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Dell ultra-thin Adamo XPS launches

Dell ultra-thin Adamo XPS launches

Dell's Adamo XPS features some interesting design choices - and is, on average, half the thickness of Apple's Air.

Dell's ultra-slim MacBook Air-alike - teaser pictures of which the company released back in September - has finally been made official, and it's a pretty stylish bit of kit.

According to the freshly created official specification page, Dell's latest manages to pip the already pretty svelte Air to the 'thinnest laptop in the world' status at just 9.9mm thick - around half that of the Air, on average.

The Adamo XPS manages this via its rather snazzy angled keyboard, which - according to the company - fits "inside the reinforced display when closed," and provides an angled worksurface when opened, with part of the laptop providing a 'foot' to lift the body from the ground. As well as giving a more natural angle for the average typist, this should help with cooling - something that ultra-slim laptops must always be cautious of owing to the lack of space for heatsinks on components.

The Adamo's display is pretty compact at 13.4" 16:9, but manages to cram 1280x720 pixels with an LED backlight system in to its reinforced casing - something which Dell claims "gives the laptop a solid feel in spite of its thinness." Somewhat disappointingly considering the specifications, the laptop only manages 5 hours and 17 minutes of continuous usage - providing you purchase the 40WHr extended-life battery. Cleverly, however, the battery can be swapped while the system is in sleep mode without the need to fully power the unit off - a far cry from the MacBook Air's integral, non-user-replaceable battery.

Dell has clearly tried to be as innovative as possible with the design of the Adamo XPS, from the ultra-thin chassis to the angled worksurface - but nowhere is this more apparent than the lid catch. Traditional mechanical latches have been eschewed, in favour of a capacitive latch release system which the company claims enabled the laptop to be opened "with a simple swipe of your finger." The

The remainder of the specs are to be expected from a premium laptop: 4GB of RAM, metallic keycaps on a full-size keyboard, integrated 2 megapixel webcam, DisplayPort connectivity along with two USB 2.0 ports and an external dongle as standard which provides 10/100 networking and a DVI output along with the option for VGA and HDMI dongles as well. Storage is courtesy of an impressively sized 128GB SSD module, and integrated wireless networking is taken care of by an 802.11a/b/g/n full-spectrum wireless card and a Bluetooth 2.0 module. Of course, with the size standing at an impressive 340mm x 273.9mm x 9.99 mm and weighing just 1.44kg with the standard battery, something had to give - and in the case of the Adamo XPS it's the processor and the graphics, which is an ultra-low voltage 1.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo backed by an integrated Intel G45 GPU. The unit is provided with Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit as standard, although the 64-bit edition is available as an optional extra at a $30 premium.

Speaking of pricing, the Adamo XPS is available in the US at a starting price of $1,799 (£1,074), which gets you the full 128GB SSD and 4GB of RAM - although to get the five-hour lifespan you'll need to shell out an extra $100 on the additional 40WHr battery - and should ship by Christmas. So far there's no indication of UK pricing or availability.

Is this the Air-alike you've been waiting for, or has Dell's innovations made the Adamo XPS just a little bit too novel for your tastes? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

28 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
alpaca 19th November 2009, 14:25 Quote
i like it!
Krikkit 19th November 2009, 14:28 Quote
That looks awesome. Having said that it's all about what it feels like in the hand, not how it looks on the web.
perplekks45 19th November 2009, 14:43 Quote
Shiny!
eek 19th November 2009, 14:47 Quote
But how would you use it on your lap?! It'd dig in to your legs!! Looks to me like it's only been designed with a desk/other hard surface in mind!

Impressive specs for the size, shame it'll probably be $1=£1 when they bring it across the pond
bigsharn 19th November 2009, 14:53 Quote
As much as I hate Dells with a burning passion, I really like the design behind this... It's actually really prettiful

Pity it's designed for pretty boys and rich kids that can't carry anything heavier to school with them :p
PureSilver 19th November 2009, 15:28 Quote
I love things like this because they push the envelope, so even if it's brutally expensive and chronically underpowered it leads us down paths that lead to everything getting smaller and lighter - like the Air...
Abhorsen 19th November 2009, 15:34 Quote
I like... alot.
metarinka 19th November 2009, 15:37 Quote
interesting, better specced than the air as well, which is a useless bit of kit.

still though, what is the target market of these ultra small, do nothing lap tops?
Sheiken 19th November 2009, 15:41 Quote
I dont foresee that hinge mechanism being very strong...
Krikkit 19th November 2009, 15:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by metarinka
still though, what is the target market of these ultra small, do nothing lap tops?
Like the Air, and to a lesser extent, Macbook Pro's and other premium laptops, for the rich types who want a top-quality machine. In the case of this and the Air, something that's very portable and yet still retains the oooh factor. :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheiken
I dont foresee that hinge mechanism being very strong...

I'm sure they've worked it out to be sufficiently strong - they wouldn't bother to sell it if it creaked and wobbled while you were typing on it. After all, something like that you can get away with adding a bit of weight for the sake of nice feel.
Mankz 19th November 2009, 15:46 Quote
Want.
13eightyfour 19th November 2009, 15:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eek
But how would you use it on your lap?! It'd dig in to your legs!! Looks to me like it's only been designed with a desk/other hard surface in mind!

This ^^

It might not be too bad but it looks like it would be a nightmare to use in everyday life.
perplekks45 19th November 2009, 15:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eek
But how would you use it on your lap?! It'd dig in to your legs!! Looks to me like it's only been designed with a desk/other hard surface in mind!
Ehrm... it helps with ventilation and given the overheating issues with HP's 2510p and the general heat output of their 2530p, 6910p and 6930p I welcome every notebook that is better than that!
l3v1ck 19th November 2009, 16:51 Quote
If it's that thin, I hope it's sturdy. I'd be worried about damaging it.
eek 19th November 2009, 17:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by perplekks45
Quote:
Originally Posted by eek
But how would you use it on your lap?! It'd dig in to your legs!! Looks to me like it's only been designed with a desk/other hard surface in mind!
Ehrm... it helps with ventilation and given the overheating issues with HP's 2510p and the general heat output of their 2530p, 6910p and 6930p I welcome every notebook that is better than that!
So? Doesn't make it practical to use! I have a laptop precisely because I don't want to use a desk (at home anyway, work is a different matter but I can't see many business customers for this...)
PureSilver 19th November 2009, 17:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eek
So? Doesn't make it practical to use! I have a laptop precisely because I don't want to use a desk (at home anyway, work is a different matter but I can't see many business customers for this...)

I don't think there were ever intended to be wholesale business customers for this. Who do you see using comparable machines like the Air? People in suits for whom efficiency is all, or people in coffee shops who want to look cool? I think this is a coffee-shop/departure lounge sort of thing; ultraportable, for being put on a desk for personal use or a few emails while you wait for a flight or a meeting.

This isn't a practical laptop and it's not being marketed as an everyday laptop for the masses - it's a crushingly expensive rich-man's/obsessive geek's toy, like the last Vaio X505.
Cupboard 19th November 2009, 18:04 Quote
The swapping battery while in sleep mode idea is rather useful - why has no one done that before?
leexgx 19th November 2009, 20:40 Quote
64bit is default install most laptops i have seen in PC world and other places put 64bit on by default ($30 more when 32 and 64bit is the same price)
PureSilver 19th November 2009, 21:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cupboard
The swapping battery while in sleep mode idea is rather useful - why has no one done that before?

It is a good idea, I dunno... One reason I can foresee it not catching on is that people very, very rarely buy a second laptop battery, which is why things like the Air can get away with sealed-in power.
ch424 19th November 2009, 21:21 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cupboard
The swapping battery while in sleep mode idea is rather useful - why has no one done that before?

My last two Dell laptops (2003, 2008) had this feature! In fact, I think all laptops with removable batteries can do it.

As several others have said: Want.
crazyceo 19th November 2009, 21:57 Quote
I think this looks really cool. Want one!
stonedsurd 20th November 2009, 02:32 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Krikkit
They wouldn't bother to sell it if it creaked and wobbled while you were typing on it. After all, something like that you can get away with adding a bit of weight for the sake of nice feel.
Why? They did that with the first Adamo.

I think it's a very poor design. Only good for desks, which makes that 'ultraportable' tag a joke.
crazyceo 20th November 2009, 08:48 Quote
You are all just purely speculating on whether it's comfortable or not. They don't put out a new funky product without proper R&D. The name Laptop would suggest one of it's purposes would be to sit on your lap in comfort. This hasn't been a full product review by Bit-Tech, just a review of the media sent by Dell.

Based on the topic content, it looks and sounds cool but I'll wait the guys to give it the once over before I decide whether to own one or not.
perplekks45 20th November 2009, 09:16 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by leexgx
($30 more when 32 and 64bit is the same price)
http://forums.bit-tech.net/picture.php?albumid=590&pictureid=6620

:p
eek 20th November 2009, 09:32 Quote
I'd rather the sony x series. Sure it's less powerful, but I wouldn't spend that much on a Dell... Dell just isn't a cool brand no matter how much better specc'd the laptop is. Sony and Apple on the other hand - they turn heads.
perplekks45 20th November 2009, 12:10 Quote
Because that's what computing is all about: Looking good. Just look at all the people pushing technology boundaries, the most stylish people on earth, right?
eek 23rd November 2009, 09:49 Quote
That's what this laptop is about, yes.
leslie 23rd November 2009, 13:42 Quote
That looks like something that sits on an exec's desk.
You know, the one who only uses it to occasionally check stocks and email.

I want a notebook that works, not a piece of art that occasionally doubles as a Blackberry.


I'm sorry, but if you need to prop up a laptop that much for it to cool effectively, you failed. Go back and start over. It's pretty, but that's it.
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