Dell goes above and beyond for its XPS 700, finally.

Dell retroactively upgrades the XPS 700.

Ugh...looking back. And here we thought this industry was only supposed to move forward. Still, it's only fair that since we made such a stink about Dell's XPS 700 last year, we ought to give it credit for addressing one of that system's key problems, even if it is 10 months later.

If you'll recall, the Dell XPS 700 and XPS 710 shipped with Dell's own version of Nvidia's 590 SLI chipset. The Dell hardware lacked that chipset's support for BIOS-based overclocking of Intel's Core 2 Duo Extreme chips, as well as support for automatically detecting overclockable EPP memory that can further boost system performance. It also lacked certain kinds of RAID support and Intel's Virtualization technology. All bad stuff, especially since the missing features initially weren't documented as such.

Dell's XPS 700 gets some long-needed attention. CNET

Ten months later, an announcement on Dell's blog says the company not only plans to remedy those issues, it's also going a step further. For one, a forthcoming BIOS update will address all of the issues above. Even better, in the coming months Dell says it will offer XPS 700 customers a free quad-core CPU-supporting motherboard, complete with on-site install service, with the option to purchase a quad-core chip at a 25 percent discount from the current price at Dell.com. XPS 710 customers who already have a quad-core CPU also will be able to get in on the motherboard exchange program.

Dell hasn't specified hardware makes and models yet because the parts it has in mind haven't been officially announced. But bringing these systems up to date retroactively is a major customer service move, and more like something we'd expect from one of the smaller boutique shops. It sounds as if Dell is finally getting the message about what it takes to compete in the high-end PC market.

(Thanks, Inquirer)

Read the full CNET Review

Dell XPS 700 (Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800)

The Bottom Line: Dell's XPS 700 high-end desktop lives up to our expectations and delivers a polished, powerful, cutting-edge gaming PC. We still have a few issues, but nothing deal-killing and nothing that overwhelms our positive opinion. Dell can now hold its head high in the high-end gaming space, and this is a PC you should consider. / Read full review

About the author

Rich Brown is an executive editor for CNET Reviews. He has worked as a technology journalist since 1994.

 

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