Dell XPS 8920 Premium Desktop Review

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While desktops are not as popular as they used to be, they certainly offer value for a few user demographics. If you are interested in getting as fast components as you can for the money, desktop beats a laptop about every time. One new power user oriented desktop is Dell XPS 8920 with i7 processor and even a dedicated graphics card. Today, we will take this system under examination and determine if it’s a valuable choice or not.

A Strong Set of Components

The best thing in the Dell XPS 8920 is without doubt the processor. The manufacturer decided to go for the Intel i7-7700. If you are a person “in the know”, you can right away spot a few things from this unit: i7, the best Intel processor series for high-end use, and 7th generation model which is the latest CPU family of theirs. Thus, plenty of raw performance can be expected from this quad-core processor; indeed it runs on a high 3.6GHz clock speed which increases to 4.2GHz with turbo boost. Compared to other common CPUs, the i7 is definitely in the upper echelon!

The desktop is configured with one terabyte 7200RPM SATA 3 hard drive. Such an HDD is a common sight in desktops since more storage than laptops is usually required. However, the downside of hard drive is the performance. The remedy for this is to upgrade to solid-state drive which, on this model, should not be hard. The case has space for two 3.5″ drives more, and there should also be M.2 slot inside for another type of drive.

The 16GB DDR4 2400MHz memory receives no complaints from me; such an amount is all a computer user needs today. That being said, if you really want more you are free to upgrade: 64 gigabytes is the maximum on four DIMM slots on the mainboard.

Like Gaming? No Problem

For gamers, Dell XPS 8920 offers something as well. The graphics card is Radeon RX 560, a mainstream GPU from AMD. The in-depth reviews of this card show decent performance for Full HD gaming, with popular games like Grand Theft Auto 5 getting ~80FPS and The Witcher 3 ~40FPS on 1080p resolution and medium settings. Thus, the RX 560 does a good job for keeping frame rates high enough for the modern gamer to enjoy, although the same article mentions that the GTX 1050 card offers better price-performance ratio.

Modernized Ports Section

The USB-C fad has also entered the desktop market. The Dell XPS 8920 sports a single USB 3.1 Type-C port which should be a step towards simplification of different ports, although Microsoft has hesitations of including the USB-C for its new computers. If you think it’s better to use the older type of ports you still have plenty of options, as two USB 2.0, seven USB 3.0 and one USB 3.1 are included as well. The graphics card should have connectors for HDMI and DisplayPort, so connecting a monitor or two is not a problem.

Like a good desktop, also the Dell sports a DVD burner on the front panel. Next to it is a memory card reader for SD and SDXC cards. If you wonder what such a card slot is usually for, it’s for effortlessly getting pictures from your digital camera to the computer.

For at least a decade, desktops have had support for wireless networking out of the box. This Dell is no stranger to WiFi either, having a 802.11ac wireless card with Bluetooth 4.0. For those who prefer the wired way of connecting, also Gigabit LAN is available.

Do Not Forget These Things

Like most, if not all, desktops also the Dell includes a wired keyboard and mouse. You don’t have to spend money for the input devices; however, you still have to solve the monitor part somehow as display is not included.

The operating system Windows 10 Home 64-bit should be pre-loaded on the hard drive.

Slays software - The Dell has a desktop-level 7th generation Core i7 processor which is among the fastest processors currently available. Along with the 16GB of memory, you will find no program or application to be too much for this computer.

Better graphics than many - While the Radeon RX 560 card is far from a high-end graphics unit, it still runs games much better than integrated GPUs often found in desktops.

Just a hard drive - Still in 2017 the manufacturers largely trust on traditional hard drives. The raw storage part is excellent, however what you gain in storage you lose in performance.

Basically, Dell XPS 8920 is your go-to desktop for performance and good looks (if you value the latter, that is). You don’t need to be ashamed of the sleek design, but the more important thing is the intense performance stemming from a smart processor choice and ample memory amount. In addition, the graphics engine allows for decent Full HD gaming. However, the bane of desktop computers, the conventional hard drive, can become a bottleneck with some operations, however upgrading it to SSD solves the problem effectively. If you find a good monitor to pair this desktop with, it becomes a kick-ass home or productive use computer for sure.

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