Intel's Next Wave of Laptops | Showcase | A spiritual successor to the original Ultrabook

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Intel's Next Wave of Laptops | Showcase | A spiritual successor to the original Ultrabook

Hey guys, this is Austin. This is one of the biggest laptop upgrades in years, let me explain. Intel, who are sponsoring this article have been working on something big, the Project Athena innovation program, now this is a codename that's essentially like a spiritual successor to the original Ultrabook concept. And then if you see the engineered for mobile performance visual identifier when you're shopping for a laptop, It means you're getting a few guaranteed things. The laptop they sent over is this. The Dell XPS 13 2in1, which I switched over to as my daily driver. It's good. It's very, very good. Now there are a few things that jump out to me about this, but probably the number one thing are the graphics. They are so, so much better, now typically speaking the integrated graphics on Intel processors were fine, they were usable but they were not particularly impressive and certainly really not up for any kind of remotely hardcore gaming.

Now this is certainly still not a gaming computer, what you're getting here is a lot more performance Intel claims about twice as much compared to last generation and I tend to agree, it is a huge difference, and honestly it changes a lot of the ways that I use this laptop. Now previously to get more graphics horsepower you've had to go to a bigger thicker laptop with a dedicated GPU. Now that's certainly not a bad thing, right? I mean you're certainly going to get a lot more power, but because of that you have to sacrifice a lot of thickness, you have to sacrifice a lot of weight. You have to sacrifice money to pay for generally a more expensive design. However, this is a nice sweet spot and that you don't really have any of those trade offs but you still get much, much better performance than before. So this is one of the 10th generation processors that does have the Iris Plus graphics, which is denoted when you look at the product name as a 1065G7, of course this being a Core i7. Now there are other 10th Gen processors and some of them do have their own advantages, but to make sure that you get the Iris Plus graphics that is what you want to look for.

Now we take a quick detour into nerd town backing all of this up is some very fast RAM. So this guy is rocking LPDDR4 at a full 3733 megahertz, now that's fast for any system but especially considering that we have that faster CPU and GPU to sort of feed, it actually does make a big difference. And that's sort of one of my big takeaways with not only jumping up to 10th Gen. But jumping up to this XPS 13, there are a lot of small and some fairly large upgrades but when you take a look at all of them together. It does mean this system is a full generational leap over what we've seen in the past. Which is something that well, but frankly we haven't really seen in a while, the laptop space has improved we've seen a little bit here a little bit there. But pretty much everything is new here, and because of that we're seeing major performance gains across the spectrum which is awesome to see, it really is a great upgrade. Another area that I'm really excited about is on the CPU side.

So for the first time in years we have a brand new CPU core design codenamed "Sunny Cove", and the big difference here is that we're getting a full 18% IPC uplift, which means that if both chips are running at the exact same speed Skylake versus Sunny Cove, you're getting an additional 18% performance, and generally speaking, that's definitely enough to notice. The only thing I was slightly worried about is that the clock speeds have actually come down a little bit this generation, however, realistically especially with the XPS 13 it's actually not a big deal, the clocks are very similar to what I'm getting on a lot of 8th generation devices, and yet with that additional IPC, it means that I am seeing a noticeable bump in performance. Now more than ever though, the performance of these 10th Gen chips is dictated by the computer and the tuning and the chassis that's around them. If you give them enough power, if you give them enough cooling you're actually going to see a ton of performance. But just because you see 10th Gen on the box does not necessarily mean that you're going to get excellent performance.

And with that brings me to my next point, the Project Athena innovation program. Not all laptops are created equal, which I guess should be pretty self explanatory but let me explain. Number one would probably be battery life, now you've probably seen claims like 12 hours or 18 hours of battery life, what companies usually don't tell you. Is it that 12 or 18 hour number is typically under a very, shall we say, unlikely circumstances like sitting in airplane mode, looping a article with screen brightness low like it's just not a realistic test. The idea here is that you're getting a laptop with 9 hours of realistic battery life. When you see this engineered for mobile performance identifier, the testing that Intel and their OEM partners are doing here includes things like, oh I don't know, keeping your WiFi on, having multiple programs open decent screen brightness. You know, the way that a normal person would use their laptop, as far as what this XPS 13, I can say that sounds about right, I've generally gotten 8 to 10 hours of battery life with fairly light use obviously if you're doing gaming, your 3D rendering it's going to be less.

But it's certainly not going to be one of those like 16 hours of battery life that's like, 6 when you actually start using it, so they've done a lot of optimization work to make sure that even when you have this thing unplugged you're not losing a lot of performance and that's actually really nice because anytime I do a test or a benchmark of a laptop. I always have to make sure that it is plugged in, because a lot of times when you unplug the laptop, while you might technically have a lot of power, a lot of times it actually throttles way down to try to conserve on battery, but the flip side is that you have a portable laptop, that doesn't perform well when it's being used as a portable laptop. There's a lot to like with the XPS 13 as well. One of the big selling points here is that you get super quick wake time and responsiveness with these laptops, I love this display, it's a taller 16:10 aspect ratio which I appreciate for the extra screen real estate, even though this is the base screen, honestly, actually it's the one I prefer, it's still touchscreen, you can still do the whole tilty flippy thing, but importantly, you're still getting the better battery life, and realistically a 1920x1200 display on a 13.5 inch laptop is a-okay for me.

It also helps to the keyboard is excellent, you're getting that great feeling carbon fiber and aluminum build and well yes, it would be nice to have had a USB-A port, the fact that I have two Thunderbolt 3's means that this dropped right into my desk with my 5K display my Thunderbolt dock is a really solid setup. Now the only thing I can really sort of knock it for are really minor things, so the fingerprint sensor isn't quite as accurate as I'd like. But beyond that, I'm getting the performance, I'm getting the battery life, I'm getting the build quality. It shouldn't be much of a surprise. The XPS 13 is my new daily driver. Anyway, thank you very much for reading this episode, all about the brand new Intel 10th Gen laptops and of course the project Athena innovation program There are definitely other thin and light laptops which are also powerful like what Intel and Dell worked together on with the XPS 13, and they will be starting to roll out over the next few months, so definitely be sure to check out

The link in the description for more info, especially if you're in need of that sweet, sweet laptop upgrade.
Intel's Next Wave of Laptops | Showcase | A spiritual successor to the original Ultrabook Intel's Next Wave of Laptops | Showcase | A spiritual successor to the original Ultrabook Reviewed by Admin on 1:54 AM Rating: 5

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