Review Dell G5 15 SE This All-AMD Notebook Is DIFFERENT

so this is the Dell G5 15 SE the SE stands for special edition it’s actually where the most heavily requested notebooks that we were asked to check out and there’s a good reason for that dell has managed to deliver an affordable gaming laptop with AMD all over it that’s right you’re getting a really fast Ryzen CPU and a Navi based graphics card now there is a lot to like about the G5 15 SE I mean it’s pretty affordable it comes with great specs and let’s not forget you can actually buy one right now unlike some of the other indie notebooks but I’ve also got some concerns as well and some of those will make you think twice before pulling the trigger on something like this so as always I’ll make sure leave timestamps in the description down below also you can hover over the timeline to get to a particular segment then you’re interested in and yeah let’s start talking about the G5 15 SE right after this it’s true what they say about the coarser 8 100 we’ve got what are called hardware for cool temperatures a cool design that stands out with plenty of good i/o its whisper quiet with an efficient fan and occupies as much space on my desk as my plant the coarser a 100 up to 16 cores with a 20 atti it does not disappoint check it out below all right so let’s start with pricing this laptop starts at eight hundred and eighty dollars us that’s right it’s less than nine hundred dollars and for that you get a Ryzen 5 4600H with six cores and twelve threads eight gigabytes of RAM in dual channel at 32 hundred megahertz a 256 gigabyte nvme SSD and rx 5600 and GPU and a 1080p 60 Hertz display the sample that we have over here comes with a faster eight core 16 thread Verizon 740 m 2h CPU twice the memory and storage the GPU remains the same however the display does get a bump to 144 Hertz and the price Delta between this and the base model is 320 dollars but with all the sales Dell usually has I wouldn’t be surprised to see it go for less Dell is also offering the g5 with Intel CPUs and gtx 660ti graphics for about the same price and yeah as you can see had Intel tax is significant which is really unfortunate now when you look at the competition there is the asus tough 815 for the same price as our G5 15 SE you get more storage and in RTX 2060 but remember the a-15 really didn’t have a great screen as a matter of fact it was a pretty terrible display there’s also the upcoming HP omen 15 and the Acer nitro 5 both of those notebooks are priced similarly to this Dell notebook so let’s start with the design and build quality and honestly guys it feels cheap Dells use of glossy plastic materials on the outside says it all when you flip the notebook the bottom looks like my XPS 15 alpha 2 X notebook from 5 years ago remember the classic Dell gray joke from

decades ago well it’s back again interestingly to make it stand out a bit dell has coated the front panel with air dicent accents that show up different colors depending on the lighting conditions or the angle that you look at it I’m gonna let you guys be the judge on that I should also mention that the top lid scratches easily I mean our sample has only been about a month old and it looks pretty I mean the scratch marks are really really visible which is really unfortunate so maybe two or three years down the road don’t expect it to look like the day you bought it also check this out guys like this bottom panel sort of creates a squeaky noise when you’re when you’re pressing it or when you’re holding in in that mode it’s like I said it’s just really really unfortunate and the hinge design is really poor I mean I’m gonna I’m gonna open this for you guys well I’m on camera so you can but I think you probably heard that I’m just gonna open it so you guys can hear how it squeaks I’m gonna be silent like I don’t know if you can hear that or pick that up but it’s actually very noticeable and the display also Wombles a lot especially if you have those in your lab it’s I think this is a really poor hinge design in my opinion it’s also pretty thick coming in at 0.85 inches and it weighs a tad more than five pounds so it’s a little bit thinner but heavier than the a-15 the included power adapter is ginormous guys seriously this is one of the biggest adapters we’ve ever come across in the last year it’s rated at 240 watts which is about the same size as my blade 15 but that one is significantly smaller but here’s a shot compared to my regular

photography lens and my pixel for Excel it’s really that big you’ll certainly need to find room in your bag to lug this thing around the interior space is decent you get a full-size keyboard and from our Legion seminar video a lot of you preferred standard layouts so this may or may not be your cup of tea I also notice that the key caps were smaller compared to other notebooks that we’ve tested I have pretty big hands and I constantly found myself making numerous typos which was frustrating so it might not be ideal for hardcore typist if you’re willing to pass that the keys do offer a fantastic travel distance with good feedback it’s right on par with the a-15 which is awesome the LED backlighting is RGB it doesn’t get that bright and oddly enough Dell doesn’t include brightness settings so it’s either on or off you’ll need to use the command center for that and to be honest with you guys I would prefer a much better piece of software from Dell than this the trackpad is respectable it is a pretty smooth surface with support for Windows position drivers but over time as you start accumulating finger grease it just starts to become really weird and sometimes unresponsive it’s also aligned slightly with the spacebar meaning that there’s little to no room to place your left palm comfortably unlike the tough a 15 we just slightly off centered and that makes navigation easier this is what the webcam looks like and quite frankly I’m not impressed with the color coming out of the sensor because it just you know the skin tones are another accurate boost the shadows all the way up and yeah it’s one of the worst looking webcams that I’ve come across on a notebook however the

microphone does sound pretty good so it should be fine for casual business meetings the speakers are bottom facing unfortunately they don’t sound that great you’re not gonna get any bass and the trebles do sound a bit harsh I think the tough a-15 sounds way way better than this notebook in my opinion so yeah bottom facing speakers absolute no-go port selection is okay on this notebook and basically it’s on par with the other budget-friendly devices on the left hand side you get power in mini display port HDMI 2.0 a USB 3.0 gen one foggy bits per second type a port land jack and a Type C Gen 2 port which also functions as DP switching over to the right you get a Kensington lock 2 USB 2.0 type a ports that’s right USB 2.

0 ports an audio jack and a full-size SD card reader which is really interesting because this notebook is catered towards gamers but not creators but if you happen to be both of them then this is of course a bonus feature just keep in mind that it’s not a UHS 3 card reader so it’s not the fastest one available with some of the other notebooks that are more creative focused one thing we’ve started to notice on a lot of these AMD notebooks is the fact that all you manufacturers sort of limit the number of high bandwidth connections particularly with USB so in this case you only get a single type C port which supports 10 gigabits per second and a single type A which supports of a gigabits per second and the rest is just super slow speed and you’re getting two USB ports which is really unfortunate because when you look at the Intel counterparts they do come with the fastest protocol that’s out there so that to me is very frustrating

and I hope all your manufacturers sort of revamp that in the future moving on to the display it’s 15.6 inch is 1080p at 144 Hertz and as we’re in our display analysis test it covers 95% srgb 73 % Adobe RGB and 74% DC @ b3 so it’s way way color accurate than something like the tough a 15 which is just significantly worse compared to the Dell honestly I really wish that the TUF had a similar display like what’s found on the Dell but this will definitely be an awesome addition for content creation if you’re looking to edit photos this will definitely get the job done it’s also a pretty bright display not the brightest I’d only get as far as 300 nits and the fact that it’s a matte display makes it even better so you don’t have to worry about crazy reflections when you’re viewing this in direct sunlight the gaming experience was fantastic on this notebook I think you’re really in for a treat and I think it’s partly due to the combination of that higher fresher display but also how color accurate it is I actually did side by side tests comparing this to the tough notebook and the difference was just night and day you really in for a treat with the g5 15 SE upgrade ability is pretty straightforward on this laptop you have access to two RAM sticks right over here maximum supported memory is 32 gigabytes the primary m2 drive is located right over here it’s a really fast drive in fact it’s one of the fastest that we’ve seen on a gaming notebook within this price range I believe Dell is using the Samsung PM 9 91 nvme SSD there’s an additional m2 drive for expansion which is nice but check this out for some odd reason you’ll

notice a little engraving beneath that which says you can add a 7 millimeter hard drive or a tuneup inch drive as well but that’s not really the case in fact Dell does not include any brackets or the necessary connectors for installation we even tried to place a drive to see if it would fit but turns out it conflicts with that second m2 slot and it makes a direct contact with the PCB now Dell does offer the option to upgrade the battery size to 68 one hours but that can only be done with the highest config that comes with a one terabyte drive so you’re gonna have to pay a little bit more to get that option it doesn’t really come with the lowering configs which is just so bizarre I honestly feel like layout could have been a little bit more efficient but yeah to me that was just super odd speaking of the battery our sample comes with a 3-cell 51 watt hour unit and it’s not that great in fact the bravo 15 which has roughly the same battery size lasted way longer than this notebook it could be due to a faster GPU or smart shift not optimizing workloads between the CPU and the GPU but yeah pretty disappointing in my opinion switching gears to our heavy load test we got about an hour worth of use from this thing now moving on to performance and one of the most important features of this notebook isn’t its design or even the specs but rather the addition of AMD’s smart shave technology Dell is actually the first to include this and it could really be a game-changer but I also have a few concerns about it as well and look we’ll make a separate video on smart shift but from a high level what it essentially does is it treats the GPU and the CPU as a single virtual entity and when it comes to distributing power

and thermal Headroom for certain workloads like rendering or gaming then using application specific learning algorithms smart shift will increase the power going towards whatever component is most critical for example in gaming the GPUs resources are used to most so it’ll get more power resources that should technically allowed to boost further and for longer than in a system without smart shift but that also means the CPU would be given a lot less power than normal the same goes for rendering where the CPU would be able to stretch its legs since the GPU isn’t really needed that much while the CPU and GPU are now aware of what they’re doing and can balance performance based on workloads a lot of it actually depends on how good Ami’s smart shift algorithm actually is because it’s still a new piece of technology that’s still being built out and we’ve experienced a few hiccups for instance the integrated GPU was being detected instead of a discreet graphics card and vice versa another thing that you need to be aware of is that smart shift is always on there’s no way to turn it off or modify it in fact there are some performance settings built into alien where’s a command center like high-performance and balanced but they absolutely don’t do anything it’s smart shift doing pretty much all the tasks 100% on this laptop now that could cause an issue for people who are willing to sacrifice acoustics for better temperatures and performance we already saw with notebooks like the Legion 7i that giving users control over how they experience a gaming laptop can be really beneficial hopefully AMD adds a few more modes but for the time being this notebook does have the option to run its fans at full speed by simply hitting function plus

the G key or the f7 key but who wants their fans running at full speed all the time either way I’ll be checking out to see how that mode impacts performance a bit later on and before I get too far into performance I do have to talk about some of the issues that encountered with this notebook to be honest with you guys there were a lot when I received this notebook about a month ago I honestly felt bad for early adopters there was an odd issue with steam where the app ended up enabling the integrated graphics every few seconds even when I was gaming that caused massive gameplay stutters as smart disabled the discrete card for an instant to enable the onboard GPU I also couldn’t get Red Dead Redemption – or Warhammer to total war to start and even premier ended up oddly using the integrated graphics rather than the more powerful one temperatures also got crazy hot – it all felt really unpolished but then things have changed in a big way a new Dell BIOS update and aimed a driver rolled out this week and completely wiped out every one of those problems so yeah the rise in notebook ecosystem and specifically smart shift are still going through some growing pains and we had to retest all of our titles before putting together this video so let’s take a look at how this thing actually does on a daily basis I wanted to kick things off with the acoustic performance since the g5 15 SEC is actually one of the quietest notebooks that we’ve tested but remember this since low fan speeds do come with some sacrifices and with this system there’s just no way around that by changing performance

modes exterior temperatures were pretty well managed too but that’s to be expected with such a thick boi chassis loading up a real world my render shows the CPU speeds and temperatures starting off really strong but gradually ever so slowly things start to change so as I mentioned earlier this is the quietest or one of the quietest indie notebooks that we’ve tested but it also is one of the hottest running with that risin 7 hitting almost a hundred degrees by the end of the test that impacted clock speeds – and those were barely above 3.4 gigahertz at the end that’s about where the bravo 15 ended up but a bit slower than the tough a 15 while it’s really hard to see if smart shift is actually working as we make our way through these benchmarks you’ll notice a few things first and foremost is in terms of raw CP performance this Dell laptop is better than the Bravo 15 and it’s one of the fastest notebooks that we’ve tested not as quick as the 815 but Delta notebook is also much quieter this is pretty much why people are begging to get these rise in CPUs inside higher-end systems moving on to GPU based rendering benchmarks the g5 is good but not all that great even with latest updates and videos GPUs have an edge then with something like WinRAR it does pretty good – which goes to show that the SSD dell

installed is pretty good switching gears to gaming and this is where things get pretty interesting but it also looks like smart shift is gonna impact this in a big way you see these are some of the lower CPU clock speeds that we’ve seen with a gaming laptop but according to AMD there’s a reason for this the algorithm just doesn’t think that higher speeds are necessary and the system should be putting more emphasis on GP performance dan doesn’t stop temperatures from climbing to high levels again though I mean look a notebook CPU operating at just 2 gigahertz should never get up to over 90 degrees what this tells us is the rx 5600 M is pushing its heat through the cooling system and onto the processor which makes sense since according to our readings our notebook was sucking down over 90 watts at full load on the positive side the GPU is running at an average clock speed of about 1.3 5 gigahertz which is run in line with Andy’s game clock spec it does get mighty hot though topping out at just over 90 degrees Celsius with both the CPU and GPU hitting about 90 during gaming while the system remains so quiet you see it feels like smart shift is prioritizing noise over temperatures and that could be an issue for performance other than in Call of Duty the RT X 2060 equipped on the top K 15 beats the g5 s rx 5600 M every single time in many cases it isn’t even remotely close and remember according to AMD the 5600 M is supposed to be a 2060 competitor but that’s super far from the truth here it could be that smart shift is implementing such low CPU clocks and that’s ultimately bottlenecking the GPU but there is no way to find out for certain or at least until we get a notebook with an arcs 4600

M that doesn’t have smart shift either way this is a super disappointing result but as promised here are a few more tests with Dells fan override that pushes rpms to a hundred percent well in Autodesk Maya it certainly helped increase clock speeds by a good 200 megahertz even though the temperatures were reduced by only a few degrees and the reason for this is pretty interesting basically the rise in 740 808 took advantage of the extra thermal Headroom bumped up its input power and delivered increased frequencies and that allowed the g5 see to almost match the a-15 and shaved a full minute off its rendering time in gaming things get pretty interesting even with much much lower temperatures smart chip doesn’t allow the CPU any additional clock speed Headroom so it looks like all of the resources are sticking with an Rx at 5600 M so let’s check that out here there’s lower temperatures too and that actually does lead to much improved frequencies that are on average 125 to 250 megahertz higher than the default setting in this case we actually saw the arcs 5600 I’m consuming a bit over a hundred watts every now and then which does prove that a cooler operating environment did lead to more available input power and guess what while it takes that much juice the AMD GPU can actually match the our TX 2060 but while consuming about 20 watts more and to me that’s just unsustainable without the fans running at max speed so there you have it guys and honestly my thoughts on this del G 515 se are kind of all over the place because for one it offers great value with decent gaming frame

rates respectable productivity scores a really good quality display and with a new BIOS update this laptop does run quieter but on the other hand there is a reason why I wouldn’t recommend this thing because the build quality and design leaves a lot to be desired the trackpad position is really at a cram location it’s honestly I don’t even know who designed this thing the component temperatures are pretty high battery life is pretty short too because it’s a smaller battery and most importantly you’re only getting a single at least there isn’t a single type a USB port that supports a higher protocol like a 10 gigabits per second standard which is really unfortunate and honestly I know this might be a little bit more controversial but if the top 8 15 had a better display then we would ultimately have a winner right there I am a bit disappointed since AMD Nova buyers are constantly being asked to make sacrifices they shouldn’t have to make and the del G 515 se is just no different it’s got impressive performance in many areas but in 2020 there’s so much more we’d expect from portable devices than just chart-topping benchmarks now if you can find this notebook for a really good deal given how frequent Dell sales are then this could be a great option or you could just wait out to see what the next round of em you know books could offer so on that note thank you so much watching hope you were able to take away something from this video stay safe spin responsibly and I will talk to you guys in the next

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