Dell Inspiron laptops

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The Dell Inspiron series of laptop computers was introduced in 2000 as a consumer oriented line, available to the general public through electronics and department stores (and now Dell's website), contrasting to the business/enterprise-oriented Dell Latitude series of laptop computers, and are usually ordered from Dell directly via the website, phone, or mail-order.

Early models[edit]

The early Dell Inspiron models listed here went through a number of changes from 2000 to 2002, so the specifications on each laptop may be incomplete (except for the information on the Dell Insprion 8000, that is all correct.) There are also obviously more early models than these 4, but those have not been added to this.

Inspiron 2100[1][edit]

Released in 2000, the Dell Inspiron 2100 was a lightweight laptop that Dell branded as "Ultra Thin & Light" and "Ultra Mobile." Its starting price was $1,699.

  • Processor: Intel Pentium III @700 MHz
  • RAM Supported: 128mb or 256mb of DDR RAM
  • Graphics processor & Display: ATI Rage Mobility M with 4mb of video memory with a 12.1" 1024x768 display
  • Hard drive: 10gb or 20gb Ultra ATA hard drive

Inspiron 3800[edit]

Released in 2000, the Dell Inspiron 3800 was an affordable laptop that Dell branded as "Stylish and Affordable." Its starting price was $1,199.

  • Processors: Intel Pentium III @700 MHz, Intel Pentium III @600 MHz, Intel Celeron @600 MHz, or Intel Celeron @700 MHz
  • RAM: 32, 64, 96, 128, 192, 256, 384 or 512 MB of DDR RAM
  • Graphics processor and display: ATI 2x AGP Rage Mobility with 8mb of video memory with a 12.1" 800x600 display, or a 14.1 1024x768 display
  • Hard drive: 5gb, 6gb, 10gb, or 20gb Ultra ATA hard drive

Inspiron 4000[2][edit]

Released in 2000, the Dell Inspiron 4000 was a lightweight laptop that Dell branded as "Ultra Thin & Light" and "Light as a feather, strong as an ox." Its starting price was $1,499.

  • Processors: Intel Pentium III @650, 700, 800 or 850 MHz, or an Intel Celeron processor @600 MHz
  • RAM: 64, 128, 192, 256, 384 or 512 MB of DDR RAM
  • Graphics processor and display: ATI RAGE Mobility 128 3D with 8mb of video RAM and 2X AGP with a 14.1" 1024x768 display.
  • Hard drive: 5gb, 10gb, or 20gb Ultra ATA hard drive

Inspiron 8000[3][edit]

Released in 2000, the Dell Inspiron 8000 was a mobile workstation that Dell branded as a mobile desktop. Its starting price was $1,649.

  • Processors: Intel Pentium III @650, 700, 800, 833, 850, 900, 1000, 1113, or 1200 MHz.
  • RAM: 64, 128, 192, 256, 384 or 512 MB of DDR RAM
  • Graphics processor and display: ATI Mobility M4 with 8, 16 or 32 MB of video memory, NVIDIA GeForce2 Go with 16 or 32 MB of video memory, or an ATI Mobility RADEON 7500 with 64 MB of video memory with a 14.1” 1400x1050 display, a 15” 1400x1050 display or a 15” 1600x1200 display.
  • Hard drive: 5gb, 10gb, 20gb, 30, 32, 40, or 60gb Ultra ATA hard drive

Inspiron Mini Series[edit]

The Dell Inspiron Mini Series is a sub-line of subnotebook/netbook computers designed by Dell. The series was introduced in September 2008 amidst the growing popularity of low-cost netbook computers introduced by competitors. This sub-line has since been discontinued.

Inspiron 3000 Series[edit]

Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1[4][edit]

Released in 2014, The Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1 is a 2-in-1 notebook with an 11-inch touchscreen and Intel processors. It competes with Acer Aspire R 11, Asus Transformer Book Flip TP200, HP Pavilion x360, HP Stream x360, Lenovo Yoga 2 11 and Toshiba Satellite Radius 11.

  • Processors: Intel Celeron and Pentium
  • Memory: 4 GB
  • Graphics Processor: Intel HD Graphics
  • LCD Display: 11.6-inch LED Backlit Display, 1366*768 pixels
  • Hard Drive: SATA 500 GB (5400 RPM)
  • Battery: 3-cell Lithium-Ion Battery
  • Camera: HD 720p Web Camera
  • Wi-Fi Card: Intel Centrino Wireless-AC 3160
  • Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.0
  • I/O ports: 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI port, 4-in-1 SD Card Reader, 1 Ethernet port, 1 combined headphone and microphone jack, 1 security lock, 1 power adapter connection port.

Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1 (3148)[5][edit]

The Dell Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1 (3148) features a standard HDMI port, 1x USB 3.0 Type-A port, 2x USB 2.0 Type-A ports, a headphone and microphone combo (headset) port, a media-card reader and a security-cable slot. Its processors are from the 4th generation of Intel Core i3 processors with one SO-DIMM slot supporting DDR3L memory. It uses Intel HD graphics and the Realtek ALC3234 audio controller and a 2.5-inch HDD with SATA 3 Gbit/s capabilities. The laptop has an 11.6-inch HD WLED touchscreen display with a maximum resolution of 1366 by 768 and a refresh rate of 60 Hz. The integrated webcam above the display has a camera resolution is 0.92 megapixel and its maximum video recording resolution is 1280x720 (HD) at 30 FPS. The battery of the laptop is a 3 cell battery with a voltage of 11.4 VDC. The power adapter bundled with the laptop is capable of 65w and outputs a 3.34 A.

Inspiron 11 3000 (3162)[6][7][edit]

The Dell Inspiron 11 (3162) features a standard HDMI port, 1x USB 3.0 Type-A port, 1x USB 2.0 Type-A ports, a headphone and microphone combo (headset) port and a media-card reader. The laptop uses either dual core Intel Celeron or quad core Intel Pentium processors. The audio controller inside the laptop is a Realtek ALC3234 and the multi-car reader supports one SD card in the form factor of micro SD card of the type being SD, SDHC or SDXC. The laptop has an 11.6-inch HD WLED display with a maximum resolution of 1366 by 768 and a refresh rate of 60 Hz. The integrated webcam above the display has a camera resolution is 0.92 megapixel and its maximum video recording resolution is 1280x720 (HD) at 30 FPS. The battery of the laptop is a 2-cell prismatic battery with a voltage of 7.6 VDC. The power adapter bundled with the laptop is capable of 45w and outputs a 2.31 A. The Dell Inspiron 3162 is available in three colours: red, white and blue.

Inspiron 11 3000 2-in-1 (3168)[8][edit]

Inspiron 14 3000[edit]

14" laptops under the Inspiron 3000 branding and equipped with Intel processors.

  • 3452 - Intel Celeron dual core or Intel Pentium quad core processor, Intel integrated graphics and 14-inch HD (1366 x 768) non-touch display.[9][10]
  • 3467 - 6th generation Intel Core i3 or 7th generation Intel Core i3/i5/i7 processor, Intel HD Graphics 520 or Intel HD Graphics 620 and or AMD Radeon R5 M430 and 14-inch HD (1366 x 768) non-touch display.[11]
  • 3473 - Intel Pentium Silver N5000 or Intel Celeron N4000 processor, Intel UHD Graphics 600 or Intel UHD Graphics 605 and 14-inch HD (1366 x 768) non-touch display.[12]
  • 3476 - 8th generation Intel Core i5/i7 processors, Intel UHD Graphics 620 and or AMD Radeon 520 and 14-inch HD (1366 x 768) non-touch display.[13]

Inspiron 15 3000[edit]

15" laptops under the Inspiron 3000 branding and equipped with Intel processors.

Inspiron 15 3000 (AMD)[edit]

15" laptops under the Inspiron 3000 branding and equipped with AMD processors.

Inspiron 5000 Series[edit]

Inspiron 13 5000 2-in-1 (5368)[edit]

  • Processors: 6th Generation Intel(R) Core (TM) i5-6600u CPU @2.30 GHz 2.40 GHz or 6th Generation Intel(R) Core (TM) i7-6600U CPU @2.30 GHz 2.40 GHz
  • Memory (RAM): 8.00GB (Expandable up to 16.00GB)
  • System: x64-based processor
  • Pen and Touch: 10 point multi-touch touch-screen
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520

Inspiron 13 5000 2-in-1 (5378)[edit]

  • Processors: 7th Generation Intel(R) Core (TM) i5-7200U CPU @3.10 GHz or 7th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-7500U Processor (4M Cache, up to 3.50 GHz)
  • Memory (RAM): 8.00GB (Expandable up to 16.00GB)
  • System: x64-based processor
  • Pen and Touch: 10 point multi-touch touch-screen
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620

Inspiron 13 5000 2-in-1 (5379)[edit]

  • Processors: 8th Generation Intel(R) Core (TM) i5-8250U CPU @3.40 GHz or 8th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-8550U Processor (8M Cache, up to 4.00 GHz)
  • Memory (RAM): 8.00GB (Expandable up to 32.00GB)
  • System: x64-based processor
  • Pen and Touch: 10 point multi-touch touch-screen
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620

Inspiron 15 5000 2-in-1 (5568)[17][edit]

Inspiron 15 (5547)[18][edit]

Dell Inspiron 15 5000 Series i5547-3750sLV 15-Inch Laptop

Laptop available in i5 Non-Touch Screen, i5 Touch Screen, i7 Non-Touch Screen, i7 Touch Screen, AMD 18 Non-Touch versions.

  • Processors: Intel Core i5-4210U, Intel Core i7-4510U, AMD A8.
  • Memory: 8 GB or 12 GB, DDR3L SDRAM
  • Graphics Processor: Intel HD Graphics 4400
  • LCD Display: 15.6-inch LED Backlit Display, 1366*768 pixels
  • Hard Drive: SATA 1000 GB (5400 RPM), SATA 1 TB (5400 RPM)
  • Optical Drive: Yes
  • Battery: 3-cell Lithium-Ion Battery
  • Camera: HD 720p Web Camera
  • Wi-Fi Card: Intel Centrino Wireless-AC 3160
  • Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.0
  • I/O ports: 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI port, 4-in-1 SD Card Reader, 1 Ethernet port, 1 combined headphone and microphone jack, 1 security lock, 1 power adapter connection port.

Inspiron 15 (5566)[19][edit]

The dell Inspiron 15 (5566) features Intel Kaby Lake Microprocessors And comes with Intel Core i7-i5 processors and a 15.6" lcd display at 1366x768.

  • Processors: Intel Core i7-7500U, Intel Core i5-7200U.
  • Memory: 8 GB, DDR4 SDRAM
  • Graphics Processor: Intel HD Graphics 610 or 620
  • LCD Display: 15.6-inch LED Backlit Display, 1366*768 pixels
  • Hard Drive: SATA 256 GB (SSD), SATA 1 TB (5400 RPM), SATA 512 GB (SSD)
  • Optical Drive: Yes
  • Battery: 6-cell Lithium-Ion Battery
  • Camera: HD 720p Web Camera
  • Wi-Fi Card: Intel Centrino Wireless-AC 3160
  • Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.0
  • I/O ports: 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI port, 4-in-1 SD Card Reader, 1 Ethernet port, 1 combined headphone and microphone jack, 1 security lock, 1 power adapter connection port.

Inspiron 15 (5567)[20][edit]

The Dell Inspiron 15 (5567) features Intel Kaby Lake Microprocessors

Inspiron 15 5000 (5567)[edit]

Inspiron 17 5000 (5767)[edit]

Inspiron 14 5000[edit]

  • 5457 - Intel Pentium or 6th generation Intel Core i3/i5/i7.[21]

Inspiron 15 5000[edit]

  • 5545 - AMD A8-7100 APU or AMD-7300 APU.[22]
  • 5547 - 5th generaiton Intel Core i5/i7 processors.[23]
  • 5551 - Intel Celeron or Intel Pentium processors.[24]
  • 5552 - Intel Celeron or Intel Pentium processors.[24]
  • 5555 - AMD A10-8700P or AMD A8-7410 or AMD A6-7310 or AMD A4-7210 or AMD E2-7110 or AMD E1-7010 processors.[25]
  • 5557 - 6th generaiton Intel Core i3/i5/i7 processors.[26]
  • 5558 - Intel Celeron or Intel Pentium or 4th generation Intel Core i3 or 5th generation Intel Core i3/i5/i7 processors.[24]
  • 5559 - Intel Celeron or Intel Pentium or 6th generation Intel Core i3/i5/i7 processors.[27]
  • 5570 - Released in 2017, the Dell Inspiron 15 5570 is a notebook has a starting price of €599.[28] Intel Celeron or Intel Pentium or 6th generation Intel Core i3 or 7th generation Intel Core i3/i5/i7 or 8th generation Intel i3/i5/i7 processors.[29]

5555[edit]

  • Processors: AMD E2-7110 APU, AMD A4-7210 APU @1.8 GHz, AMD A6-7310 APU @2 GHz, AMD A8-7410 APU @2.2 GHz, and AMD A10-8700P APU @1.8 GHz
  • Memory (RAM): 4.00gb, 8.00gb, 12.00gb, or 16.00gb DDR3L 1600 MHz RAM
  • Graphics Processors: AMD Radeon R2, R3, R4, R5, or R6 Integrated Graphics
  • System: x64 based-processor
  • Display: Non-touch or touch 15.6" Dell TrueLife 1366x768 display
  • Hard Drives: Seagate Laptop Thin HDD SATA 500 GB, 1000gb, or 2000gb (5400 RPM) or 128gb and 256gb SSD
  • Optical Drive: TSSCorp DVD+-RW
  • Battery: 4-cell 40WHr or 47WHr Lithium-Ion Battery
  • Camera: HD 720p Web Camera with stereo microphones
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth: Dell Wireless 1707 Card (802.1 1BGN + Bluetooth 4.0, 2.4 GHz)
  • I/O ports: 1 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI 1.4a port, SD Card Reader, 1 Ethernet port, 1 combined headphone and microphone jack, 1 security lock, 1 power adapter connection port.
  • Keyboard: Full-size non-backlit or backlit spill-resistant keyboard w/ number pad

5558[edit]

  • Memory: 4GB or 8GB, DDR3L-1600; up to 16GB (8GB*2)

5559[edit]

  • Processors: 6th Generation Intel(R) Core (TM) i5-6200u CPU @2.30 GHz 2.40 GHz
  • Memory (RAM): 8.00GB
  • System: x64 -based processor
  • Pen and Touch: 10 point multi-touch touch-screen
  • Keyboard: Full size backlit keyboard

Inspiron 17 5000[edit]

Inspiron 7000 Series[edit]

Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 Laptop (7348)[35][edit]

Released in 2015, the Inspiron 13 7000 Series 2-in-1 is a 2-in-1 notebook with a 13-inch touchscreen and Intel processors. It competes with Acer Aspire R 14, Asus Transformer Book Flip TP300, HP Pavilion 13 x360, Lenovo Yoga 3 14, Samsung Notebook 7 spin (13-inch), Toshiba Satellite Radius 12 and 14.

Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 Laptop (7359)[36][edit]

Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 (7368)[37][edit]

Inspiron 15 7000 2-in-1 (7569)[38][edit]

Released in 2015, The Inspiron 15 7000 Series 2-in-1 is a 2-in-1 notebook with a 15-inch touchscreen and Intel processors. It competes with Acer Aspire R 15, Asus Transformer Book Flip TP500, TP550, HP Envy x360, Lenovo Flex 2 15, 3 15, Samsung Notebook 7 spin (15-inch) and Toshiba Satellite Fusion.

Inspiron 17 7000 2-in-1 (7778)[39][edit]

Dell Inspiron 17 7000 2-in-1
Also known asInspiron 17 7000 2-in-1
DeveloperDell
ManufacturerDell
Type17-inch 2-in-1 PC
Introductory price$1,049.99
Operating systemWindows 10
CPUIntel Core i5 or i7
Memory16GB, DDR4, 2400MHz
Storage1TB 5400 rpm Hard Drive
128GB Solid State Drive
Display17.3-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) Truelife LED-Backlit Touch Display with Wide Viewing Angles
GraphicsNVIDIA® GeForce® 940MX 2GB GDDR5
Sound2 tuned speakers; audio processing by Waves MaxxAudio® Pro
1 combo headphone / microphone jack
CameraStandard Widescreen HD (720p) Infrared Webcam w/Dual Digital Microphone Array
TouchpadYes
Connectivity1 USB Type C
1 USB 3.0 with PowerShare
1 USB 2.0
Media Card Reader
Media Card Reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC)
Power56 WHr, 4-Cell Battery (integrated)
DimensionsHeight: 0.87”– 0.89” (22.1mm – 22.6mm) x Width: 16.24” (412.5mm) x Depth: 10.93” (277.5mm)
WeightStarting at 2.77 Kg / 6.12 lbi with 4 GB Mem, FHD display, SSD

The Inspiron 17 7000 series 2-in-1 is an 2-in-1 convertible by Dell. It uses a 17-inch display, and is the largest Inspiron 2-in-1 laptop.

Inspiron Gaming Series (Pandora)[edit]

Inspiron 14 Gaming/2015 Inspiron 14 7000 (7447)[40][40][edit]

The 2015 Dell Inspiron 7447 (Inspiron 14) is a gaming oriented laptop with a discrete 4 GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 850M. It has either an Intel i5-4210H or the Intel i7-4710HQ with up to 8 GB of DDR3L RAM and expandable up to 16 GB.

Inspiron 15 Gaming/Inspiron 15 7000 (7559)[41][41][edit]

The Dell Inspiron 7559 (Inspiron 15) is a gaming oriented laptop with discrete Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M and comes in black with red trim. The RAM is standard at 8 GB of DDR3L RAM and expandable up to 16 GB. It competes with the HP Pavilion Gaming Series and HP Omen.

Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming (7566)[42][43][edit]

The Inspiron 15 Gaming (7566) changes the styling from the Inspiron 15 7000 (7559) while retaining the Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M dedicated graphics card.

Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming (7567)[edit]

The Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming (7567) has the same design as the Inspiron 15 Gaming (7566) with the main difference being the replacement of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M with either a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 or Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti. The laptop uses DDR4 RAM which can be upgraded to 32 GB and has one M.2 slot for an SSD and one M.2 slot for a wireless card. The screen was improved by switching from a TN to IPS LCD.

New Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming (7577)

The Inspiron 15 7000 gaming (7577) changes the styling of the fan and speaker grills from the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming (7567). The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card was replaced with a GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q for improved performance.

New Inspiron 15 5000 Gaming (AMD) (5576)[44][45][edit]

The Dell Inspiron 15 5000 Gaming (AMD) (5576) is a lower-priced gaming oriented laptop using either 7th generation AMD FX 9830P Quad Core or 7th generation AMD A10 9630P Quad Core processors. The integrated video controller is an AMD Radeon R5 or R7 with shared system memory and its discrete video controller is an AMD Radeon RX460 with 4GB GDDR5 memory. Like the Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming series, the laptop uses DDR4 RAM which can be upgraded to 32 GB and has one M.2 slot for an SSD and one M.2 slot for a wireless card. The I/O includes one Ethernet port, one USB 3.0 port with PowerShare, two USB 3.0 data ports, one HDMI port, and one headset port. The audio controller used is a Realtek ALC3246 with Waves MaxxAudio Pro with two speakers and one subwoofer. The card reader is a 2-in-1 type supporting SD card and MultiMedia card (MMC). The webcam is capable of 1 megapixel still images and 720p HD video at 30 fps. The display used is a 15.6-inch FHD non-touch screen with a refresh rate of 60 Hz.

The Inspiron Gaming Series (Pandora) was replaced by Dell G Series in 2018.[46]

Rebadging[edit]

In the past, Dell has modified some existing Inspiron machines to produce computers of higher or lower quality.

The first-generation Inspiron XPS and Inspiron 9100 (2004–2006) shared the same options in processors (Intel Pentium 4 HT "Prescott"), RAM (DDR 400 MHz), hard-drives (Ultra-ATA 5400/7200 RPM), wireless cards, LCD screens (at 15.4-inches; WXGA, WSXGA+, WUXGA) and graphics cards (ATI Mobility Radeon 9700 64 MB/128 MB), as well as the same chassis. Dell marketed the XPS as an "ultimate gaming machine", while marketed the 9100 as a "desktop replacement". The Inspiron 9100 is a rebadged XPS with the only difference between the two computers is the LCD Panel. Although both support a 15.4 Samsung LCD, only later models of the 9100 (3.2 GHz) use the identical LCD screen (Dell Part #s 7T774/W3866). The Samsung LCD Panel supports 1920×1200. Previous 2.8-3.0 GHz Inspiron 9100 use a lesser panel with resolutions of 1280×800 (Dell Part # Y0316).

Problems[edit]

Overheating[edit]

In 2003, Dell released several lines of Inspiron notebooks that had overheating issues.[47] The systems would overheat and could cause damage to the microprocessor, video card, and motherboard. These systems would also randomly shut down due to high internal temperatures. Overheating in these Inspiron systems is mainly caused by performance-consuming tasks and software. This problem was determined to be due to the design of the air-flow from the bottom of the system. It would draw in dirt/dust and clog the heat sink, making air unable to pass through in order to cool the system. Affected models include the Dell Inspiron 1100, 1150, 5100, 5150, and 5160. Also affected is the Latitude 100L, a near-clone of these models.

Dell acknowledged this problem and designed a new fan with a better heatsink and heatpipes to provide better cooling with less noise. Any repairs made at this point will include the redesigned parts.

On September 20, Inspiron 5150 owners in the US brought a class action against Dell. The settlement included 100% cash reimbursement for certain repairs, and an extended limited warranty to cover those types of repairs that become necessary for one year.

Following the lawsuit detailed above, in October 2006 customers who had purchased Dell Inspiron 1100, 1150, 5100, 5150, and 5160 notebooks filed a class action lawsuit against Dell, alleging misconduct in connection with the design, manufacture, warranting, advertising and selling of these computers. A similar action started in Canada.[48][49]

Overheating has been reduced by using compressed air duster spray. Spraying the keyboard, the Microprocessor Thermal-Cooling Assembly located under the "I" - "backspace" keys, rear air vent/exhaust, bottom air intake, and side air vent (all located on the right side of affected systems) have been effective in reducing the running temperature from a normal operating temperature of 77-87 °C to 45-55 °C under average load.

Alternately, some users of these affected models found relief by underclocking their processors.

Motherboard[edit]

Inspiron lvc.jpg

On a number of Inspiron 5150 and Latitude 100L systems, a design flaw in the positioning of a tab on the C panel on the underside of the laptop has led to problems.[citation needed] Any pressure applied to the top left hand corner of the laptop causes this tab to press against the motherboard and in particular against the "LVC14A" chip. This causes the solder between this chip and the motherboard to break. This causes sudden shut-downs of the system as a result of any movement of the laptop; in certain cases the laptop will not re-boot at all. Dell has redesigned later models of the 5150 to avoid this problem. Some models reveal cases where someone has manually snapped off the tab from the C panel by hand during the manufacturing process. Dell currently covers this fault in the United States under the Lundell Settlement, although it is not known whether Dell will fix this fault free of charge outside the USA. In January 2007 a similar lawsuit started in Canada[citation needed], and Dell in the Netherlands has agreed to repair Dutch computers following criticism in the consumer programme Kassa.[50]

This has also been a problem with the Inspiron 1150, with the same chip giving problems with broken solder. Re-soldering is not recommended. Re-heating the pins can re-establish the connection and solve the power-off problem at the expense of possibly losing the use of the touch-pad mouse.

Battery recall of 2006[edit]

Dell posted notices to many of their laptop customers on August 14, 2006, saying that the Sony batteries on the following models could combust, or even explode:[51][52]

Models Affected

Latitude D410, D500, D505, D510, D520, D600, D610, D620, D630, D800, D810
Inspiron 6000, 6400, 8500, 8600, 9100, 9200, 9300, 500m, 510m, 600m, 6400, E1505, 700m, 710m, 9400, E1705
XPS XPS, XPS Gen2, XPS M170, XPS M1710
Precision M20, M60, M70, M90

Users of many of these computers purchased between April 2004 and July 18, 2006 received the recommendation that they should remove the batteries and run their computers on AC power until replacements arrived.[53] Problematic batteries made by Sony led to recall programs at other laptop computer companies as well, including Hitachi, Toshiba, Lenovo (IBM) and Apple.[54]

Power supply issues[edit]

Most Dell laptop computers have a special external power supply (PSU) which cannot be replaced by a third-party universal supply. The PSU has what's called UniqueWare™ Add-Only Memory, known under type DS2501. It is a parasitic power circuit memory chip connected to the center identification pin in the plug, via a 2m long unshielded wire alongside the PSU cable. This chip produces a special signal using a 1 wire communication protocol known as "1-wire" in identifying the PSU as an original Dell PSU. This chip handles all the data needed to authenticate a charge. If a power supply not made by Dell is used, or the cable near the connector becomes damaged as is not infrequent after some use, the PSU stops charging the battery and the CPU runs slower, although the computer can be used indefinitely so long as it remains plugged in. If this problem is present at startup, the message "The AC power adapter type cannot be determined. Your system will operate slower and the battery will not charge" is displayed. This will continue until the external PSU is replaced. A few third-party suppliers make power supplies with specific provision for Dell computers at lower prices than Dell's. It is possible to work round the slowdown, but not the battery charging, by installing a CPU clock utility.[55] On some models (the 9100 for instance), the problem can be worked around by starting the computer without a battery installed and fitting the battery after the computer has booted.

Another problem arises after much use with the motherboard power connector; flap-like metal parts which contact the outside of the plug lose their tension and fail to make contact so that power does not reach the computer. The "official" solution is to replace the connector on the motherboard, which requires partial dis-assembly of the computer and desoldering a part with several pins; many companies charge a considerable sum for the work involved. Various simple alternatives have been suggested; for example a thin "skin" of solder on the outside of the barrel of the connector on the PSU (with care not to overheat the connector's plastic parts; and this thickened connector should not be used with other, not faulty Dell laptops, as it will stretch the springs and damage or even overheat the plug and socket assembly, causing them to melt or bond permanently).

One other problem can happen with the wattage rating of the power supply. There are 2 Dell power supplies that were used for different Inspiron models which have the same plug assembly and voltage, a 65 watt supply model PA-6 and a 90 watt supply model PA-9. Some models (for example the Inspiron 1100) shipped with a PA-9. If a PA-6 (or equivalent aftermarket supply) is used in these models then the system might not boot at times. In such cases, it will light the battery light for a few seconds when the supply is plugged in. This can also happen if the power supply becomes marginal. Marginal supplies can show as supplying full voltage even if tested with a volt meter while the supply is plugged into the computer and an attempt is made to turn on the computer.

These problems are discussed in detail, and solutions and workarounds suggested, in a discussion on Tom's hardware site,[56] and on The Laptop Junction site.[57]

Hibernation sensor problem[edit]

A problem exists with the hibernation sensor located in some older laptops. Unlike many laptops that use a mechanical switch to detect when the lid is closed, in these systems the sensor is a magnetic reed switch that is located between the touchpad and the front edge of the laptop. There is a magnet that is located in the top lid above this switch, and when the lid is closed the magnet triggers the reed switch. If the magnet loses strength then the system will not go into suspend or hibernation if the lid is closed. The magnet strength can be checked by running a paper clip along the top edge of the screen. A worse problem happens if the reed switch fails. Sometimes the switches will fail in a closed position with the contacts sticking together. In that case the system will not switch on. There are several ways to check for this. First the laptop can be partially disassembled and the mouse assembly can be unplugged from the system board and the system switched on. If the system boots with the mouse unplugged then it is the switch. Another way to check for the problem is by running a magnet over the reed switch, there should be a faint click when the magnet triggers the switch. This does not require disassembly but the magnet must be in the correct position and be strong enough. Some people have modified the circuitry of the laptop by cutting the switch off of the assembly, with the downside being the system will no longer suspend if the lid is closed.

Vertical line LCD problem[edit]

Some 17" Inspiron 8600, 9200, 9300, 6000, 1750, and XPS Gen 2 notebook LCDs have a vertical line manufacturing defect. Symptoms range from individual lines to entire bars of the screen with inverted colors. Most problems showed after 2–4 years of usage.

Dell has been very reluctant to replace these panels after guarantee, although there was a direct link to the defective parts from their suppliers. Even warranty customers have had difficulty getting replacements, and replaced screens often develop the defect after a short time.[58]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Dell - Inspiron 2100". Internet Archive Wayback Machine. Archived from the original on 2001-06-08. Retrieved 2017-06-15.
  2. ^ "Dell - Inspiron 4000". Internet Archive Wayback Machine. Archived from the original on 2001-01-18. Retrieved 2017-06-15.
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