Dell XPS L501x Application Performance

PCMark loves SSDs, so the performance of the L501x isn't going to break any records there. Actually, the i5-460M processor is pretty common as well, striking a balance between price and performance. Clocked at 2.53GHz with only a 2.80GHz Turbo Boost available, it's slightly slower than the i5-540M (lower Turbo) but as an OEM part the prices are probably far more attractive. Despite the return to the "pure" XPS name, the new XPS line essentially continues from where the Studio XPS left off. These are good multimedia platforms with mainstream gaming performance, suitable for all but the most demanding users.

Here's how the L501x compares to several other recently reviewed laptops. We've chosen to highlight two other laptops for comparison: the ASUS N82Jv and the Toshiba A660D. The N82Jv is a good all-around laptop with a similar size and performance while the A660D represents the high-water mark for current AMD Danube platforms. Actually, that's not entirely true—AMD has faster mobile parts available—but the A660D is at least in the same price range as the base XPS L501x. We've also got results from the latest MacBook Pro 13 in our charts, but we really need a comparison with the MBP15 (under Windows) to be fair, so we won't make too much of the MBP13 here.

Futuremark PCMark Vantage

Futuremark PCMark05

3D Rendering - CINEBENCH R10

3D Rendering - CINEBENCH R10

Video Encoding - x264

Video Encoding - x264

General performance is right where we'd expect it for the CPU, GPU, and HDD combination. The L501x trails the N82Jv slightly in PCMark Vantage but reasserts itself in the CPU intensive CINEBENCH and x264 testing. The higher base clock speed also puts it within striking distance of the i7-720QM in multi-threaded tasks, so unless you really need every last ounce of multi-core power the dual-core i5-460M is a compelling alternative—and don't forget the loss of Optimus (and the price increase) that comes with moving to Clarksfield processors. As a balanced platform, Arrandale is very difficult to beat, and AMD will need its Bulldozer/Llana mobile offerings before it can go toe-to-toe with Intel laptops.

Up Close and Personal with the Dell XPS L501x Dell XPS L501x Gaming and Graphics Performance
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  • FearoftheNight - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Bought my macbook pro back when pc notebooks were dull and lame and vista had just come out. Glad to see viable and very reasonably priced alternatives to Apple now that my laptop is getting old! :) Reply
  • fabarati - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Actually, Assuming you mean really early 2007, Asus still had som bitchin' business laptops, like the W3, the V6 and the W7. Reply
  • blackrook - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Now I've got a twinge of buyers remorse from my Envy 14 purchase. I'd love to see a comparison between the Radiance screen with this one, as well as the HD5650 vs. the 420m. Reply
  • FearoftheNight - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Didn't they discontinue the Radiance? Reply
  • blackrook - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Yes. Rumor has it they're going to be back in stock sometime in December. Whether they'll be the same screen (since the company that manufactured them went out of business) remains to be seen.

    The Radiance screen went from essentially a $100 upgrade to $200 to $300 until it was taken off altogether. I wonder whether the price for this screen will go up too. $130 is a steal.
    Reply
  • PlasmaBomb - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Dell are looking £170 (inc. taxes) for the R+BG 1080p screen in the UK :(

    Taking off taxes and converting to dollars thats ~$231.50

    Rip Off..
    Reply
  • khimera2000 - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    isint all electronics overpriced in the UK to begin with??? Reply
  • BarkHumbug - Thursday, November 11, 2010 - link

    "isint all electronics overpriced in the EU to begin with???"

    There, fixed it.
    Reply
  • erple2 - Friday, November 12, 2010 - link

    $231.50 for the single most important thing on your laptop? I don't think that's even remotely close to a ripoff. Particularly given how stunningly superior the screen is to every other 720p screen that most laptop companies pass off to consumers. Reply
  • Rasterman - Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - link

    Read the last paragraph in the review. Reply

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