Wednesday, November 25, 2020

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Dell XPS 13 Linux Developer Edition (2020)

This year’s Dell XPS 13 is better than before. It didn’t really blow their doors off, but it’s clearly a more powerful machine. 

That starts with its CPU heart. The XPS 13 uses an Ice Lake Intel Core i7-1065G7 processor. This quad-core, hyper-threading CPU averaged about 20% faster than its older versions. It’s a real pleasure watching applications “pop” on to the screen. You can now get the Dell XPS 13 with 32GB of RAM. 

The graphics, powered by the Ice Lake’s built-in Intel Iris+, is also great. This showed up well with the laptop’s 13.4-inch screen which comes with virtually no bezel and is a Full High Definition+ (1920 x 1200) or 4K (3840 x 2400) touchscreen display. 

The screen’s aspect ratios might seem a little off to you as instead of the more standard 16:9 aspect ratio, the display has a 16:10 aspect ratio. According to Dell’s leading Linux laptop pro, Barton George, “While this may seem like a small detail, the extra screen space is noticeable.” 

The new XPS 13 also gets a speed bump from its Hynix 512GB NVMe Solid State Drive (SSD).

The Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition is different from the Dell XPS with Windows 10. Generally speaking, the Developer Edition has better hardware. For example, you can only get 16GB of RAM with the Windows 10 model and its SSD is fine, but not as fast, Intel 512GB NVMe SSD. 

Both of them come with only two Thunderbolt 3/USB-C ports, and you must use one of those for power. If you run two or more peripherals regularly, you’re going to need a Thunderbolt 3-compatible port hub.

There’s also a 3.5mm audio jack, for those of you, who still prefer wired headphones. The laptop also has a microSD card reader. It also comes with a 720p webcam which unlike the earlier laptops is positioned properly in the middle of the upper bezel, rather than the lower bezel, for better video-conferencing.  

For networking, your only get Wi-Fi using the XPS 13’s Killer AX1650 Wi-Fi chipset. This supports both Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 4.2.

The XPS 13 comes outfitted with a 52Wh battery, which Dell claims can last as long as 19 hours.

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