Dell is one of the few trusted laptop brands that is known to produce quality products. It has always been a slightly premium in terms of pricing, but then the company has always had some really well made machines.

Speaking of well made machines, I got to test the XPS 13 which to me looks and sounds like the perfect portable Windows machine and quite a competitor for the Apple MacBook. Here is what I think about the sleek notebook.

Build and Design: 9/10

The XPS range has been known to offer stunning looks, ever since the range was introduced, and this early 2016 model of the XPS 13 proves it right. The XPS 13 offers a metal finish with a textured carbon fibre finish on the palmrest to offer a good grip while typing.The lid and the base are made out of machine-cut aluminum and feel very premium.

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Of course, apart from all the high-standard materials, you will notice that the XPS 13 has a size of an 11-incher but boasts a 13-inch (almost) bezel-less display. Dell has managed to cram in a 13-inch display onto an 11-inch frame by trimming the bezels, allowing the whole chassis to be way smaller than traditional 13-inch laptops. The XPS 13 is technically the smallest sized 13-inch notebook in the market today.

Overall the construction of the notebook is solid. There is no bending and the hinge is very sturdy. Dell has not cut any corners and made the Dell XPS 13 the ultimate looking Windows ultrabook. The machine weighs in at about 1.2 kg which makes it quite lightweight and easy to carry in your backpack. For the sake of nitpicking, the edges of the metal frame could’ve been rounded off. While many laptop makers are trying to copy the MacBook, Dell has proved that you don’t need to be a copycat to make an attractive product.

Keyboard and Trackpad: 8.5/10

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The implementation of the keyboard and the trackpad has been done well. The trackpad is large while the keyboard is well spaced out even on that small chassis. The chiclet-style keyboard offers a short key-travel, although, the feedback is pretty good. Typing is comfortable and apart from getting used to the layout, I didn’t face any issues with the keyboard. The backlight is bright enough and offers two-level brightness. There are better keyboards on other laptops specifically made for business users, but then for an ultrabook it’s excellent. Even the touchpad is spot on in terms of accuracy. It feels very smooth and even the gestures work flawlessly with a quick reaction time.

Publish date: October 11, 2016 12:00 pm| Modified date: October 11, 2016 11:19 am

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