Dell is generally perceived as the Apple of gaming notebooks. Cutting-edge, popular among the masses, and a fair bit pricier than the competition without any apparent benefits. In this review, I’ll be having a look at the Dell G7 15″ Gaming notebook, based on Intel’s Core i7-10750H CPU and the GeForce RTX 2060 discrete graphics. Admittedly, this SKU is sort of last-gen but you’ll find a ton of these on the market, often at decent prices. And despite being slightly dated, it should be sufficient if you’re not picky when it comes to turning down the graphics settings in some of the more taxing games.
We’ll primarily be comparing this notebook to the ASUS Zephyrus G14 which features the AMD Ryzen 9 4900H and the GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q graphics and is priced slightly slower than the G7 ($1,349 vs $1,529). While the Zephyrus does pack a more potent CPU, the GPU is restricted and the smaller form factor also prevents it from going all-out. This should make it a more interesting comparison. Personally, I loved the G14, but the G7 has its own strengths.
General System Performance
We start off the testing with PC Mark 10 which gives a good impression of the overall performance of a notebook or desktop PC. We’ve got the essentials that include lightly threaded applications like web-browsing, video conferencing, and app-start times. Here, the Ice Lake-U flagship, the Core i7-1065G7 on account of its IPC advantage comes out on top.
With productivity tests, we’re looking at writing and spreadsheet performance which to be fair is less of a benchmark than a courtesy. This too is a single-threaded workload that benefits from frequency bursts rather than raw performance. As such, all four notebooks perform more or less the same, with the Dell XPS lagging behind for some reason.
Content creation includes rendering, photo, and video editing. This is AMD’s own backyard leveraging as many threads as you throw at it. As such, the Ryzen 9 powered Zephyrus G14 wins here by a fat margin.
Overall, the Zephyrus G14 comes out on top despite being lighter, thinner, and cheaper. The Renoir-powered 14″ notebook beats not only the Surface 3 but also races past the Dell G7, all the while drawing less power and operating without much noise. The fans on the G7 spin at close to 100% in the DCC test and the chassis also gets pretty hot.
Clock Scaling, Temps, and Power
Dell G7 (Core i7-10750H)
The Core i7-10750H runs at a higher clock (4.6GHz) compared to the Ryzen 9 4900HS on the Zephyrus G14 (4.35GHz) presumably on account of the higher TDP but doesn’t come close to its boost clock (single-core) of 5GHz. However, it does consistently cross the 4.5GHz mark while the latter is limited to under 4.4GHz. This does result in the CPU core temps touching the 90 degrees mark every now and then which results in a fair bit of throttling. The same behavior is seen on the G14, but to a slightly lesser degree with the clock speeds being more consistent.
Zephyrus G14 (Ryzen 9 4900HS)
Despite leveraging the date 14nm node, the Core i7-10750H on the G7 is more power-efficient than the Ryzen 9 4900HS, generally staying around the 50W mark. The latter, on the other hand, quite regularly goes past it.
CPU Performance Benchmarks
Cinebench R20 is a compute-oriented benchmark that stresses all the cores of the CPU. The Zephyrus G14 and its Ryzen 9 4900HS (being an octa-core CPU) easily crush the hex-core i7-10750H on the Dell G7. The single-core scores aren’t any better on the G7 and it ends up being the slowest part on the list.
Continued on Page 2…