Dell XPS 15 Review: The best 15 inch laptop

by birtanpublished on November 22, 2020

Dell's struck gold with the XPS 15 over the past three years a lot of people who typically may have gone towards a macbook pro we're suddenly interested in this XPS 15 specifically because it had that slim sleek look and really good performance and most importantly a usable keyboard but now that the MacBook Pro 16 inches out there the tables have kind of turned again and we have this the brand new XPS 15 in response to that laptop and they basically redesign almost every element of this laptop and improve it in a lot of different ways so here's what this is all about and whether or not this is the best creative

Professional content creation device ever made familiar yet fresh that's sort of the tagline that Dells been going forward with the XPS 15 and I have to agree so the design of this laptop hasn't changed in the past five years that's a really long time to stick with the same chassis all those advancements that were given to the XPS 13 over the years have finally all come to the Big Brother in this new XPS 15 we're talking that bigger sixteen by ten panel thinner bezels a larger keyboard and a larger touchpad all those slight tweaks that make this a modern and fresh feeling

Laptop for 2020 now let's talk about that display because that's really the big star of the show here when you sit in front of this 15.6 inch 16 by 10 display it really does kind of command your attention of course you do still have a top bezel air with a 720p webcam and your IR camera for Windows hello but really the bezel is here are as thin as they get on laptops it really feels like there's no wasted space it's just all screen and the great thing is the actual panel that Dell has chosen to use on this laptop is one of the best I've ever tested especially considering this

As an LED panel and not an OLED panel the resolution is 3840 by 2400 and that is a lot of pixels that's a higher resolution than 4k it's certainly a higher is the 16 inch MacBook Pro and they really haven't cut any corners here if you opt for this 4k panel you're getting the best color precision I've ever seen on a laptop and as I mentioned earlier the keyboard and the touchpad and even the speakers have been redesigned and refined in this year's version the keyboard in particular features those larger key caps with less space in

Between them thanks for just a more modern look but also a more comfortable typing experience as well as a trackpad below Della's expanded it to be just about the size of the 16 inch macbook pro which is really really large these are some of the biggest trackpads you can get on a laptop and just like in the past is a really precise tracking experience and really quiet click it's really one of the best touch pads you can get and then lastly the speakers which are now located right up here on the keyboard deck just like they are on a MacBook Pro here's the thing Dell has

Kind of boasted a lot about these speakers and they they are quite a big improvement over the past these are the best XPS speakers I've ever listened to but they are not really anywhere near the type of caliber they're gonna get on a MacBook Pro though this thing does sound great and I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by how good these speakers are especially if you're watching movies or videos now one change here that I do like that I think some people may have problems with is the port selection because Dells kind of switch things up here and made it a

Little simpler basically what you're getting is two Thunderbolt three ports an extra USB 3.1 port and a full-size SD card slot and that's basically it except for of course the headphone jack that is the universal standard for ports of the future but for now you might be annoyed here and there when you can't connect directly to your TV or to a mouse or keyboard fortunately Dell does throw in a USB a two USB C connection in the Box more importantly than any of that is the fact that they included the full-size SD card slot here this is a really important

Port to have for creative professionals using a camera of any kind you really want to have that on your laptop and I could have seen them going the way of the MacBook Pro and getting rid of it entirely but I'm happy to say that it's still here and it's still very useful before I move on to pro so do you want to talk about battery life again real quick because you gotta know what you're getting into here this 4k 15 inch laptop it's just not gonna get the best battery life and honestly we shouldn't really expect it to you has an 86 watt hour battery this is a very

Large battery to put in a laptop you still really only getting around five or six hours in light usage if you're running any kind of heavy application that's gonna be cut back a couple hours from there so you know again this is standard stuff it's right in line with the 16 inch MacBook Pro but you should know what you're getting into the performance of the XPS 15 has always been one of its most important features because this is not just a bigger screen unlike a lot of other 15-inch laptops there you actually get more performance more power to run those heavy

Applications well it starts with just a quad core option you can configure this in almost any way you want up to 64 gigabytes of RAM and 2 terabytes of storage so plenty of options there for getting this machine to be exactly what you want it to be while still staying in your budget my review unit does though come with 16 gigabytes of RAM and NVIDIA discreet graphics card the GTX 16 250 T I and of course that hefty eight core Intel processor all of that costing over two thousand dollars should be plenty of power for most of what people are gonna do this but I wanted to see just how

Good this laptop was at things like video editing because that's a demanding task that really requires a lot of power from different parts of this machine I did kind of my typical test it's a two-minute 4k clip in Adobe Premiere exporting at Pro res 42 and the results were that it took 8 minutes in 42 seconds to finish the render now that is faster than options like a razor blade with a 6-quart processor and an RT X 27 T but it's not quite as fast as the ninth gen core i9 version the MacBook Pro 68 the XPS 15 has never been a gaming laptop but I want to talk

About graphics performance because if it's got a discrete graphics card I should be able to do some gaming and this one can because it comes with the GTX 6 250 T I which is a step up from the 1650 that was used in last year's model now the XPS 15 is never really gonna be able to compete with a normal gaming laptop but you can get some really good gaming with the XPS 15 this year and I think the slight bump up to that new graphics card gives it just enough to make this actually a really nice gaming experience because you can get most games to play at 60 frames per

Second depending on what settings you're at I'll light a game like fortnight or civilization 6 can both play 60 frames per second with the settings cranked all the way up and it's a really nice experience while it's something a little bit heavier like battlefield 5 I was able to get to 60 frames per second really easily just by dialing the graphics back a little bit and of course this is all playing at 1080p you're not going to play at 4k really any game so I'll just put it out there this is the best 15 inch laptop you can buy I think in terms of its design there's really

Nothing even in the ballpark of comparing with it I think the MacBook Pro the 16 inch one is a really nice laptop still but I think this is a better value I like the design of this better and I think your performance is going to be better too if you jump up to that core I 9 version when it comes out if you are a creative professional if you spend all day sitting in front of your computer you know trying to get through those applications and your work depends on how well it can render graphics and work with large files you're gonna need this type of laptop

And I still think the XPS 15 is the best one you can buy

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