Dell XPS 15 (9550) Review: Pushing The Infinity Edge (Updated)
XPS 15 SiSoft SANDRA, ATTO And SunSpider Benchmarks
Our Test Methodology And Comparison Data:Before we dive into the benchmark numbers that follow, we should underscore our approach to testing and reference comparison data. The Dell XPS 15 presents a bit of a dilemma when it comes to what a machines in its weight class it should be compared to. This notebook is essentially a 4 pound thin and light machine, with specs that are more in line with notebooks of a beefier weight class. As such, to show a balanced view of performance relative to other notebooks on the market, on the pages that follow we compare the XPS 15 to both light, under 4 pound ultrabooks and also larger premium notebooks. We even threw a few gaming notebooks into the mix. Remember, comparing one notebook config to another is also never an exact science. Machines are often configured with different memory configs, different storage components and so on. However, the data that follows will give you a good visual of how the new Dell XPS 15 performs in a variety of use cases.
First, we ran SiSoftware's SANDRA, the System ANalyzer, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant. The benchmarks we chose are four major tests, including CPU Arithmetic, CPU Multimedia, Memory Bandwidth, and the Physical Disk test.
We decided to delve a little further into the storage performance profile of the new XPS 15, so we fired up ATTO as well.
ATTO Disk Benchmark
While it's still pretty delightful to see a notebook drive pushing over 1.7GB/sec for reads and over 500GB/sec for writes, we've seen the Samsung PM951 PCI Express NVMs SSD, that's configured in the XPS 15, push a bit more bandwidth than this, hitting in excess of 2GB/sec as our SANDRA tests showed. We reached out to Dell on this and its apparent that there maybe some driver optimization still going on. Different versions of the NVMe driver for Windows 10, whether it be Microsoft's default driver or the drive manufacturer's, offer different performance. Dell is currently employing Microsoft's driver here and could squeak out more performance if they moved to Samsung's.
We should note that this is more of a platform test, in that different browser versions, associated with different OS types can and do affect scores.