Is the Dell XPS 15 (9500) good for gaming?

Dell XPS 15 9500
Dell XPS 15 9500 (Image credit: Dell)

Is the Dell XPS 15 (9500) good for gaming?

Best answer: The Dell XPS 15 is great at gaming, so long as you make sure to include an NVIDIA GTX GPU.XPS for gaming: Dell XPS 15 (From $1,274 at Dell)

Choose the right XPS 15

Dell refreshed the XPS 15 in 2020 to include the latest iterations of processors and GPUs from Intel and NVIDIA, respectively. What this means is if you kit out the XPS 15 with a Core i7 or Core i9 and GTX 1650 Ti, you'll be able to play a large selection of PC games without much effort.

A drawback to wanting to play games on the XPS 15 is the base model is out of the question. It only comes packing an Intel Core i5 with integrated GPU, which can technically play some games, but you'll have to turn down all the settings and even then it won't be a visually pleasant experience.

Your XPS 15 needs an Intel Core i7 and GTX 1650 Ti. Don't settle for less.

Stepping up a model to the configuration with a Core i7 and GTX 1050 Ti bumps the price up to $1,700, which isn't too expensive when you remember you are paying for a premium notebook. Not only will the beefy processor and GPU allow for more serious gaming, the combination will make it possible to do video editing and more intense PC tasks too.

This model, in particular, only comes with 8GB of RAM so you may want to upgrade at a later date, which is possible. At the end of the day, not all XPS 15 notebooks are created equal, and some are more powerful than others resulting in better PC gaming. What you need to do is ensure you have the upgraded internals that you can't change yourself. RAM can be swapped out, a GPU ... well, not without problems.

When viewing all the configurations on the Dell website, the more affordable options start on the left with the Core i5 processor and integrated GPU. Moving across to the right will reveal more expensive configurations of the Dell XPS 15, adding the Core i7, more RAM (up to 32GB), GTX 1650 Ti GPU, and a 4K display. I'd recommend the $1,700 configuration if you plan on doing a little gaming on the side.

No matter the configuration, the Dell XPS 15 9570 is an excellent Windows 10 notebook in general.

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.