Dell XPS 13 7390 review: A sign of success on your desk

Mala Bhargava | Updated on November 18, 2019 Published on November 18, 2019

This iconic notebook is a sleek powerhouse for executives

Dell’s XPS brand was one of the first crop of ultrabooks, a format which came up when tablets briefly threatened laptops and everyone talked of the post-PC era. The mandate for new notebooks then was to be slim, light, portable, and even versatile with their form factor, which is how we have convertible or hybrid laptops today. The XPS 13 was immediately impressive with how sleek it was with its knife-edge sides and the Dell XPS 15 did much the same in a bigger size.

The XPS 13 for 2019 includes a 2-in-1 variant which has a swivelling back but that model isn’t in India at the moment. What we got to check out is the more ‘regular’ and familiar format of the XPS 13 7390 which is refreshed and refined. There’s a ‘Frost White’ version of this laptop and it looks very nice and clean, but we received the silver finish one. It has a very executive look and indeed that’s been the profile for this product all these years although the power it comes with could make it appropriate for situations where high performance is needed rather than just the less demanding everyday routine tasks.

Minimise to maximise

One of the characteristics to change on this version of the XPS 13 is that the edges of the display have been reduced and the camera has been moved to the top edge, since putting it on the lower edge has just not worked out for any laptops as this ends up in a less-than-flattering and very peculiar angle on v ideo calls. Dell says their engineers have worked hard and long for two whole years to miniaturise the camera to make it fit on the slim top edge. The new 2.25mm HD camera setup includes a four element lens for more clarity on video calls which, typically on laptops, tend to be blurry and dull coloured. Everyday business involves enough video calls to have necessitated all the work done to improve the camera and locate it correctly. The company has also used ‘temporal noise reduction’ which results in significantly better video quality, especially in dim light conditions, achieved by analysing information from multiple frames of video simultaneously.

The XPS 13’s 4K touchscreen screen is gorgeous. It has an 80.7% screen-to- body ratio and is wonderfully clear with a 100% sRGB colour gamut for rich colours. It also has 400-nit brightness and great viewing angles. Dell is particularly proud of being able to offer what it calls a cinematic experience delivered by a combination of technologies they all Dell Cinema.

The XPS 13 actually just has a footprint of 11 inches although it accommodates a 13.3 inch screen. It weighs just 1.17 kgs which makes it super portable. Even though it’s that lightweight, it doesn’t feel anything less than durable and sturdy. I personally owned an XPS 13 from some years ago and it’s lasted without any of its parts weakening and found the same strength seeming to come from the 2019 model.

The slim profile doesn’t mean there’s a shortage of processing power on this laptop. Quite the contrary. It has 10th Generation Intel CoreTM i5-10210U processor (6MB cache, up to 4.2 GHz, 4 cores or 10th Generation Intel CoreTM i7-10510U processor (8MB cache, up to 4.9 GHz, 4 cores). RAM options include 8GB LPDDR3 Dual Channel SDRAM at 2133MHz and16GB LPDDR3 Dual Channel SDRAM at 2133MHz. Storage is 512GB PCIe 3 x4 SSD. This isn’t the laptop for creative professionals who need really massive power, but a nice future-proof option for business users.

Not so hot

With a machine that is thin and powerful, heating could be a real issue. But Dell has worked on that using GORE Thermal Insulation which involves a low conductivity lining that stops heat from travelling to the components inside the laptop. Interestingly, the technology, called Silicon Aeroge, is also used by NASA, so there’s some reassurance for you. Dell also uses dual thin fan fans.

Dell XPS 13 7390
  • Price: Rs. 1,13,990 and 179,990
  • Pros: Sleek, slim, good looking, elegantly businesslike, powerful, great screen, good attention to details
  • Cons: Expensive, no stylus support, 6-core option not in India, No 1TB storage option

Published on November 18, 2019
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