Dell XPS 13 Review
Dell XPS 13 review – Erasing borders, starting with the display.
The smallest 13-inch laptop on the planet has the world’s first virtually borderless InfinityEdge display and the latest Intel® Kaby Lake processors. Touch, Silver, and Rose Gold options available.
main competitors: MacBook Pro 13
To the majority users, the most important part of the Kaby Lake XPS 13 9360 update is the fact that the Skylake XPS 13 9350 will now be cheaper. The performance deltas between these nearly identical notebooks are so minimal that buyers intending to use the notebook for classwork, browsing, or multimedia will find very few tangible benefits from Kaby Lake. In fact, certain XPS 13 9350 SKUs with Iris Graphics can outperform the newer Kaby Lake SKUs if users demand more graphical horsepower.
The XPS 13 is still one of the better traditional 13-inch Ultrabooks available if fancy 360-degree hinges or detachable displays are not important. Its small size and quality design can’t be underestimated and its super-narrow bezels are already being incorporated onto competing notebooks including the upcoming Yoga 910. Not much has changed for the XPS 13, but the series will remain very competitive moving into the Holidays nonetheless.
The big trend in laptops right now is making your system as thin and light as possible but at the expense of shorter battery life and too few ports. The XPS 13 doesn’t cave to that peer pressure, and instead gives you nearly 14 hours of endurance and all the connection options you need in a design that’s plenty light and compact for travel. Plus, the new XPS 13 offers a very strong Wi-Fi card, which allowed me to connect in parts of my abode where the 12-inch MacBook barely maintains a signal.
The 7th-generation Core i5 processor and SSD in the XPS 13 offer plenty of speed, and I like that there’s enough oomph to play casual 3D games. This ultraportable is also comfortable to use, thanks to its soft-touch deck and accurate touchpad. Yes, the webcam is still in a weird place, but overall, the XPS 13 remains the laptop to beat.
The addition of Thunderbolt 3 lets you quickly turn this little laptop into a full workstation capable of driving multiple monitors, Ethernet, external storage, speakers and power with a single cable connection. You also get a USB 3.0 port, an SD card slot and a mic/headphone jack.
In the end, whether you scale back for better battery life or load it up for the best performance possible, the Dell XPS 13 remains a fantastic ultraportable laptop.
Despite that singular flaw, the Dell XPS 13 continues to be a thoroughly impressive piece of computing machinery. Better yet, Dell didn’t have to change much to maintain that image.
But, even against the spate of Windows-bound laptops that have adopted burgeoning technologies whole cloth, the XPS 13 stands out with a healthy balance of old and new tech inside a device that’s comfortable to use for as long as it can last – a long time. For that reason, the Dell XPS 13 wins our Best in Class award.
It’s at the high end that the Dell XPS really shines. The top-spec Intel Core i7 processor makes light work of HD video tasks while still sipping power in other tasks to make true all-day battery life a very real claim. It doesn’t have the wow factor that it did a couple of years ago, and it certainly doesn’t match the MacBook Pro for pure experience, but it’s a winner in every other way.
The Dell XPS 13 is more expensive than the likes of the Asus ZenBook UX310UA and Lenovo IdeaPad 710S, but it beats them both in terms of screen quality, build quality and SSD performance, as well as boasting a Thunderbolt 3 connector. If you rely on your laptop for serious work, the XPS 13 is the obvious choice.