Dell Inspiron XPS Gen 2 Notebook - Gaming and Performance


Over the past year, it has been interesting to see the emphasis that the big names are willing to put on the "enthusiast" crowd, in regards to notebooks. In the past, notebooks have been targeted towards businessmen and the like. These days, however, the variety is so wide that there is a notebook targeted to just about every niche and need. Consider this: a few years ago there were a handful of names making true blue notebook gaming rigs, i.e. Alienware, albeit in small quantities.  But as the gaming generation grows, so does the interest in these powerful systems. So, it really comes as no surprised to us to see Dell and HP joining the fray. The difference is that Dell has really gone after the "enthusiast" gamer, rather than the casual "once in a while" type gamer. This is really seen once you get into the design of their gaming notebook: the Inspiron XPS. Now in its second generation, let's take a more in depth look at this already popular notebook.

Dell Inspiron XPS Gen 2
_Designed for Intel 90nm Dothan Pentium-M with 2MB On-Die L2 Cache
_Supports 533MHz FSB

_Intel 915PM/ICH6-M
_Supports maximum memory capacity up to 2GB

_Two 200-pin SODIMM sockets
_Supports DDR2 400/533 Unbuffered Non-ECC memory
_Supports maximum memory capacity up to 2GB

_256MB NVIDIA GeForce Go 6800 Ultra PCI Express x16

Intel ICH6-M South Bridge:
- 1 x ATA 100/66
- 2 x SATA 100/66
- 60GB/80GB/100GB Ultra ATA HDD (all 5400RPM or 7200RPM)
- Optical device (CD-RW/DVD-ROM, DVD+-RW/CD-RW)

_Broadcom Gigabit Ethernet
_Intel Wireless 2200BG (802.11 b/g) or Broadcom 802.11/b/g WiFi card
_Bluetooth (optional)
_56K v.92 Fax/modem

_17.0" WUXGA UltraSharp TFT LCD (native 1920 x 1200) with TrueLife

_Compatible with AC'97 2.3
_Built in dual speakers

Dimension and Weight
_~ 15.5" x 11.3" x 1.67" (our sample)
_Starts at 8.6 lbs.

External I/O Connectors
_1 x Power port
_1 x Lock jack
_1 x PCMCIA slot (Type I or Type II)
_1 x Modem jack
_1 x Ethernet jack
_1 x microphone jack
_1 x headphone jack
_1 x VGA-out port
_1 x DVI-out port
_1 x S-video port
_1 x 4-pin mini1394 Firewire port
_1 x SD Card Reader
_6 x USB 2.0/1.1

Included Software - preloaded
_Norton Internet Security 2005 trial
_Adobe Acrobat Reader 6.0
_Dell Media Experience
_Dell Jukebox



Measuring in at 15.5" x 11.3" x 1.67" and with a weight starting at 8.6 pounds (our XPS Gen 2 sample weighed in at about 8.8 lbs.), the XPS Gen 2 is currently the largest and heaviest notebook to come from the design team at Dell and exceeds historical size specifications for past Dell notebooks. Obviously, this is not the mainstream notebook you should be buying if you are just looking to do some word processing or emailing. This notebook has been explicitly designed for the hardcore gamer and multimedia enthusiast looking for a notebook. The reason that Dell is making a big statement with this notebook is...well...because they are Dell. That name alone carries a lot of weight and bursting onto a scene that Voodoo, Alienware, Hypersonic, and others normally occupy is a huge deal when it comes to serious gamers looking to avoid a huge price tag.

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