What can Dell do to improve its already excellent XPS 15? Intel's new hybrid chips promise to significantly improve multitasking performance over previous technology. The XPS 15's updated design won us over when it debuted two years ago, and last year, Dell added an OLED screen option, which led us to call it 'practically perfect' in our review. We're out of superlatives at this point. Although it's still worth noting, the XPS 15 remains the laptop that every PC manufacturer aims to make.
One reason is the XPS 15's recent redesign, which drastically narrowed the bezels and gave the entire computer a more modern appearance. You can practically date laptops by their thick display borders. Despite seeing it in various forms over the years, I still love how the screen just flows into the lower keyboard area. While it may sound like a cliche, the screen truly looks like it's floating because of its razor-thin borders.
Other aspects of the XPS 15's case are also polished to perfection, from the aluminum exterior to the carbon fiber around the keyboard. In the near future, Dell will probably release an XPS 15 Plus based on the newer XPS 13 Plus, but even the standard model still has a level of refinement that goes beyond most Windows laptops.
The XPS 15 is a great laptop this year due to the new 12th-generation Intel hybrid processor. Thanks to their combination of high performance and efficient cores, they are far more capable than last year's when handling various tasks. Low-power cores prove particularly useful to save battery life. With NVIDIA's 45-watt RTX 3050 Ti GPU (which was also offered in the model we reviewed last year), the XPS 15 has now become even more powerful.
With excellent color reproduction, black levels, and all the features you'd expect from an OLED display, the 3.5K display on the XPS 15 is still a winner. Dell should push this display further, especially after both Apple and Microsoft squeezed high refresh rate screens into competing notebooks. The XPS 15 experience would be even better with the extra bit of smoothness while scrolling through websites (and taking on the occasional Spartan in Halo Infinite).
The XPS 15 starts at $1,449 and comes with a Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM, but as usual, we recommend bumping those specs up a notch. You'll need at least 16GB of RAM, a 1TB SSD, and a Core i7 CPU to keep this computer going for years to come. Considering the hardware you get, this is a relatively modest price of $2,253. Still, if you're constantly juggling large files, I'd spend a little more to get a larger SSD and possibly more RAM.
Dell has not yet delivered a near-perfect workhorse machine, but the XPS 15 comes close. Its beautiful exterior hides incredible power for serious tasks, but it can also handle games when you just want to have fun. On top of that, it packs almost every feature we could possibly want in a modern laptop, especially if you choose the OLED display. Dell proves, just like Apple, that great design lasts a lifetime.
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