Performance and Benchmarks
The Dell XPS L501X offers an upper midrange configuration featuring an Intel Core i5 processor clocked at 2.53GHz and a NVIDIA Optimus graphics solution powered by the GeForce GT420M dedicated graphics card. In testing, this setup performed very well in daily use and 3D oriented benchmarks. Users looking to play the latest games should be in luck, although in some cases you might need to dial down the detail settings to get framerates at a playable level. When you aren’t in the mood to play games or stress the GPU, the system automatically switches back to the integrated graphics to save on power.
The system had no trouble decoding locally played 720P and 1080P video, with the GPU hardly breaking a sweat. Online streaming HD video was also no problem for the XPS 15, where we tested 720P and 1080P videos from sites such as YouTube, Hulu, and Vimeo. Initially we did run into a small bug where video’s wouldn’t play in full-screen, but updating the Flash codec to the latest version corrected the problem. With the included HDMI and DisplayPort-out connections, this system should have no trouble at all working as the multimedia hub for your home theater.
In standard daily use, the Dell XPS runs smoothly with fast boot times, thanks to the standard 7200RPM hard drive. Users can configure the XPS 15 with an optional solid state drive (SSD), although at the time of this review, Dell only offers a rather expensive–$510!–256GB SSD. Users looking to increase performance may want to turn to an aftermarket upgrade, purchasing a less expensive SSD from an online retailer such as Amazon or NewEgg.
wPrime processor comparison results (lower scores mean better performance):
PCMark05 measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
PCMark Vantage measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark06 measures gaming performance (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark Vantage measures gaming performance (higher scores mean better performance):