Dell XPS 15 (2018) Review: lightweight & ultra-portable but high-performer
Much like the XPS 13 laptops, the Dell XPS 15 line-ups are five-star performers, but in this case, they pack larger 15-inch screens. Riding on the successes of previous XPS laptops, Dell’s 15-inch offering for 2018 raises the bar even higher for the competition.
The Dell XPS 15 is equipped with high-end internals and also boasts of a really good battery. You need not be reminded of the aesthetic design that is typical of these laptop series.
Dell’s XPS laptops are known for their ultra-portability and thin frames. This laptop sticks to this design languages with a weight of 1.8kg and measuring only 17mm thick. There is just so little difference in design between this year’s version and last year’s.
The chassis used for this laptop is made mostly of aluminum, with the Dell logo slapped as usual on the top of the lid. The InfinityEdge screen is 15.6-inches long diagonally with very minimal bezels. As a result, the webcam has been pushed to the bottom of the display – just like with the XPS 13. In addition, the Dell XPS 15 has the size of an average 14-inch laptop, making it very compact for a 15-incher.
Dell included a battery indicator on this device, which is located on the top right side. The indicator comprises five lights that turn on when the battery is fully charged, and each going off as the battery power reduces.
The display on the Dell XPS 15 is an almost borderless one, similar to the XPS 13’s. The near bezel-less display is bright enough and also vivid. You have the option to choose between a Full HD or Ultra HD – that is also a 2-in-1 – screen. Whichever one you pick, you still get a wonderful viewing experience.
The display is an IPS panel with up to 178 degrees wide viewing angles. There is also an anti-glare protection for the high contrast screen.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The keyboard on the Dell XPS 15 has backlighting and lacks a number panel. The keyboard is surrounded by a soft black carbon fiber deck.
Also, the touchpad is situated at a central position and is almost as wide as the space bar. Looking at the pad shows no signs of any buttons as they have been integrated into the bottom side of the pad.
In terms of CPU, there are three major variants of the XPS 15 (2018): one with an Intel Core i5-8300G processor, another with Intel’s Core i7-8750H, and lastly one with a Core i9 CPU.
All variants come with a dedicated graphics card: Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1050 GPU (with 4GB of VRAM). RAM for this ultrabook is 8GB but can be expanded to 32GB; while internal storage is a combo of 128GB SSD plus 1TB HDD, which can also be upgraded.
For software, Microsoft’s Windows 10 OS has been pre-installed on all models of the Dell XPS 15 laptop.
This is an important part of a laptop, so, we’ll take a look at it critically. While the manufacturer promises that the XPS 15’s battery can deliver power continuously for up to 21 hours (I’d like to call that outrageous), the extent of battery life will depend largely on the type of task the laptop is been used for. Also, don’t forget that the CPU and GPU used on this device are high-end including the screen.
Moving on, the XPS 15 laptop by Dell features the usuals in terms of connectivity options. There are two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, one type-C USB port – with Thunderbolt 3, a HDMI port, SD card slot, headphone jack, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity. Sadly enough, the type-C USB port does not support dash charging.
Pricing and Availability
Pricing for the Dell XPS 15 begins at about $1000 – for the base Core i5 model – and goes up to about $2600 for the highest version. This laptop is available on most online and offline stores worldwide.
Specs at a Glance
|Maximum Screen Resolution||1920 x 1080/3840 x 2160 pixels|
|Internal Storage||128GB SSD+ 1TB HDD|
|CPU||Intel Core i5-8300H/i7-7700HQ/Core i9|
|Operating System||Windows 10 OS|
|Dimensions||14.1 x 9.3 x 0.6 inches|
Mind-blowing and near the bezel-less display, high-end performance, beautiful and lightweight design, decent battery life; these are some of the sweet spots of the Dell XPS 15. If you are looking for a powerful but ultra-portable laptop, especially for traveling, this laptop fits the specs.
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