Dell XPS 12 2016 Review – 12.5″ 2 In 1 Windows 10 Tablet With 4k Display
This is a two and one detachable, as you can see from Dell and for the thousand dollar price tag. You get the keyboard dock here, along with the computer component. All of these are powered by a core m5 processor. This is the new skylake generation of Core M chips of their fan list, so you can get into this kind of form, factor it doesn’t get too hot, but there’s, no noise or anything else like that, while it’s running all models also have 8 gigabytes of RAM. But there are some choices to make on the keyboard, as well as the display which might drive your cost in a couple different directions. Now, before we get into the review of the interest of full disclosure, this was provided to the channel as a loaner from Dell. When we’re done with this we’re going to be sending it back to them, no one is paying for this review to be made, and every opinion you’re about to see is my own. No one has reviewed this prior to it posting, except for me. You can read more about my disclosure policy in the comment section below and I should also add. The Dell in the past has provided equipment to the channel that we use as part of our production. Workflow, these were items that we had reviewed from Dell previously to see you’re all aware of what my relationship is and what is with Dell here moving forward.
So this is what you get for your 1000 price tag. You get the keyboard dock here, along with the display this one that we’re looking at is their 12 and a half inch 4k display yes, 4k on a 12 and a half inch screen, there’s, also a 1080p version, which is what you get for. The thousand dollar price tag that is in the same form factor just with less resolution. Now there is a price to be paid for the 4k, so it’s about a 2 or 300 extra add on here to get the higher resolution, and it will also cost you battery life, so you’re going to be losing about an hour to 2 hours or more Of battery with the 4k versus the 1080p display, so Dell rates this at around 7 to 8 hours, if you are using with the 1080p display doing web browsing and weird processing and that sort of thing with the 4k version here, you’re going to be looking at 5 to 6 hours, so a definite battery penalty because you’re getting a lot more resolution with no more battery to back it up. So it’s definitely going to be something that I would recommend more for someone who’s using this dock in their office and looking for an occasional device to walk away with versus someone who wants to get all day battery life. You get a full day battery life with the 1080p version, but definitely won’t get that with the 4k.
Now the keyboard dock is interesting because it’s more of a cradle than it is a dock. Let me switch over to our other camera angle here, but what’s cool is that they’ve designed it in such a way that you can unfold it like you would a laptop. So you can see here. Everything is up. You know pretty much pieced together here. There is a magnet that kind of holds it all together. It isn’t hard to knock it off it’s magnet though so you definitely want to be careful while you’re walking around with it. They do give you a little wraparound thing in the Box here. Also that you can use to protect everything that might hold it together a little bit better, but I definitely want to be careful while you’re walking with it, but the magnet generally will hold it in place and then, when you want to use it, you just kind Of fold it up like so, and it will move itself into position. However, this is the riskiest component here, because there’s really nothing guiding it in place here as you’re moving it just risking in the sense that you could drop it. If you move too quickly, so you definitely ought to be careful as you’re folding it up here once it gets itself into the dock, it tends to stay put, although one thing I have noticed with it is that I occasionally have to kind of guide it into Position to get the pins on here to latch on so it doesn’t it magnetically guides you to a degree, but sometimes you need to push it a little bit into the right position to get everything to recognize itself.
The keyboard is really nice on it, though backlit. These are not quite full size keys, but they certainly feel like them. In some ways it reminds me of the old think, pad keys and how it feels it really is. A very nice responsive keyboard, backlit with excellent travel. Despite how thin it is, so I think they said 1.9 millimeters of travel or something so that is really well done. I am very fond of the trackpad on the base here, it’s very nicely sized, especially for the size of the device. Overall I was also really noticeable is how low latency there is on gesture controls like two fingers scrolling. It really has no latency when you’re moving around with it, so it’s, really among the best windows trackpads. I have used and I’ve seen this now on we’re, going to look at another Dell in a couple of days. Equally good, so Dells done something right on these track pads. It was one of the things I ding them on last year was their track. Pads didn’t feel much better than some of the other Windows track pads out there. Now they do feel much better. So this is a really nice track pad as responsive to me as the touchscreen is especially when scrolling around. I want to show you the screen angle on the base, though so you’ll notice that we’re kind of locked on to this Bay. Here we can’t change this screen angle.
We can’t push the screen back any further, nor can we move it any closer to us, so they kind of had to pick an angle that worked for most people and went with it and that’s going to be a problem for you. They have an option that will be coming out soon after this video is posted. So this is a another keyboard dock that they’re coming up with, that is thinner, but it’s, actually equally comfortable to type on I’m, going to show you how this works. Let me pull out the computer out of the other dock and we’ll go switch it into this one here and this one you just kind of lay the computer into the back of the dock. Here it will line up magnetically as the other one did, but this one has a kickstand on it, so you can actually just grab this part here and push that out and then you can adjust the screen any which way you want. So it is a little bit more flexible. The problem is it doesn’t work as well on your lap as the cradle does, so you have to make a choice here. Maybe you can buy both keyboards if you want to do that. I think there’s a price premium on this. So if you wanted to go with this particular kickstand folio model there’s a little bit extra added onto the price of purchase, but you’ll get this one with it.
Instead of the cradle or you’ll, be able to buy it separately. I don’t have pricing on the keyboard dock, yet at the time that I’m recording this review, when you’re done with it, you can just fold it back up also and get yourself into a little folio mode here as well. So a little bit more flexible kind of in line with some of the other tablet two and one devices that are out there on the market, and you do have a choice here and that’s, one of those things with these two in ones. I think the industry is trying to figure out what people want so to have a choice is a good thing. I would have liked this better if it worked better on the lap again because it doesn’t lock in here, so you kind of have to do a balancing act to use it as a laptop when you’re using it. But the keyboard is backlit, even though it has less travel. It is just as comfortable and the trackpad is equally good as well. So everything that was good about this one is in here too. So you have those options available to you and you can flip it around and put it into multimedia mode. If you want, you can also do the multimedia mode with the included folio that they give you in the box that you have to take the keyboard off. First from it, and then use this thing with your tablet to kind of position and around into that position, so if you’re looking to do more flexible tablet, II kind of things this other dock might be, the one that’s worth looking at Adele has gone all in On USB see on this device, you’ve got two USB seaports on here.
These do everything from power to video output as well as device connectivity. They will give you a USB seed, a regular USB adapter in the box for connecting external hard drives or something you might have laying around, but really the standard is going in this direction now we’ll be seeing these connectors moving forward. This also has Thunderbolt 3, which is another standard that’s out there that uses the same connector that provides high speed connectivity up to like 40 gigabits per second, as you’ll be able to have a single cable that use a docking station that will have all the things That you might want to use on there. They also will sell you a little premium adapter here. I think this is about 75 dollars, or so that gives you Gigabit Ethernet, another USB port, their VGA and HDMI outputs, and that again plugs right into that port there. So these ports are going to be very flexible and that’s. Why there’s? No other video output or anything else on there, except these two? So your power goes in there again display everything else through the USB sea ports. You also have a headphone microphone, combo jack. There, a micro SD card slot here with a door, so you can stick a card in there and secure it with the door there, a volume rocker on the other side, you’ve got the standby power switch and a lock for locking it down on a table or Something you can see what those pins look like at the bottom for connecting to its docks and then there’s also a capacitive Windows button here for pulling the Start menu up.
However, I found that I often hit that by accident when I’m holding it in tablet mode I’m going to look at maybe disabling that feature because it’s I mean I’m, hitting it a lot more than I would like to. You got a little webcam here on the front for conducting web conversations. I believe the front camera is a 5 megapixel camera and there is an 8 megapixel camera on the back here. So pretty much in line what we’ve seen on other tablet devices and overall it’s, pretty lightweight when you just have the tablet portion out on its own, is about 1.75 pounds, it’s about 740 grams, so a pretty lightweight, not as light, perhaps as an iPad or something, But lighter than a lot of other similar devices out there again that’s the trade off between battery life and and weight when you have a dock with the keyboard base. Here are you looking at about 2.8 pounds under 3 pounds or 1.3 kilograms? When you have it configured like this it’s a little bit lighter with the other keyboard dock, but not too much let’s, take a look and see how it performs as a computer, doing some real world tasks that will begin with our usual web browsing experience. Here we are connected via five gigahertz wireless AC down to my basement here, so things do spring up pretty quickly. The core M processor is a lot faster than the tablet processors that you’ll find on a lot of lower cost Windows devices.
So the new chip offers a little bit of a bump in performance, as we usually see from one generation of Intel processors to the next, so not too bad. There let’s take a look at Microsoft. Word I’ll load up our usual template that we use for judging its performance for word, processing and desktop publishing. You can see it comes up very quickly. A render is pretty nicely not as fast as some of the core i7 or i5 machines. We might look at, but certainly adequate for getting this kind of work done. We can resize our images here. You can see how quickly text reflows around is removing things around here, really good, responsive performance here for this kind of work – and this is a very nicely performing computer for this kind of stuff, so you’ll definitely get really nice snappy performance in word, processing, even in Photoshop and some other things where you won’t see that kind of performance that would be in video, editing or things that really tax the processor, because it lacks a fan what’ll happen is, is the chip will regulate its its speed, essentially to keep it from overheating? So if you’re doing things like video rendering or a lot of heavy duty, video editing, this is probably not the best platform for it, because the CPU can’t cool itself in the process of doing that. But one of the things you will gain with having a 4k display is that text is really sharp, it’s really nice to look at on this display, given that you have so much resolution to play with and when you can adjust your window settings to get everything The right size for what you want to look at, and it really is a nice screen to read from and also to write on to and speaking of writing there is an optional Dell pen.
You can get for this device it’s about another fifty dollars, but there are configurations where you can get the pen bundled in and it’s, not too bad it’s, not as good as the surface pen. It does do adequate risk detection when the pen is close in proximity to the screens. You’Ll see that little cursor appear there, but once that goes away. If I accidentally hit the screen with my finger here, you can see things are drawing on there. So the pen really has to be closed for that risk detection to work, but it is passable as a writing implement just not as good as the surface pen is well. Let’S. Take a look now at some games. This is certainly not going to be a gaming powerhouse, but it can play some casual stuff. We’Ll, take a look and see what it can do all right. Just for the heck of it. I figured I would run minecraft at 4k, as you can see here – we’re at 3840 by 2160 and we’re getting decent frame rates even at this resolution. So almost 30 frames per second sometimes hitting that mark in some portions of the game here. So you can definitely run minecraft at 4k on a core em. This is the original version. The Java based version that everyone’s running still and it seems to be working pretty decently. I did install the opting in to enhance its performance a little bit, so that is giving perhaps a little bit of a performance boost here, but nonetheless we are definitely getting a playable framerate here.
It’Ll certainly work better at lower resolutions, but I did have a hard time getting it to run fullscreen at 1080 it’s. Just the complexities of these four arcade displays and getting everything configured the correct way. You could run it in a window and probably get closer to 40 or 50 frames per second it’s, not a little bit more at 1080. Now more modern games are going to struggle, though, so, if we take a look at rocket League, for example, we are getting about 30 frames per second give or take here, but I’ve also turned down the resolution to 720p and I tuned everything to high performance mode To give it a little bit better performance here, so you’re not going to get any kind of smooth frame rate without dramatically impacting the image quality that you’re going to see on the display and running 720p on a 4k display is a downgrade for sure. You’Re. Definitely going to notice some pixelization and everything just because this screen is just so high resolution that low resolution stuff actually looks bad, so it’s not going to be a good gaming platform for modern stuff. The 3d mark benchmark, though, shows us we get a score of three thousand five hundred and two so it’s, definitely a faster GPU than we’ve, seen on the prior generation of the core M, but again still not up to par for modern games. So that is the Dell XPS 12. What I really like about it is just how lightweight and thin the tablet portion is so it’s not as awkward the hold as I’ve seen with other two in ones a very lightweight, a very good grip on it.
So it is metal, actually it feels like plastic and in both weight and how it feels what they’ve done is taken a magnesium alloy and put on this grippy coating over it. So you don’t, drop it as easily, so it’s really good to hold on the hand. A very lightweight, and not all that heavy I’m, not as crazy, though about the keyboard cradle here I’m, often having a hard time getting it to a line and activate properly. So you have to sometimes make some adjustments on there to get everything locked in. So, if you’re not paying attention, while you put it on the magnets, don’t, really guide you into position, you really have to make sure you’ve got everything going into the keyboard dock. The right way to get it to latch on there I’m also not crazy about the fact you can’t change the screen angle on it either so you’re kind of stuck at this angle, and if you don’t like that angle, you need to do something else to get A more comfortable viewing angle that might be going with that keyboard, folio that we talked about earlier. I do like this one, a lot better than the one it comes with. I just wish it worked better on the lap, so you do have some choices to make and some compromises here or there to make. Depending on what your use case is. I do give you a nice little folio here to wrap it up with.
It will incorporate the keyboard also, but it does kind of slip off, sometimes it’s, not the nicest feeling case, but you do have something that you can carry around with you if you’re looking for something to wrap it with, but not again as nice as the folio. The last thing to think about on here is the screen resolution. So one of the issues that you’re going to get by paying more for the 4k display is getting a pretty significant decrease in battery life. So I think you should really strongly consider the 1080p version of this, because that will give you pretty much a very nice high quality display yet with more battery life, because really, unless you’re holding that screen really close to your face. It’S going to be hard to tell the difference on a twelve and a half inch screen between 1080 and 4k. I think if you had them both sitting next to each other, you could definitely tell the difference but really for a device like this. 1080P is fine and you’ll get a lot more battery life, which is something you’ll want to have out of a portable device and you’ll save yourself, some money too, so that’s the Dell XPS 12. This is lhans I’ve been thanks for watching this channel is brought to you by my patreon supporters, including gold level supporters shebeen. If you want to help the channel you can, by contributing as little as a dollar a month head over to lamda TV, slash patreon, to learn more and don’t forget to subscribe visit.