Overview Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook Tablet Convertible: Review & Specs

On the wave of interest in the new operating system Windows 8 “tile” interface Modern UI major players of the mobile market hastened to present their sensor solutions and here is one of the unique solution Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook. However, not all limited release tablets trend or banal Integrated Touch sensitive screen in conventional laptops, some manufacturers have seriously believed in the possibility of reincarnation niche form factor notebook-transformer (“clamshell”). In particular, Dell creatively redesigned 2010 model-year Inspiron Duo, presenting the first ultrabook convertible Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook, which is reviewed here.

Dell XPS 12

Construction of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook:

At first glance, Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook convertible is almost indistinguishable from the traditional laptop – pretty slim narrowed to the front edge of the housing, the standard “shelf” and the classic joint operation panel. The metal frame looks like a stylish contrast edging cover, and the gap between it and the mobile screen is too small to be suspected in this model, the ability to transform.



However, it should push the screen away from you, as it leaves the inside of its usual place. It is in the borderline of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook looks the most unusual and attractive, but the basic mode it has two – notebook and tablet, for which you want to rotate the display 180 degrees all the way and lay back down on the operation panel.



As a result of the transformation you get 12.5-inch tablet with a touch screen with IPS-Full HD resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels. Naturally, the most convenient to use its capabilities in the interface Modern UI, ground under control of the fingers, and if you want to use and occasionally classic desktop mode Windows 8.

Frame display of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook is of aluminium with a matte finish has been very strong and rigid in spite of its shape and thin. The display rotates about an axis passing through its center, fixing the boundary positions by means of four spring-loaded latches. Additional protection against twisting at the same time acts by several magnets at the top and bottom of the frame.


Design of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook:

Dell XPS 12


Ultrabook convertible Dell XPS 12 is made in the style of the familiar 13-inch Dell XPS 13. Uses the same materials as the only external difference (besides the form factor) acts clearance outside the display module – the older brother, it is metal.


The central part of the display module of Dell XPS 12 finished pleasant to the touch with a distinctive weave carbon fiber, and decorated with metal logo. The basis of the housing is also made of carbon fiber with a distinct pattern, all service information and a small hatch to upgrade hidden under aluminium panel. Skid legs are in the form of two long rubber rollers, with a number of top pass airflow. Radiator located in a niche display hinge, so that hot air does not get in the user’s hand or a “notebook” or in tablet mode (provided that you keep it in a horizontal position).


The front and back face of Dell XPS 12 are free, all connections brought to the sidewall transformer. On the left is a speaker, volume control, illuminated slider switch on the combined audio port and lock button position sensor, blocking automatically change orientation interface. On the right side is wall passed second speaker, indicator of battery, a pair of connectors USB 3.0, Mini DisplayPort video output jack and charger.


The main panel of display module covered with protective glass Gorilla Glass, at the bottom of the screen is edging hardware button Home, which is sure to come in handy in tablet mode. The working area of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook is made of magnesium and finished detergents Soft-touch softtach-black plastic, which is quite hard to rub out quickly covered with fingerprints. Spill-resistant keyboard features island-type LED-backlit glass touchpad in different solid size.



Functionality of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook tablet convertible


In terms of the hardware platform, Dell XPS 12 is a typical ultrabook, that is, it is based on the low voltage platform on Intel integrated graphics and comes with a SSD-drive. The manufacturer offers several configurations cost from $ 1199 to $ 1699 (prices for the U.S. market) based on processor Intel Core i5-3317U (2.6 GHz) and Intel Core i7-3517U (3.0 GHz), RAM varies from 4 to 8 GB, the capacity of SSD – from 128 to 256 GB.


One of the configurations of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook is equipped with Intel Core i5-3427U, with 4 gigabytes of RAM and a 128 GB SSD. In this configuration, it scored 4800 points in PCMark 7, more than 1000 points in 3Dmark11 and 5.4 points in the performance index of Windows. The battery life of the battery capacity of 47 Wh was 1 hour 45 minutes at maximum load, and 6 hours in the emulation mode of reading.

Ultrabook convertible Dell XPS 12 has a high-quality IPS-matrix with a substantial margin of brightness (380 cd/m2 at the maximum) and excellent viewing angles. Resolution of 12.5-inch screen is 1920 by 1080 pixels, so in some cases you may need fine tuning of image scaling. Capacitive touch panel supports all the usual tablet gestures.



Operation of Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook:

Dell XPS 12

During operation, special claims to Dell XPS 12 do not arise, pleased with quality materials, sophisticated keyboard and excellent by the standards of IPS-screen laptop. There are no problems with the original design and transformation; it looks pretty safe for daily use. But the cooling system sometimes behaves noisy, primarily in notebook mode. Someone obviously will miss only two USB, and the lack of HDMI-out and a slot for memory cards, but these restrictions are related to the construction of transformer, so that future owners will have to wait.

In tablet condition Dell XPS 12 can be used in both the horizontal and vertical orientation, but the former is more convenient for many reasons. With horizontal clutching hands lie on the cold part of the bottom, and the lock button, the position sensor and the volume control is conveniently fall under the fingers of his left hand. Thanks to successful configuration do not overlap and the connectors on the right side wall, but both speakers are placed exactly in the places grip palms, which significantly dampens their sound. However, the most prominent claim to the Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook device is its weight, 1.5 kilograms is still too much for the long-term comfort for the tablet weight.



Transformers vs tablets


This is such an important issue that it is worthwhile for greater length. The first notebook-transformer was in our wording exactly 10 years ago, it was the 12-inch Toshiba Portege 3500 running Windows XP Tablet PC Edition. Device with an Intel Pentium III processor with a clock speed of 1.33 GHz weighed 2 kg and has a relatively touch screen, which can operate it exclusively with the stylus. Then it was really exceptional decision for which requested crazy by today’s standards the amount of $ 4,000. Time passed, transformers updated, but the most classic central vertical hinge and removable keyboard-base remained standard for devices of this form factor. Alternative design monoblock Tablet PC (“slate”) with optional detachable keyboard was much less popular, because at that stage of the development of technologies to place the touch screen and hardware stuffing in a fairly slim body just was not possible.



Today, however, is no surprise quite thin and light tablet Windows-based energy-efficient processor Intel Core iX or Atom, and in this situation to drag behind a keyboard unit on a permanent basis is not the best idea. One may convince yourself that you get two All-in-one, but in the current situation, a classic notebook-transformer – this is the forced compromise, who really does not like any of the parties. Arithmetic is very simple, and 12.5-inch Dell XPS 12 weighs more than 1.5 kg at a thickness of 2 cm, then how can you get a 13-inch ultrabook weight of 1.35 kg and 1.5 cm thick, or even choose 11.6-inch Windows-tablet weight of 700 grams and a thickness of less than 1 cm.

Dell XPS 12


Yes, in the first case, you cannot expand the screen, placing it on the keyboard, but the touch selecting ultrabook may well be able to control the interface with your fingers. It would seem that in the second case, the comparison is not quite correct, as the screen for such a tablet is smaller and with a docking station, the thickness of the very same set of 2 cm and a weight of 1.34 kg (as an example we take the ASUS VivoTab TF810C). However, that with the dock you get not only the keyboard and extra ports, and also a second battery, which nearly doubles the resulting autonomy. Again, no one forces you to keep the keyboard buckle up, if you just see some photos, and only the difference between the 1.5 kg Dell XPS 12 and 700-800 grams of modern Windows-tablet you will feel very quickly.



Results of Dell XPS 12:

As a result, in terms of attractiveness for the average user ultrabook convertible Dell XPS 12 saves unless the original design. But all of exotic seen only in rare moments of transformation while in laptop mode will see around just a laptop and tablet mode even unpleasantly surprised its thickness and weight.



So if Dell XPS 12 have attracted a stylish silver-black design and premium aluminium-carbon fiber body, it is best to pay attention to its older brother, Dell XPS 13. Well, if you need Windows-based device with a touch screen and a hardware keyboard, then choose any of the available tablets with the optional docking station, the benefit of their number in the coming months will continue to grow just like an avalanche: ASUS VivoTab TF810C, Acer Iconia Tab W510, Samsung ATIV Smart PC 500T1C, Microsoft Surface Pro, etc.


+ the original mechanism of transformation
+ quality IPS-matrix with a high resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels and Gorilla Glass coating
+ use of premium materials (carbon, aluminum, glass, magnesium alloy)
+ waterproof backlit keyboard
+ convenient battery indicator



– the weight is too large for use in tablet mode
– only two USB, no HDMI and card reader
– high cost
– noisy cooling system
This was all regarding the Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook tablet convertible review, now you may decide easily that this device will be perfect for you or not.

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