Intro

Review of the Dell XPS 13 Ultra-portable laptop

Ultra-Portable Laptops were supposed to be our answer to Ultra heavy laptops of yesteryear, but they more often than not lacked the power of their bigger and heavier counterparts.  It’s the year 2016 and it’s time to put away childish thoughts of years passed, put away childish toys and step up our games and with that our way of thinking.  Amazing things just keep growing smaller as technology improves, but does the Dell XPS 13 redefine our thoughts and stigma’s of small and weak or does it strengthen them?

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It’s got some pretty decent components, but I will get to that in a second, let’s check out the unboxing and a brief overview first.

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So obviously, it’s an Ultra-portable laptop, almost Ultrabook, but I will list the specs of this particular machine.

Specifications

  • Case: CNC machined aluminum
    • Carbon fiber composite palm rest with soft touch paint
  • Keyboard: Full size, backlit chiclet keyboard
  • Touchpad: Precision touchpad
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-6500U 4MB Intel Smart Cache
  • Memory: 16Gigs LPDDR3-1866MHz
  • Video Card: Intel HD 520 Graphics
  • Camera: Integrated Widescreen HD 720p webcam with dual array digital microphones
  • Wireless: Intel DW1820A 2×2 802.11ac 2.4/5GHz
    • Bluetooth 4.1
  • Hard Drive: Samsung PM951 M.2 PCIe NVMe Samsung 1TB SSD
  • Display: 13.3’ QHD+ 3200 x 1800 InfinityEdge touch display
    • Edge-to-edge Corning Gorilla Glass NBT
  • OS: Windows 10 Professional 64Bit
  • Ports:
    • 2 x USB 3.0
    • 1 x Thunderbolt 3
    • 5mm headphone jack
  • Slots:
    • 3-in-1 Card Reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC)
    • Noble Lock Slot
  • Battery: 56wHR, 4-Cell Battery

Wait,… and this is an Ultra-Portable Laptop?  16Gigs of RAM, Core i7 processor, with a PCI-e SSD, that seems pretty nice.  Isn’t this an Ultrabook though?

We can’t call it an Ultrabook for a few reasons.  First off, Intel trademarked the term “Ultrabook” as a  high-end subnotebook with low powered Intel Core processors, SSD’s, extended battery life (5  hours), resume from hibernation times of 7 seconds and some software and firmware requirements.  As time and technology progressed, those specifications grew to include longer battery life (5 to 9 hours) 6 hour HD video playback, 9 hour Windows idle time, 3 second resume from hibernation, 80MB transfer rate, touch screen, WIDI and a few other software and firmware requirements.

With that, this laptop aims at destroying those “specifications” and giving you more.  Let’s see if it accomplishes them.  Let’s see what she can do.

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Iggy Castillo

Iggy Castillo

Senior Editor an Reviewer at Dragonblogger.com
I have spent many years in the PC boutique name space as Product Development Engineer for Alienware and later Dell through Alienware's acquisition and finally Velocity Micro. During these years I spent my time developing new configurations, products and technologies with companies such as AMD, Asus, Intel, Microsoft, NVIDIA and more. The Arts, Gaming, New & Old technologies drive my interests and passion. Now as my day job, I am an IT Manager but doing reviews on my time and my dime.
Iggy Castillo

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