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Dell 9310 XPS 2 in 1 Convertible Laptop Review: Slim & Light

Dell’s XPS series are premium laptops that combine the best of the company with lightweight and long battery life. The Dell XPS 13 2 in 1 2021 is an evolutionary upgrade from the previous year. The laptop is still light and tiny, but 11th Gen processors from Intel are now available.

Over the past few years, the XPS 13 has been the most exciting notebook in the thin and light segment. According to Intel, the XPS an “ultrabook,” but this concept has already become obsolete. Now we need to say, laptop on the Evo platform.

The XPS 13 2-in-1 sticker indicates that this is a highly optimized laptop that should turn on instantly, run at least 9 hours in real-world tasks, and provide a high level of performance.

Considering materials, design, features, and price, it is clear that the target audience of the laptop is upper-middle-income people who need a quality Windows computer.

And the aspect ratio of the 16 by 10 screen hints that one of the target audience groups is managers and office workers. Probably the way it is. The last couple of times I’ve seen the Dell XPS 13 live is proof of this. Even though it was already around midnight, a man in a good suit at the airport was actively typing something on his laptop. And the second time, a businesswoman with an XPS 13 armpit in a beautiful Mercedes came along to find out about taxes. Judging by her question, she is the owner of a small business.

Specifications

  • Processor: 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7 (12MB Cache, 4 Cores, 2.8GHz to 4.7GHz)
  • OS: Windows 10 Pro
  • Graphics: Intel® Iris Xe Graphics
  • Memory: 16GB LPDDR4X Dual Channel 4267MHz
  • Storage: 512GB M.2 1620 SSD, PCIe Gen 3 x4 NVMe
  • Screen: 13.4-inch Full HD (1920 x 1200) 60Hz touchscreen, anti-smudge coating, 100% sRGB color gamut, 450 nits brightness, wide viewing angle, low blue light, narrow bezel, Eyesafe® technology, Corning Gorilla Glass 5 coating, active stylus support
  • Battery: 51 Wh, 45 W compact adapter (weight with cord 240 g)
  • Webcam: 2.25mm HD widescreen webcam (720p) with dual digital array microphones + Windows Hello IR camera
  • Keyboard: Backlit with fingerprint reader, black
  • Touchpad: standard size 11.3 x 6.7 cm, gesture support
  • Audio: Stereo speakers 2W + 2W
  • Connectivity: Killer ™ AX 1650, 2 × 2, MIMO, 2.4 / 5 GHz, Wi-Fi 6 (Wi-Fi 802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.1
  • Ports:
    • 2 Thunderbolt ™ 4 ports with Power Delivery technology
    • 1 headset port (headphone/microphone combo)
    • 1 microSD card slot
  • Material: aluminum and carbon fiber
  • Dimensions: Height 14.35 x Width 297 x Length 207 mm | Starting weight: 1.32kg

Features

The design of the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 hasn’t changed since last year. There’s the same brushed aluminum and carbon fiber in the keyboard area. And of course, the laptop can be easily opened with one hand. Read photo captions.

Dell logo aluminum lid

On the right side, there is a Type-C and a tiny 3.5mm jack. It is clear that the 3.5 mm jack is a standard size, but due to the design, it seems smaller than it actually is.

On the left side is a microSD slot and another Type-C. Both Type-C is Thunderbolt 4 capable of charging.

The laptop opens up to 360 degrees and can be used as a tablet.

The keyboard area is made of carbon fiber. Firstly, it is beautiful. Secondly, it looks unusual, and thirdly, the manufacturer promises incredible durability. By the way, the model is also available in white. There uses fiberglass.

Display

There are 2 screen options to choose from:

13.4 ” Full HD (1920 x 1200) 60Hz Touchscreen, Smud Resistant Light Absorbent Coating, 100% sRGB Color Gamut, 450 nits Brightness, Wide Viewing Angle, Low Blue Light, Narrow Bezel, Technology Eyesafe®, Corning Gorilla Glass 5, Active stylus support

13.4 ” Ultra HD (3840 x 2400) 60Hz Touch Display, Smud Resistant Light Absorbent Coating, 90% DCI-P3 Color Gamut, 450nits Brightness, Wide Viewing Angle, Low Blue Light, Narrow Bezel, Eyesafe® technology, Corning Gorilla Glass 5 coating, active stylus support.

To put it, that is 4K with 90% DCI-P3 color gamut and Full HD with 100% sRGB coverage. Considering the size of the screen. This choice will have a positive effect on battery life. The increased color gamut and high resolution are certainly good, but you hardly take this laptop for design tasks.

The brightness of the screen is excellent enough to work indoors and on a clear day under sunlight.

Both screen options are covered with a large protective Gorilla Glass 5, so you can not be afraid of large scratches. Perhaps the main plus of the screen is its high brightness. At 450 nits advertised, the test model delivered a fair 500 nits. It is comfortable to work with a laptop even in the park with such brightness, sitting on a bench on a clear day.

Surprisingly, Dell continues to equip its best laptops with 720p webcams aggressively. Apparently, behind this lies some statement to the world. The camera has a standard 720p quality. It is embarrassing that unlike Lenovo and HP, which have started to supply their laptops with shutters or even physical camera cutouts, Dell ignores this trend. Since with the increased number of video events through Zoom and other platforms.

There is also Windows Hello so that the laptop recognizes the owner by sight. There is also a fingerprint scanner on the power button.

Keyboard & Touchpad

The laptop uses an ultra-short key travel keyboard. Before buying, we recommend trying the keyboard in action. Dell can be praised for its dedicated arrow keys and separate Page Up and Page Dn buttons. Home, End, Delete, Insert run at the top. This is a great solution. It will be convenient to use hotkey combinations in-office tasks.

The laptop has a white backlight with two brightness modes. The backlight is delicate. It does its job perfectly, highlighting only the key labels. The black rectangle next to the Delete key is the power button combined with the fingerprint reader.

The touchpad is almost standard. It is increased by 0.8 cm horizontally and by a couple of millimeters vertically. Supports gestures, the bottom of the touchpad mimics mouse keys.

Performance

The user can choose from the entire line of Intel 11th generation processors – from i3 to i7, made according to the 10 nm process technology. Previously, we would recommend taking the i5 as a worthy compromise, but now that the integrated graphics have become quite powerful, perhaps you should pay attention to the i7. Many people think that they do not play games, but interesting stories come out that they want to get acquainted with from time to time. And nobody canceled World of Tanks.

For the upgrade, users have access to an SSD in the M.2 slot. But if you decide to upgrade, then it might be worth contacting a professional. The screws can be easily removed with the correct screwdriver. And here, force must be applied with all determination. The M.2 slot is located under a heat-dissipating pad, which I didn’t have the heart to remove.

The performance of the laptop can be described as being ideal for work in Excel (fast processor, lots of RAM, fast SSD), perfectly cope with work in Photoshop (even in complex large projects where the file weighs under 250 MB), and even in Adobe Premiere can work well with 4K content (you won’t get much pleasure from work, but the laptop will do the task).

New graphics from Intel make it possible to play games. We can say that the Dell XPS 13 2 in 1 2021 is made for World of Tanks (especially with a Full HD screen). You can play in Full HD (1920 x 1200 pixels – the laptop has an aspect ratio of 16 x 10) at the lowest settings – 22-25 frames. Accordingly, the conclusion is simple. You can play relatively well in AAA games from 2 years ago, and all casual and indie games are going with a bang.

Battery Life

In terms of battery life with the Dell XPS 13, the question is tricky. On the one hand, the EVO platform guarantees at least 9 hours of work in everyday tasks. In fact, a laptop, for example, can play videos on YouTube for 11 hours. And this is an excellent indicator, hinting that the laptop will allow you to have a productive working day.

Conclusion!

The 2021 Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 is a great premium thin and light laptop. And the impressions from him, by default, are only the most positive. It turns on quickly, all programs and games open and download at lightning speed, while the laptop is quiet, and even sitting half a meter away from it, you won’t guess that it passes a stress test for stability under maximum load.

The main difference between the XPS 13 2021 is the 11th generation processors from Intel and the certification for the Intel Evo platform. This is probably enough for the target audience. My couple of complaints are the lack of a stylus and a 720p camera. Well, and perhaps you can find fault with the fact that only an adapter for a classic USB is put in the 13-inch version, while the 15-inch USB / HDMI adapter is put in.

If the OS issue is not fundamental, but the battery life is important, perhaps you should look at the new MacBooks with the M1 chipset. Nice, stylish, with good performance. You can even play games, as laptops support iPhone applications.

If you need Windows and want to save money, then you should look at the ThinkPad T14s. The ThinkPad does not have a touchscreen, and the brightness is lower, but this is not striking, thanks to the matte screen. By the way, if for some reason you don’t like ThinkPads, then pay attention to the HP Elitebook 845 G7. The latter is even closer in style to the Dell XPS 13.

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