Dell refreshes high-end laptops with new Intel CPUs

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Dell gives its most premium laptops the latest processors from the Intel stable. This is how the devices earn the processor builder’s ‘Evo’ label.

Dell’s XPS series gets new guts. The Dell XPS 12, XPS 13 2-in-1 and XPS 13 Developer Editions are coming soon with Tiger Lake chips from Intel’s eleventh generation processor inside. Tiger Lake is Intel’s first truly widely available 10 nm line-up and is theoretically at the level of AMD’s 7 nm CPUs. In addition to the CPU, the memory will also be upgraded to a faster version of LPDDR4x. The devices come with up to 32 GB of RAM.

The most interesting innovation that Tiger Lake brings, however, is in the graphics component. The built-in graphics are now based on the new Xe architecture, which plays in a completely different class from the Intel HD graphics of yesteryear. Benchmarks show that a laptop with Xe graphics can handle popular games at 1080p resolution with a frame rate that is consistently above 30 fps. So on paper you can play a bit on the new ultrabooks without the need for a discrete GPU. It remains to be seen to what extent that really works in the compact and thermally challenging chassis of the XPS series.

Evo

Thanks to the inclusion of the Tiger Lake chips, the XPS 13 laptops receive the ‘Evo’ badge from Intel. Evo is the marketing-friendly successor to Project Athena, which in turn is the modern incarnation of the Ultrabook label. Laptops with an Evo badge meet a number of high-end specifications. Think of a guaranteed autonomy of nine hours under realistic conditions and a start-up time from sleep mode of less than one second.

The laptops will be available in the coming weeks. We do not yet know a Belgian recommended price, although it will probably be in line with previous editions. Think of an entry-level price of 1,129 euros for a standard version of the regular XPS 13.





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