If you want a cheap — and more travel-friendly — gaming laptop, the G3 15 is worth a look.
Display: 15.6 in Full HD LED (1920 x 1080)
Processor: Intel Core i5-8300H 8MB cache, 2.30 GHz up to 4.00 GHz
Storage Drive: 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD
Memory RAM: 8GB DDR4 2666 MHz
Network: LAN 10/100/1000 GB Ethernet, 802.11ac
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB GDDR5 graphics memory
Webcam: 720p HD webcam with integrated widescreen, plus dual digital microphone array
Multi-format Digital Media Reader: SD card Reader
Operating System: Windows 10 Home 64-bit
Keyboard: Backlit keyboard
Battery: 56WHr Battery
2 x SuperSpeed USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A with PowerShare
1 x USB 3.1 Gen 2
1 x HDMI 2.0
1 x Headphone/microphone combo jack
Dimensions (WxHxD): 14.96 x 10.16 x 0.89 in
Weight: 5.57 lbs
Power Adapter: 180W Charger
The G3 15 is Dell’s entry point for its gaming laptops, at least for those not sold under the company’s. This is the step-down model from the , which won from us last year, but don’t take that as a knock. Despite being lower end, the G3 and G5 have some component overlap. You can essentially get the same configuration and similar performance for less money by going with the G3, even if the design isn’t as polished or sturdy feeling.
- Good performance for the money
- Thin and light for a gaming laptop
- Flimsy build compared to Dell G5
- Display color could be better
At least, that’s the case for the G3 I tested, which sells for $792 with current promotions, while the same component mix in the G5 is $852 at the moment. That’s not a huge savings, but it’s something. Once you get beyond this configuration though, the price difference gets even smaller and the decision more difficult. Here’s why the G3 is still worth a look.
Dell G3 15 3590
|Price as reviewed||$949|
|Display size/resolution||15.6-inch 1,920 x 1,080 display|
|CPU||2.4GHz Intel Core i5-9300H|
|Memory||8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2667MHz|
|Graphics||4GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650|
|Storage||128GB SSD + 1TB HDD|
|Networking||802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 5.0|
|Operating system||Windows 10 Home (64-bit)|
Dell’s G3 3590 is a basic black gaming laptop
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Less is more
Intel and Nvidia’s newer processors run cooler than their old chips, which has allowed PC makers to make thinner and lighter gaming laptops. That’s the case here with the Dell G3 15, which looks much more like a mainstream thin-and-light than what used to be offered at its price just a couple years ago. The G3 is still about 5.5 pounds (2.5kg) and 0.9-inch thick (21.6mm), but that’s less than the G5 and several others in its class.
Slimmer bezels on the sides of the 15.6-inch full-HD display help reduce the G3’s overall footprint and give it a modern look. The display is decent and, again, much better than what you used to get at this price, but it’s still one of the weaker parts of the package. It’s bright when plugged in, but dims on battery power and the screen’s color is unimpressive. Despite having a built-in SD card slot, I wouldn’t recommend this display for doing color-critical work. On the other hand, with both a full-size HDMI port and USB-C port, you could easily connect an external display.
More for less
The G3 I reviewed was running on a ninth-gen Intel Core i5-9300H and Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1650. The Intel chip didn’t bring much to the table compared to the eighth-gen version. While it’s nice to have a latest-generation CPU, you won’t see significant performance gains. The GTX 1650 benefits are a little more noticeable, giving you better frame rates than the older GTX 1050 Ti but for about the same price. Get above $1,000 and you’ll find laptops with the Nvidia GTX 2060 and better.
Basically, with the 1650 you’re unlikely to hit the smooth 60fps we look for on demanding games at 1,920×1,080-pixel resolution, but getting over 30fps at that resolution for current titles is doable. If you want headroom for future games, I recommend saving up for a G5 orwith at least a GTX 1660 Ti or ideally a GeForce RTX 2060.
There’s not a huge price break between the G3 and G5, but it’s enough that you could put it toward adding more storage or memory (both are easily accessible for you to upgrade) or picking up a. The G3 is thinner and lighter than the G5, too, and its design is a little less “gamer” as well. Also, if you’re not buying right now, this is one you’ll want to keep an eye on for discounts down the road.
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15.6 in Full HD LED (1920 x 1080), NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB GDDR5 graphics memory
Intel Core i5-8300H 8MB cache, 2.30 GHz up to 4.00 GHz, 802.11ac, Bluetooth
8GB DDR4 2666 MHz, 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD, No Optical Drive, Waves MaxxAudio Pro
2 SuperSpeed USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A with PowerShare, 1 USB 3.1 Gen 2, 1 HDMI 2.0, Headphone/microphone combo jack, LAN 10/100/1000 GB Ethernet
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