Home Icon
dell-xps-15-2012-review-02

Review: Dell XPS 15 (2012)

By Leigh D. Stark | 11:17 am 14/08/2012

Most laptops that pass through GadgetGuy’s office at the moment tend to offer a minimalist computing experience, with a smallish screen, smallish drive, and a sleek streamlined look. Not everyone is after the little laptop lifestyle, and Dell thinks it has an answer, with a 15 inch aluminium machine sporting a 1080p screen, 1 terabyte, and optical drive.

Features

Dell’s latest foray in the 15 inch notebook space comes in the form of the 2012 model XPS 15, continuing its long running XPS range of notebook computers.

Encased in an aluminium body with silicone and magnesium sections, the XPS 15 has been designed to exude a fairly professional look that also looks as metallic as some of the competing laptops we normally see.

While the profile is pretty slim at 23.2mm thin, Dell has made sure to include a hardware list that allows it to compete, including a third-generation Intel Core i7 processor with Ivy Bridge technology running at 2.1GHz, 8GB RAM, 1TB conventional hard drive (no solid state here!), and an Nvidia GeForce GT640M graphics card with 2GB memory.

With this level of technology inside, the XPS 15 is no Ultrabook, and shouldn’t be a slouch in the processing department, potentially appealing to the multimedia and gaming types.

Good thing then that the screen is a reasonably big 15.6 inch widescreen display, adopting a nice full HD 1080p resolution of 1920×1080, an area a lot of other 15 inch laptops let us down in.

Ports are reasonably well supplied in the XPS 15, with one HDMI, one mini-DisplayPort, one Gigabit Ethernet port, three high-speed USB 3.0 ports, one 3.5mm headphone jack, and one 3.5mm headset jack for use with microphone and headphone combo headsets.

There’s also a Blu-ray drive wth DVD burning facilities, which should make those of you still keen on burning discs happy. And if optical media is dead to you, there’s an SD card slot waiting for you.

A 1.3 megapixel webcam sits just above the 15.6 inch display, useful for video conferencing and any self-portraits you plan on taking, with two small 2W speakers built into the laptop.

Dell has supplied an island-style keyboard with backlit keys and a 4.7 inch glass-button trackpad for use here. Windows 7 Home 64-bit is provided out of the box for your operating system.

Pages: 1 2 3

Price (RRP)

$starting from $1,499

Pros & Cons

Product Pros

Decent specs; High resolution screen for a PC laptop;

Product Cons

Touchpad mouse feels strange and carries a touch too much resistance; Combination of metal and rubber is a little odd; Screen needs better viewing angles and less gloss;

Ratings

Overall

Features

Value for money

Performance

Design

Latest reviews

  • Samsung’s PowerBot robotic vacuum reviewed

    The home of the future will come with robot butlers and maids and chefs and cleaners, but until that happens, you’ll have to settle for a robot vacuum. Is…
  • Oppo’s $529 mid-range metal smartphone reviewed

    With phones hitting well and truly past the thousand dollar mark, the mid-range is now the attractive area to price a device, and with a tag of $529 outright…
  • Review: Sony NW-A25 Walkman

    Not everyone wants to use a phone for media playback, and so the Apple iPod still gets buyers, but what if you’re after high-res audio?
  • Review: Apple MacBook Air 11 inch (2015)

    One of the few Macs we haven’t reviewed in a while, it’s time to check out Apple’s baby of the bunch before what we expect will be a 2016…
  • AppMonday: Playground

    Making music can be an awesomely fun exercise, but it's not something we all have the mindset for. If you're into playful electronica, however, Playground makes it possible to…
  • Review: HTC Desire 520

    Whenever we hear the word “cheap” associated with a phone, we hit the deck, preparing ourselves for the onslaught of something awful. Can HTC’s Desire 520 shake us from…
  • Review: Toshiba Satellite Click 10

    When you can’t decide between a laptop and a tablet, the hybrid might be the answer, and if you’re on a budget, Toshiba’s Click 10 offers up something that…
  • Review: HP Spectre x2

    Not quite a Surface, but still something close, HP's Spectre x2 is one interesting machine, and worth checking out if you're keen to see a tablet with all the…
  • Review: Sol Republic Shadow wireless earphones

    There’s nothing quite like being liberated from the cables that wired earphones rely on, but often the prices of wireless earphones don’t match up to the performance. Fortunately, Sol’s…
  • Review: Acer Predator 17

    Not every PC should be treated the same, and Acer's Predator 17 looks to prove it, skipping past the slim and minimalistic design most laptops features these days, opting…

“How do you stop yourself from being caught out by these scam artists?”

Read More

Tell us…

Will you be installing an ad blocker on your smartphone?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

“There’s certainly no doubt that you can find a bargain, but like always, you get what you pay for.”

Read More