Field Testing Features Continued
All things considered, the XPS M1710's roughly 8lb weight is actually light given the specifications of the system. However, the overall size and bulk of the notebook prevents this system from being a viable or desirable candidate for the frequent traveler. Regardless, it is hard to not fall in love with the fact that you essentially have the power of a state of the art desktop at your fingertips when you do travel with the XPS M1710.
In keeping with the torture trends we run notebooks through during the review process, the XPS system was taken along throughout the weekly routine of going into the office and accompanying the group on any coffee or lunch runs. Here, the performance of the included Intel 3945 wireless NIC was flawless as the system was able to connect to any open networks. Though many enthusiasts will recognize the system and be able to appreciate the power of the hardware its comprised of, the flashy exterior panel and countless LED's also don't fail to grab the attention of nearly everyone else around you. Although these people might not know what the system is, their raised eyebrows prove that the Dell XPS M1710 looks as good as it performs.
With such a list of enthusiast-class components crammed into a relatively small package, we assumed that the battery life of the XPS system would be amusing at best. To our delight, the M1710's 9-cell battery was consistently able to provide upwards of two hours of general use. Here, the power-saving features of both the Intel CPU and NVIDIA GPU proved priceless as speeds were able to be throttled down when the application didn't require the additional horsepower. Should you want to be gaming on the go, you would be wise to bring the AC adaptor as the system certainly begins to crave power once the hardware is running at full speed and capacity.