Dell G15 Ryzen Edition review: A powerful and discreet laptop

Dell G15 Ryzen Edition review: A powerful and discreet laptop

The Dell G15 5515 has a light gray with blue dots, much like recycled plastic – which it isn’t. The back is signed with an orange letter G on the right edge indicating the gaming membership of this model. The underside is greatly perforated to bring fresh air into the components.

The cover of the Dell G15 AMD Edition is striped. © Digital

Open, the Dell G15 reveals a very classic backlit keyboard with a key layout reminiscent of an office model. The touch is also far from satisfying and looks empty.
Thus, the arrow keys are surrounded by the Page Up and Down keys; We’ll also notice a numeric keypad with calculator hotkeys or the CE and +/- keys.
An even more exotic option as the shortcut that allows modifying Dell’s “SmartShift” performance mode isn’t even typed on the keyboard: it’s Fn + F9 – while on the manufacturer’s website it’s indicated as Fn + G . We had to download the instructions to find the information.

A master layout that focuses more on office automation than gaming.  © Digital

The key layout is more office-oriented than the games. © Digital

The touchpad is on its part off center a little to the left. It doesn’t have separate left or right click buttons, but simple buttons below the touch surface.

The connections are distributed on the sides and the back of the computer, between the slots. On the left side we have the RJ45 port and the headphone/microphone jack as well as the charging indicator light. On the right are two 3.2 Gen1 ports, one of which can charge the device even when the computer is turned off. Finally, the back houses a USB 3.2 Type-C port, a USB3.2 Gen1 port, an HDMI port, and a charging jack.

Wireless connectivity is provided by an Intel AX1650 Killer chip that is nothing more than the AX200 chip with a software overlay that provides more settings. So the AX1650 Killer like the AX200 allows you to have Wi-Fi 6 (2400 Mbit/s) and Bluetooth 5.2. The webcam captures 720p resolution and doesn’t provide much detail. It is especially noisy in low light.

© Digital

Cooling is done by two fans in the corners under the hinge. Four radiators, and therefore four vents, are responsible for discharging heat from the processor and graphics card. Surprisingly, Dell did not place the processor and graphics card on the accessible side of the motherboard; It is located under the keyboard and the heat pipe is invisible.

© Digital

This probably explains the 51 degrees Celsius above the keyboard, and it’s ventilation at that level. However, temperatures in strategic places (ZQSD keys, arrows and touchpad) do not suffer from heat and do not rise above 34 degrees Celsius.

Noise pollution was contained, too, measuring 42 dB in “normal” mode and 46.6 dB with SmartShift activated via the Fn + F9 shortcut.

© Digital

The set of programs that allow you to control various performance modes and parameters of the Dell G15 is very limited. Dell has already reused the Alienware Control Center software, cutting many functions. It will also be necessary to contact the Microsoft Store to download certain modules, since in the case it is not possible to access the audio settings (Nahimic) or SmartShift; Not understood! It also takes a long time to launch the application after starting the computer (more than a minute). So we will be satisfied with the most useful shortcut (Fn + F9) that activates SmartShift and ventilation to get the most out of the Ryzen 7 and GeForce RTX 3060 of 125 W.

Unlocking the Dell G15 is especially easy. To access the components, simply remove 8 Phillips screws and slide the casing.

© Digital

Apart from the processor and GPU soldered to the motherboard, all components can be removed easily. Two M.2 ports can be accessed in 2230/2280 format; The M.2 SSD is available in the unusual 2230 format.
On its website, Dell provides a complete, step-by-step disassembly guide for all the components that make up the G15, such as USB ports, touchpad, etc.

The Dell G15 is equipped with an IPS panel that displays 1920 x 1080 pixels at 120 Hz, its integration is more than classic, with large bezels that raise the occupancy rate to 69%.

© Digital

Contrast was measured at 1544:1, which is a high value for an IPS panel. The average recorded temperature is 6,638 K, which is very close to the video standard (6,500 K).
On the other hand, the Dell panel does not shine through with its brightness (272 cd / m²). It would be advisable to stay indoors. Fortunately, the matte coating provides low reflectivity (20.8% reflected light) so you don’t have to play with tilting the screen too much to avoid glare.

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

Important details for a PC dedicated to the games, screen survival was measured at 15ms, a value low enough to play in good conditions, but almost twice the highest level in our database (8ms).

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

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

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