Dell Inspiron 3020 Desktop PC (2023 release) Review

Dell Inspiron 3020 Desktop PC (2023 release) Review

Buy it at Amazon: Dell Inspiron 3020 Desktop PC (2023 release) [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: Easy to setup, great for casual use, responsive and lag-free.

You’ll receive the PC tower, 6 ft power cable, USB optical mouse, USB keyboard, and quick start manual. The tower measures 6” wide, 11-1/4” deep, and 12-3/4” tall. The front of this machine has a grayish blue color called mist blue and a ridged texture. From top to bottom, there is a DVD+RW, power button, SD card slot, combo mic/headphone jack, two USB -A 2.0 ports, one USB-A 3.2, and a USB-C 3.2 port. On the back in the upper left corner is a speaker out jack, HDMI out and DisplayPort out for the monitor, which can be used simultaneously for dual-monitor support. Below that you have two additional USB-A 3.2 ports, two USB-A 2.0 ports, and the RJ45 Ethernet jack for a wired network connection. The PC supports WiFi-AX (WiFi 6) and Bluetooth 5.2 as well.

I recommend connecting the USB keyboard and mouse to the slower USB ports and reserving the SuperSpeed ports which are blue, for devices that would benefit from the faster speed, like external hard drives. I do like that it has a USB-C port on the front since this connection type is becoming more commonplace on newer devices. While there are four slots in the case for additional cards, there are only 2 expansion slots inside. At the bottom is the input for the power cable.

To open the tower for upgrading the components, you’ll need to remove two knurled thumbscrews, that are designed to be removable without tools, but if you find they are too tight, you can use a Philips screwdriver to loosen them. You don’t have to fully remove them from the panel. There is a security tab for you to add a lock on the case to prevent internal access, and a Kensington lock slot for additional security. Inside are a Foxconn 80 mm CPU fan, m.2 NVMe Gen 3x4 512GB SSD and 8GB of 3200 MHz DDR4 RAM pre-installed. There’s an open PCIe x1 slot for port expansion, a PCIe x16 slot for a graphics card, and a second RAM slot for additional memory up to 64GB total max. There are also several SATA power and data connectors available and room for a 2.5” or 3.5” HDD at the front. Just be sure any additional components added will stay within the 180 Watt maximum for the power supply.

When you power on the machine for the first time, you’ll need to complete a brief setup for Windows 11, which takes about 15 minutes. Once that’s done, you can start using the computer. The harddrive has about 450 GB free with 50 GB used for the OS and pre-installed programs like McAfee LiveSafe and Office 365. The hardware specs are mid-tier and neither exceptional nor minimalist. The machine runs on an Intel 13th Gen Core i5-13400 CPU with 10 cores, 16 threads, and 2.5 GHz base clock with a 4.6 GHz boosted max. The machine is quick and responsive and out-of-the-box is efficient at running multiple applications simultaneously for most computing tasks. There was no significant lag or delays experienced with common everyday usage.

The tower is very quiet when operating and doesn’t produce a lot of heat, though you’ll need to keep the vents on the back and left-side clear for proper airflow. I was surprised that the tower had a DVD drive as most software can be downloaded digitally nowadays, but if you happen to have software CDs, movie DVDs, or like backing up to physical media, I suppose it’s nice to have. It’s a pretty basic one though, with a motor-less pop-out tray that you have to push back in, like one you’d see in a laptop. The USB mouse and keyboard are also really basic but work just fine. The full keyboard is thin and lightweight with fairly quiet keys. The optical mouse is also lightweight and feels plasticky, but does have a clickable scroll wheel.

Overall, this PC isn’t a bad option for an entry-level tower PC. It has a small footprint, decent processing power and speed, and just enough specs to handle everyday computing and is suitable for most home office or personal uses. You could probably play some casual games on it too, or use it for media consumption, if you’re not looking for maxed out visuals and top of the line performance.

Buy it at Amazon: Dell Inspiron 3020 Desktop PC (2023 release) [Affiliate Link]


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