Help me decide: Precision 7550 vs 5750

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by Joah Hems, Jun 29, 2020.

  1. Joah Hems

    Joah Hems Newbie

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    Hey guys,

    I am in the market for a new computer and ordered a fully specced Precision 5750, it hasn't arrived yet. However when I saw the owner's thread of the 7550 here I was really impressed by the fact that you change even the GPU (although I guess this in reality is not really practical, but still!). And that it's volume is not that much higher (or even lower) then the 5-series 17".

    So now I am asking myself if I should return the 5-series Precision and get the 7550 instead.
    So I would like people to advise me who are much more familiar with these machines than I am (as a former mac user).

    My use cases:

    Programming, running 3D simulations, some ML (I do most in the cloud), running VMs, a lil gaming (Kerbal Space, Universe Sandbox, Civ 6, maybe RDR2).
    And I run Linux (currently Arch) which is why I would choose a Ubuntu config.

    So, the config I ordered with the 5750:

    i7-10875, UHD, Quadro RTX 3000.
    (RAM and SSD I already bought separately)

    When I configured a 7550, I found that I can configure a machine with same CPU and UHD but with a RTX 4000 instead for 200-300 Euros less!

    Which makes me really wonder. I think one other problem I see with the 5-series Precision is that they only give you 130W power budget (the charger) which limits the performance. (There is a lot of users reporting draining while charging which would indicate that the thermal budget is bigger than the power budget. That the battery drains can be fixed by limiting the power consumption but it shows where the bottleneck is.)

    But after reading through the owners thread of the 7550, I learned that that machine apparently is "warm even on idle" and I think it is possible that the vapor chamber of the 5-series is even better here (although the 7-series is thicker).

    Pros for the 5750 for me are:
    - Efficient use of screen size (17" in a 15" housing)
    - Sexy (design, materials. and that does kinda matter)
    - Good speakers (not usual a feature to look out for, but hey)
    - Good (enough) cooling?
    - Smallish

    Pros for the 7550:
    - Better thermals? (Because thicker)
    - Better GPU option (RTX 4000)
    - Better expandability in the future
    - Higher power budget (180W)
    - Ports (more nice-to-have for me)

    So yeah, I don't know. It is quite maddening looking at the stats of these machines. The only plus side is: I have been researching heavily for the past months and am happy to know that it will be one of these for sure.

    If anyone can advise me I would be super appreciative! As a bonus question: can you guys make a guess if the 7550 would support swapping the GPU with the upcoming nvidia GPU series (which I believe is right around the corner)?

    Ps: You guys really seem to know your **** so please be gentle and excuse my lack of deep understanding of the Dell lineup and intricacies in notebook configurations.
     
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  2. etern4l

    etern4l Notebook Virtuoso

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    The power supply units mentioned are shockingly weak for a high-end mobile workstation. I would expect to see 180W for the weakest dGPU option and 240W+ onwards.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
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  3. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    It's a tradeoff of size vs. power, basically, and you have to decide which is more important to you. There are of course a whole lot of things to consider which it looks like you already have (i.e. speakers in the 7000 series are reportedly not so great). Though for me I'd say it basically boils down to, if you leave the system stationary most of the time then get the 7000-series, but if you are on the move a lot then the 5000-series should be considered strongly.

    More power consumption = more heat output (that's physics).

    Keep in mind that the RTX 4000 in the 7550 is also power-capped. It is limited to 80W in the 7550 but it can run at 110W in the 7750. We don't have a lot of benchmarks yet but we might find that it doesn't perform much better than the RTX 3000 (also 80W).

    It is likely, but not a sure thing, that upgrading the GPU in these systems will be possible in the future. Dell normally keeps the same chassis for at least two generations so it can be expected that next year's 7X60 systems will feature the same form factor of DGFF GPUs, but with an upgrade from NVIDIA Turing to NVIDIA Ampere. If you could procure one of these GPU cards then it would probably work in the 7X50 systems as well. For a similar situation, consider the 7X30 systems which shipped with Pascal GPUs, and were followed the next year by 7X40 systems with the same chassis but they used Turing GPUs. Upgrades were indeed possible in this case.
     
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  4. Joah Hems

    Joah Hems Newbie

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    Thats a good point. When I looked at just the raw dimensions I was like "Oh the 5-series is less thick but much wider" but now I calculated the volumes and it is 1.86l for the 5750 and 2.35l for the 7550 (assuming they are cuboids and not wedges). Which is significant. Although I was once also rocking a W530 wich is 3.29l. Damn that 5750 is small.

    I was wondering about this too. Also if I would get the RTX 4000 but only have 50W more in the 7550, it is probably not even a huge gain. But the 7750 is where I draw the line, that thing is too heavy. I only went for the 5750 because it is basically the size of a 15" which is a very attractive proposition.

    I really like this whole concept of upgrading the GPU, somehow the Precision line always flew under my radar and I always looked towards Thinkpads (which I used besides macs).

    I think I will probably keep the 5750 if there are no other show stoppers. Besides paying A LOT of money I got a good deal with 4 years of ProSupport Plus and just the hassle of returning that one and waiting for the 5750 to arrive would be quite annoying.

    Thanks for helping me out and being nice despice noob questions!
     
  5. WoofWolf

    WoofWolf Notebook Enthusiast

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    I would recommend to you to go with the upgaradble edition as the soldered on board GPU fails much more often than the MXM. That means having to replace an entire motherboard which would be more expensive opposing to just one component. Also having the ability to upgrade CPU is also nice if you plan to use this laptop in the future whilst running newer software at full speed. But don't limit yourself to this model only there are many many more options out there that are also upgradable.
     
  6. Joah Hems

    Joah Hems Newbie

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    If the GPU fails and I am within my 4 years ProSupport Plus, they would replace it for free, I thought. Is that not the case?
    Upgrading the CPU would be awesome but the 7550 does not have a socketed CPU does it? And what other options would you recommend then? I think size-wise the 7550's ~2.3l are already my limit, e.g. I don't wanna get much bigger.
     
  7. WoofWolf

    WoofWolf Notebook Enthusiast

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    When it comes to warranty its a bit of easier said than done, they will often try and say rubbish like try update drivers try system restore etc... when its obvious its a hardware fault, then its sending the laptop to them and wait for their verdict wait for them to call you back wait for the laptop to be sent back and very often they will replace the part just to have it fail again months later until eventually you will run out of warranty and will have to buy parts yourself. It best if you have just one part to deal with take it out and replace it yourself which is still a pain but better than going through everything else mentioned above. As for other laptops there are fully customizable models such as HP 8570W its 15 inches and it has MXM GPU and CPU there are loads of CLEVO laptops with upgradable parts not to mention MSI GX and GT series and many more. Out of curiosity would you rather go with a smaller laptop or larger?
     
  8. Joah Hems

    Joah Hems Newbie

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    Oh wow, after looking around a lot and asking, people were like: "Dells support sucks, but Pro support treats you like a king". And I have onsite support as well, so I hoped they would just come and get it fixed at my home. I am not too worried about them making me install things, because I run Linux and what I have heard from people who have also chosen Linux is that Dell lets them alone if they bought it with Linux, no matter which distro they install later on. So I am kinda banking on that.

    Regarding other notebooks: the Linux support is very important. Dell is pretty good on that. And that's why I would not go with MSI. I really do not like the Clevos, they are huge, ugly have ****ty keyboards and not that well build. I considered some System76 products (also Clevo) but that is just too much for me. The HP you mentioned seems to be quite old (and with a volume of 3.45l quite a big boy).

    I guess having made the experience with the W530, it was not THAT bad but I would prefer something smaller.

    One thing that I def. considered, although it does not belong in the same category as the others mentioned here is the Zephyrus G14. The performance, form factor and price point is making it really attractive. But no webcam, poor Linux support (although it is getting better), limited RAM (24GB) and build quality are deal breakers.
     
  9. WoofWolf

    WoofWolf Notebook Enthusiast

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    Dell support has always been crap, they dont actually send anyone to your house to repair it if it is a laptop. They will often tell you to go to the shop where you bought it with your receipt and ask them to step in for a best possible solution (in most cases exchange whilst under warranty)
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
  10. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    This is not true in my experience. I've called pro support many times for issues with personal systems and work systems at the office. They have always sent a tech out to perform onsite replacements. Many other users here will say the same thing, I'm not sure where this "they don't send anyone to your house to repair it if is a laptop" thing came from. They are very reasonable to deal with. You get local people on the phone who don't have difficult to understand accents even. A couple of times I have had issues raised directly to the engineering team (though they won't let you actually talk to those guys).

    I doubt that there is any data to back up this "soldered GPUs fail more often than MXM GPUs" thing either. Never heard that before either. I have been active on the Precision forum for a long time I do not ever recall hearing a story about someone's Precision 5000-series GPU dying.

    In the event that you have a hardware failure within the four years of support, you'll either get an on-site tech to replace it or a full system replacement for whatever the equivalent current system is if they don't have the parts to repair your old one anymore.

    Buy from the business store and you should be fine. You could even look at the XPS 17, if they have a configuration that you like (it's the same as the 5750 except for GeForce instead of Quadro GPU and no Xeon options, basically) — just buy it from the business store and get pro support. It's been a long time since I bought anything from the consumer/personal store but I do agree that support there is not as good; I had to have a GPU replaced once and it took a good while to run through their diagnosis and get the person on the phone to agree that I actually needed hardware service.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
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