Dell's XPS 15z Ultra Slim Notebook Review

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Introduction and Specifications

Every so often, a company does something unexpected; something that sets the bar for its competition and really grabs the attention of potential consumers for one reason or another. Dell is a company that is capable of this and has done so in the past in both their desktop and notebook lines. While Dell has been known for pushing out a huge number of "beige boxes" years back, they're also the company that helped reinvigorate the ultraportable market thanks to the original Adamo, and with the help of Alienware, they're putting together some similarly interesting products lately, in the gaming space as well.

For some, Dell may historically have an undeserved reputation for producing run-of-the-mill products, but when you look at their recent smartphone offering like the Venue Pro, slates like the 5-inch Streak and computers like the Adamo XPS, it's hard to not give 'em credit where credit is due. Enter the XPS 15z. For all intents and purposes, this is yet another standout product from Dell, one that simply cannot be lumped into standard mainstream categories. There's something fundamentally different about the 15z that commands a second look, and in our case, an in-depth review of its features and capabilities.  First, here's a quick video walk-through we've put together, to give you a taste of what we're getting at here.

Dell's 15.6" XPS 15z
Specifications and Features (as tested)
  • Intel Core i7-2620M @ 2.70GHz
  • 8GB of DDR3 RAM
  • 15.6" LCD (1080p); LED backlight, matte
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 525M (2GB) + Optimus graphics
  • Seagate Momentus 750GB (7200RPM)  Hard Drive
  • 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi
  • 8x CD/DVD Burner
  • 1.3MP webcam
  • HDMI 1.4 output
  • USB 3.0 x 2
  • eSATA / USB Combo Port
  • Bluetooth 3.0
  • RJ-45 (Ethernet 10/100/1000)
  • Headphone / Mic Input Jacks
  • 9-in-1 Multimedia Card Reader
  • Backlit Keyboard
  • Stereo Speakers
  • Dell Stage software
  • 5.54 Pounds (with 8-cell battery installed)
  • Removable 8-Cell Li-ion Battery (up to 8 claimed hours)
  • 15.15" x 10.25" x 0.97" (Dimensions)
  • Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
  • Price (as tested): $1599.99
  • Price (starting): $999.99
  • 1-Year Warranty

As you can see from the specifications breakdown, the XPS 15z is no slouch. In fact, it's one of the better equipped laptops on the market today. But it's also shoved into an incredibly thin and striking chassis. And the $999 starting price is very competitive. The XPS 15z is hailed as the company's thinnest 15" PC, but is it cut out to be your next notebook? Join us in the pages ahead as we aim to find out.

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