Hands-on: Dell XPS 15 (9500) is every bit as gorgeous as you thought

Dell Xps 15 9500
Dell Xps 15 9500 (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

Dell's refresh of its flagship XPS 15 for 2020 is not a surprise. While it's the first major design change in five years (you read that right), Dell has been modernizing its XPS line starting with the XPS 13 2-in-1 (7390) and XPS 13 (9300), both of which won critical rave reviews from us.

We just got our review sample in from Dell, which is configured with the new Core i7-10750H (six-cores), NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650Ti, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, and 512GB of storage, which is $2,156.

Of course, the real draw is the new 16:10 Sharp IGZO touch display with a UHD+ (3840 x 2400) resolution and anti-reflective layer.

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CategoryDell XPS 15
Operating systemWidows 10 HomeWindows 10 Pro
Display15.6-inch 4K UHD+ (3840 x 2400) touch15.6-inch FHD+ (1920 x 1200)
Processor10th Gen Intel Core i5-10300H10th Gen Intel Core i7-10750H10th Gen Intel Core i7-10875H10th Gen Intel Core i9-10885H
GraphicsIntel UHD graphicsNVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti
Memory8GB DDR4 Dual Channel SDRAM at 2933MHz16GB DDR4 Dual Channel SDRAM at 2933MHz32GB DDR4 Dual Channel SDRAM at 2933MHz64GB DDR4 Dual Channel SDRAM at 2933MHz
StorageUp to 2TB PCIe 3 x4 SSD
Ports2x Thunderbolt 3 with power delivery & DisplayPort1x USB-C 3.1 with power delivery & DisplayPort1 Full size SD card reader v6.03.5mm headphone/microphone combo jackWedge-shaped lock slot
AudioQuad-speaker designDual microphone array
WirelessKiller Wi-Fi 6 AX1650 (2x2)Bluetooth 5
Camera720p with Windows Hello
DimensionsHeight: 18mm (0.71") x Width: 344.72mm (13.57") x Depth: 230.14mm (9.06")
Weight4 lbs. (1.83 kg) for non-touch with 56Whr battery4.5 lbs. (2.05 kg) for touch with 86Whr battery

First impressions matter, and out of the box, the new XPS 15 certainly wows. The keyboard is updated, and we can already say it is much better than the previous generation with larger keys.

And speaking of bigger things, that trackpad is comically large akin to what Apple does in its MacBook Pro line. It's actually 62 percent bigger than the last-gen. That trackpad though, could be controversial, as unlike Apple's, it's a massive physical one that clicks. It's a lot of surface that moves, and while it is exceptionally smooth and accurate, it will be interesting to see how it holds up.

Audio is also massively boosted. Now with quad speakers, including two that are top-firing, and Waves NX 3D Audio for Speakers, it quickly moves to the top of the best audio in a PC laptop. It's very good.

Dell Xps 15 9500

Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

Toss in some excellent software like Dell Mobile Connect, which works with iOS and Android, and the new XPS 15 (9500) already looks like one of the best laptops of the year.

By the way, expect our Surface Book 3 (15) review for Friday, June 5, and this new XPS 15 for later next week. Fire off any questions about the XPS 15 in the comments that you want to be answered in our review.

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.