Best Dell laptops 2022: top machines for college, business, gaming and more

These are the best Dell laptops today from the budget-friendly to their most powerful gaming machines

Dell XPS 13 2021
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(Image credit: Dell)

The best Dell laptop of 2022 is no easy choice to make. Delivering what makes the brand such a great choice for those on the market for a new laptop, the choices on our list combine the high performance specs, impressive power output, and the incredible value that new Dell laptops offer for the money.

Dell offers a range of laptops that cover all budgets and necessities. From budget laptops to gaming laptops, 2-in-1 laptops and workstations, it's easier now more than ever to find a Dell laptop on sale to suit your needs.

Students checking out Back to School sales on laptops are sure to find a good option with Dell. They make some of the best student laptops (opens in new tab) around, offering a wide range of machines that fit almost every sized budget.

And while it's hard to definitively list the best Dell laptops in 2022, we've dug into the current range to tell you the Dell laptop that offers the best mix of price and performance for most people. We've also included lots of picks for people with specific needs.

Best Dell laptops 2022

Dell XPS 13 9310 OLEDT3 Award


(Image credit: Future)
The best Dell laptop right now

Specifications

CPU: Up to 11th Gen Intel i7-1165G7
Screen: 13.4" 3.5k OLED or 4K UHD+
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe
RAM: Up to 16GB LPDDR4x 4267MHz
Storage: Up to 512GB M.2 SSD

Reasons to buy

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Fantastic display 
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Superb design and build quality
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Comfortable typing experience

Reasons to avoid

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Average battery life
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On the expensive side
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Limited number of ports

The Dell XPS 13 series has consistently wowed us here at T3. It's powerful, supremely well built, and compact, so just about everything you could possibly want in your search for the best Dell laptop around at the moment.

In our Dell XPS 13 OLED review, we acknowledge that this is "a laptop that combines power and portability in a stylish package." 

With the latest 11th-gen Intel processors installed and up to 16GB of RAM installed, this is a portable computer that's going to be able to handle everything that you want to throw at it. From late-night Netflix to early-morning report writing, you'll find the Dell XPS 13 a capable and competent laptop.

It's that 13.4-inch display with the super-thin bezels that really makes the XPS 13 stand out though. The 3.5K OLED option is a touch more expensive than the 4K UHD+ version, and while both are extremely impressive, we'd opt for the OLED. 

Dell XPS 13 vs Dell XPS 15: which of Dell's premium portables is better?

Dell XPS 15 9510 OLEDT3 Award

(Image credit: Future)
The best premium Dell laptop

Specifications

CPU: 11th-gen Intel Core i7-11800H
Screen: 15.6" 3.5K (3456x2160) OLED touch display
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 4GB
RAM: 16GB DDR4-3200MHz (2x8GB)
Storage: 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD

Reasons to buy

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Stunning screen
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Premium build quality
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Plenty of power

Reasons to avoid

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Short gaming battery life
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Can get a bit pricey

The Dell XPS 15 9500 has wowed us even more than previous versions of the flagship laptop, and if you've got enough money to be able to afford it, this is undoubtedly one of the best Dell laptops in the business – you pay a little bit extra than the XPS 13 for that 15.6-inch display, but we think it's worth it.

In our Dell XPS 15 9510 review, we praised the laptop for its "cutting-edge processor performance and a bright, clear 15-inch OLED screen that makes your content look great." The 11th gen Intel Core i7 is still speedy, though there is now a 9520 model that comes with the 12th gen models up to an i9-12900HK, which are faster still. 

This has left only a single option on the Dell website for the 9510 model but the specs are top-notch – from the Nvidia Geforce RTX3050 graphics card to the 16GB RAM. This is still a little cheaper than the 9520 equivalent. 

Dell Inspiron 7506T3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)
The best Dell 2-in-1 laptop

Specifications

CPU: Up to 11th Gen Intel i7-1165G7
Screen: 15.6-inch (up to 3840x2160 60Hz)
Graphics: Intel Iris Xe
RAM: Up to 16GB LPDDR4X 3200Mhz
Storage: Up to 12B M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD

Reasons to buy

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Large, bright touchscreen
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Numpad included
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Thunderbolt 4 connectivity

Reasons to avoid

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Middling battery life
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Reflective screen
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Cumbersome in tablet mode

Besides the premium, flagship laptops that Dell puts out, there are plenty of value-for-money models as well. The selection on Dell's website is so huge that you're bound to find something that fits your financial situation. The Inspiron line is a good place to start looking, and the Dell Inspiron 15 2-n-1 is particularly tempting.

In our Dell Inspiron 15 2-in-1 review, we said that it "checks off a lot of useful boxes for its price, but loud fans, middling battery life and a reflective screen hold it back."

The main highlight is an expensive 15.6-inch screen – large screens aren't always a given at lower price points, but the display attached to this particular Dell laptop gives your video streaming apps and your web browsers and anything else you want to run plenty of space to move around in.

You get some very decent specs to go alongside that screen, with SSD hard drives and AMD chipsets on offer on certain models. Shopping for the best Dell laptop at this end of the market means you'll have to forget about hardcore gaming or video editing, but for a good-looking computer that will take care of the everyday basics, this is ideal.

dell latitude 9510 grayT3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)
Top-level gaming power in a laptop

Specifications

CPU: Up to 10th-gen Intel Core I7-10810U
Screen: 15-inch (1920 x 1080 pixels)
Graphics: Intel UHD
RAM: Up to 16GB
Storage: Up to 512GB

Reasons to buy

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Top-level internal spec
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Great looks
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Lots of options

Reasons to avoid

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Very, very expensive
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No 4K screen
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Not for gaming

"The Dell Latitude 9510 might not be thrilling, but as a thin and light laptop for the executive traveler, it packs a performance punch and will keep going all day." – T3's  Dell Latitude 9510 review (opens in new tab)

The Dell Latitude 9510 gets you MacBook Pro-style looks and performance in a Dell chassis that runs Windows. It's a fantastic-looking laptop with plenty of power under the hood, and while it's also on the expensive side, we'd say that it's worth the investment if you want one of the best Windows laptops and best Dell laptops currently available.

With one of the latest 10th-gen Intel CPUs and up to 16GB of RAM keeping everything running smoothly, the only tasks you won't be able to take on with this laptop are video editing and heavy gaming – Intel integrated graphics will do for web browsing, office tasks and image editing, but will struggle if you push them any further.

It's thin, it's light, and it comes with plenty of connectivity options as well, so take a look at the various configuration options and see which one suits you best – because of the number of different ways you can set up the Latitude 9510, the price can vary quite a bit too. The laptop is also available in a 2-in-1 form factor as well.

alienware m15 r3 blackT3 Award

No one does it quite like Alienware and the m15 R3 is no exception. 

(Image credit: Alienware)
From the iconic brand comes one of their best gaming laptops yet

Specifications

CPU: 11th Gen Intel i7
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070
RAM: 16GB
Screen: 15.6-inch IPS 1920x1080 FHD 144Hz
Storage: 512GB SSD

Reasons to buy

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Beautiful performance
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Stunning design
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Plenty of customization
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1080p display is vibrant

Reasons to avoid

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Can run hot
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One of the priciest laptops out there
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Battery life could be better

"All mighty, all-powerful, the Alienware m15 R4 remains a top dog in the world of gaming laptops. It's missing a few features you’d expect from portables of its caliber, but that doesn’t change the fact that this is a laptop that’s designed to impress, especially in gaming." – T3's Alienware m15 R4 review (opens in new tab)

There's something about Alienware that says gaming; you know the true purpose of the machine is to crank the resolution up as high as possible and watch as the FPS doesn't drop an inch. 

An upgrade from Alienware's previous lineup – the m13, m15, and m17 – the new R4 models showcase this philosophy perfectly. Our preference has to be the middle option, however, as it balances having a big screen without also having a laptop that's essentially a desktop. 

From the huge array of ports – from Ethernet to Thunderbolt to HDMI – to the customizable keyboard and controls, this laptop has you covered, and then some. The cooling system has been specially designed to deal with the most demanding tasks, too, ensuring you get every ounce of performance you need. It really doesn't get much better than this.

dell xps 17 silverT3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)
The one we'd buy if we were made of money

Specifications

CPU: Up to 12th Gen Intel i7-12700H
Screen: 17” (up to 3840 x 2400 pixels)
Graphics: Up to GeForce RTX 3050
RAM: Up to 64GB
Storage: Up to 2TB SSD

Reasons to buy

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Excellent performance
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Very attractive screen, keyboard and touchpad
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Nvidia RTX 3060 GPU offers excellent gaming performance

Reasons to avoid

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Battery life limited for serious work
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Weighs a lot
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Very expensive

"The Dell XPS 17 9710 is a powerful laptop with screen real estate to spare, but it is large in size and has a price tag to match." – T3's Dell XPS 17 9710 laptop review (opens in new tab)

If you want the power of a workstation without sacrificing style, the new Dell XPS 17 is absolutely stunning. Its 17-inch, 500-nit display can be configured as FHD+ or 3840 x 2400 UHD, and if you max out the options you can have 64MB of DDR4 RAM, a 2TB SSD and a 6GB GeForce RTX 2060 in a PC powered by an 8-core, 5.3GHz 10th Generation Intel Core i9. You don’t have to max out the options to get great performance, but it’s a lot of fun if you do. 

This XPS 17 is pretty as well as powerful. It has the same stunning looks as its smaller siblings but, despite its svelte case, there are still plenty of expansion options, thanks to four Thunderbolt 3 ports with power delivery and DisplayPort. The XPS also has Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 for all your wireless needs. It’s a little on the heavy side at 2.11kg, but laptops of this size are usually bought as desktop replacements so that’s not a huge issue.

dell g5 15 blackT3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)

7. Dell G5 15 (2020)

A compact gaming powerhouse

Specifications

CPU: Up to 10th-gen Intel Core i7-10750H
Screen: 15.6-inch (1920 x 1080 pixels)
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti 6GB
RAM: 8GB
Storage: 512GB

Reasons to buy

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Affordable gaming option
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1080P 144Hz screen
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Great battery life

Reasons to avoid

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Outpunched by Alienware systems

If you want to game on your laptop but you don't want to go overboard in terms of size and price, get the Dell G5 15: it'll play all the latest Windows games very nicely indeed (ranking as "next-level gaming" on the official 3DMark benchmark score), and comes with a subtle lighting effect underneath that you can enable or disable as needed.

Dell has kept this down to a fantastic price considering the components you get inside, components that include a healthy 8GB of RAM and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Ti 6GB graphics card to keep those frame rates nice and smooth. The star of the show is the 15.6-inch, 1920 x 1080 display though, with a maximum refresh rate of 144Hz.

When you're not gaming, you can of course use the laptop for everything else as well – it's not so flamboyantly styled that you won't be able to get it out in the local coffee shop. We're impressed with the thermal management and the battery life of the Dell G5 15 as well – definitely one of the best Dell laptops for gamers.

dell g7 blackT3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)

8. Dell G7 17 (2020)

Top-level gaming power in a laptop

Specifications

CPU: Up to 10th-gen Intel Core i7-10750H
Screen: 17.3-inch (1920 x 1080 pixels)
Graphics: Up to Nvidia GeForce GTX 2070 8GB
RAM: 16GB
Storage: Up to 1TB

Reasons to buy

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Impressive 17.3-inch screen
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Dramatic looks
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Range of graphic options

Reasons to avoid

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Top spec gets pricey

The Dell G7 17 is a step up from the Dell G5 15 in almost every respect, from the size of the display to the available graphics options to the dramatic looks of the device. The display stands a little way above the rest of the chassis, so it's almost as if you're got a separate monitor in front of rather than a laptop screen.

With a 144Hz refresh rate and a 9ms response time, that 17.3-inch screen is guaranteed to show off your games in the best way possible, and it should give you an edge against opponents and enemies (either real or computer-generated). This is of course a relatively chunky laptop thanks to that screen, but you can still carry it around fairly easily.

This model was recently updated to offer 1TB of storage, which means more room for your games without having to rely on the cloud all the time, and you get the same subtle lighting effect options as on the Dell G5 15. Definitely a gem of a gaming laptop.

Dell Inspiron 15T3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)

9. Dell Inspiron 15 (5510)

An affordable Intel option

Specifications

CPU: Up to 11th-gen Intel Core i7-11390H
Screen: 15.6-inch (1920x1080 pixels) touch or non-touch
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce MX450 2GB or Intel Iris Xe
RAM: Up to 16GB
Storage: Up to 1TB

Reasons to buy

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Impressive specs
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Great looking machine
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Cheaper than XPS line

Reasons to avoid

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Basic screen options
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Not the fastest or lightest

If you're looking for a solid laptop under $1000, the Dell Inspiron 15 is a great option. Formally known as the Inspiron 5000 series, the Inspiron 15 is the more powerful of the Inspiron options. It comes in a choice of Intel and AMD processors, including 11th gen Intel Core models up to i7-11390H and AMD up to the Ryzen 7 5700U. 

There's Intel Iris Xe or Nvidia GeForce MX450 graphics on the Intel or AMD Radeon on the AMD version. Memory is up to 16GB and storage is up to 1TB. The screen is a standard FHD (1920x1080) display in either regular or touch versions but this is plenty for most people. 

The other thing that's great about the Inspiron 15 is that is has plenty of ports. There are two USB-A, one USB-C, an HDMI 1.4, an audio jack and an SD card slot. You can easily spec this machine to suit your needs and not pay for any of the bits you don't. 

dell xps 13 2-in-1 whiteT3 Award

(Image credit: Dell)

10. Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 (2020)

A premium, versatile 2-in-1 Dell laptop

Specifications

CPU: Up to 10th-gen Intel Core i7-1065G7
Screen: 13.4-inch (up to 3840 x 2400 pixels)
Graphics: Intel Iris Plus
RAM: Up to 32GB
Storage: Up to 1TB

Reasons to buy

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Dell's best model in a 2-in-1
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Top-level specs
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4K screen option

Reasons to avoid

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Do you need 2-in-1 functionality?

Our top pick for the best Dell laptop is also available in a 2-in-1 configuration, so you can prop it up to watch some movies or fold it right over and use it as a (thick) tablet – depending on your requirements and what you're going to be using your tablet for, the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 might be an even better deal for you than the standard version.

You still get the excellent build quality and the top-level specs: some of the latest and greatest Intel processors around, plus a maximum of 32GB of RAM and 1TB of storage space (though the very best specs will of course cost you a hefty amount of money). On a laptop this size you can't expect too much in terms of graphics, but the integrated Iris Plus chipset will handle all the basics with ease.

There's even the option of a 4K resolution screen here, on what is already one of the brightest and best display panels in the business. The Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 isn't for everyone – those on a budget and those needing a more spacious screen will want to look elsewhere – but it certainly ticks a lot of important boxes.

How to choose the best Dell laptop for you

Choosing the best Dell laptop works the same way as it does for any other laptop: decide where your own particular sweet spot is in terms of price and power, and make your choice accordingly. Paying more will usually get you better performance and more longevity of course.

There's a balance to be struck between power vs portability that's worth considering – not only are more powerful laptops more expensive, they're more difficult to lug around, and if you want the top-tier laptop components, you'll also need a bigger laptop to fit them all into.

The Dell badge gives you a certain guarantee in terms of quality, so whichever laptop you opt for it's going to serve you well – you just need to decide the sort of specs you need, the price you can afford, and the amount of effort you want to put into carrying it around.

Our guide has been designed to help you find the best Dell laptop for school, the best Dell laptop for work and the best Dell laptop for gaming. We’ve also gathered all the specifications, designs and prices so you can easily compare the different options, though it's worth mentioning that the Dell laptop range is constantly being updated, so you might find that specifications differ slightly from what we’ve described here.

Dell makes many of the best laptops overall today, and Dell's range includes some of the best gaming laptops and best student laptops available. But which are they? Well, they're these ones.

Want to save some money and grab a new Dell laptop cheap? Head on over to T3's best Dell laptop deals guide to shop all of the best discounts.

Which Dell model laptop is best?

This question requires a little more from you to determining that, specifically what exactly you're looking to do with your brand new Dell laptop. Are you a gamer? Maybe you're in need of a student laptop?


If you're someone who just needs a new personal laptop for basic home use, the XPS Series is a solid choice for all-around performance and value. The XPS line (along with the Inspiron line) are two of Dell's flagship models, both of which are excellent values that offer a range of laptops at budget-friendly and premium prices.


As a gamer, you'll want to look at Dell's G Series line of gaming monitors. Many of the latest models feature NVIDIA's RTX graphics cards, making them ideal for modern gaming on the go. The G Series does run a bit pricier depending on the specs you setup under the hood of your new laptop, but you can grab a rig ready for high-performance 60FPS 1080p gaming for as low as $600 if you're lucky!


Of course, Alienware gaming laptops take it up a notch with premium parts and performance ratings. Many can handle 4K gaming with ease, but these will be even more expensive over Dell's proprietary G Series line up.

Which Dell laptop series is the best?

This all will boil down to exactly what you expect of your new Dell laptop. If your a gamer, their G Series or even the Alienware line are your best bet. If you're looking for business, their Inspiron and XPS lines are fantastic to go with. Here's a quick rundown of what the best Dell laptops are for gaming, schoolwork and more:

G Series – ideal for high performance gaming and available in setups with the latest NVIDIA RTX cards

Inspiron Series – ideal for personal use and light business use at great price points

XPS Series – all-around performers great for business, academics, personal use and more

Aside from these main laptop line ups, the rest are pretty straight forward and are designed for specific tasks including workstations for modeling, editing and more.  

Dave has over 20 years' experience in the tech journalism industry, covering hardware and software across mobile, computing, smart home, home entertainment, wearables, gaming and the web – you can find his writing online, in print, and even in the occasional scientific paper, across major tech titles like T3, TechRadar, Gizmodo and Wired. Outside of work, he enjoys long walks in the countryside, skiing down mountains, watching football matches (as long as his team is winning) and keeping up with the latest movies.

With contributions from