Dell G15 Ryzen Edition review: a powerful and discreet laptop

The Dell G15 5515 sports a light gray dress with blue dots, much like recycled plastic – which it doesn’t. The back part is signed with an orange G on the right edge which indicates the Gaming membership of this model. The underside is largely perforated to bring fresh air to the components.

The Dell G15 AMD Edition’s cover is streaked. © Digital

Open, the Dell G15 reveals a very classic backlit keyboard with a layout of the keys reminiscent of that of an office model. The touch is also far from satisfactory and sounds hollow.
Thus, the arrow keys are surrounded by the Page UP and Down keys; we will also notice the presence of a numeric keypad with the shortcut keys to the calculator or the CE and +/- keys.
A choice all the more strange as the shortcut allowing to modify the “SmartShift” performance mode at Dell is not even written on the keyboard: it is the shortcut Fn + F9 – whereas it is indicated on the manufacturer’s website that it is Fn + G. We had to download the instructions to find the information.

A key layout more focused on office automation than gaming. © Digital

A layout of keys more office-oriented than gaming. © Digital

The touchpad is for its part slightly off-center to the left. It does not have separate buttons for left or right click, but simple buttons below the touch surface.

The connections are distributed on the sides and the rear part of the PC, between the vents. On the left side we have an RJ45 port, the headphone / microphone jack as well as a charging indicator light. On the right, two 3.2 Gen1 ports, one of which is capable of charging a device even when the PC is turned off. Finally, the rear part has a USB 3.2 Type-C port, a USB3.2 Gen1 port, an HDMI port and the charging socket.

Wireless connectivity is provided by the Intel AX1650 Killer chip which is none other than an AX200 chip with a software overlay that offers more settings. Thus the AX1650 Killer, like the AX200, has Wi-Fi 6 (2400 Mb / s) and Bluetooth 5.2. The webcam captures in 720p definition and doesn’t offer a lot of detail. It is particularly noisy in low light.

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Cooling is provided by two fans in the corners under the hinge. Four radiators, and therefore four openings, are responsible for evacuating heat from the processor and the graphics card. Surprisingly, Dell did not place the processor and graphics card on the accessible side of the motherboard; they are located under the keyboard and the heat pipes are not visible.

© Digital

This probably explains the 51 ° C above the keyboard, it is also ventilation at this level. However, temperatures in strategic places (ZQSD keys, arrows and touchpad) do not suffer from the heat and do not rise above 34 ° C.

Noise pollution is also contained, with 42 dB measured in “normal” mode and 46.6 dB with SmartShift activated via the shortcut Fn + F9.

© Digital

The software suite that controls the performance modes and various parameters of the Dell G15 is very limited. Dell actually reused the Alienware Control Center software, cutting off many functionality. It will also be necessary to connect to the Microsoft Store to download certain modules, because in the state the audio settings (Nahimic) or the SmartShift are not accessible; incomprehensible! It also takes quite a long time to launch the application after starting the PC (over a minute). We will therefore be satisfied with the most useful shortcut (Fn + F9) which activates SmartShift and ventilation to make the most of the Ryzen 7 and the GeForce RTX 3060 of 125 W.

Opening the Dell G15 is particularly easy. To access the components, simply remove 8 Phillips screws and slide the shell.

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Apart from the processor and GPU soldered to the motherboard, all the components are easily removable. Two M.2 ports in 2230/2280 format are accessible; the M.2 SSD provided is also in the unusual 2230 format.
Dell provides on its website a complete step-by-step disassembly manual for all the components that make up this G15, such as the USB ports, the touchpad, etc.

The Dell G15 is equipped with an IPS panel displaying 1920 x 1080 px at 120 Hz. Its integration is more than classic, with large edges bringing its occupancy rate to 69%.

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The contrast was measured at 1544: 1, a high value for an IPS panel. The average temperature recorded is 6638 K, very close to the video standard (6500 K).
On the other hand, the panel of this Dell does not shine by its brightness (272 cd / m²). It will be advisable to stay indoors. Fortunately, the matte coating offers low reflectance (20.8% of reflected light) so you don’t have to play too much with tilting the screen to avoid glare.

The colorimetry on the other hand leaves much to be desired. We measured a delta E of 5.5, far from the threshold of 3 below which the eye cannot distinguish the difference between the original color and the restored color.

Important detail for a PC dedicated to gaming, the screen persistence was measured at 15 ms, a value low enough to play in good conditions, but almost twice as high as the best in our database (8 ms).

From left to right, the gamma curve, the color temperature and the delta E. © Les Numériques

From left to right, the gamma curve, the color temperature and the delta E. © Les Numériques