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XPS M1530 Amatuer Review

Discussion in 'Portable & Small Form Factor' started by bass87, Dec 22, 2007.

  1. bass87

    bass87 Member

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Well I've had mine a few days now and got it pretty much setup how I want it. Some of my thoughts:

    T7500 2.2Ghz processor
    3GB Ram
    256MB nVidia graphics card
    Windows Vista premium 32bit
    1280x800 WXGA screen
    250GB Hard Drive


    Design: Much lighter and slimmer than I imagined, a big improvement over my inspiron 6000. I Didnt like the glossy screen at first because I thught it would get affected my glare, I really enjoy it now and has vibrant colours, not looking forward to taking it into the sun/similar light areas. The slot loading cd drive clicks a bit loudly for my liking on startup and loading but I havn't used another to compare it to.

    My second thought was that there was no latch on the laptop lid, being used to this I found it strange however now I don't mind and can't really see the point of having one anymore. Greasy fingers will leave smudges on the lid.

    Having the barrel hinges was very high on my priorities as I have seen many laptop surcome to the dreaded broken hinges. This does mean that all connections are done on the front and sides. I found this a downside on the visual asthetics side of thing, A right-angled power plug would have been a nice thought to try and keep the sides neat. Also both of the headphone outputs are on the front of the machine, as I predominantly use an external setup being plugged in most of the time, bringing the stereo cable around the laptop and into the front is quite messy and annoying.

    [​IMG]

    The design of the base is angled, being slimmer at the front and gradually increasing towards the back. I find this much more comfortable to type on compared to the inspiron 6000 which was quite a thick based laptop. Excuse my crappy camera skills, photo was taken on an angle:

    [​IMG]

    Software: Wasn't much standard dell stuff to get rid of, I have kept the support programs etc and think they'd be quite useful. That said, there are a lot of icons in the bottom right as sandard and addingnmore programs results in it being quite crowded.

    Had a quick play with the webcam and seems about the normal quality expected. The fingerprint reader is also quite handy and was easy to setup.

    Use: The two tests to compare to my old computer was running need for speed most wanted and using the smudge tool in photoshop very quickly for about 30 sconds around and around. NFS played better than my old laptop but probably not as high settings as I would have liked. I did have an error with the graphics card mid game where the computer through an error saying it wasn't functioning but then it came back and I could not replicate the error again. The game does run very well though compared to many of my friends desktops. I'm very happy with its power in such a small unit. The photoshop smudging also went much faster than my old laptop.

    The windows performance index:
    [​IMG]

    The laptop does pump out a bit of heat compared to my inspiron, which had no graphics card, even when just doing everyday operations like internet explorer etc. The heat doesn't rise too much during gaming/photo editing that Ive found. This could be an issue for people using on their actual lap or where the ventilation grills (total of 4 on the base) are blocked.

    Wathcing the RAM I'm struggling to push it over 50%. I do have 3GB which some information sections show but still says that only 2-2.2GB is available or somthing, This should be fixed when Vista SP1 is fully released.

    Extras: I knew the laptop came with the travel remote, it works from a very wide range of angles (pretty much parrallel with the front face and back behind the lappy from a birds eye view if that makes sense) however it does sit about 1-2mm out of its slot and does not recharge itself as far as I can see.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    The laptop also came with an XPS embedded leather bound book which holds the owners manual, 16 cd holder for OEM cd's, screen cloth and headphone pouch. Also Dell have included a very slimline carry pouch which is felt lined, to just slip the laptop into when placing in a backpack or just out of the way. A very big bonus for me as I usually dont like to carry around the large universal laptop bags and will stop the lappy from getting scratched in my backpack and for quick pickup and reloacting of the lappy.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Bluetooth mouse: I went the extra and ordered the bluetooth travel mouse. Much smaller then I am used to (large hands) but I have gotten used to it very quickly, the softwarefor programming the buttons is also very easy to use. It doesn't work through glass however which is a downside as I dont often use a mouse pad on my desk.

    [​IMG]

    All in all I'm very happy with my purchase; it's fast, lightweight visually pleasing and affordable. My biggest problem is getting used to vista.

    Any questions just ask.

    bass87
     
  2. Jimmy89

    Jimmy89 Member

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    Melbourne
    nice review mate, thanks!
     
  3. HellsAngel

    HellsAngel Member

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    Tried Crysis on mine set everything to High and 1024x768 so smooth. It did not have any video lag.

    Tried it on the Vostro 1500 with same specs and I had to set it to medium to make it smooth.
     
  4. DiZyPhEr

    DiZyPhEr Member

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    Did you measure fps? If you didn't add r_displayinfo = 1 to a system.cfg file in the game installation folder and tell us all your average read out in game/post screenies.

    I wanna get one of these but I am waiting for a few reasons atm. I am a gamer and do alot of video encoding/processing for work. For that reason I am waiting for the things below, which should be due soon:

    1. Apparently Peryn comes in January (better for video encoding with its SSE4 optimisations)
    2. LED Backlit 1440x900 screen or CCFL 1680x1050 (personal preference thing)
    3. I would also like a faster GFX card to come with it for future proofing maybe 8800m/rv670m (The graphics interface on xps m1530 isn't some form of mxm is it? Anyways I hear the new mobile rv670 ATI cards will be great with their Thermal Design Power and speed, eliminating any need for a bulkier chassis... hint hint HellsAngel... :) )

    I am aware that some or none of these things will become available but I would slap my $$$ down in an instant if they did. Even if its not what I've listed above some more options as they become available would be nice.

    Does anybody know if the HDMI output will go to my Dell 2405FPW? I'm worried about HDCP mucking about and showing a blank screen...

    Just some ideas, to make a sexy lappie even more sexier in my eyes!

    Nice review Bass! Oh and Merry Xmas All!
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2007
  5. HellsAngel

    HellsAngel Member

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    Tell me where to put that command exactly and then how to activate it in game to see the fps.
     
  6. DiZyPhEr

    DiZyPhEr Member

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    Make a notepad file in the Crysis install folder (same folder where the other folders: bin32, Game, LogBackups etc are) called system.cfg
    In system.cfg only have:

    r_displayinfo = 1

    That's it, run the game and it should have fps and some other info at the top (left I think) of the screen in game.
     
  7. HellsAngel

    HellsAngel Member

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    It didnt work, unless I did wrong :p
     
  8. DiZyPhEr

    DiZyPhEr Member

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    Ok to make it simpler just run the built in GPU Benchmark "Benchmark_GPU.bat" and post the score please. Min, Average and Max please:)

    Cheers
     
  9. HellsAngel

    HellsAngel Member

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    Do I run that ingame or from windows? Is there a console button to use to type that in like quake and half life?
     
  10. higherdestiny

    higherdestiny Member

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    Thanks for taking the time to write the review mate! I've been pondering the purchase of one of these babies for a while, so thanks! I'll keep my eyes open for any bargains :)
     
  11. Kataton1c

    Kataton1c Member

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    Can you tell me what battery power is like?

    And did you get the 6 cell or 9 cell? I want to squeeze 4 hours out of one of these Babies and should be getting it soon :)
     
  12. DiZyPhEr

    DiZyPhEr Member

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    run it in windows double click it, you have used batch files in the past I assume? I loads everything it needs automatically!
     
  13. DaemonEyes

    DaemonEyes Member

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    How are people finding the viewing angles on their screens? Mine is terrible, the top of the screen can be black and the bottom is grey. Also agree with the clunky dvd drive, mine is pretty loud as well. Likewise, other than the screen I'm pretty happy with it and think its a nice lappy.
     
  14. OP
    OP
    bass87

    bass87 Member

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    I got the 6-cell but havn't tested it yet, I will when I get a few hours spare when i need to use it so that its actually working while unplugged. What sort of work are you looking to do? I would only expect to get such a long life if your just word processing without bluetooth, wireless etc.

    The left to right viewing angles are fine but with the up and down I find you gotta be pretty square-on. I watch DVDs with other people from a couple metres distance and I think it's quite fine as long as its roughly square on.
     
  15. HellsAngel

    HellsAngel Member

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    Ok hope I did it right. Max I got was 45FPS, Min was 12FPS and average was around 20FPS.

    This is everything set to high and at 1024x768

    I did not bother trying very high
     
  16. Kataton1c

    Kataton1c Member

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    I will be mostly connected remotely to the internet.

    I need it as I travel from offices etc to access VPNs along the way and my private servers.

    I'd also like to do a bit of gaming all consolidated, but I'm considering the 17", then battery life is reduced too.

    Then again, I also think I'm being unreasonable and expect the battery to last forever so I just may get the bigger screen.

    Your review has really helped me out :)
     
  17. DaemonEyes

    DaemonEyes Member

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    With a 6 cell battery, power save battery plan, screen brightness up to the second highest level and wlan and bluetooth on I get about 2 and 1/4 hours of playing AVI's. Drop in a 9 cell, turn off the wireless and drop the brightness a bit and im sure you could get over 4 hours of basic work use and a good 3 hours of movie watching. Games will probably kill the battery fast though.
     
  18. Lem0n

    Lem0n Member

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    Does the 9 cell battery stick out when installed in the 1530 like it does in a 1330?
     
  19. DaemonEyes

    DaemonEyes Member

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  20. DavidRa

    DavidRa Member

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    Is it really only 100Mb Ethernet?

    I've held off considering the M1530 - the Dell site specifies it as being 100Mbit only. Yeah yeah, I know, limited use - but I've got the Gb network in place and servers that can push and pull 500Mbps sustained, so for me it is worth it.

    Can you confirm whether they really did cut 10c in cost and make it 10/100Mbps only, or is it a misprint and it's really 10/100/1000Mbps?
     

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