Dell XPS 17 (2022): Two Minute Review
If the Dell XPS 17 (2022) looks familiar, it’s because it is. Physically, this revised 2022 model is a dead letter for last year’s XPS — and 2020’s too — but that’s not a bad thing, considering this is one of, if not the smartest and sleekest laptops out there.
What’s new can be found inside, specifically Intel’s latest 12 Gen CPUs. Our review unit rocks the Intel Core i7-12700H, which includes six performance cores plus eight efficiency cores and turbos up to 4.7GHz.
Frankly, it should be enough CPU for even the most demanding users, making it one of the best laptops around for productivity and business users. But if you really insist, you can pay extra – and a whole lot more because the upgrade typically forces more expensive components in other areas – for Dell to stay in a Core i9-12900K, which has the same number of cores but peaks at 5GHz. We wouldn’t bother, because you won’t feel the difference, if at all.
Dell XPS 17 (2022) Key specs
Here is the Dell XPS 17 (2022) configuration sent to Ditching for review:
PROCESSOR: Intel Core 17-12700H
Graphic: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050
RAM: 32GB DDR5
Screen: 17-inch 3,840 x 2,400, 500 nits
Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD
Ports: 4 x USB-C with Thunderbolt 4, 1 x 3.5mm combo jack, 1 x SD card reader
Connectivity: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2
Camera: 720p with IR
Weight: £4.79 | 2.17 kg
Dimension (W x D x H): 14.74 x 9.76 x 0.77 inches (375 x 248 x 20mm)
Elsewhere, one thing the XPS isn’t is a true gaming laptop. Our setup has an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 GPU with 4 GB of graphics memory. It’s dandy for a bit of casual gaming and will also add some welcome grunt to GPU-accelerated productivity and content creation apps. But it’s not a 4K powerhouse, nor is the RTX 3060 chip offered as an upgrade, which should ideally get the XPS display’s spec.
We do indeed have the optional upgrade panel with 3840 by 2400 pixels – more than standard 4K thanks to the higher aspect ratio of 16:10. It’s a stunner of a screen at a punchy 500 nits and with 100 percent coverage of the Adobe RGB gamut, so it’s fully capable of content creation workflows. It also supports HDR, but isn’t a newfangled mini LED panel, so keep expectations in check. The HDR experience is OK rather than dazzling.
The display looks all the better thanks to those signature Dell XPS thin bezels on all four sides. It’s a design feature that keeps this two-year-old design looking up-to-date and also minimizes the laptop’s overall footprint. Not only the screen stands out, but also the sound quality. The XPS 17 really packs an audio punch, with remarkably dynamic sound, including decent bass, good stereo separation and strong volume.
The best things about this revised 2022 model of the Dell XPS 17 is the battery life of over 10 hours during light workloads, which is excellent for this big beast. On the other hand, this isn’t nearly as portable as the best Ultrabooksbut no 17-inch laptop will ever score very high in that area.
But if you take it with you, you can actually work a day without the mains, making it one of the best student laptops for college students in a few months.
So whether you’re a student, a content creator, or just want a beautiful device, the Dell XPS 17 (2022) holds its place as possibly the best dell laptop ever made that is not called the XPS 13.
Dell XPS 17 (2022): Pricing and Availability
- Starting price looks attractive
- Gets pricey fast with options
The Dell XPS 17 (2022) starts at $1,749 in the US, £2,099 in the UK and AU$3,999, the apparent difference outside the US being due to a higher specification CPU. Anyway, if that’s not exactly cheap, it only gets worse when you add upgrades.
For example, the beautiful UHD+ touchscreen will add $300/£300, doubling the RAM to 32GB will set you back $150/£200 and the 1TB SSD will cost an extra $100/£100. All things considered, as configured here, you’re looking at $2,749, £2,599 in the UK and AU$4,798 below that.
Dell XPS 17 (2022): Design
- Super thin edges
- Beautiful build quality
The design of the Dell XPS 17 (2022) is a dead letter for last year’s model and the year before, but we’re thankful for that.
The XPS is super slim and beautifully built, with machined aluminum main chassis and screen cover and carbon fiber palm rest. It also still looks modern, thanks to the ultra-thin bezels on all four sides of the display. And that’s despite still squeezing in a 720p webcam at the top with Windows Hello facial recognition support.
The chassis is very solid and the keyboard bed fairly stable, although there is a bit of flex present. The large trackpad is about as good as it gets on a Windows laptop. Only Apple’s MacBooks do trackpads better.
Of course, this is still a big machine weighing well over 2kg and over 14 inches in diameter, but that’s the case with all best 17 inch laptops; they will just never be compact. That said, the slim bezels ensure the smallest footprint possible and ensure that if you must have something this big, you at least get the most out of its size.
The XPS 17 is about as portable as 17-inch laptops, with the possible exception of the featherweight LG Gram 17, which is slightly wider in terms of footprint but much lighter at 1.35kg.
If we disagree with the XPS’s proportions, it’s how they match the port selection. On the one hand, the quartet of USB-C ports all support full Thunderbolt 4 functionality with power delivery and DisplayPort alt mode, which is great.
There is also a full size SD card slot and an audio jack. But that’s it. There’s no USB Type-A, no full-size HDMI jack or a LAN port, but that’s the price you pay for the slick look and chiseled sides of the chassis.
Dell XPS 17 (2022): Performance
- Grunty 12th Gen Intel CPUs
- Good cooling
- Not a real gaming laptop
With six performance cores and eight efficiency cores, the XPS 17’s Intel Core i7-12700H has as many cores as the top Core i9 processor from Intel’s latest 12th-generation Alder Lake CPU family. It just runs at slightly slower clock speeds, but not that you’d notice.
In terms of CPU performance, this laptop has everything you could wish for. It rips through everything from video encoding to 3D rendering with ease. Alder Lake’s unparalleled single-core performance also ensures that this laptop feels snappy for everyday tasks like web browsing.
Indeed, with full 32GB of RAM, you will rarely run out of memory, making multitasking a breeze. With that much RAM, switching application data to the SSD will almost never happen. Even if it does, a fast PCIe Gen 4.0 SSD is ready to minimize the performance hit from swapping drives. Overall it really is a very fast machine, this XPS 17.
Here’s how the Dell XPS 17 (2022) performed in our series of benchmark tests:
3DMark night raid: 27,398; Fire Attack: 11,908; Time spy: 5.439
Cinebench R23 Multicore: 17,747
GeekBench 5 Single core: 1,682; (Multi core) 13,725
PCMark 10 (Home Test): 6.810
Battery Life (Gadget Masti Movie Test): 10:14
Total War: Warhammer III (1080p, Ultra): 48 fps; (1080p, Low): 121 fps
Dirt 5 (1080p, Ultra): 44 fps; (1080p, Low): 96 fps
If there’s an exception, it’s graphics performance and gaming. As tested, our review unit runs Nvidia’s GeForce RTYX 3050 mobile GPU with 4 GB of video memory. It’s definitely a big step up from plain old integrated graphics. As our benchmarks show, you can get playable frame rates of 1080p in modern games. But only just. It’s not a really powerful gaming GPU.
You can optionally go for the RTX 3060, which will improve your frame rates. But even that GPU isn’t nearly powerful enough to play games at the XPS’ native 4K-plus screen resolution. Even Nvidia’s fastest mobile GPU, the RTX 3080 Ti, is barely capable of that.
Anyway, the point is that the XPS is definitely suited to some casual gaming. But if gaming is one of your top priorities and you can afford this laptop class, we recommend getting one of the best gaming laptops instead with at least an RTX 3070 GPU, something that is certainly available at this price.
Dell XPS 17 (2022): Battery Life
- Impressive battery life for a large machine
- Battery life of a full working day is possible
Big high-powered laptops like the Dell XPS 17 (2022) used to be nailed down sureties for terrible battery life. Not these days. With light workloads, such as watching videos and surfing the web, you can expect a battery life of more than 10 hours. That’s real all-day performance.
Admittedly, if you do something more demanding, that number will drop dramatically, despite the gargantuan 97Wh battery. But this is certainly not one of those old-fashioned desktop replacement installations where you worried about battery life the moment you unplugged it. This thing has legs.
Should you buy a Dell XPS 17 (2022)?
Buy it if…
Don’t buy it if…
Dell XPS 17 (2022): Report Card
|Where the||No laptop this powerful and well built will come cheap, but be careful with the options, they really add up!||3.5 / 5|
|Design||Oh so slim, impossibly slick and beautifully built, that’s the Dell XPS 17 – it just doesn’t have the best port selection.||4.5 / 5|
|Performance||Intel’s latest 12th generation CPUs give this updated machine some serious power, but the graphics performance could be better.||4 / 5|
|Battery life||For such a large, powerful machine, the Dell XPS 17 has remarkable battery life, with battery life in excess of 10 hours possible.||4 / 5|
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