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CNET First Look
The Dell XPS 8500 falls shortDell's new high-end desktop comes with the latest generation of Intel CPUs, but Dell doesn't quite have the value here to make this a recommendable computer.
Hi. I'm Rich Brown Senior Editor for CNET. Today we are gonna take a look at the Dell XPS 8500. So, this is a higher end mid-tower for Dell. This config comes in at about 1999. The highlight feature is probably its Core X7 3770 CPU. That's one of Intel's new 3rd generation Ivy Bridge chips and makes the system one of the faster mainstream PC's out there but overall it's kind of hard to recommend. So, if you're familiar with Dell's desktop line up, this system looks familiar. They haven't really tweaked the (chass?) in a couple of years. It's got a nice clean look to it. We like the white and the black here in the front. It's pretty clean as well. Dell actually eliminated the door on the front of the system. So now the USB ports are just exposed on the front making them easier to get to if not maybe messing the aesthetic up a little bit. We can live with that. On this door, you'll find a blue ray drive and pair of standard (??) of media card slot. Turn around at the back, and you see (??) ports. There's nothing too innovative but there's pretty much every connection you'd need for a modern hardware. So, from the top you've got some USB 2 jacks. There used to be three. That's becoming more common now. There is an SPDIF, digital audio output for standard 7.1 analog out. Down here on the graphics card, you've got all kinds of outputs, there's DVI, two display ports, as well as standard HDMIF. So, inside the system it looks kind of typical mess that we're used to for mainstream PCs. You can see the core i7 CPU here. Here you've got an AMD Radeon 7870 graphics cards. It's pretty high end. There is 16 gigabyte RAM. That's becoming more common on high end systems also and here Dell's included a 3 terabyte hard drive, giving you all kinds of storage. Now one of the more interesting features of the system, you actually can't really see in here. There's an Intel SRT solid state hard drive buried underneath the (??) part. SRT also provides faster access to commonly used files. So, for games or other applications that you use often, you'll be able to load them up and run them generally a lot faster than they would otherwise. Despite all these great features, the problem with this system, is a bang for the buck. As usual the boutique vendors out there are really pushing harder on performance. The system from Origin for example, we saw it costs about $1200 and outperformed this 1999 Dell on pretty much every benchmark. That makes it hard to recommend this system even though it's relative capable. So, overall this is a well build PC with some interesting features but I can't really recommend it because it doesn't offer enough value for its price. So, I'm Rich Brown. This is the Dell XPS 8500.