Dell Studio XPS 13

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Right after talking about the dell Studio XPS 16, here we go with another laptop released by dell at CES 2009, namely the "little brother," the Studio XPS 13. I hope you're not superstitious, because I used to have some "13-fright," but no more! Why? Probably the XPS 13 helped a little...

Basically, you can consider the XPS 13 to be "the 13.3-inch NVIDIA GPU version of the XPS 16," and you won't be too wrong. Even more, those looking for ultimate power within a certain price range and power consumption will probably go for this one, considering that you'll get Optional NVIDIA Hybrid SLI graphics. Anyway, today I'll only give you the specs of the base model, priced at $1,100, because what I really want to see is user feedback, just as last time.

The base version dell Studio XPS 13 technical specs:

- Intel® Core™ 2 Duo P8600 (3MB cache/2.4GHz/1066Mhz FSB)
- Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium Edition SP1, 64-bit
- Edge-to-Edge 13.3" HD WXGA LCD with 2.0 Megapixel Camera
- Slot Load DVD+/-RW (DVD/CD read/write)
- 4GB Dual Channel DDR3 SDRAM at 1067MHz (2 Dimms)
- 320GB 7200 RPM SATA Hard Drive
- NVIDIA® GeForce® 9400M G (9500M for more powerful versions)
- High Definition Audio 2.0
- dell Wireless 1515 802.11n Half Mini-Card
- 56 WHr 6-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery

After 12 reviews, this black beauty got a rating of 4 out of 5. Why? Well, as usual, it's about heat. Nothing special for a laptop, no matter we're talking about dell, sony, asus, acer, or any other brand. The wide and flat power adapter could be an issue for some people, although I think the following story is more interesting than the shape of the power adapter:

"I purchased my first Studio XPS 13 on Jan. 9th, and I have exchanged my laptop 4 times within a week. Here is my story:

- The 1st one is bought directly at a BestBuy store (they have 3 in stock). After I bring it home, open and turn it on, I recognize 3 tiny dusts lay under the screen (black particles)on the top right corner.

- A day after, I bring my 1st one to BestBuy to exchange a new one. The 2nd is the most terrible laptop ever. Again, it has 2 tiny black particles under the screen. AND the space bar is a junk (its black layer on the bottom bumps up and higher than another keys). I return it immediately.

- The 3rd one has a same problem like the 1st and 2nd one: dust under the screen !!!!

- Today morning (Sunday Jan. 15). I bring my laptop to BestBuy to exchange it one more tim. Unfortunately, that model is out of stock (only 6 units in stock in my city, and 3 of them are defective), and I have to wait another one transferring form Mankato to Rochester. I will report about my 4th laptop later!"

Now, that's a true dell fan! Also, that's how unlucky some people can get, which reminds me of those days when I got a DVD Writer unable to write anything, I returned it, and got another one who wasn't even able to read any discs! Third one worked (almost) fine, and I still have it...

At last, there are some more smaller issues, like fingerprints madness, Wi-Fi problems for some users, and - oh, yeah! - noise caused by the system fans when they start spinning like crazy. Sometimes, watching some online video is enough to get the "fans show" started, and that's not good at all, but I have a solution to the problem: connecting your laptop to a powerful external sound system will surely take away all other noises. Just pump up the volume, and everything should be fine !


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