Problems with XPS 13 -- Buy Another?

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by Duckhead, Oct 22, 2019.

  1. Duckhead

    Duckhead Newbie

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    I've had an XPS 9360 with 8th gen i7, 512g, 16g, and HD screen, for two years. In many ways it's exactly what I need -- just small enough to use in an airplane, great battery life. The ridiculous webcam placement is irritating but I can overlook it.

    What I don't like, however, is that I have been plagued with problems which inhibit the usefulness of the machine:

    1. Wifi is terrible -- about half the time, literally, I connect to a wifi network, I have to use the troubleshooter to get it to acquire an IP address or do whatever else it has failed to do to get a connection. I don't know if this is due to the Killer WiFi card, or the driver, or Dell's implementation, but it's awful. How many business meetings have gotten off to an awkward start when I needed to show a presentation and I ended up faffing with the wifi for 5 minutes. I really hate this -- how hard is it to engineer and integrate this so that it JUST WORKS? Like all my other devices in the last 15 years.

    2. Sound card failed, dead, hardware fault.

    3. Internal charger failed.

    4. Touchpad failed (maybe my fault and liquid, but minor spills have never killed a touchpad on any of my other machines).

    5. Keyboard starts to act up after less than 2 years of ownership.

    I have never had so much trouble with one laptop.

    My question is this -- is this typical of Dell? Is the quality just -- off? Or is it typical of 9360, improved with subsequent releases?

    I am going to buy a new laptop on Black Friday, unusually for me, as I usually keep my laptops for three years and until they fall apart. But this one is apparently fresh enough to sell on, which is what I will do.

    So what to buy? The refreshed XPS 13 fits my needs and would allow me to reuse my collection of chargers, sleeves, and adapters I bought for this one. But I don't want to do it if I'm just going to have the same litany of problems I've had with this one.

    Alternatives? HP Spectre? Lenovo X1 Carbon?

    I had an HP laptop decades ago; it was bulletproof. Maybe irrelevant to what they are today, but still.

  2. jeremyshaw

    jeremyshaw Big time Idiot

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    WiFi is a combination of all of the factors you listed.

    Battery of newer models is smaller than your model, if that matters. They also got thinner and are USB-C-only, afaik.

    If the internal charger failed, does that mean you are relying on USB-C charging, now? If so, just about any decent, modern laptop will be able to use your existing USB-C chargers (if that is the case; including the HP Spectre and X1 Carbon - I should note, I haven't seen the older Spectre X360 laptops wear well, but that may just be me).

    X1 carbon also got thinner this gen, with a smaller battery.
    HP Spectre is in the middle of an update, and I don't know much about it.

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