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Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 (2017) review: A slick 2-in-1 that needs more juice

But all that comes with one big drawback in battery life. The 38-watt-hour battery is smaller than last year's model, so the laptop doesn't last as long. There are three power modes, but the device averaged 4 hours, 40 minutes in our battery tests, which is a couple hours weaker than average. On heavier power settings it lasted 20-40 minutes less. I got between three and four hours of real-world use out of it before a recharge was necessary, which is way too low.

Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1

Price as reviewed $1,249
Display size/resolution 13.3-inch 1,920x1,080-pixel touch display
CPU 1.8GHz Intel Core i7-8550U
aMemory 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz
Graphics 128MB dedicated Intel UHD Graphics 620
Storage 512GB SSD
Networking 802.11ac + Bluetooth 4.2, Dual Band 2.4 & 5 GHz, 2x2
Operating system Windows 10 Home (64-bit)

This is an issue, because the Inspiron, with its speed, touchscreen and comfort, is an otherwise excellent device for productivity. But battery life is a key factor for most people who use their computers for work. Your accessibility to power outlets is something to consider before buying.

Feel the buzz

While the grey chassis is an improvement over older versions, the Inspiron still doesn't do much to actually inspire. It looks industrial, and doesn't pull off the grey frame/black keyboard mix as well as Apple's MacBooks, from which it obviously drew inspiration.

But what the 2-in-1 lacks in style, it makes up for in substance -- battery notwithstanding. The responsive, smooth trackpad and spacious keyboard are a joy to use, making this a laptop well-suited for work.

That's not too much of a surprise, considering Dell's XPS laptops have similar strengths. Still, Windows laptops with such quality touchpads and keyboards are rare, especially ones that are under $999.

dell-inspiron-2-in-1-12
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 Its Era Gray chassis looks industrial.

Ian Knighton/CNET

But not everything in the Inspiron feels as premium. The 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution display is vibrant and sharp, but has some noticeable glare. It's mostly forgivable in an office scenario, but is troublesome when watching videos, as a darker screen means more reflection.

A glossy screen is a common problem for touch displays, but it has a double whammy effect here. Since you always need the brightness turned all the way up to minimize glare, the battery life takes another hit.

The Dell Inspiron 2-in-1 is still a great package, and it certainly feels like it's worth more than its asking price -- but that's with a heavy asterisk. If you need a laptop that runs all day, this is not the one for you. It's a shame the Inspiron's battery doesn't give it the power it needs to be truly exceptional. 

Video playback battery drain test (streaming minutes)

LG gram (13-inch, 2017)
690
Acer Swift 3
511
Asus Pro B9440U
497
HP Spectre 13 (2017)
490
Dell Inspiron 7373
290

Note:

Longer bars indicate better performance

Geekbench 4 Multi-Core

Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB
13588
Dell Inspiron 7373
13306
Asus Pro B9440U
7654
Acer Swift 3
7204
LG gram (13-inch, 2017)
7023

Note:

longer bars indicate better performance

System configurations

Dell Inspiron 7373 Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 1.8GHz Intel Core i7-8550U; 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz; 128MB (dedicated) Intel UHD Graphics 620; 512GB SSD
Lenovo Yoga 920-13IKB Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 1.8GHz Intel Core i7-8550U; 8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz; 128MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics 620; 256GB SSD
HP Spectre 13 Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 1.8GHz Intel Core i7-8550U; 8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,133MHz; 128MB (dedicated) Intel HD Graphics 620; 256GB SSD
Lenovo ThinkPad 13 Microsoft Windows 10 Pro (64-bit); 2.4GHz Intel Core i3-7100U; 4GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz; 128MB dedicated Intel HD Graphics 620; 128GB SSD
Asus Pro B9440U Microsoft Windows 10 Pro (64-bit); 2.5GHz Intel Core i5-7200U; 8GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,866MHz; 128MB dedicated Intel HD Graphics 620; 512GB SSD
LG gram (13-inch, 2017) Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.5GHz Intel Core i5-7200U; 8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,133MHz; 128MB dedicated Intel HD Graphics 620; 256GB SSD
Acer Swift 3 Microsoft Windows 10 Home (64-bit); 2.5GHz Intel Core i5-7200U; 8GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,133MHz; 128MB dedicated Intel HD Graphics 620; 256GB SSD

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