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GD Reviews: Dell XPS 12 convertible Ultrabook

The ultrabook Dell XPS 12 convertible is the perfect example of ‘Best of both World’s’ for gadget lovers. A powerful, sleek, and intricately designed touch-screen convertible that flips into multiple screen positions. This is one of the first laptops with Windows 8, the new touch- and tablet-friendly OS, and it’s meant to be used as both a traditional laptop and a tablet. Gizmodiva reviews the good, the bad, and the beautiful of this nifty ultrabook.


Design and Build: The Dell XPS 12 is undoubtedly stylish with an excellent build quality. The ultrabook offers a premium design with sleek appearance and overall matte finish. The smart black and silver case measures just 20mm thick and the XPS 12 weighs only 1.52kg, so it’s easy to carry around with you. XPS 12 hybrid design allows you to rotate the display, which pushes out and swaps 180 degrees to fold over the keyboard and collapse into tablet mode. When the XPS 12 is folded down as a tablet, you can access the onscreen keyboard built into Windows 8. Dell offers various configuration options with the XPS 12 with 3rd generation Core i7 processors, along with solid-state-drive (SSD) storage. However, there is no there is no SD or MicroSD card slot, and dedicated HDMI port.

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Display: The Dell XPS 12 offers 12.5-inch screen with a resolution of 1,920×1,080 pixels, which is promising for an ultraportable laptop. It also includes a standard 1.3MP webcam with dual digital-array digital microphones, capable of capturing video at 1280 x 1024 pixels.

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Keyboard & Trackpad: The ultrabook offers a luxurious glass integrated trackpad. The smooth trackpad also support Windows 8 gestures to interact with the OS. It offers a standard keyboard with slight key indentation, which makes typing experience responsive.

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Sound and Audio: We don’t expect brilliant sound quality from ultrabooks. However, the maximum volume of the Dell XPS 12 is surprisingly loud while remaining clear and without distortion. The XPS offers good sound experience for casual use and everyday work environments.

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Performance and battery life: Battery life is the only weak point in the Dell XPS 12 ultrabook. The XPS 12’s 47WHr battery lasts only 4 hours and 10 minutes, and since the battery isn’t user-replaceable, third-party solutions are impossible.

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Conclusion: The Dell XPS 12 offers a different take on the convertible laptop/tablet concept. The flip screen is practical for sharing your screen with others and using the benfits of a tablet. However, the draining battery life and lack of dedicated HDMI output and SD card support puts a damper on the situation.

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The Dell XPS 12 starts at $1,199 for a Core i5 CPU and 128GB SSD, and goes up to $1,699 for the hardware we tested, with a Core i7 CPU and a 256GB SSD.