Some weeks ago I’ve switched to a Dell Vostro 3700 with a Intel Core i5 M560 (2.66GHz), 17.3″ non-glossy LED display (1600*900), 6GB DDR3 (1333MHz), 500GB SATA harddisc (7200 1/min) and a NVidia GeForce GT 330M (1024MB).
The performance of this office notebook is quite nice, but a major flaw of this notebook is the fact that ALL of the connectors (4*USB, 1*USB/eSATA, HDMI, VGA, Ethernet, Firewire and the power connector are located on each side of the notebook case and not at the back. Using it as desktop replacement permanently connected to another external monitor really sucks. I can’t understand why someone would design it this way for an office notebook. It’s highly impractical! The microphone and headphone jacks are located on the front of the notebook aswell as the SD/MMC/MS slot, which is quite ok. I use the notebook with the already installed Windows 7 64bit, which is the best OS from Microsoft up to now. It works effective and reliable. The notebook is quite silent even if stuffed with a high CPU load. The design of the notebook itself is clean and without any special highlights. It’s just a workhorse. Nothing more, nothing less.
Conclusion: Seeing it as work horse makes it a acceptable choice for a office notebook. The resolution is far below what I would recommend for designers to work with, but with a huge second monitor it’s ok. The placement of the ports on each side of the notebook is pure crap (sorry to say). It uses far too much space on the desk and is unacceptable for a office notebook. Not that it’s of any importance for an office notebook, but the speakers are cheap and the sound is horrible. Personally I wouldn’t buy this one for my personal use, as it is not my taste in terms of design, the screen resolution is below my standards and the speakers render it useless for any kind of multimedia use.
Just my 2 cents.