In August, Dell arise that it was auspicious its XPS 13 laptop with Intel’s new eighth-generation processors. The new U-series chips are quad-core, and Dell says that this apparatus is 44% added able than its dual-core predecessor.
It additionally includes a 3200×1800 InfinityEdge touchscreen, acceptation that it has abbreviate bezels on all sides. It’s additionally accessible in a 1080p flavor, for those that are accommodating to cede resolution in favor of array life. I autonomous to analysis the QHD model, because I am not one of those people.
With a high-resolution, edge-to-edge affectation and a quad-core processor, the XPS 13 is a actual affable apparatus to use. Here’s our review:
These are the specs of the archetypal that Dell beatific me. There are affluence of added options, including both 7th- and 8th-gen CPUs, beneath RAM, added or beneath storage, and a 1080p display.
To be honest, I feel like the architecture of Dell’s XPS laptops is a bit uninspired. It’s absolutely the capital check to an contrarily adorable device. I was beatific the accepted Silver model, although some configurations additionally arise in Rose Gold.
It’s not that the user is absolutely bigger served by a PC actuality “pretty”, but it does feel like commodity you’d appetite out of a exceptional laptop. After all, there are affluence of PCs and phones out there with attractive designs, and if all things are equal, you’d apparently go for one of them. Of course, if you don’t affliction about aesthetics, again this doesn’t affect you.
The anatomy of the XPS 13 is fabricated of machined aluminum; however, the approach blow on the keyboard is fabricated of a carbon cilia blended actual with bendable blow paint. Indeed, while it ability not be the best adorable accessory on the eyes, it soft-feeling approach blow is actual comfortable, so it works in practice.
On the larboard ancillary of the device, you’ll acquisition a anchorage for Dell’s bequest ability adapter, Thunderbolt 3, USB 3.0 Type-A, and a 3.5mm audio jack. As you’d apprehend from such a device, the Thunderbolt 3 anchorage can be acclimated for charging. The adjustment of including a bequest charging anchorage forth with USB Type-C is acceptable added accepted amid exceptional PCs, which is great, because it allows you to allegation if you accept an old charger lying around, or you can use the aforementioned ability cable for assorted devices.
On the appropriate side, there’s addition USB 3.0 Type-A port, forth with an SD agenda aperture and a Noble lock. This USB anchorage has PowerShare, which allows you to allegation your accessories from the machine’s battery, alike back it’s off.
The 3200×1800 InfinityEdge affectation is admirable and immersive. The top and ancillary bezels arise in at aloof 5.2mm, which allows for the 13.3-inch awning in the anatomy of what seems like an 11- or 12-inch PC. Dell says that it’s the aboriginal 13.3-inch laptop on the planet.
There is one above check to accepting such abbreviate bezels, at atomic on the top. The camera is absolutely placed beneath the screen, which can accomplish it absolutely awkward for Skype calling. It’s additionally apparently one of the affidavit why Dell acclimated a fingerprint clairvoyant instead of facial acceptance for Windows Hello.
The Dell XPS 13 is a accepted laptop anatomy factor. The archetypal that I was beatific includes a touchscreen, although non-touch options are available. There’s additionally a 2-in-1 convertible acidity of the XPS 13, cleverly alleged the XPS 13 2-in-1.
To be clear, there are all-inclusive differences amid the XPS 13 and the XPS 13 2-in-1, and it’s not aloof the anatomy factor. As I mentioned earlier, the XPS 13 uses Intel’s eighth-generation U-series processors. These are the chips that you’ll acquisition in best laptops and ultrabooks, and it’s Intel’s low-power lineup. Previously, these accept consistently been dual-core, but with this generation, they’re quad-core, which is why Dell is able 44% added power.
The XPS 13 2-in-1 uses Intel’s Y-series chips, which is the ultra-low-power lineup. They’re still seventh-generation, as Intel hasn’t alike arise the eighth-generation Y-series processors yet. Previously, these were alleged Core m, in m3, m5, and m7 flavors. The m5 and m7 accept been rebranded to i5 and i7, so it’s important to agenda the archetypal numbers of the dent back affairs a attenuate and ablaze PC.
The point that I’m aggravating to accomplish actuality is that if you’re activity for the XPS 13 and you’re chief amid the accepted archetypal and the 2-in-1, there are tradeoffs to each. You get added functionality from the 2-in-1, but added ability from the laptop.
I accept to say, I feel like Dell is akin these machines (including the XPS 15, which I afresh reviewed) in an accomplishment to stick to architecture principles. After all, there are affluence of 360-degree convertible PCs with U-series processors. HP makes the Spectre x360, which is an accomplished machine, and Lenovo does some alarming assignment with its Yoga and ThinkPad Yoga convertibles.
As addition that works from a PC all day, the keyboard on a laptop is acutely important to me. Luckily, the XPS 13 has served my needs actual well. I’ve enjoyed all of the time that I’ve spent alive from it.
The keys are accurate, and they’re not oversensitive, or undersensitive, for that matter. This is a accepted affair that I’ve had with Windows laptops (particularly lower-end ones), breadth accounting on a key ability accomplish the appearance arise twice, for whatever reason. I don’t accept that botheration with the XPS 13, or any problems.
The backlit keys don’t accept any appropriate architecture like Lenovo uses for its ThinkPads; they’re aloof aboveboard keys. But it works, and the carbon cilia breadth surrounding those keys is absolutely adequate to touch. In fact, I’d booty it over the Alcantara of Microsoft’s Surface Laptop.
Dell’s XPS 13 uses a fingerprint clairvoyant for Windows Hello, rather than facial recognition. In my opinion, facial acceptance is consistently the way to go, as it’s aloof accustomed to ability on your PC, accept it see you, and automatically log you in.
Unfortunately, this is addition case of anatomy over function. Facial acceptance absolutely wouldn’t assignment if it’s placed on the basal breadth the camera is. The camera can almost see the user’s face. If the top bezel wasn’t so small, this could accept been placed there.
Fortunately, the fingerprint clairvoyant is authentic and fast enough. I’ve not had any issues with the accessory acquainted me, a botheration that I’ve had with abounding fingerprint sensors on Windows devices. Overall, the fingerprint sensor is still bigger than most, but it’s aloof a affliction that there’s no facial recognition.
Dell says that the XPS 13 has the longest array activity of any 13-inch laptop. Personally, I don’t anticipate that this is accurate, as the Surface Laptop would apparently booty that accolade from my experience.
Still, the array activity is appealing good. I was able to get a solid eight hours out of it, and my accustomed acceptance is Chrome (with assorted tabs open), Skype, and Slack active all of the time, with some accidental Photoshop and Premiere Pro. Yes, Premiere Pro will acutely abate array life.
With an XPS 13 with these specs but a Core i5, Dell says that MobileMark 2014 got it 13 hours, it got 10 hours 15 account with Edge browsing, and eight hours 30 account alive Netflix. With the 1080p display, however, it gets 18 hours 56 account on MobileMark, 15 hours 16 account with Edge browsing, and 12 hours 24 account with Netflix.
Obviously, you’ll get bigger array activity with the FHD model, which comes as no surprise.
You can allegation the accessory with either Dell’s bequest pin connector, or you can use USB Type-C, alone the above of which is included in the box. This is a abundant adjustment that’s been accepted in PCs as of late. After all, if you’ve got a agglomeration of Dell chargers lying around, you can use those. If you’ve got a agglomeration of USB Type-C laptops from altered brands and you appetite to use the aforementioned charger for all of them, you can do that too.
Just to get this out of the way, the XPS 13 comes with McAfee pre-installed. As always, I acclaim uninstalling as anon as possible, which is what I consistently do. If you ask me, it’s amoral that OEMs abide to array this software on new PCs.
Other than that, you’ll acquisition the accustomed stuff. Dell’s SupportAssist app is decidedly useful, back it’s what you’ll use to amend the drivers and firmware on the machine. Of course, there’s additionally the accumulation of Microsoft Store apps that arise with any Windows 10 installation, which accommodate things like Microsoft Solitaire Collection, Minecraft, Bubble Witch Saga, and sadly, more.
Dropbox additionally comes pre-installed, and it will action you 20GB of chargeless accumulator for a year with the acquirement of your new device.
Intel has alone arise a scattering of eighth-generation processors. There are a few desktop SKUs, and there are alone four U-series chips so far: two i5 and two i7. This archetypal came with the i7-8550U, rather than the 8650U.
These arise commutual with Intel UHD Graphics 620, which absolutely isn’t abundant added than a name change from the aftermost generation’s HD Graphics 620. It should account from actuality commutual with a quad-core CPU, but that’s about it.
As for real-world performance, I never begin the XPS 13 to attempt with accepted tasks like browsing in Chrome or alteration images in Photoshop. It did attempt a bit with Premiere Pro though, although it didn’t accomplish the app abstract in the slightest. If you use Adobe Premiere a lot though, you should apparently be attractive at PCs with a committed GPU.
For benchmarks, I acclimated PCMark 8, active three tests: Home, Creative, and Work. Home tests accepted tasks, like web browsing, video chat, photo editing, and accidental gaming.
As you can see, the XPS 13 array appropriate breadth we’d apprehend it to on the Home test, bigger than 46% of added results. Next up is the Creative test, which checks things like video editing, boilerplate gaming, and more.
This was absolutely a bit bigger than I expected, because the abridgement of a committed GPU. Finally, the Assignment analysis checks productivity-related tasks like writing, spreadsheets, and video chat.
The Assignment analysis account was a bit lower than I’d expected, accustomed the added able CPU. Still, it’s added than acceptable for accepting your assignment done.
I appetite to be bright back I say that the Dell XPS 13 is an acutely affable laptop to use, admitting the actuality that I’ve been analytical of some of the company’s architecture choices throughout this article. The QHD affectation is attractive and the attenuated bezels aloof add to the immersive effect. And that allows it to fit into a abbreviate and carriageable package.
I additionally adulation the keyboard, commodity that’s actual important to me in a laptop. The carbon cilia actual on the approach blow is absolutely comfortable, and the keys feel acceptable to blazon on. Of course, the quad-core processor helps in the achievement breadth as well.
But as I mentioned, the anatomy of the accessory feels uninspired, and I absolutely don’t accept why Dell isn’t alms a high-performance convertible PC. At atomic the camera adjustment would accomplish some faculty if I was to use it in a altered anatomy factor.
Those are all appealing baby complaints though. Ultimately, the XPS 13 is one of the best laptops out there on the market. You can grab the XPS 13 from Dell actuality for $1,924.99, although it’s $50 added for the Rose Gold model. Obviously, it’s configurable with lower end specs.
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