Best answer: Dell's XPS 13 (9310) has many set configurations available, with the ability to customize internal hardware to your liking. Those with general productivity in mind can get by with a lower-end configuration. At the same time, those with heavy multitasking and even a bit of editing will want something with heavier-hitting hardware. As always, multiple display options must be considered. Here's what you need to know.
- Latest and greatest model: XPS 13 (9310) (From $980 at Dell)
What's new with the XPS 13 (9310)?
The XPS 13 saw a major refresh with the 9300 model that continues with the Dell XPS 13 9310 model. The new 13.4-inch display moved to a 16:10 aspect ratio, effectively eliminating bezel on all four sides. There's no more chin along the bottom, and the result is a genuinely eminent look with a 91.5% screen-to-body ratio. Despite the thin bezel, Dell has still managed to fit an IR camera for Windows Hello above the display.
The keyboard has now been spread out over the chassis, with keys reaching from edge to edge. There's more space for keycaps that are 9% larger, meaning you'll feel a lot less jammed up while typing. The Precision touchpad has also been blown up by 17% to make the best use possible of space below the keyboard.
Whereas the 9300 model was equipped with 10th Gen Intel processors (CPU), the newest 9310 model got a further mid-gen update with 11th Gen Intel Core CPU options, Iris Xe integrated graphics, faster memory, and Thunderbolt 4 ports. The XPS 13 Core i5 and Core i7 models are also a part of Intel's EVO platform. All models also now include Killer Wi-Fi 6 wireless connectivity.
Which XPS 13 (9310) model is best for you?
Dell has a bunch of different configurations to choose from when it comes to the XPS 13 (9310). That means you should be able to mix and match the hardware to get precisely what you need without overspending. Because you get the same ports, keyboard, touchpad, speakers, battery, and display size no matter the configuration, the choice will mostly come down to CPU, RAM, solid-state drive (SSD), and display resolution.
The baseline configuration includes an Intel Core i3-1115G4 CPU with two cores, 8GB of LPDDR4x RAM, a 256GB M.2 PCIe SSD, and a non-touch 1920x1200 (FHD+) display with about 500 nits brightness and an anti-glare finish. This is a decent configuration for light productivity work. A Core i5-1135G7 model is where most people will start, especially if you're looking at heavier multitasking. Those four cores will be a huge boon to productivity. And for the best performance possible, the Core i7-1165G7 CPU will deliver the best performance possible.
Storage and RAM (which is soldered on all models) are customizable. Core i3 models currently have up to 8GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD, while Core i5 models have up to 16GB of RAM along with a 1TB SSD. For a Core i7 config, up to 16GB of RAM (you might see 32GB depending on availability) and a 2TB SSD can be added. And no matter the configuration, both Platinum Silver with Black Carbon Fiber palm rest or Frost White with Alpine White woven glass palm rest color options are available.
Next, come the display options. The basic display (which is anything but basic) is a non-touch FHD+ display with an anti-glare (matte) finish and raised plastic bezel. It has excellent color, it hits 500 nits brightness, making working outdoors much easier. This is the cheapest display option available, but that doesn't mean it won't wow you.
Next is an FHD+ touch display with an anti-reflective layer and edge-to-edge glass with no raised bezel. It looks just a bit more premium due to the glass, though it won't combat glare as well as the matte version. This display also has outstanding color and hits 500 nits brightness. Expect to pay about $90 more for this display compared to the basic non-touch option.
Finally, a 3840x2400 (UHD+) touch option is available for a few hundred dollars more than the basic non-touch display. It too has edge-to-edge glass and an anti-reflective layer, as well as 500 nits brightness. While the other displays offer Dolby Vision compatibility, the UHD+ display is VESA certified DisplayHDR 400.
The UHD+ display is absolutely stunning and delivers better color reproduction in the DCI-P3 color gamut, but at 13 inches, it's not absolutely necessary. The FHD+ models — especially the touch option with edge-to-edge glass and 100% sRGB color — are still quality IGZO displays and will help prolong battery life. The premium you pay for UHD+ is also quite steep, and no doubt, not worth it for many people.
If none of these configurations appeals to you, be sure to have a look at our picks for best Windows laptop for way more buying options. And if you're more interested in a convertible XPS, check out our Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 vs. XPS 13 comparison for more details.
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