Best answer: No, unfortunately, you cannot upgrade the RAM in a Dell XPS 13 (7390) after purchase. However, you can currently configure a model with up to 8GB of LPDDR3-2133MHz RAM at checkout. If you'd like an XPS laptop you can take apart and upgrade, check out the XPS 15 (7590).
What are the XPS 13's configuration options?
As far as RAM and storage go, Dell's product page mentions configurable hardware up to 16GB of LPDDR3-2133MHz RAM and a 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe solid-state drive (SSD). However, current configuration options are limited to 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSD.
If you're on a tight budget, you can grab a model with 10th Gen Intel Core i3-10110U processor (CPU) with two cores and a clock speed up to 4.10GHz, as well as 4GB of RAM and 256GB SSD. It's enough performance for general productivity, but if you need better performance, there is a 10th Gen Intel Core i5-10210U CPU option with four cores and up to a 4.20GHz clock speed. If you opt for the Core i5 CPU, you'll also get 8GB of RAM. All models are stuck with integrated Intel graphics with no dedicated GPU available.
Core i3 and Core i5 models are available with either a touch or non-touch FHD display with Dolby Vision HDR, though if you want to opt for the brilliant 4K touch display with perfect sRGB color reproduction and HDR, you'll have to pair it with the Core i5 CPU.
No matter the configuration, you get two Thunderbolt 3 ports, a single USB-C 3.1, a microSD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack. The 52Wh battery will get the best life with an FHD display, and all models include Killer AX1650 wireless compatible with Wi-Fi 6.
Who is the XPS 13 best suited for?
The baseline XPS 13 7390 configuration option, including Core i3 CPU and 4GB of RAM, is best suited for light productivity work that doesn't get into anything specialized — gaming or editing, for example — that requires a dedicated GPU or extra RAM.
For better performance, an XPS 13 model with Core i5 CPU and 8GB of RAM makes more sense. The fact that RAM is soldered to the motherboard and not upgradeable after purchase means 8GB is what you're stuck with for the lifetime of the PC, and 4GB is already on the low side. If you plan on multitasking, at least the $1,200 model should be considered.
Go with the XPS 15 if you prefer upgradeable RAM
The larger 15-inch XPS 15 (7590) includes not only more powerful configuration options compared to the XPS 13, but it also has RAM that can be upgraded after purchase. If you're interested in doing the DIY upgrade, we've put together a full guide for the older XPS 15 9570 that should apply to the newer 7590 model.
XPS 15 7590 models start at about $1,050 and include a 9th Gen Intel Core i5-9300H CPU, 8GB of DDR4-2666MHz RAM, and a 256GB M.2 PCIe SSD. For even more power, including a 9th Gen Core i7-9750H CPU, 8GB of RAM, 256GB M.2 PCIe SSD, and dedicated NVIDIA GTX 1650 graphics card (GPU) with 4GB of VRAM, you're looking at a starting price of about $1,450.
You can still get an FHD non-touch or 4K touch display, but there's also a 4K OLED option with perfect DCI-P3 color reproduction, ideal for design, development, and editing work. If you're interested in this type of specialized work, or even some gaming, the XPS 15 will make a much better choice.
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