Dell's New XPS 13 Hands On: A Sleek, Slick, Rock Solid Laptop Dreamboat

Dell's New XPS 13 Hands On: A Sleek, Slick, Rock Solid Laptop Dreamboat

On paper, Dell's new XPS 13 seems impossibly good for the $US800 starter price. It leaves you thinking "what's the catch?" I just saw it in person, and to be honest I couldn't find it. This thing seems fantastic.

Gizmodo loves technology. Our product reviews are presented thanks to Dick Smith.

The first thing to notice about the new XPS 13 is that screen. Not so much what's there — its 3200x1800 QHD+ screen is high-res and high-end but nothing special — but what's not. There's practically no bezel here. It's not quite an edge-to-edge display, but it's close enough to really give a nice pop when you look at it. A little bit of oooOOOooo what's that?

Dell's New XPS 13 Hands On: A Sleek, Slick, Rock Solid Laptop Dreamboat

The rest of the new XPS's design is equally fantastic. The aluminium exterior and polished edges make it look slick as hell when it's closed. It's got the kind of angular handsomeness I like in my laptops. Open it up and the black carbon-fibre keyboard frame and the soft-touch palm rests stretch out into a simple expanse of black. It reminds me of the inside of a Lenovo Yoga Pro, which is a high compliment as far as laptops go.

That keyboard, by the way, is great. I only typed a couple dozen words, but it felt instantly familiar. The keys have a short but deliberate throw that makes them feel appropriately sensitive, not squishy and soft or too shallow and rattley.

Dell's New XPS 13 Hands On: A Sleek, Slick, Rock Solid Laptop Dreamboat

It helps, too, that the build quality is all-around rock solid. I could hardly find a bit of flex in the XPS, and I tried pretty hard. The keyboard frame can hold up against a hard push. Try to twist the display and it holds up way better than my MacBook Air. Close it up and I'm pretty sure you could beat someone to death with it. At 2.7 pounds, it's actually a bit lighter than a Macbook Air, but its design is so hearty and deliberate that it feels super robust.

We'll see how it holds up to day-to-day use once we get one in to review, but from a quick little get-to-know-you feel-up session, the Dell XPS 13 seems every bit as nice in person as it does on paper. This is one slick machine.

Dell's New XPS 13 Hands On: A Sleek, Slick, Rock Solid Laptop Dreamboat

Comments

    So, what are the specs inside? Given that my laptop is supplied by my work who has a deal with Dell, it's great to read something like this. But I want more details......

    Multiple configurations. The $800 mentioned is for an i3, which doesn't appear to be available in aus.

    http://www.dell.com/au/p/xps-13-9343-laptop/pd.aspx?c=au&l=en&s=dhs

      USD$800 is a much better marketing price than the min price in Australia of AUD$1500...

    well your $800 "starter price" only comes with the 1080 p screen

    the QHD version cost more than 50% more at $1299

    and when you factor in the weaker australian dollar, shipping and GST, it's not so much a "bargain" anymore.

    At least I won't impulse buy a notebook which is close to $2000

    Hi, $800 US? Are you sure. Looks more like $1400 US starting price. Is it still worth it?

    Starting at $1,698.99
    http://www.dell.com/au/p/xps-13-9333/pd?oc=x510791au

    Last edited 13/01/15 8:59 am

      That link is to the old XPS 13, the new one is $200 cheaper and it's here - http://www.dell.com/au/p/xps-13-9343-laptop/pd.aspx?c=au&l=en&s=dhs

        Thanks for that... Still though... Only touch on the higher end version, which kinda sucks..! :)

          Yeah, I don't like the way Dell do business these days. It used to be possible to customise the krap out of their machines but now you are presented with 3 or 4 different specs and that's it. It's why I got my M3800 from the US.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now