The Dell XPS 12 was one of the earliest high profile convertible tablet-laptop models to hit the market and thanks to Dell’s wide market reach, has become one of the best-selling laptops in its class. To date, this model’s design have not been replicated by any other brands so if you are totally in love with in, this is the laptop for you. Here is an in depth review of this convertible laptop model.
Tablet-laptop hybrids are relatively new in the industry and laptop manufacturers have been taking big risks in designing how the laptop converts into tablet mode. Sony and Toshiba have opted for a slide-out design while Lenovo went for a design where its screen can be rotated 360 degrees backwards. Dell on the other hand, designed the laptop’s screen in such a way that it can be swiveled backwards on a center axis.
In the end, we think that only one design will win this race where every convertible laptop from then on will be built that way (note how every single laptop today have an identical basic design). For now, it is a little early to call the race (although there are signs that the Lenovo Yoga is leading the race), and every brand is free to battle it out to see which design will prevail. The customer’s experience in the long run will be the sole factor in determining the winner of this race.
The Dell XPS 12 measures around 12.48 x 8.46 x 0.65 inches in dimensions and weighs 3.35 pounds. Dell goes out of its way to let us know that this is a premium product and this fact is evident in its design. The device generally fells very sturdy and well built. High end materials such as corning gorilla glass, aluminum and even carbon fiber has been used in finishing the external casing of this laptop. Customers who have bought and used this laptop have been very impressed by its built quality and design.
The 12.5-inch screen is surrounded by a slim aluminum frame. To convert the laptop into tablet mode, the screen swivels at its center axis backwards so that it faces outwards. You then fold the screen inwards towards the keyboard to complete the transition. This trademark design so far has been a quite a hit among users. For one, it gives the laptop a high novelty factor since this design is not found on any other devices. It is also quite practical where the laptop’s keyboard is completely protected when it is in tablet mode.
Specs & Features
The Dell XPS 12 is designed to be a workhorse, with specs like an Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, a 128GB solid-state hard drive and runs on Windows 8. With a powerful processor, plenty of RAM and a speedy hard disk for storage, other than astronomically resource-heavy 3D gaming and heavy graphics processing, it is hard to imagine any computing tasks that this laptop can’t handle.
This convertible laptop comes with a 12.5-inch 1920 x 1080 resolution 1080p HD touchscreen. The effect of having such high pixel density on a 12.5-inch screen is sharp and crisp images. Even the smallest of text seems sharp with very little signs of fuzziness. The 400-nit brightness also allows for clear images even when used under bright lighting conditions. Thanks to the gorgeous screen, watching videos and movies on this tablet-laptop hybrid is an absolute delight. The touchscreen was also very responsive and the touch features works in both laptop and tablet mode. Another notable feature on this laptop would be its very comfortable keyboard that also comes with backlights, allowing it to be used under dim lighting conditions.
At the time of writing, the Dell XPS 12 (with the configuration above) is priced at around $800 each, which is quite a competitive price tag for a convertible laptop of this class. Overall, this convertible laptop model proved to be quite a decent laptop model thanks to its competent specs, high-quality construction and good looks. Nevertheless, this wouldn’t be an honest review if we said that the XPS 12 is without flaws. For one, it is missing a HDMI port, which by today’s standard, is a staple feature when it comes to laptops (even most budget laptops comes with HDMI ports). It is also missing a SD card slot. Other than these small design issues, it is hard to fault this laptop model. All in all, this is one of the better hybrid laptops in the market and would make a perfect buy for anyone that is looking for a well-price, one-of-a-kind convertible laptop model.
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