Back To School With the Dell XPS 13 Review | M1 MacBook Pro Alternative
Last week i went to best buy and i decided to pick up a dell xps 13.. A lot of you guys have been asking for a review, and since i know that back to school is just around the corner, i figured what better way to start the year than by reviewing the most famous laptop ive seen in engineering school. I studied engineering for three years in college two years in university and ended up graduating in computer science and believe it or not. The xps is literally the most frequent laptop ive come across during my school years, so i decided to review it today ill. Do a quick unboxing go over some of the hardware and show you the performance all based on my own personal experience after spending some time with it now i couldnt wait to get home and start messing around with this thing. I know, as students were always excited to unbox their tech, and so in this little tiny box, youll find a very nice mad dark box. That truly reveals the unboxing experience. Opening it up. You get a cool xps logo on top and the laptop itself in this clear, wrap paper beneath it. Every little thing is everything, and here weve got some paperwork and information about the brand itself. Warranty instructions, as well as an included starter guide for the device, but underneath i love the fact that ill included a usb c to usb dongle straight out of the box, and i truly enjoy the size of the ac power adapter, which does power the xps via Usb c, although i just wonder if this power cord is long enough to reach those tricky plugs in class regardless.
This here is the new 2021 dell xps 13 in silver, of course, and i have to say opening it up and seeing that carbon fiber finish on this top frame feels like im in a porsche. While i did try to power it up out of the box. I did realize it wasnt charged at all, so i went ahead and used its 45 watt ac adapter to connect to it and charge it. So if you are out of juice at school, i can tell you that a full charge took around three hours to obtain. Now this week i got quite a few things done with this laptop and look. I have to say i really like it, but its not perfect by any means. My biggest worry when i first took this out of the box was the sharp edges, my razer blade. 15 does feel uncomfortable after typing for quite a while, but with this i honestly did not feel any discomfort and know that i wrote this entire video script on it resting the palm on this finish does feel really nice, together with the fact that the trackpad is Perfectly well sized this does have windows position, so you can go ahead and use it along with some gestures which overall work really nicely, but the click feels like a rubber and quite sharp push on your fingertip. I quite like it a lot and the material they used on. It again feels like a plastic powder rubber, which is super easy to touch click on which brings me to the point of this top piece: the backlit keyboard.
I had previously never typed on this new generation of xps laptops and let me tell you this feels incredible way better than the m1 macbooks. In my opinion, i love these chunkier keys, which i feel like you guys will benefit a lot from and the one millimeter key travel on these keys feels nice. They are not too loud, they feel super sharp and dont worry people wont, hear you typing in class. So if youre typing, on chrome for storyblocks.com youll find an awesome subscription service with a massive library that gives you access to unlimited stock downloads of high quality royalty free stock footage, not only that, but with our unlimited all access plan, you can unload higher resolution. Videos awesome, stock, music and sound effects that i keep repeatedly using within my reviews. A lot of you guys keep asking me how i edit my videos well a lot of it has to do with using motion backgrounds, overlays and, after effect, templates all delivered by their platform, which does allow me to save time and avoid having to build effects from Scratch on adobe, it is as easy as searching for a motion: graphics, template downloading it. Locating your downloaded file within your import effects in premiere pro and importing it to your timeline. Storyblocks is also leading the stock industry with their initiative restock, which is a commitment to increasing the amount of diverse and inclusive content in the library for you to download, with their unlimited all access plan.
So if you truly would like to help yourself, tell a better story head over to storyblocks.com andres fedoza and check out their flexible subscription plans to fulfill your video work needs. Thank you storyblocks for allowing us to bring this dell xps 13 into the channel. I like how dell took advantage of their design and made this edge to edge keyboard, which also has the standard regular function keys, like any other laptop, nothing fancy i like it, except that dell did include this fingerprint reader, which is as quick as my m1 macbook Pro its beautiful now, all of this does sit in this sturdy lightweight and mega compact chassis. That really doesnt scare me at all when it comes to throwing it in my bag or in my couch. It also has a very little amount of ports, but unlike the 2020 models, you now have thunderbolt 4 instead, meaning that you can now support up to a couple of 4k displays, but you still have the same 40 gigabytes per second speeds as thunderbolt 3. other than That i know a students tend to use a lot of usb drives so dell. I really like the fact you included this dongle within the box. Smart move, okay. So, if youre putting this on those cool desks, opening up the device with one hand, is a thing. I know sometimes we tend to have a coffee or a bag, in our other hand, so its nice to be able to get things up and running.
One handed – and i do have to say my particular model – has a full hd touch display. That is absolutely gorgeous. It is bezel free it doesnt wobble as much as i thought it would when typing and it delivers a 16 by 10 aspect ratio, meaning that you have more vertical space. So it technically should be better for productivity, but i just personally dont seem to benefit from it. The touchscreen is nice, although at this point i think its just a plus to have so save your money and just get the base full hd display, which should increase battery life. Note that this isnt the same as the dell xps 13 21 laptop model. That dell also makes which overall makes the screen not compatible with a premium active pen, so forget about drying at all im, just more into the fact that the screen is absolutely gorgeous. Color accurate and it feels nice to watch netflix on just dont – expect this to have macbook like quality speakers, though, but i have to say they sound way better than my razer blade: 15. Applause. Merry christmas, buddy signatures disable with extreme prejudice. Also, i remember working in teams a lot during my degree, so this camera will come in handy, although the camera is bad and the audio quality of the microphone isnt too good, as well as you guys, can hear its quite hard not to compare to the m1 Macbook, even though this isnt a comparison, video battery life could be a lot better.
I tested the battery across four different workflows on best performance and full brightness from 98 percent. I watched netflix and youtube for about an hour and i got to 59. I also tried the game on minecraft for about another hour or so and got to 30 percent in terms of battery life. I then used all esl to code on vs code for a solid hour and went down by 16 and the last one i did leave my zoom app open for a good hour. Although the battery life lasted for 35 minutes in battery battery mode with medium brightness, i did get about 7 hours and 30 minutes of use, which is nothing like the m1 macbook pro, but for a windows laptop its just average. So, as a student, i think this 52 watt hour battery is definitely something you want to watch out for. Sadly, though, not much is upgradable in here, which is not my cup of tea. The ram is soldered, so theres no way to physically upgrade your sticks, but it does seem like you can comfortably upgrade the m.2 ssd. So i strongly suggest getting 16 gigabytes of ram to future proof yourself, but after opening the laptop itself, i now understand why the keys do get hot after extensive use. The cooling unit is just not as big as i would have liked it to be in terms of long term usability im just concerned that how this machine will turn out after working on your lap.
I want to point out that my current machine is an intel core: i7 1185 g7 with iris xc, graphics, 16, gigabytes of ram and 512 gigabytes of m.2 memory, im, not sponsored by dell, so its the only machine i was able to find on at local best Buy but within this light, ultrabook the graphical performance isnt too bad – i mean it isnt. The best thing for gaming running apix legends, which is not a very demanding title, is pretty laggy. It definitely drops frames all the time, so i dont recommend it for these types of activities. Although, while i was doing some depth work on canva, i did realize that going back and forth between my editor and adobe xd was smooth. The interaction within this particular adobe software was actually enjoyable, which obviously made me wonder. How well would this edit some of the assets for this video, particularly on lightroom, using my own preset and tweaking a few things here, and there was completely fine if i needed to enhance the picture on photoshop, i was able to do so. However, when it was time to edit some footage on premiere pro, it was just not possible, but a lot of it has to do with the fact im editing, 4k and a heavy codec, although the software did crash eventually. I also wanted to point out that manipulating large excel sheets was flawless within this one million row projects i was able to easily sort these rows calculate the average of the total cost column sum these up and even navigate through these entries easily.
I even went the extra mile and ran the mandelbrot algorithm to stress the cpu, and i got a total execution time of 2 minutes and 20 seconds, provided i was in best performance mode and the laptop was plugged in otherwise. If unplugged, you can expect around 2 minutes and 45 seconds in terms of computational time, which is 2 3 times less fast than the m1 chip in the macbook pro so software devs. You might want to consider this if you want a complete comparison. Video on these two comment: hashtag compare just know that throughout the week i did realize the fans kick in. Quite often when doing intensive tasks they arent loud, but they do have this hissing sound to them. I do have to say, as the internet claims on these, i never really experienced any overheating issues, but within a week of having it its too early to say it could happen. Look, the xps is a great device, but if something happens and you need to deal with customer support, you might not get the best experience from them theyll. If youre watching this as much as i love and recommend the brand, you need to get better at customer support. Ive had multiple terrible experiences trying to replace the dell inspiring after it broke down on me within a few weeks of owning it. The replacement was never quite successful regardless. Is this truly a macbook pro alternative? If you really need windows, it depends battery life is not the best in my opinion and the camera either.
But if you are a student that doesnt prioritize those things, then i would suggest getting one with the proper configuration and if you really dont need windows, then i honestly think that the m1 macbooks are worth it. The mac is overall, cheaper, faster and the battery lasts. Longer this is by no mean a long term review or a comparison video, so i always recommend doing your own research and check what other tech journalists have to say. My priority is to always be transparent with you guys, no matter the brand, if you want a more complete machine, i recommend you check out my two in one review with msi. I love these type of laptops for students.