Dell's popular XPS family, which are among the best ultrabooks and premium laptops, is getting refreshed with Intel's latest Alder Lake-H mobile processors. The new 12th generation processors will be available in the XPS 15 and XPS 17 to satisfy your needs in the 15.6-inch and 17.3-inch form factor, respectively.
Given that the XPS family last received a significant design overhaul last year with a switch to 4-sided InfinityEdge 16:10 displays, there are no major visual updates for 2022. Instead, the big news comes under the hood, where the XPS 15 is available with either a Core i5-12500H, Core i7-12700H or Core i9-12900HK processor. That flagship 12900HK delivers 14 cores (20 threads) and a maximum turbo frequency of 5GHz. All processors are paired with dual-channel DDR5-4800 memory in capacities ranging from 16GB to 64GB. You can also configure a barebones system with just one stick of DDR5-4800 if you're looking to save a few bucks.
As before, there are three 15.6-inch display options to choose from: 1920 x 1200 (FHD+), 3456 x 2160 (3.5K), and 3840x2400 (4K+). The panels feature Dolby Vision support and EyeSafe technology, while the FHD+ and 4K+ panels are specced for 500 nits brightness and a 1,600:1 contrast ratio. However, the option that many will want to spring for will be the 3.5K OLED panel, which boasts a 100,000:1 contrast ratio.
Those displays can be paired with Intel UHD or Intel Iris Xe graphics if you want to go the integrated route. However, if you require more graphics muscle for your workloads, Dell offers up NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 3050 (4GB) or RTX 3050 TI (4GB) as options.
Base configurations come with a 256GB PCIe 3.0 SSD, but 512GB, 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB PCIe 4.0 SSD options are available. In fact, Dell says that you can equip the XPS 15 with up to 8TB of storage (2x 4TB) if you wish. Users can opt for either a 56- or 86 WHr battery at the time of purchase, and all systems come equipped with two Thunderbolt 4 ports, one USB 3.2 Type-C port, one full-size Secure Digital slot, and a 3.5mm headphone/microphone combo jack.
If you require a slightly larger laptop with a bigger display and more graphics muscle, you can step into the XPS 17. It features the same available processor, RAM, and SSD configurations as the smaller XPS 15. Where things differ are with the displays (obviously) and available discrete GPUs. The base display option is a 17-inch FHD+ InfinityEdge panel (500 nits, 1,650:1 contrast ratio) with an anti-glare coating. The premium option is the 4K+ InfinityEdge panel (500 nits, 1,600:1 contrast ratio) with anti-reflective coating and multi-touch support. Both panels support Dolby Vision with Eyesafe technology.
Regarding graphics, the first three choices are the same as on the XPS 15: Intel UHD, Iris Xe and RTX 3050 (4GB). However, the XPS 17 has the option for the more powerful RTX 3060 (6GB) for those that need more graphics muscle. All XPS 17 systems come with a 97 WHr battery and include four Thunderbolt 4 ports (instead of two Thunderbolt plus one USB-C on the XPS 15).
According to Dell, the XPS 15 and XPS 17 with 12th generation Alder Lake-H processors launch today, priced from $1,449 and $1,849, respectively. However, please note that Dell says XPS 17 configurations with the RTX 3060 will not be available until April.
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Brandon Hill is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware. He has written about PC and Mac tech since the late 1990s with bylines at AnandTech, DailyTech, and Hot Hardware. When he is not consuming copious amounts of tech news, he can be found enjoying the NC mountains or the beach with his wife and two sons.