Dell Inspiron 14 Plus review: plus in additional ways than one

Dell Inspiron 14 Plus

MSRP $1,150.00

“The Dell Inspiron 14 Plus delivers great performance at an inexpensive price.”


  • Excellent performance
  • Quality display
  • Superb keyboard and touchpad
  • Solid connectivity
  • Good value


  • Below-average battery life
  • No touchscreen offered

Dell’s Inspiron represents its budget to midrange lineup, and it’s been a mixed bag over time. For instance, one of the crucial recent machines we’ve reviewed was the 2022 Inspiron 14 2-in-1, and we found it provided a compromised experience resulting from its poor display and inferior battery life. That’s in comparison with previous versions which have made their method to our list of best budget laptops and best 2-in-1s.

Dell just introduced a recent addition to the road that guarantees to maintain the Inspiron firmly in contention for offering a few of the very best reasonably priced laptops. The Inspiron Plus takes what’s been best concerning the line and guarantees upgrades to make for a more compelling mainstream machine. I checked out the Inspiron 14 Plus, considered one of two recent Plus models that’s joined by a 16-inch version. It’s a a lot better option than the usual Inspiron because of faster components and a a lot better display.


  Dell Inspiration 14 Plus
Dimensions 12.36 inches by 8.96 inches by 0.64 – 0.75 inches
Weight 3.7 kilos
Processor Intel Core i5-12500H
Intel Core i7-12700H
Graphics Intel Iris Xe
Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050
Display 14-inch 16:10 IPS 2.2K (2,240 x 1,400)
Storage 256GB PCI 4.0 SSD
512GB PCIe 4.0 SSD
1TB PCIe 4.0 SSD
2TB PCIe 4.0 SSD
Touch No
Ports 1 x USB-C 4.0 with Thunderbolt 4
2 x USB-A 3.2 Gen 1
1 x HDMI 2.0
1 x 3.5mm audio jack
1 x microSD card reader
Wireless Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2
Webcam 1080p
Operating system Windows 11
Battery 54 watt-hour
64 watt-hour
Price $1,000+

A dull but functional design

The Dell Inspiron 14 Plus on a desk.

The Inspiron 14 Plus looks like many other 14-inch laptops in the marketplace today. It has easy angles and a solid dark green color scheme (that appears blue in some lighting) with none bling by any means. It’s a really conservative design with just some aggressive venting providing some deviation. Dell constructed the laptop of aluminum, and its construct is solid enough for around $1,000. There’s some slight bending within the lid and flexing within the keyboard deck, but overall, the laptop feels as solid as a midrange machine must be.

The laptop’s plastic display bezels aren’t the smallest or most up-to-date, but they’re enough to enable a fairly sized chassis. It’s quite thick at 0.75 inches on the rear, tapering right down to a more reasonable 0.64 inches upfront. The Inspiron 14 Plus can be a heavy 14-inch machine at 3.7 kilos. That extra thickness is mandatory to enable a thermal system that may move enough air to maintain the 45-watt CPU and discrete GPU running cool — an area where some similarly configured thinner and lighter 14-inch laptops struggle.

The ports on the left side of the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus.

The ports on the right side of the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus.

Like most 14-inch laptops, the Inspiron 14 Plus packs a functional number of ports. There’s a USB-C port with Thunderbolt 4 support, two USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports, a full-size HDMI 2.0 port, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader. Power is provided by a proprietary connector, which frees up the USB-C port for connectivity. Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2 offer up-to-date wireless connectivity.

The keyboard has a typical layout with large keycaps and comfy key spacing. The switches are light and snappy, with enough bounce to supply a precise motion. I discovered myself typing at full speed immediately and didn’t experience any fatigue while writing this review.

The keyboard of the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus.

Because of the taller 16:10 display, there’s loads of space on the palm rest for a touchpad, and Dell uses most of it efficiently. The touchpad is large and responsive, with firm buttons that provide a satisfying click without an excessive amount of noise. The whole repertoire of Windows 11 multitouch gestures is supported. There’s no touch display option, which is all the time a disappointment.

Windows 11 Hello passwordless login support is provided by a fingerprint reader embedded in the ability button, which is the right location. It worked quickly and reliably during my testing.

Finally, the webcam is a 1080p version that gives a pointy image in various lighting conditions together with a physical privacy switch. AI-powered noise reduction and dual microphones be certain that the audio is top-notch during videoconferencing.

Faster but not that long-lasting

The hinge of the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus.

The Inspiron 14 Plus is considered one of a recent breed of 14-inch laptops powered by Intel’s 45-watt Twelfth-gen CPUs. That’s a strong processor to pack inside a 14-inch chassis, but we’ve seen it done more often than with past Intel generations. The Core i7-12700H in my review unit has performed thoroughly in larger laptops, but its performance in 14-inch machines has been mixed.

Unlike most of those other laptops we’ve reviewed, Dell made a discrete GPU available quite than relying wholly on Intel’s integrated Iris Xe graphics. It’s the Nvidia RTX 3050, which is an entry-level GPU, but it surely’s significantly faster than Iris Xe, particularly at powering creative applications that may use the GPU to hurry up various processes.

The result’s a laptop that gives solid productivity and impressive creative performance for a 14-inch machine. As you may see from the table below, the Inspiron 14 Plus performed well against other 14-inch laptops equipped with the identical CPU. The one faster laptop in our comparison group is the Del XPS 15, a bigger laptop with more room for enhanced thermals. Note that I tested the laptop in each balanced and performance modes, configurable via the MyDell utility, and reported each results below. The utility was effective in our two most CPU-intensive tests, Handbrake and Cinebench R23.

Performance is a strength of the Inspiron 14 Plus.

I also tan the Pugetbench Premiere Pro test that runs a live version of Adobe’s Premiere Pro and might use a discrete GPU. The Inspiron 14 Plus hit 569 in balanced mode and 627 in performance mode. That’s roughly twice as fast as similarly configured machines with Iris Xe graphics and is a solid rating for entry-level creators.

Overall performance was a strength. The Inspiron 14 Plus can handle demanding productivity tasks and manage creative applications in a pinch. It’s the best-performing 14-inch laptop with the Core i7-12700H that we’ve tested thus far.

(single / multi)
Cinebench R23
(single / multi)
Dell Inspiron 14 Plus
(Core i7-12700H)
Bal: 1,671 / 10,898
Perf: 1,644 / 10,196
Bal: 117
Perf: 89
Bal: 1,718 / 8,997
Perf: 1,774 / 11,035
HP Pavilion Plus 14
(Core i7-12700H)
Bal: 1,462 / 8,531
Perf: 1,472 / 8,531
Bal: 104
Perf: 102
Bal: 1,523 / 8,358
Perf: 1,716 / 10,915
Asus Vivobook S 14X
(Core i7-12700H)
Bal: 1,595 / 6,692
Perf: 1,681 / 7,175
Bal: 113
Perf: 102
Bal: 1,757 / 10,339
Perf: 1,792 / 12,051
Dell XPS 15 9520
(Core i7-12700H)
Bal: 1,470 / 9,952
Perf: 1,714 / 11,053
Bal: 100
Perf: 77
Bal: 1,509 / 11,578
Perf: 1,806 / 13,313
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
Bal: 1,717 / 9,231
Perf: 1,712 / 10,241
Bal: 130
Perf: 101
Bal: 1,626 / 7,210
Perf: 1,723 / 8,979
Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
Bal: 1,417 / 6,854
Perf: 1,404 / 7,223
Bal: 112
Perf: 111
Bal: 1,402 / 8,682
Perf: 1,409 / 8,860

With the RTX 3050 readily available, you would possibly consider the laptop an entry-level gaming machine. Unfortunately, my results were inconclusive. The Inspiron 14 Plus did advantageous within the 3DMark Time Spy test at 4,438, in step with other RTX 3050 machines. And it hit 44 frames per second (fps) at 1,200p and epic graphics in Fortnite and 32 fps at 1080p and ultra high graphics in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. Each of those are good scores for the GPU.

Nonetheless, the laptop wouldn’t run either Civilization VI  or Cyberpunk 2077 without crashing, indicating some instability within the hardware or drivers. Until Dell works those out, I wouldn’t count on the Inspiron 14 Plus even for entry-level gaming.

Battery life from the 64 watt-hour battery was competitive with other 14-inch laptops running the Core i7-12700H. The truth is, it was quite a bit higher across all our battery tests. In comparison with laptops running the 28-watt Core i7-1260P, nevertheless, which offer competitive performance on this size chassis, the Inspiron 14 Plus wasn’t terribly impressive. And its results are below average across all of the laptops we’ve tested by about an hour in each test.

Web browsing Video PCMark 10
Dell Inspiron 14 Plus
(Core i7-12700H)
7 hours, 3 minutes 9 hours, 29 minutes 8 hours, 34 minutes
 HP Pavilion Plus 14
(Core i7-12700H)
4 hours, 29 minutes 7 hours, 29 minutes 5 hours, 48 minutes
Asus Vivobook S 14X
(Core i7-12700H)
6 hours, 20 minutes 8 hours, 18 minutes 7 hours, 1 minute
Dell XPS 15 9520
(Core i7-12700H)
9 hours, 38 minutes 12 hours, 40 minutes 11 hours, 14 minutes
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
10 hours, 10 minutes 16 hours, 12 minutes 10 hours, 33 minutes
Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 Gen 7
(Core i7-1260P)
9 hours, 10 minutes 12 hours, 45 minutes 8 hours, 32 minutes
 Asus Zenbook S 13 OLED
(Ryzen 7 6800U)
8 hours, 4 minutes 13 hours, 13 minutes N/A

A greater-than-average display

The screen of the Dell Inspiron 14 Plus.

I could tell from the moment I turned it on that the Inspiron 14 Plus had a vastly superior display to the Inspiron 14 2-in-1 I’d reviewed. The panel was brilliant, colourful, and enjoyed deep blacks, all attributes my colorimeter confirmed.

The 14-inch 16:10 2.2K (2,240 x 1,400) display hit 392 nits, which exceeds our 300-nit standard and must be brilliant enough for any indoor (and a few outdoor) settings. Its contrast was exceptionally high for an IPS display at 1,800:1, making for deep blacks and text that pops on a white background. Color width barely exceeded the premium laptop average, and accuracy was great at a DeltaE of 1.02 (1.0 or less is indistinguishable to the human eye). As mentioned above, it’s a display that matches a machine at its price, unlike the panel on the “normal” Inspiron.

Specifically, productivity employees and media consumers will appreciate this display, while creators will find its colours a bit lacking for skilled work. But for quick photo and video editing, it’s greater than ok.

Contrast sRGB gamut AdobeRGB gamut Accuracy DeltaE
(lower is best)
Dell Inspiron 14 Plus
392 1,800:1 99% 77% 1.02
Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1
288 1,330:1 63% 48% 3.35
HP Pavilion Plus 14
398 27,830:1 100% 95% 0.78
MSI Prestige 14
317 1,820:1 97% 72% 3.67
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7i Pro
369 1,340:1 100% 80% 1.65
Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 7 Carbon
397 27,590:1 100% 96% 0.88

There are only two downward-firing speakers that produce enough volume for a small office, with clear mids and highs without distortion. Bass is lacking, though, so motion movies and music will demand a great pair of headphones.

A much simpler lineup (for now)

Dell’s various lines will be complex, with a wealth of configuration options sometimes making for an advanced purchase decision. The Inspiron 14 Plus is the other. There are only two configurations to select from as this review is being written. First is a $1,000 version with a 14-core/20-thread 45-watt Core i7-12700H CPU, 16GB of DDR5 RAM, a 512GB PCIe 4.0 SSD, and a 14-inch 2.2K (2,240 x 1,400) IPS display.

The one other option is a $1,150 model that swaps out an Nvidia RTX 3050 GPU for Intel’s integrated Iris Xe, which is the model I reviewed. Based on Dell’s specifications, a 12-core/16-thread Core i5-12500H will probably be available together with more RAM and storage options.

Our take

The Dell Inspiron 14 Plus improves significantly on the usual Inspiron line, speeding up performance dramatically and greatly improving the display. It’s not way more expensive, either, meaning that in case you’re searching for a budget to midrange laptop, Dell now has a more competitive offering.

Are there any alternatives?

The HP Pavilion Plus 14 is a solid competitor, offering the identical CPU and an OLED display for similar money. Nonetheless, it lacks discrete graphics, meaning it’s not as suitable for creative work.

If you happen to want the flexibleness of a 2-in-1, then Lenovo’s Yoga 7i Gen 7 must be in your list. It provides excellent performance and battery life, a solid construct, and a colourful display.

Finally, the Apple MacBook Air M1 is all the time a viable alternative. It’s lower than $1,000 with 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD, as is just as fast or faster while offering considerably higher battery life.

How long will it last?

The Inspiron 14 Plus is built well enough that you must expect years of effective service. Its components are also up thus far, meaning it should support Windows for the foreseeable future. Its industry-standard one-year warranty is OK at these prices.

Do you have to buy it?

Yes, especially in case you go for the RTX 3050 model. There aren’t many thin-and-light 14-inch laptops that may provide the identical level of creativity performance, and it’s greater than fast enough for even essentially the most demanding productivity employees.

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