If you’re looking for the best home computers (opens in new tab) on the market, then Dell should definitely be one of the brands that you check out, and the Dell Inspiron range is the perfect starting point.
The Inspiron line is Dell’s entry level home computer range, offering you an affordable way into the desktop PC market. The Inspiron range covers both traditional desktop computers, all-in-one computers which have the monitor integrated into the main body of the PC, and laptops. Here we're just focusing on the desktop PCs and all-in-ones, but be sure to check out our best laptops (opens in new tab) guide for more info on the latest Dell laptops.
The latest model of Dell Inspiron is called the Dell Inspiron 3880, though you'll rarely see that name on the Dell website - Dell prefers to keep things simple and just call the latest model the Inspiron. Even within the Dell Inspiron 3880 line, there are a huge number of configurations to choose from with different CPU, GPU, RAM, and storage options. We’ve broken down your options and highlighted what we think is the best choice for most people.
Buying a computer like the Dell Inspiron 3880 isn’t just about the device itself though. We’ve also trawled the Dell website to see how easy it is to navigate and find what you’re looking for. We’ve also pulled together user reviews to see how happy people are with their Dell purchases, and we’ve looked at the customer service and aftercare that you’re likely to get if you choose Dell Inspiron.
Dell Inspiron review: Specs
If you’re not looking to spend your life online and you’re not a big gamer, then the Inspiron range will be perfect for you. It has enough power to handle basic things like web browsing, video streaming, online shopping, and social media. Most of the Inspiron range comes with a 1TB HDD storage drive too, which means plenty of space for storing your photos, music, and videos.
Despite being the entry level range, there are a lot of variants of the Inspiron computers available, and some of the more expensive models start to step on the toes of the premium XPS range. Inspiron desktops come with a 10th gen Intel I3, I5, or I7 processor. There is a lot more variation in CPUs in the laptop range, with AMD Ryzen chips and 11th gen Intel mobile CPUs on offer alongside the 10th Gen Intel options
Almost all of the PCs in the Inspiron range come with Integrated graphics chips instead of a dedicated graphics card. One or two of the top end models come with low-end graphics card options like the NVIDIA GeForce GT 1030, which is enough to get some basic gaming done if you want to play some Fortnite on medium settings. If you want a true gaming rig, look at the G Series or Alienware ranges.
On the memory front, Dell Inspiron computers start at 4GB of RAM, with top end models packing 16GB of DDR4 RAM. We’d recommend picking a model with at least 8GB of RAM, though you can always add more RAM later and it's one of the easiest upgrades you can make to your computer.
Storage space shouldn’t be an issue for you with a Dell Inspiron computer either, as even the base model comes with a 1TB HDD storage drive. Some of the higher end models come with a dual system, with a 256GB/512GB SSD and a 1TB HDD instead - this will mean your system will run faster off the SSD, while you’ll still have ample file storage thanks to the HDD.
The Dell Inspiron all-in-one computers come with either a 24” or 27” full HD touch screen. Instead of a desktop tower, the hardware for the computer is all bundled into the monitor. These devices are ideal for people who are short on space and can’t fit a traditional tower PC in their office or living room.
Dell Inspiron desktop vs all-in-one vs laptop?
If you make the decision to go with a Dell Inspiron computer, the next choice you’re faced with is what type of Inspiron do you go for? Desktop or all-in-one? Or should you ignore both and choose a laptop?
The answer to this question largely comes down to you needs and limitations. If you need a portable device, or you don’t have anywhere for a desk in your home then a laptop is the ideal solution for you. Meanwhile all-in-one devices are a great solution for people who have a home office area, but with limited space. Since the computer and screen are combined into one device, they take up much less space than a traditional tower.
Desktop PCs might be bulky, but they have their own advantages too. For one thing, a Dell Inspiron desktop is far cheaper than a laptop or all-in-one with similar specs. It’s also much easier to upgrade a desktop computer down the line. There is plenty of room in the case for extra components, whereas all-in-ones are built for the specs they have and can rarely be tinkered with.
Dell computers review: User reviews
While there are hundreds of different products on offer from Dell, the website actually groups user ratings by range which makes it much easier to give you an idea of how Dell is perceived as a whole. Overall we have to say that we’re incredibly impressed with Dell’s customer feedback ratings across the board.
In the Dell Inspiron tower computer range, the average user rating is 4 out of 5 stars (opens in new tab) with a total of 1445 reviews at time of writing. The all-in-one computers have a lot fewer reviews, but they almost all have a 5 star rating.
Dell computers review: Customer Service
Dell has an extensive support section on its website, with a mixture of FAQs, guides, and online chat to help you with your questions and issues.
The support section (opens in new tab) of the Dell website is easy to navigate and we had no problem finding the right section to sort our issues, whether it was a problem with an order or support for our existing devices. The knowledge base section has a large selection of guides to common issues and it’s organized into useful sections, so if you have a WiFi or audio related problem, you can easily navigate to the right area.
There is even a downloadable program called Dell SupportAssist which you can install on your PC. This smart program runs in the background and constantly monitors your PC for issues with both your hardware and software. This software is free, but there is also a premium subscription that costs $39 per year which adds additional features like an antivirus, coverage for accidental damage and 24/7 real person support if you need it.
Dell Inspiron computers come with a one year hardware warranty that includes at-home service after remote diagnosis, meaning that once Dell has identified your issue, they’ll send someone out to fix or replace your device. You can pay to extend the warranty to up to four years, and the price works out at about $50 per year.
Should you buy a Dell Inspiron?
If you need a budget PC then we’d absolutely recommend the Dell Inspiron line, though as we mentioned above there are some minimum specs that we think you should strive for if you want to avoid issues down the line. You get good build quality and the latest hardware at very reasonable prices.
We’re impressed by the support options that Dell offers too - you don’t need to be a tech wizard to keep your Dell computer in top shape, and the addition of 24/7 technical support either online or on the phone is very reassuring.
The only real downsides to Dell computers is that there aren’t a lot of customization options. There are a load of different preset loadouts that you can choose from, sure, but this isn’t true customization and this will likely turn off some computer aficionados who want to spec out their own custom PC.
Which Dell Inspiron spec should you choose?
We’ve shown you the range of specs that you can get, but here is our recommended setup that we think you should be aiming for.
We’d choose this Dell Inspiron (opens in new tab) with an Intel I5 CPU, 8GB RAM, and 512GB SSD. This setup keeps the costs low, but offers much better performance than the base model. If you’re going for a desktop, you should also be able to add a 1TB HDD in there later if you need more storage space.
If you've decided that the Inspiron doesn't have enough power for your needs, then check out our review of the Dell XPS (opens in new tab) range. This is Dell's premium line of desktop tower PCs and it has plenty of muscle for all your working needs. If you need a dedicated gaming PC, you could also look at the Alienware Aurora (opens in new tab).