Dell XPS 13 9370 is here...and it's disappointing.

Discussion in 'Dell XPS and Studio XPS' started by don_svetlio, Jan 13, 2018.

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On a scale of 1-5 how would you rate the 9370?

  1. 5 - Fantastic

    4 vote(s)
    23.5%
  2. 4 - Good

    7 vote(s)
    41.2%
  3. 3 - Average

    2 vote(s)
    11.8%
  4. 2 - Poor

    2 vote(s)
    11.8%
  5. 1 - Terrible

    2 vote(s)
    11.8%
  1. don_svetlio

    don_svetlio In the Pipe, Five by Five.

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    I'll give a brief summary and my general impressions.

    Firstly, white keys on a white background with white back-lighting - results? Poor visibility and near-illegible keys in certain situations. Same dumb design as the Asus UX501 had years ago.

    Secondly, smaller battery than last year because they opted to shave 1-2mm from the profile thickness. In my opinion, that's a stupid thing to do. The thin'n'light craze really needs to end. Things are getting out of hand with thickness obsessions on OEM's and consumers' parts.

    Thirdly, throttling... Yeah, again. Under sustained heavier load you can expect power throttling. Not sure if it's due to VRM design problems or what but Intel XTU reports power limit as the reason in Dave's video. It could also be due to the ULV CPU. Again, we have no idea here. CPU temps were around 81*C so at least it's not as bad as last year's 9360 where we could reach up to 95*C.

    Fourth, not a single USB-A. Once again, Dell should stop trying to copy Apple's dumb decisions >.>

    Lastly, the mediocre 1080p screen. It's really not good enough considering the fact that this is a luxury device. 70% sRGB and 50% AdobeRGB are just not good. Hell, 2-year-old entry-level gaming laptops have better colour reproduction than that.

    There are positive aspects - TB3 is now 4x PCIe 3.0 and the webcam placement is better (though not ideal) but I really expected a LOT more from this. Personally, I will likely stop recommending the XPS 13 since there are now better solutions on the market in this price range.
     
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  2. hb720x

    hb720x Notebook Enthusiast

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    Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon seems to be the stronger pick in the ultrabook category. It has a more sensible set of ports, and the 500 nit display option is quite intriguing. Dell XPS 13 should have had a WQHD option, which would offer an in between for those wanting a higher res than FHD but not wanting the scaling problems and battery drain of 4k. The smaller battery capacity and the angled design at the front makes me somewhat concerned about the upcoming new Dell XPS 15, as I would prefer the front to be even with the rest of the chassis. Speakers should have been next to the keyboard.
     
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  3. don_svetlio

    don_svetlio In the Pipe, Five by Five.

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    Agreed. The X1 is really hard to beat currently in the 13-14" ultrabook market. The LG Gram 13/15 are also quite good considering they're only 900g in terms of weight.

    Honestly, I don't mind the brightness - I feel it's enough but the colours for a device targeted at the designer audience (hence the MacBook design ques and Rose Gold colours) should at least offer 90% sRGB and 70% AdobeRGB. In it's current state, it's an expensive facebook machine.
     
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  4. hb720x

    hb720x Notebook Enthusiast

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    The gamut is a disappointment, and the calibration could also be improved. Laptops in this price range should be aiming for at least 100% SRGB and 75% ARGB. Brightness on prior Dell XPS models is pretty good, and better than some competing laptops. ASUS Zenbooks seem to be shipping with dimmer displays than expected. The CABC on the FHD XPS 13 models of the past was a major drawback, but at least this issue has been resolved, according to https://www.reddit.com/r/Dell/comments/7p9njf/dell_xps_13_fhd_official_cabc_fix_93509360/. Prior to this, only the QHD+ models had CABC that could be disabled.
     
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  5. MSGaldenzi

    MSGaldenzi Notebook Deity

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    I see everyone's issue with it but I think the design is forward thinking enough to still recommend it. The battery life is going to be very good, even though its a bit smaller. USBc/TB3 is the future, I completely understand that it would have been nice to have a USBa but if dell keeps this design for 2 to 4 years like the last version, I don't think its going to be as big of a deal. Charging over USBc I think is a major win here to boot. I am not a fan of the white model for the OPs reasons, but they still have a black/silver version so thats my pick. The 1080p screen should have been better, but perhaps a limitation of the supplier with thin bezels. I also would have wished for a 1440p screen but 4k seems to be all the rage right now, so eh, thats an option and for the people who need/want color accurate displays its there. Most people I know who do digital design use a secondary display or 15' laptop so I get why dell isn't necessarily catering to that on the base screen option. From what I hear the speakers are better so they were probably going for more of a content consumption profile and I am ok with that. Regarding the processor/heat/throttling, I think thats always going to be an issue and comes with the territory. If they left it as thick as the last model, there would have still been issues. From what I have read, the new thermal design is pretty good and Dell did that weird goretex thing so we will have to see. Either way, as new processors come out and get more efficient, I think the thermals will only get better.

    All in all, I think the new XPS 13 is still great for what it is. Its still on my short list of recommended ultrabooks but I certainly think the LG gram and some of the lenovos are hard to overlook at this point.
     
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  6. don_svetlio

    don_svetlio In the Pipe, Five by Five.

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    While I do agree that USB-C is the future, I still think having a single USB-A for a mouse or USB thumb drive is important. We still don't have enough native USB-C peripherals so this design is just going to feed into the Dongle Lyfe posts.

    I still think we've reached a point where laptops can be criticized for being too thin. Back when the standard thickness of a machine was 25-30cm, I would have agreed that a new iteration should reduce that vertical size but considering this laptop is only about 13mm in height (down from about 15mm on last gen), I think it's gotten to the point where the sacrifices for that extra slimness are not worth it. Especially on the keyboard-side and reduced key travel.
     
  7. MSGaldenzi

    MSGaldenzi Notebook Deity

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    I agree with you that there aren't many native usbc accessories yet. I don't think I have seen any major name brand mice yet which is weird. With that said though, the price of an adapter is not much these days. You can get some really good aluminum ones that you can set and forget. I agree, the dongle life is not the best option, but I as a bridge until more native products come out, it works for me.

    I totally understand your criticisms of thinness but the previous generation of XPS was often criticized for being too thick. I remember watching several videos that put a lot of emphasis on that. I am with you, the tradeoff is not something that I feel is worth it. They could have kept the same thickness and given more battery life and better key travel. I never liked the key travel on the original xps13 and am nervous about the new version. Even more nervous about the maglev one on the XPS 15, but thats a little off topic. I could have lived with the same thickness but am guessing they went slimmer for market reasons. People look at these in big box stores and if they can tell one is thinner, they gravitate to it. Also its a spec sheet battle and their attempts to make it slimmer will make it stack up on paper better, no pun intended ;). I guess in the end I am indifferent but am glad that they didn't do something silly like going for the unnecessarily too slim design (asus/spectre).
     
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  8. don_svetlio

    don_svetlio In the Pipe, Five by Five.

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    Dell should definitely take some notes from Lenovo, it seems.
     
  9. custom90gt

    custom90gt Notebook Virtuoso

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    it looks great except for the pricing point...
     
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  10. don_svetlio

    don_svetlio In the Pipe, Five by Five.

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