Dell Inspiron 9400
- Power and multitasking, Entertainment centre, Connectivity options
- Graphics, Not for gaming, Looks
Although Dell's build quality is once again a winner, the Inspiron 9400 is lacking in other areas, mainly looks and graphics.
Price$ 2,499.00 (AUD)
The design of the Inspiron 9400 is almost exactly the same as the 9200 and 9300, so the chassis is starting to look a bit dated. It's a sturdy desktop replacement, but compared with the styling of the Inspiron XPS, it leaves a little to be desired.
The 9400 is a world ahead of the 9300 as far as specifications are concerned, though. Gone is the Pentium M processor, replaced by the dual-core T2500 chip, seriously increasing the 9400's power and helping it to a WorldBench 5 score of 94. We've seen quicker overall results, but in our multitasking tests the Dell was second to none.
Another difference between the 9400 and its predecessors is the choice of operating system - XP Home has been replaced by XP Media Center 2005 Edition, indicating a greater emphasis on making the 9400 an all-round entertainment centre. The screen is good, giving a sharp, colourful image, but we'd have liked to see a higher resolution than 1,440x900.
In terms of graphics, the 9400 really falls down - that onboard Intel processor simply isn't up to the standard established by ATI and nVidia. The frame rates we got in our Doom3 and Halo tests weren't very good at all. Believe us when we say that this laptop isn't for gaming. We suspect that a better graphics chip would have boosted the Inspiron's WorldBench 5 result.
Other than this disappointment, the 9400 is a decent model, with plenty of space on the hard drive, a decent DVD writer and good connectivity options, both wired and wireless. There's a newer version of Microsoft Works than the one Dell provides with this model, though, and the warranty isn't the best on offer. The build quality of the Dell is beyond reproach, but it isn't exactly a looker and there are plenty of better deals available.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 LG G6 Plus: Full, in-depth review
- 2 First Look: Nikon D850
- 3 OnePlus 5: Full, in-depth review
- 4 Nokia 8: Full, in-depth review
- 5 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
Latest News Articles
- MSI GE73 7RF VR Raider Gaming Laptop: Full, in-depth review
- Traditional Aussie PC market defies global downward trend again
- Acer expands gaming notebook lineup with Predator Helios 300
- ASUS Announces Two New Entries into the VivoBook Range with the VivoBook 14 and VivoBook 15
- Hands-on: MSI's GT75VR Titan brings high-end HDR display tech to a gaming laptop
PCW Evaluation Team
- Huawei Y5 (2017) Review
- First Look: The Evil Within 2
- LG G6 Plus: Full, in-depth review
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSocial Media Executive / Specialist (Facebook) - Online PokerNSW
- FTBusiness Intelligence DeveloperSA
- FTBackend Java DeveloperNSW
- FTLevel 2 Desktop EngineerOther
- FTSplunk DeveloperVIC
- CCSenior Oracle ConsultantNSW
- CCMitel Contact Centre SpecialistWA
- FTSenior SAP Training LeadOther
- FTSenior Business Analyst – Office 365 ProjectOther
- CCSenior Business AnalystNSW
- FTDigital Project Manager - Mobile App, Website BuildOther
- FTSalesforce ConsultantVIC
- TPAnalyst ProgrammerSA
- CCApplication Developer - Sterling IntegratorVIC
- FTApplication/Maintenance DeveloperOther
- FTSenior Software Engineer - C++ and NodeQLD
- CCApplications PackagerNSW
- CCSenior Java DevelopersACT
- FTProject Manager- Cloud -Federal GovernmentOther
- FTProject Manager | Intelligent Transport Software DeliveryOther
- FTJunior Applications Support AnalystOther
- CCData ArchitectNSW
- CCBusiness Analyst - Government OrganizationVIC
- FTBusiness Analyst / Change AnalystOther
- FTWireless Solution Architect - 6mth ContractOther