Dell XPS 15 (2015)

Dell makes laptops thinner and lighter across XPS and Alienware range

Aside for a new year, 2015 also heralds the introduction of more companies using Intel’s new 5th generation Core processors, and managing to make their laptops even thinner than before. Dell is chiming in with its own, ready for action with lighter and slimmer machines for 2015.

The new range coming for Dell aims to have a big impact in making small computers, as Dell’s XPS and Alienware line-up goes on a diet and sheds the grams.

Those 2015 changes start wit the XPS 13, a machine that will resemble more of an XPS 11 thanks to some interesting design changes Dell has managed to accomplish here.

Dell XPS 13 (2015)

Dell is calling this one “the smallest 13-inch laptop in the world”, and it’s a statement the company can make thanks to a display with borders that are so slim, the 13 inch screen is being called “virtually borderless” thanks to bezels of 5.2mm.

With so small an edge, the 13 inch display kind of sits in the space of where an 11 inch would work, and Dell is providing options for either Full HD 1920×1080 without touch, or a QHD+ 3200×1800 screen with touch support and Gorilla Glass to protect it from scratches.

Remember, a computer is more business like when it shows "business" on the screen.

Under the hood, the XPS 13 will pack in fifth generation Intel Core processors (now that Lenovo’s exclusive release period is practically done), with options for Core i3, i5, and i7 processors, as well as either 4GB or 8GB RAM, SSD options ranging from 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB, Intel’s latest HD graphics (5500), 802.11ac WiFi, Windows 8.1, and a USB 3.0 port, SD card reader, and a Mini DisplayPort.

But while the specs are important, it’s the design that will probably grab you, with Dell using machined aluminium for most of the body and a carbon fibre composite for the palm rest, helping the machine come together to measure 1.27kg for the touch option, and just under for the touch-less Full HD model.

Dell XPS 15 (2015)

A 15 inch variant will also be arriving coming with the not-so-surprising name of XPS 15, and while the chips take a tumble to Intel’s fourth-generation “Haswell” processors, there will be variants with as much as 16GB RAM, 1TB space with 32GB SSD working alongside, an Ultra HD screen (3840×2160), and an Nvidia GeForce GT 750M with 2GB graphics.

“The new products announced today raise the bar in every category, with style, substance and software solutions customers can only get from Dell,” said Sam Burd, Vice President of the Client Solutions Product Group at Dell.

“Whether you are a gamer, always on the go or buying a laptop or desktop for everyday use, Dell is building in the features and functionality customers care about.”

Alienware 15 (2015)

Gamers have also been taken care of, as Burd says, and there’s more being offered than just the 750M graphics chip, with more grunt in a smaller space.

Yes, just like the XPS, the Alienware machines are going on a diet, with weight lost on the 15 and 17 inch models being introduced at CES 2015.

For the 15 inch machine, you’ll find a new design made with a carbon-fibre filled base, the lid using aluminium, with the internals relying on an Intel Core i5 or i7 fourth-gen processor (“Haswell”), 8 or 16GB RAM, either Nvidia GeForce GTX 9XX graphics (965M, 970M, or 980M) or the AMD Radeon R9 M295X graphics chip with as much as 4GB video memory, as well as USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI 1.4, and support for Alienware’s graphics amplifier which can speed the graphics up when you’re sitting down at a desk and have it plugged in.

Alienware 15 (2015)

An ultra high-definition screen is even possible here, complete with touch technology, and as much as 512GB SSD working alongside a 1TB conventional drive, providing lots of storage for gamers that need it.

Alienware’s 17 inch model offers very similar options, though there’s no 4K screen (only Full HD 1920×1080), and instead you’ll find a bigger screen, options for an uber-fast Intel Core i7 clocked at 4.2GHz (the max on the 15 inch is 3.7GHz), and audio handled by Creative Labs.

Alienware 17 (2015)

Both machines come with that special lighting all Alienware machines tend to come with, and Alienware says there are over 10 trillion lighting combinations possible using the 10 programmable lighting zones.

And just to make a bit of a change, there is pricing and availability details for these CES announcements, as Dell is ready with the information.

As such, you’ll find the XPS 13 available this week from $1499, the XPS 15 with an Ultra HD screen online this week from $2499, and both the Alienware 15 and Alienware available next week (January 12) for $1999 and $2499 respectively.