We take a close-up look at Dell's new 14in laptop, which boasts lots of speed under the hood
Here is a close-up of the ports on the rear. From left to right, you get: power, Mini DisplayPort, HDMI, two USB ports (the second one is USB 3.0 capable) and Gigabit Ethernet.
The left side also has an air vent, as well as microphone and headphone jacks and an SD card slot.
The right side has a built-in, slot-loading DVD burner. While optical media may slowly be on the way out, it's nice to have this drive so that you can rip CDs and DVDs or install the odd driver now and then.
It's also a backlit keyboard and we think it looks great when illuminated.
The XPS 14z has the same styling as the XPS 15z, but on a smaller scale. It's not identical in design though, and there are differences in the port layout.
A battery level indicator on the right side is handy for when you want to quickly check on the notebook's juice without first booting it up.
Here is the 14z sitting, waiting to be removed and booted into action. It's a laptop that is said to have a 14in screen in a 13in form factor. It's starting weight is just under 2kg, it's around 25mm thick and it's 335mm wide and 234mm deep.
The bottom has etched holes that allow the chassis to breath. It's a one-piece anodised aluminium base that feels strong and it's a sealed design so you can't easily service the unit yourself.
The rear of the unit has all of the main ports -- the power port included -- and this helps to keep things neat. There is also an air vent.
The design of the XPS 14z is simple and plain, and for the most part it looks just like the 15z.
The keyboard is spill-resistant and similar in design to the keyboard on the 15z. We didn't like the feel of the keyboard on the 15z, but our first impression of the 14z keyboard is that it's a little better, perhaps because it has been scaled down a little. The arrow keys are still small and the eject button for the optical drive still sits between the F12 and Insert keys.
These days it's not all about the products; the product packaging also has to be up to scratch. The box for the XPS 14z is attractive and it opens up easily to expose the laptop inside.
The XPS 14z will be available in Australia from 15 November with a starting price of $1199 for the Intel Core i5 model. A Core i7 model will also be offered. The 14z will also have NVIDIA GeForce GT 520M graphics (1GB), 4 or 8GB of RAM and there will be a choice of either 7200rpm hard drives or a 256GB solid state drive.
Don’t have an account? Sign up here
Don't have an account? Sign up now