Dell XPS 13 Review: Kaby Lake Makes A Fantastic 13-Inch Laptop Even Better

Dell's XPS 13 (9360) Refreshed With Intel Kaby Lake Takes It Up A Notch

Mechanically speaking, Dell has done little to change or update the company's wildly popular XPS 13 and 15 series of premium consumer notebooks since their initial release. There's no mystery as to why that is the case, however. When something works this well, you stick with it. The Dell XPS 13 and XPS 15 have been two of the best selling notebooks in the company's history. That's a bold statement and it stands to reason. The Dell XPS 13 and XPS 15 line of machines, with their unique Infinity Edge displays and gorgeous carbon fiber and aluminum adorned chassis, are some of the best looking, best built, and highest performing laptops on the market.
XPS13 With Plug2
However, despite minimal exterior design changes, Dell has taken a vigorous approach to refreshing the XPS 13 and 15 line of notebooks with the latest Intel processor platforms. In fact, the new Dell XPS 13 9360 we have on tap for review here today is one of the first notebooks we've received in for testing with Intel's 7th Generation Kaby Lake Core series processor technology powering the experience. Asus actually snuck in under the wire ahead of Dell with the ZenBook 3 we looked at recently, but Dell was close behind with its venerable XPS 13, refreshed and tweaked-up with Kaby Lake and - wait a minute, we lied - now also adorned in a Rose Gold finish.

Dell XPS 13 9360
Specifications & Features
Processor Options 7th Gen Intel Core i7-7500U (4MB Cache, up to 3.5GHz)
13.3" QHD+ (3200 x 1800) 276ppi IGZO IPS InfinityEdge touch display, 400 nits, 1000:1 contrast ratio, 72% color gamut
Graphics Intel HD Graphics 620
8GB LPDDR3 1866MHz (On board)
256GB PCIe NVMe Solid State Drive
Optical N/A
Ethernet N/A
Killer™ 1535 Wireless-AC 2x2 + Bluetooth 4.1
Interface (Left)
Power/DC-in Jack; Thunderbolt 3 (USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C); USB 3.0; Battery Gauge Button, Headset Jack, speaker
Interface (Right)
Noble Lock Slot; Power Button, USB 3.0 w/ PowerShare, 3-in-1 SD Card Reader, Speaker
Interface (Back) N/A
Widescreen HD (720p) webcam with dual array digital microphones
Operating System
Windows 10 Home 64-Bit
Battery 4-cell Lithium Ion (60 WHr)
Dimensions Height: 0.33-0.6” (9-15mm) / Width: 11.98” (304mm) / Depth: 7.88” (200mm)
2.9 pounds (1.29kg) with Touch Display, 2.7 pounds (1.2kg) Non Touch
1 Year Limited Hardware Warranty with Onsite service after remote diagnosis
Pricing $1,649.99 as configured with Rose Gold ($1599 standard silver)

The other notable internal change, beyond its Intel 7th Gen Core series processor, is a slightly beefed up battery, which is now at 60WHr, whereas the previous generation weighed in at 56WHr. In addition, the XPS 13 is also enabled with a Rivet Networks Killer 1535 Wireless AC 2x2 + Bluetooth 4.1 WiFi NIC, which adds a bit of QoS mojo for bandwidth and app prioritization. Feel free to read up on that right here if you like. We should also note that we have the high res 3200x1800 IGZO IPS touch display in our machine, though a 1080p non-touch display option is available as well. 
XPS13 With PSU2
And of course there's that swank anodized aluminum top and bottom lid material, now buffed up with a Rose Gold finish, if you so choose, for a modest $50 up-charge. Riding shotgun above is the XPS 13's power brick, sans its three conductor wall cable. The AC adapter itself is tiny -- slightly smaller than palm size -- and as you can see, it also coils up nicely for easy stow away and travel.

As configured, and in Rose Gold, the machine we're looking at here today is priced at $1649, though the Core i5-7200U with 1920X1080 non-touch display retails for $1149. That's relatively competitive, when you consider the new 13-inch MacBook Pro with a last gen Intel Skylake Core i5 processor and 2560X1600 Retina display retails for $1499.  

Let's flip up the lid and have a closer look around... 

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