.
The Vostro 3555 is almost identical in appearance to its Intel-based sibling, the Vostro 3550 – but where the Intel Machine is red, the Vostro 3555 proudly bears smooth platinum-hued brushed-aluminum surfaces with a few snatches of copper, giving the notebook durability and sturdiness. Inside it’s a sea of jet black with chrome trim. Build quality is on the whole excellent. OK so there’s no locking mechanism for the lid.
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The Dell Vostro 3555 notebook measures 375 x 260 x 35mm, and at its thinnest is only 30mm thick. It weighs 2.5kg. The Vostro 3555′s well-positioned port selection include VGA and HDMI sockets, a card reader, a grand total of three USB-3 sockets, on each on the left, right and rear, an eSATA combo, an Express34 card reader and good old audio sockets. We hope no-one expects a docking interface at this price. Wifi-n is provided for wireless surfing. There is also Bluetooth 2. A 2MP HD webcam sits above the screen.
The Vostro 3555 boasts a number of safety features – a fingerprint scanner gives biometric protection against unauthorized log-ins and the pre-loaded DigitalPersona software protects other log-ins, such as email accounts. The Vostro 3555 boasts a number of safety features – a fingerprint scanner gives biometric protection against unauthorized log-insand the pre-loaded DigitalPersona software protects other log-ins, such as email accounts. Macafee Security Center and Trend Micro Worry-Free Business Security Service are both included.
The Windows 7 Professional 64-Bit OS arrives with a back-up disk, always useful. The backlit keyboard makes working in the dark possible. Typing is accurate and responsive, with excellent feedback and travel.
The matte touchpad supports multitouch gestures without a problem, and features separate, responsive left and right buttons. Here are some nice Dell Vostro 3555 pictures:
The 15.6-inch matte 1366 x 768 resolution display produces average brightness and contrast, though viewing angles are sub-par. Outdoor-use is possible as the matte screen minimizes reflections.
The 1.5GHz quadcore AMD A8-3500 CPU with 4MB L2 cache can be boosted to 2.4GHz via Turbo mode. The integrated graphics chip supposedly matches a Radeon HD 5650 mid-range graphics card, but the 3555 is outperformed by the 3550 Intel version’s superior HD 6630M solution by a good 30%.
Audio is very satisfactory, even at high volume.
Performance-wise, the 3555 is capable of playing most current games at lower resolutions – it’s not for hardcore gamers, but everyone else should be happy. Twenty quite large spreadsheets open in two or so seconds, which is fine for all but the jumpiest of office folk.
Unfortunately, the fan runs almost constantly but it’s quiet enough, and means the Vostro 3555 runs cool enough for genuine use in the lap. Flat out at maximum settings provided only 1 hour 23 minutes of battery life, but ultraconservative settings yielded 4 hours 48 minutes. So about three hours normal use – not so long but acceptable for mobile use. . This is no $2000 gaming laptop. But it’s everything else, although without a lid lock. And it wipes the floor with anything else anywhere near its price point.
Check out this short video of Dell Vostro 3555 notebook courtesy of notebookcheck:
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