Dell ultra-thin Adamo XPS launches

November 19, 2009 | 13:59

Tags: #128gb-ssd #adamo #adamo-xps #air #dell-adamo #laptop #macbook-air #notebook #ssd #ulv #windows-7

Companies: #dell #intel

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.
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