The Dell XPS 15 is the latest premium home entertainment laptop from Dell. Not only does the XPS 15 come with the latest hardware configuration, it brings a fresh new design to Dell's XPS line.

It is definitely one of the most extravagant desktop replacement laptops I've tested, with such features as a full-HD 1080p screen, HD webcam, promising onboard JBL audio, Intel Core i7 quad-core processor and powerful Nvidia graphics.

Design and Build

In keeping with the Dell XPS 15 laptop's premium tag, it is no surprise the laptop comes clad in an all-aluminum jacket. The XPS 15's top aluminum cover is slightly darker compared to the Apple MacBook Pro and 11-inch MacBook Air. For a desktop replacement laptop, the XPS 15 is definitely as elegant and stylish as the Sony VAIO and Apple MacBooks in comparison.

The XPS 15 laptop is strongly built, its hinge fuses the screen ably to the rest of the laptop chassis. It’s a big and bulky machine for sure. The XPS 15 laptop has a forward hinge-placement and protruding spine design like the Dell Inspiron 14R, Inspiron M501R, Vostro V13 and Vostro V130 laptops.

Dell XPS 15 extended spine

The Dell XPS 15 laptop isn’t light even for a 15-inch laptop, weighing 2.8-kgs with a six-cell battery. It's alright for a desktop replacement laptop, not great if you’re looking to carry around the XPS 15.

Usability

The Dell XPS 15 laptop has a 15.6-inch glossy LED-backlit screen with a full-HD, 1920x1080 pixel resolution, lower resolution 1366x768 display options also available. The XPS 15’s glossy screen is very good for watching HD movies and YouTube videos, while reading text is also crisp.

Viewing angles aren’t bad either. Overall the screen is well-lit and very good by laptop standards.

Dell XPS 15 HD 720p webcam

The XPS 15’s Skype-certified HD webcam isn’t exceptional compared to HD-ready webcams we've seen before (MSI GT660 and GT663R, for example) it’s definitely good for videochats. The webcam lets you stream 720p HD video, we haven’t seen this on any laptop yet.

Dell XPS 15 keyboard

The Dell XPS 15 desktop replacement laptop comes with a nice pair of keyboard and touchpad. The keyboard sports keys similar to previous Dell laptops like Inspiron 14R and Studio 15. The closely packed keys are well laid out and great for typing, there's no perceptible flex and nothing’s out of place.

What’s more, the XPS 15's keyboard is backlit so typing in the dark isn’t a worry. There's ample palmrest to park your wrists while typing on the XPS 15. Although sporting different shaped keys, the Lenovo IdeaPad Y560's and Dell XPS 15's keyboard are at par.


Dell XPS 15 touchpad

The Dell XPS 15 has a sufficiently large touchpad that is smooth, fast and responsive to touch. The twin mouse buttons located separately below the touchpad are nice to use as well, no problems at all.