Yep. I love my Dex builds, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve got to dedicate a lot of build to getting high AC Aif I don’t want to require a lot of healing.Yeah, I've never been too worried about Str vs. Dex melee builds. Str builds that forgo Dex have lower initiative, Dex saves, and lower ranged range, but they have higher strength which helps with Pushes and Grabs and higher Str saves to resist monsters throwing them around, and higher AC.
I realized for the math for my earlier Fighter comparison, I didn't give them a subclass to compare side by side with the Ranger. A battle master fighter can be adding +4.5 damage per hit 4 times during a short rest, plus effects, which would have pushed their expected damage up quite a bit.
Still, my Swashbuckler/Bladesinger is pretty damn fun. Hell, my Thief has an 18 AC with no magic items at level 12, bc he’s got that 20 Dex, but the fighter had that AC or better at level 6.