Review ultrabook Dell XPS 13 (9343) with the new Intel Broadwell
Intel continues to adhere to its strategy “Tick-tock”, according to which the release of new processors is divided into two stages. The phase “Tick” implies a reduction of the manufacturing process and minor enhancements to the microarchitecture, and the stage of “So” — issue processor with a new architecture, without changing the technical process. Intel Core i7-5500U installed in this laptop is the Dell XPS 13 belongs to stage “Tik”. This CPU is made according to the process 14 nm, while its predecessors, the Intel Core 4th generation was made according to the process technology 22 nm. Thanks to a new process technology chip size has been reduced by 37% and the number of transistors was increased by 35%.
When developing the architecture Broadwell Intel engineers not have to focus on increasing the CPU performance. Even the memory support DDR3L-1866 more increase computer performance in graphics tasks, rather than dependent solely on processor performance. In developing the new family of processors, the main emphasis was on reducing energy consumption of CPU and improve the CPU graphics.
In the new graphics cores Intel HD Graphics 5300 and 5500, the number of execution units increased to 24 pieces, the maximum frequency of the graphics cores will amount to 950 MHz, but will change depending on the CPU and graphics core. In the previous videodreh Intel HD Graphics 4200, 4400, 4600 was only 20 execution units, and the maximum frequency of these videoder was 1 200 MHz.
Other graphics cores, Intel Iris 5000, 5100 and 5200, with 40 execution units, also replaced. In the new graphics cores Intel HD Graphics 6000, 6100, 6200 and Intel Iris Pro Graphics P6300 6200 and installed for 48 execution units. New processor graphics Iris Pro is a big part of the crystal, a more simple Intel HD 5500 is occupying the half of its area. As for clock frequency, the maximum frequency videoder old Intel Iris and Iris Pro, belonging to the generation Haswell amounted to 1100-1300 MHz, while the new built-in video cards it drops to 1000-1100 MHz.
The new graphics core Intel HD Graphics 5500, HD 6000, and Iris 6100 and 6200 will support DirectX 11.2, OpenGL 4.3 and OpenCL 2.0. The 4K resolution is also supported, and it can be received not only via cable, but with the help of Intel WiDi 5.1. Also was promised support for DirectX 12, but actually talking about it too early, because he DirectX 12 will only appear in Windows 10.
Some changes have occurred in the chipset (PCH), which is located on the processor substrate, and these changes are likely to cut the possibilities of the chip. The new PCH supported only 4 USB 3.0 ports instead of 6 ports from the PCH to Haswell, though it’s a very small loss, after all, a rare ultrabook need more than three USB 3.0. Number of SATA III decreased from 6 to 4 pieces — also, in General, not be sad about it: rarely used more than two or three, even with the availability of M. 2 port. The number of supported USB 2.0 ports have not changed, they are still eight.
Also PCH has a new digital signal processor (DSP) Intel Smart Sound. The DSP, unlike its predecessor, has the support of post processing, and Wake on Voice, which allows the owner to Wake the sleeper ultrabook using voice commands.
So, the new Intel Broadwell looks pretty interesting. However, there has been no test of their power it is better not to speak. We will return to them in the section “performance Testing”, and now let’s talk about what is a laptop Dell XPS 13.
Beautiful appearance – a special feature of the line XPS. As before, the lid and the bottom of the laptop is made of aluminum, the frame is made of magnesium alloy, and workspace is made of carbon fiber coated with “soft-touch”. The maximum thickness of the ultrabook is 21 mm.
We should also talk about the screen of the new XPS 13. The manufacturer calls it a “frameless” – and this is very similar to the truth. Left, right, and top frame the screen on the new XPS 13 is very thin. As a result, the place for web Cams found only in the bottom left of the screen. This course looks beautiful only until, until you need to use the camera. The fact that the view “from somewhere on the bottom left” go not everyone – even a thin face with this angle of view will look full. So the camera’s XPS 13 is better to use only in extreme cases: when nothing else remains.
Dell XPS 13 almost does not get dirty. The dirt that gets on its silver cover, will be unobtrusive, and fingerprints cover almost does not collect. The workspace also did not get to use for fingerprinting – saves three-dimensional texture of its surface. As a result, the cleaning of the laptop will not be a difficult task with a normal microfiber cloth this is enough.
The laptop turned out not only beautiful but also convenient. The keys of his keyboard are quite reasonable for the island-style keyboards, but pressing feels great: typing on this laptop a pleasure.
The size of the touchpad of our test subjects – 100 × 60 mm to Work with him as comfortable as with a keyboard. Gestures are handled consistently and correctly, and with the keys hidden under a touch surface, there is no problem.
Connectors have the XPS 13 very much, but this is quite normal: two USB 3.0 a typical ultrabook is enough. But the lack of HDMI is a bit frustrating. To a large extent it compensates for the presence of the Mini DP connector that allows output to external monitor image with a resolution of 3840 × 2160 at 60 Hz (HDMI limits the rate at around 24 Hz). However, Mini – or Micro-HDMI would also be nice – correctly working cables and adapters for these connectors is much easier to find than for the Mini DP. For headphones the XO laptop has a 3.5 mm audio Jack, and memory card — card reader SD (HC/XC).
On the bottom of the XPS 13 is nothing but grids of ventilation and a sticker with the marking, which is hidden under a hinged panel. This proprietary chip we have already seen in other laptops XPS.
|Dell XPS 13 (9343)|
|Processor||Intel Core i7-5500U;
2.4 GHz (3 GHz in Turbo Boost), 4 MB L3;
Two cores, four threads, TDP of 7.5 to 15 watts
|Graphics controller||CPU GPU Intel HD Graphics 5500;|
The resolution is 3200×1800 (276 PPI), type of matrix: IPS + IGZO;
Glossy finish, LED-backlight;
The matrix model: SHARP SHP1421
|RAM||8 GB DDR3L-1600 (memory soldered on the motherboard
replacement by the user is impossible, dual-channel mode supported)
|Hard drive||256GB M. 2 SSD (SAMSUNG PM851)|
|Interfaces||2 x USB 3.0;
1 x Mini DP ;
1 x headset Connector (3.5 mm mini-jack);
|Wi-Fi||802.11 a/g/n, 2.4 and 5 GHz , 2×2 (Intel Wireless-N 7265)|
|Connector flash cards||SD (SDHC/SDXC)|
|Sound||Two microphones, two speakers|
|Battery||Built-in, 52 WHr (6930 mAh, 7.4 V), 4 cells|
|Power supply||45 W (19 V, 2,35 A)|
|Size||304 x 200 x 21 mm|
|Operating system||Microsoft Windows 8.1 Single Language 64 Bit|
|Estimated price||About 100 000 rubles;
from 86 999 rubles for the initial configuration
Installed in laptop dual-Core Intel Core i7-5500U with support for Hyper-Threading. It belongs to the 5th generation Core and is made for 14-nm process technology. Processor frequency is 2.4 GHz and can increase to 3.0 GHz in Turbo Boost mode. The volume of cache L3 – 4 MB, and the maximum value of TDP is 15 watts. Processors of the Broadwell U family is the laptop manufacturer may lower TDP of 7.5 W, thereby limiting the maximum achievable clock frequency of CPU and GPU cores. However, the Dell XPS 13 has left the TDP is 15 watts.
All the RAM is Dell XPS 13 is soldered on the Board, and replace it with the user not be able. The laptop has 8 GB DDR3L-1600 is working only in dual channel mode.
In CPU GPU Intel HD Graphics 5500 are 24 execution units and the maximum frequency HD 5500 is 950 MHz. Recall that in the same processor core of the previous generation was 20 execution units, and their maximum frequency was 1 000 MHz.
The Dell XPS 13 is equipped with the only SATA SSD format M. 2 256 GB. For wireless connection meets the Intel Wireless-N 7265, which supports 2.4 GHz networks (802.11 b/g/n). The Bluetooth Protocol is also supported.
Capacity battery updated XPS 13 is 52 kWh (6930 mAh, 7.4 V) and it consists of four cells. The charger is very compact, its power is 45 W (19 V, 2,35 A).
At the time of writing, an updated version of the Dell XPS 13 (9343) is just starting to appear on sale. The price of the simple modification will be 86 thousand rubles. If you take into account all the features of the ultrabook, this price looks too high, especially given the twice risen in the dollar.
The internal structure
For disassembly of the laptop Unscrew all the screws located around the perimeter of its bottom, and Unscrew the last screw is located under a hinged panel in the center. To remove the cover it is necessary very carefully – the plastic latches at the XPS 13 small, but they hold the lid very tight.