What Are the Differences Between Inspiron, Vostro & Optiplex Dell Desktops?

The Inspiron, the Vostro and the OptiPlex desktop personal computers represent brands that Dell designs for different segments of the consumer market. The Inspiron can be seen as Dell's flagship brand, comprising a vast array of entry- and mid-level desktop PCs for basic users and students.

The Vostro, placed higher than the Inspiron, is aimed at the small business market. The OptiPlex is the highest-ranked of the three brands, targeted at the large business, government and education markets.


At the time of publication, the Dell Inspiron line of desktops consists of the Inspiron 560, 570 and 620 traditional towers; the Zino HD, a small form factor desktop; and the all-in-one Inspiron 2205 and 2305 machines. The Dell Vostro desktop line-up includes the Vostro 230, 260 and 460 mini towers; a slim version of the 230 aptly dubbed the 230s; and the all-in-one Vostro 330. The OptiPlex desktop brand is split into the OptiPlex 380, 390, 580, 780, 790 and 990 towers; the OptiPlex XE small form factor desktop; and the small-and-thin OptiPlex 190.

Operating System, Processor and System Memory

Each Dell Inspiron desktop runs Microsoft's Windows 7 Home Premium operating system. Some Vostro and OptiPlex desktops run the Professional version of Windows 7 instead. Most Inspiron processors are entries from the low-end i3 or mid-range i5 divisions of Intel's premier Core brand, or the company's budget-oriented Celeron line. The Vostro and OptiPlex include more powerful choices such as the top-level Intel Core i7 or quad-core chips instead of the dual-core ones on the Inspiron.

System Memory and Hard Drive

The maximum system memory capacity that the Dell Inspiron desktop offers is 8GB; the Vostro and OptiPlex offer half that amount. In terms of data storage, the Inspiron provides choices of 500GB, 750GB or 1,000GB, or 1TB. The Vostro has three choices: 250GB, 320GB and 500GB. The OptiPlex outdoes the other two brands with five choices -- 160GB, 250GB, 320GB, 500GB and 1,000GB.


The Dell Inspiron, at the time of publication, has a starting price range of £182 to £487, which includes online-savings price slashing. The Dell Vostro has a £195-to-$600 price range. The Dell OptiPlex offers a starting price range of £211 to £458. These starting prices don't include a monitor, productivity software, antivirus software and numerous other potential add-ones.