Which Dell is best? Studio 15 vs Inspiron vs XPS

Which Dell is best? Studio 15 vs Inspiron vs XPS

Buying a mid-range Dell notebook now means a choice between Dell's Inspiron, Studio and XPS notebooks. We examine the value.

The Dell Studio 15 brings more choice to the mid-range laptop market, but also you'll also have the lower-end Inspiron and higher-end XPS to consider, both which overlap with the Studio 15 prices.

So is the Studio 15 better value than its siblings, or should you consider an Inspiron or XPS M1530?

Studio 15 vs XPS M1530
We specced a Studio 15 for $1457 on the Dell site (the official starting price is currently $1,149), to get it closer on paper to Dell's XPS M1530. We also specced an entry level XPS M1530 for $1798.

We're not entirely convinced the $300 step up to the XPS M1530 is a must.

Major differences are processor and graphics. On our Studio 15 we have Intel's Core 2 Duo P8400, vs the T8300 on the XPS M1530. The P8400 has a lower clock speed at 2.26GHz chip vs 2.4GHz for the T8300, and has 3MB cache (same as the XPS). On the other hand, the P8400 is a 25watt chip, vs 35W for the T series, so in theory it's more battery efficient.

The Studio 15 is also on the new Centrino 2 platform, and has a 1066MHz FSB, vs 800MHz for the XPs.

The other major difference is graphics. The entry level Studio 15 gives you the choice of either Intel's integrated graphics (4500MHD), the better choice for battery life, or 256MB Ati Mobility Radeon HD 3450. The XPS eschews integrated graphics in favour of 256MB NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT.

Both notebooks come with internal DVD combo drives, though there is a Blu-Ray option on the entry level XPS. The XPS also has an integrated mobile broadband option, which wasn't mentioned on our Studio 15.

The Studio 15's Centrino 2 platform and solid spec stack up well against the entry level XPS M1530. It seems the XPS' advantages here are mostly in terms of its sleeker design, and slightly lighter weight (2.62Kg vs 2.77Kg for the Studio 15).

Studio 15 vs Inspiron 1525
We also configured a top end Inspiron 1525 for comparison. Our spec included Intel Core 2 Duo T8300 (same as the XPS), the same 1440x900 scren as the XPS, 3GB RAM (same as Studio 15), and 320GB HDD (same as Studio 15). Bluetooth and wireless n were add-on modules, and there was no dedicated graphics option, only Intel's older generation X3100.

With the older Centrino platform, older graphics, and without the LED screen, our Inspiron 1525 spec came to $1527 - actually more than the Studio 15.

In this comparison, the Studio 15 stacks up as the better buy, and it's also solid value against the more expensive XPS. If you're looking for a solid mid-range laptop, we recommend you place the Studio 15 on your shopping list.

 

Dell Inspiron 1525 - $1527
Latest deals on Dell Inspiron 1525
Dell Studio 15 MV - $1457
Latest deals on Dell Studio laptops
Dell XPS M1530 - $1798
Latest deals on Dell XPS laptops
Dell Inspiron 1525 Dell Studio 15 MV Laptop Dell XPS M1530
- Intel® Core™ 2 Duo Processor T8300 (2.4GHz/800 FSB/ 3MB Cache)
- Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium 32 bit
- 15.4" Widescreen WXGA+ (1440x900) TFT
- 3GB (1X1GB+1X2GB) 667MHz Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM
- 320GB SATA Hard Drive
- Internal 8X DVD+/-RW Combination Drive
- Intel® Integrated Graphics Media Accelerator X3100
- Dell 1505 Wireless-N Mini-Card
- Dell™ Wireless 355 Bluetooth Module
- Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor P8400
- Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium 32 bit
- 15.4 " Widescreen WXGA + (1440x900) WLED TFT
- 3GB (1X1GB+1X2GB) Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM
- 320GB SATA Hard Drive
- Internal 8X DVD+/-RW Combination Drive
- Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 4500MHD
- Intel® WiFi Link 5100 (802.11a/g/n) Half Mini-card
- Dell™ Wireless 370 Bluetooth Module
- Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor T8300 (2.4 GHz, 3MB Cache, 800 MHz FSB)
- Genuine Windows Vista(R) Home Premium 32 bit
- 15.4" Widescreen WXGA+ (1440x900) TFT
- 4GB ( 2 X 2048MB ) 667MHz Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM
- 320GB SATA Hard Drive
- Internal 8X DVD+/-RW Combination Drive
- 256MB NVIDIA® GeForce® 8600M GT
- Intel® 4965AGN Wireless-N Mini-Card
- Dell™ Wireless 355 Bluetooth Module
See more about:  dell  |  studio  |  15  |  inspiron  |  xps  |  notebooks
 
 

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