Recommendations for a used Dell Precision 15" (today?)

Discussion in 'Dell' started by reburns, Nov 11, 2021.

  1. reburns

    reburns Notebook Guru

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    Hello - As a CAD enginerd, I've been a Dell Precision user for decades, and have two 7740's on hand. I use computers, but ain't no expert!

    Today I'm shopping for a Dell Precision Laptop for an "IT" student buddy of mine in Haiti. I'll buy off eBay and ship DHL to Haiti and hope it doesn't get stolen along the way or that he doesn't have to pay huge bribes to get it from the DHL office. It's a hard life in Haiti and the situation is deteriorating there. You can easily get shot dead picking up a box from DHL.


    I'm going to stick with Dell Precision 15", W10. My top budget is $900, so that's probably an i7 version. Reliability and durability is most important, so maybe that means age is important? I shop eBay with a hawk-eye out on photos and seller feedback.

    Can y'all give me opinions about different Precision models:
    5530 / 5540
    7510 / 7520 << something attractive is that these have tool-less battery access... batteries there take a beating and I'd send a spare.
    Or something else?

    I get that the 55 series is smaller and less customizable (he'll never make upgrades), but maybe better trackpad. Battery life will be less and that's a biggie. I'd personally hate the glossy screen.

    Thoughts about FHD 1920 x 1080 versus UHD 3840 x 2160... While I'm leaning towards paying a premium with UHD, tho in years past sometimes higher resolution was a pain because some program icons didn't scale... would that issue still exist with Windows 10?

    Here's some possibilities... bidding on the first one ends in an hour:

    #1 Dell Precision 5530 15.6" 4K, i7 8850H, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD #275014351841
    #2 Dell Precision 5540 15.6" FHD i7-9750H 2.6GHz 16GB RAM 500GB SSD T1000 #124994277071
    #3 DELL Precision 7510 Intel i7-6920HQ @ 2.90GHZ 64GB RAM 256GB SSD WIN10 Pro #353761698478
    #4 Dell Precision 7520 15.6” i7-7700HQ 2.80GHz 256GB SSD 32GB RAM #133924743051

    There's lots.... the first one is the UHD screen and is "listed well"... seller states they are the owner and user.

    Thanks! - Ralph
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2021
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  2. Tech Junky

    Tech Junky Notebook Deity

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    I would go for #1 / 2 for the sake of W11 upgradability.

    UHD vs FHD is personal preference but, the icon scaling isn't really an issue any longer.

    If having the ability to tile out more windows is important then go UHD.
     
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  3. reburns

    reburns Notebook Guru

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    Thanks. The portability of the 55 series would be better for him. I put my snipe bid in on #1 UHD, and if that doesn't work, #2 FHD might sell cheaper, plus #2 is newer.

    I wonder how much more battery drain the UHD causes over FHD??
    I might prefer the #2 non-glare myself. The sun is bright in Haiti!
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2021
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  4. Tech Junky

    Tech Junky Notebook Deity

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    I went matte UHD myself as I can't deal with reflectivity. I'm running a 9750H as well until they start releasing gen12 next year. The UHD I went with has a brightness of 500 nits which is flexible for indoor/outdoor use. Most screens these days though fall in the 250 range for brightness. Might be worth a shot replacing the panel to something a bit better for ~$100. Panel swap should only take 15-30 minutes depending on if you have to swap the cable or not. Rerouting the cable adds time due to needing to pull apart the chassis and routing it through the hinge. The other variable is the pinout on the panel side of the cable. Mine was 30 and the panel I went with is 40 so I found the replacement cable for $15.
     
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  5. reburns

    reburns Notebook Guru

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    Thank you! I don't want any fuss... not interested in any upgrade or even OS installs on this one.
    I was 2nd highest bidder on the #1 glossy 5530 UHD
    I've put in my snipe for #2 matte 5540 FHD
     
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  6. Tech Junky

    Tech Junky Notebook Deity

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    Now you just have to wait....
     
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  7. reburns

    reburns Notebook Guru

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    Follow-up question: where to buy replacement batteries and what brand? I think the Precision 5530 takes a 6GTPY and Dell is both $$$ and on a long backorder. Reviews of aftermarket ones on Amazon have too many negatives. Thanks!
     
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  8. Tech Junky

    Tech Junky Notebook Deity

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    Can't really say on that one. I know for m Clevo but, Dell isn't one I put much effort into looking for batteries. It mostly depends on how long they sit on the shelf that determines how well they hold up to a charge / use. There should be some good generic options out there though if you dig deep enough.
     
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  9. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    Though they tend to be higher quality, 4k generally speaking means less battery life. A lot of reliability and durability comes down to chance, though a well built notebook is probably more likely statistically to be stout.
     
  10. reburns

    reburns Notebook Guru

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    I ordered the eBay 5530 for my Haitian friend, it'll arrive to me mid-week, and I have a new related question: can the laptop be charged using USB-C into the Thunderbolt port, even if very slowly? There is hardly any grid power right now in Haiti but there's always sun, so I'm curious if it could trickle-charge using portable solar panels (link)(or need a power station also?) or smaller solar battery bank (link) even if it took all day.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2021
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