For the last four or so years my main computer has been a Microsoft Surface Pro 2. The Surface Pro 2 has a 4th generation 2xCore i7 1.7GHz with 8GB of RAM.
It has been a great PC and I have done a lot of photo processing on it.
But, as I am getting close to retirement, I decided to upgrade. After a lot of ‘research’ I landed on a DELL Inspiron 13 7000 8th generation 4xCore i7 1.8GHz with 16GB of DDR4 RAM.
Now I realise that the DELL Inspiron i7 has a relatively short battery life for a modern ultra-light 2-in-1 laptop. It is only good for about six hours on battery—depending what you are using it for. But, when it comes to being docked, the performance-for-dollar ratio for the Inspiron is the best. And, as I do almost all of my hard work—such as photo editing—when docked, then the battery life was not that big a consideration.
Another very important consideration for me was that it could be docked and that the dock would support at least one 2560x1440 resolution monitor, and in the future when 4K colour-correct 10-bit monitors get into my price range, then I want it to also support 4K.
I have been using the Inspiron now for about two weeks now. I am very happy with it. The performance improvement for editing images using Lightroom, Photoshop, Skylum Luminar, and Skylum Aurora 2018 is excellent. It is at least twice as fast as the ‘old’ Surface Pro in all the tests I have done.
As a few example, opening a RAW from my Sony a7r III in Photoshop used to take 17.8 secs on the Surface but the Inspiron does it opens in 9.5. Doing a HDR merge into Skylum Aurora from Photoshop used to take 27.8 seconds, and now completes in 12.0 seconds. And the saving the HDR layer back to Photoshop previously consumed over 31 seconds and now completes in just over 14.
I am very happy with the speed improvements. By-and-large everything happens in less than half the time it took the Surface.