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Best Work From Home PC Upgrade: Huawei MateStation S VS Dell Vostro 3681

Comparison Verdict: Huawei’s first foray into the desktop world is a better buy than Dell’s offering, thanks to a better screen, faster hardware, and overall better performance. If you or your organization wants a fully integrated, productivity-focused machine to upgrade your existing hardware, Huawei’s MateStation S is the answer.

Design

Both desktops are targeted at work from home peeps and small to medium enterprises that require robust, easy-to-use machines for their workforce. Because of that their overall dimensions are made to be as small and unobtrusive as possible.

Dell’s offering reflects the company’s corporate focus, at least in the Philippines, and you can’t get a more generic-looking tower even if you tried. Huawei’s MateStation S is a little different though, mostly because of the Star Trail design in the front. Who says work boxes can’t look interesting?

Ports, connectivity, and keyboard

The two machines are fairly modern when it comes to connectivity, though the devil is in the details. While both devices have WiFi and Bluetooth, The Dell Vostro 3681 only has WiFi 802.11 ac and Bluetooth 4.2 compared to the MateStation S, which has WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth 5.0.

And while USB connections are expected here, the MateStation S has a Type-C connector that’s missing from Dell’s offering. Huawei’s MateStation also supports fast charging as well.

One thing that the MateStation S has over the Vostro when it comes to overall security is the fact that the keyboard supplied with Huawei’s offering has a built-in fingerprint scanner.

That’s a nifty feature to have, especially for SMEs that want biometric security on their PCs. Huawei is the only pre-built desktop manufacturer that has a built-in fingerprint reader on their keyboard here in the Philippines, which gives it a big advantage over the Dell Vostro.

Display

Huawei is giving customers who buy the MateStation S with a 23.8-inch display, dubbed the Huawei Display, while Dell does a similar thing with their Dell 22, which is a 22-inch panel.

Let’s start with the similarities first – both displays have 60Hz refresh rates, both use IPS panels and both have thin bezels on the side and top to give you more screen real-estate.

But if you look closer at the two displays you’ll see that Huawei’s offering is far superior. For one thing, it’s physically bigger at 23.8-inches VS 22-inches on the Dell 22. It has better color coverage and looks more elegant than the very corporate-looking Dell Vostro. It also has a 90% screen-to-body ratio, making it a perfect display for both work and play.

Thanks to the Huawei Display’s excellent color coverage, it can be used in a wide variety of applications that require accurate color reproduction, significantly increasing the display’s use case.

Hardware

Huawei’s MateStation S has a significant lead VS the Dell Vostro 3681 when it comes to hardware, thanks to the use of the former of AMD’s Ryzen 5 4600G. The Dell Vostro 3681 only packs an Intel Core i5-10400 in its chassis.

AMD’s Ryzen 5 4600G easily beats out the Intel Core i5-10400 that’s in the Dell Vostro, easily outstripping it in benchmark tests. And while both desktops only make do with built-in graphics (Radeon Vega 7 on the AMD chip and UHD Graphics 630 on the Intel), it’s clear that AMD still has a lead there too.

For RAM, the MateStation S leads the Dell Vostro 3681 with 8GB VS 4GB, though both desktops can be configured to take higher RAM capacities.

As for storage, the MateStation S has a 256GB SSD VS the Dell Vostro 3681’s 1TB HDD, though take note that an HDD is significantly slower compared to an SSD. Unless you plan to work on large files, a faster SSD is more desirable than a slower, but bigger, HDD.

Price and Verdict:

Huawei’s first foray into pre-built desktops for WFH and for the corporate space is clearly superior to the offering of the longtime player. It has a better display and overall better value for money when it comes to hardware. Not to mention it’s the first desktop that has an integrated fingerprint security solution.

As for pricing, the Huawei MateStation S is priced at Php 30,999 just for the tower, keyboard, and mouse alone. The Huawei Display is priced at Php 7,999. If you purchase them together they come out at Php 39,998.

The Dell Vostro 3681 tower is Php 39,990 without the display. If you purchase it with the display, it’ll come out at Php 5,490.

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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