Dell's new XPS 15z reviewed

Dell says the new XPS 15z is the "thinnest 15-inch PC on the planet." Check out our review and hands-on video to find out if that's true.

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Dell this morning announced its latest addition to the high-end XPS laptop line, the 15-inch XPS 15z. Probably the worst-kept secret in technology since Dell's last laptop announcement , the 15z has been the subject of many rumors and leaks, not to mention a teaser video from Dell itself, and a recent Tweet from CEO Michael Dell that revealed the new system's name.

In the run-up to this official unveiling, predictions from some corners of the Internet have pegged this new 15-inch as Dell's latest version of a MacBook Air competitor or a successor to Dell's now-cancelled Adamo laptops. As is often the case, these prerelease analyses were way off the mark, and any comparisons to either the MacBook Air or Adamo are unfounded. In fact, the XPS 15z is 0.97 inch thick, which is even bigger than the 0.95 inch thick 15-inch MacBook Pro.

The Dell XPS 15z (bottom) and the Apple MacBook Pro. CNET

That's why Dell says this is the "thinnest 15-inch PC on the planet," rather than the world's thinnest laptop. But though it may not make for as compelling ad copy, the XPS 15z is better than its gimmicky thickness claims, and is in fact a well-made, reasonably configurable, upscale multimedia and gaming laptop that includes almost all the high-end extras we'd want, from an (optional) 1080p screen, to a backlit keyboard, to 3D support.

The XPS 15z starts at $999, and our upgraded review model came out to $1,534, including an Intel Core i7 processor and 1,920x1,080-pixel display. Read our full review of the Dell XPS 15z.

About the author

Dan Ackerman leads CNET's coverage of laptops, desktops, and Windows tablets, while also writing about games, gadgets, and other topics. A former radio DJ and member of Mensa, he's written about music and technology for more than 15 years, appearing in publications including Spin, Blender, and Men's Journal.

 

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