Dell Precision M3800 Owner's Review

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by Bokeh, Oct 22, 2013.

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  1. michelsu

    michelsu Notebook Enthusiast

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    While the announcement for the M3800 clearly says it is included for that model, it is not so obvious for the XPS15. When I ordered the latter, I was told I had to order that piece separately. I'll see if I end up with two dongles:(.
     
  2. ceoloide

    ceoloide Notebook Enthusiast

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    Ah, sorry Bokeh, one more question.

    How does the touchscreen fare? I get that it's a 5pt instead of a 10pt one, could you run the classic "oblique lines" test (basically draw very slowly intersecting lines oriented at +/-45° degrees, like the top of a pie :D) and post here a screenshot of the result?

    Thanks again!

    CEO Loide
     
  3. winterwolf64

    winterwolf64 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Is there a technical reason why more manufacturers don't use PCIe SSDs? They're so much faster!
     
  4. tijo

    tijo Sacred Blame

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    They're relatively new, mSATA is pretty standard fare and until recently the TRIM command didn't go through PCI-E which was another hurdle. It's feasible, but manufacturers are more comfortable with SATA I suppose. Is there a standard format for PCI-E SSDs or is it all proprietary at the moment like on the retina macbooks. That's a pretty big downer in terms of the replaceability of parts which is definitely something you expect in a business notebook.
     
  5. Aaron44126

    Aaron44126 Notebook Prophet

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    It looks like SATA 3.2 includes provisions for direct PCIe connection (allowing speeds up to 16 gbps). It looks like there will also be an updated physical connector that will allow standard 2.5" and 3.5" drives to take advantage of this. The connector will be backwards compatible similar to how USB 3.0 has an updated connector but is backwards compatible. Anyway, we'll likely see this go mainstream once it makes its way into the standard chipsets.

    Not sure if the implementation is the same as that used by Apple; it wouldn't surprise me if Apple's stuff is proprietary.
     
  6. SvenC

    SvenC Notebook Evangelist

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    I think M.2 is the standard: NGFF M.2 | The SSD Review

    Just has to show up in more laptops.

    I would love to see them as ejectable cards just like pcmcia or express cards.
    The m6800 has one hard disk slot which can be easily removed when the battery is removed.
    That space could hold two M.2 cards.
    Running out of VM storage space, just exchange an M.2 SSD without opening the chassis and without the need for an external USB device.
     
  7. mr_handy

    mr_handy Notebook Evangelist

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    Without knowing the specific clocks used for the 750M vs. K1100M, you can't say the 750M will be better for gaming -- in the end, same silicon, and while the NVidia reference for each involves a higher clock on the 750M, Dell may well be using the same clocks on both in the same chassis -- in which case downloading the "Performance" driver from NVidia's site rather than the standard ISV-certified driver should result in the same performance.

    Given that it's removable base rather than a unibody, case plastics are generally a cheap replacement (or an easy one it happens under warranty.)

    Is there an Optimus disable in the BIOS? If so, did Dell stick to just on/off, or did they go to a Discrete/Integrated selectable like Lenovo?

    Look at the W540; Lenovo added a number pad on that one, and it's a bit lighter than the M4700 (and presumably the M4800... although still quite a lot heavier than the M3800.)

    How many applications can take advantage of that extra speed? I "downgraded" one of mine to a Crucial M500, because it was more valuable to have the extra ~448GB rather than the faster drive. Despite a ~350MB/sec write speed rather than ~500MB/sec on the drive it replaced, I've yet to see any difference in real-world application performance.

    As for why they don't, I'd be curious how they'd decide to hook them up -- via the DMI on the south bridge, or pulling lanes off the CPU/graphics bus. If the latter, the DMI bus might well turn into the bottlneck and not be much faster than SATA3; has anyone seen a laptop block diagram recently?
     
  8. pipspeak

    pipspeak Notebook Deity

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    The M.2 cards can be either PCIe or SATA: Toshiba HG5D Series SATA M.2 SSD Review (512GB) - Amazing Performance in a SATA M.2 SSD | The SSD Review

    The biggest problem with M.2 format IMO is the different sizes. Lenovo decided to implement 42mm M.2 cards in their new Thinkpads and I doubt we'll ever see cards over 128GB in that tiny size. The larger capacity M.2 SSDs tend to be the longer versions (they go up to 100mm IIRC)

    For that reason I like the fact that Dell stuck with mSATA instead. Far more options and generally slightly cheaper. OK, not as fast as PCIe, but I bet most people ain't gonna notice
     
  9. tmoney2007

    tmoney2007 Notebook Guru

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    They aren't everywhere because the standard is relatively new and there aren't that many companies making the drives. The fact that something pops into existence doesn't make it immediately feasible to use in every single development program in process.

    True.

    "So much faster" doesn't always equate to significant real world performance. Its really easy to get caught up in benchmark performance.
     
  10. spybenj

    spybenj Notebook Deity

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    Bokeh, could you take a picture of the power brick next to like either an apple square or a pencil or whatever, just so we can get a sense of size?
     
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