Dell XPS 13 Plus review (XPS 9320 model, OLED)


  1. Ben

    June 21, 2022 at 11:33 pm

    "I also took some benchmarks with a few games, varying in age"
    ^– Should've been "varying in *avg*"

    Great review as always, much appreciated (:

  2. Brad

    June 22, 2022 at 7:48 am

    What is your number 1 laptop right now?

    • Derek Sullivan

      June 22, 2022 at 2:20 pm

      At this class I still liked the Ideapad Slim 7 Carbon the best. It has a lot more to offer, especially considering the prices are similar to this Dell.

  3. Diego

    June 22, 2022 at 7:08 pm

    Derek, very nice review as always. Im looking for an upgrade later this year (still waiting for some refresh from razer to the book and the surface laptop 4), but as of right now, between this one and Asus ZenBook S 13.. Is it possible for u to post a side by side comparison? I have the measurements, and know this one is smaller but just a lit bit heavier.

    • Derek Sullivan

      June 22, 2022 at 10:37 pm

      I don't think I'll be reviewing that one but I can take a look in my local store and see if they have one I could tinker with a little bit.

  4. Alex

    June 24, 2022 at 8:28 am

    I just received my XPS 13 plus this week and am really turned off by how hot it gets.

    I really love the design, screen, and speed but the heat is a real dealbreaker, even with running in cool mode.

    Are you aware of any comparable laptops that run much cooler? I prefer PC but I am intrigued by these new Apple M2 chips assuming their lower power consumption equates to less heat. I'm just not a fan of the bottom tier retina displays. That XPS OLED is so nice…

    • Andrei Girbea

      June 24, 2022 at 9:16 am

      As far as I can tell, Derek's thermal readings are showing that this laptop actually runs cooler than other ultraportables of the same size and with similar specs.

      If you need something that feels cooler to the touch, my suggestion would be to go with an option that's not made out of bare aluminum, but rather magnesium/plastic/carbon fiber alloys. Or/and go with a lower-power hardware platform. Something like the ThinkPad X1 Nano comes to mind, but up to you if it's fast enough.

  5. Tim Wilson

    June 24, 2022 at 7:51 pm

    My Dell Gaming Laptop died in 4/6 months. Warranty was useless. Dell took 87 days to refund after a long fight with them….Never buy Dell

  6. Sanaz

    June 24, 2022 at 8:46 pm

    Thank you for the thorough review.
    I need this laptop for machine learning works.
    Is it suitabale?

    • Derek Sullivan

      June 24, 2022 at 10:02 pm

      I don't know much about what's required for machine learning. Assuming it doesn't need a GPU though, it's probably fine. The CPU in this little laptop is pretty powerful, especially if you go the 14-core route.

  7. Michael

    June 25, 2022 at 2:16 pm

    Can you say something about Coil whine?
    I have a XPS 13 Plus since yesterday. On Battery or with Dell AC Connector everything is fine.
    You can hear it minimal.

    But when i plug in the 13 Plus in my Dock (LG 4K Monitor with 90W PD), then you can hear relativly loud coil whine.

    Can you test this with your unit?

    • Derek Sullivan

      June 25, 2022 at 2:35 pm

      I don't have any coil whine on or off the charger. But I don't have a dock at home to test either. Will check next time I'm in the office on Monday.

      • S

        November 22, 2022 at 12:35 pm

        Hi Derek,

        Did you end up testing for coil whine with your unit? Thank you

  8. neotexh

    June 26, 2022 at 12:42 pm

    Nice Laptop Design, although that battery is definitely is not good for an ultraportable (?) correct me if I'm wrong
    And do you have any chance to review the G15 from 2022 since it didn't get as many reviews on youtube as last year..

    • Andrei Girbea

      June 26, 2022 at 1:00 pm

      Slim chances on the 2022 Zeph G15 from me.

    • Derek Sullivan

      June 26, 2022 at 1:00 pm

      If you mean the Dell G15 then probably not. We don't get many review units from Dell so we'd have to purchase one.

      If you meant the Asus g15, that's something that Andrei might cover

  9. Nati

    July 3, 2022 at 2:04 am

    I bought it and as soon as I started using it for the first time, it started overheating.
    I requested it to be replaced, and the the replacement also overheats the same way.
    After a 10 or 15 minutes it feals real hot!.
    It is a 32GB, 1 TB SSD, i7.
    Drivers were updated by Dell technical support.
    Any ideas? should I return this 2nd one too?
    Thank you!

    • Derek Sullivan

      July 3, 2022 at 2:06 am

      Are you using monitoring software to determine if it's overheating? How bad is it and what power mode are you in?

  10. Nati

    July 3, 2022 at 2:19 am

    Uffff… I'm just a user, those questions are way over my head.
    I use my laptop for accounting and administrative purposes, travelling a lot.
    The back of the laptop feels so hot in my hand, that it kind of burns, and keyboard/touch pad sides get warm.
    Power mode? regular electricity in my house :)
    Thank you, your opinion is gonna help because I dont understand much. My old laptop doesnt get hot as this one.

    • Derek Sullivan

      July 3, 2022 at 2:25 am

      No prob, I understand. It could be because you're in a profile that is using the CPU at max and it's just getting hot. Try opening My Dell(program), then go to the power tab and click on the thermal settings. You should be able to choose between cool, optimized, quiet and ultra performance. I'd steer clear of the latter two as they will make your laptop warmer on the underside. Cool will maximize fans and make it stay as cool as possible, Optimized will be less fans but will still be way cooler than the latter two options.

      If you were already on optimized, this may be the nature of the machine. It's a really thin laptop with a powerful CPU inside it so if you push it's performance limits, it will definitely get hot. In general, the greater the wattage you put into the CPU, the more heat it will generate.

      Hope this helps. Curious if yours is the i5 like I had or is it the i7?

  11. Nati

    July 3, 2022 at 2:48 am

    Wow! thank you for your answer. Is a i7.
    I really didnt push its performance limits, I didnt even upload my files and apps yet. Just by being on, it gets hot.

    I checked: the thermal setting is in Optimized. I chose Cool now to see what happens.

    Not knowing much about computers, and this one being a luxury to me ($$) I dont know how to decide to keep it or not. I mean: is it -as you said- the nature of the machine and nothing will be damaged by the high temps? is there a way to know?

    But travelling I may want to use it on my lap… and it burns! perhaps there is by answer :)

    • Derek Sullivan

      July 3, 2022 at 2:56 am

      Ok hopefully Cool mode helps. It's probably doing a lot of updates in the background the first couple hours since the machine is out of the box, which may elevate temps a bit. But other than that it should stay cool. But yeah, this may be just what it is. I'm used to machines like this so I see it as normal, but if you were used to a thicker and lower powered laptop before, it will definitely be cooler feeling than this XPS. To know for sure if it's your hardware or not, there is some temperature monitoring software available. I use Hwinfo32 which is a free download. If you want to try it, it's pretty easy to use. Just open it, check sensors only and then double clock on Core Max. It'll open a graph that shows temperature over time. While in cool mode, it should stay under 70C which should prevent excessive overheating of the chassis.

  12. Nati

    July 3, 2022 at 3:30 am

    Did it! and Core Max temp is around 40/45C, max 66C.
    Seems such a high temperature in my world.
    But your comment about 70C gives me peace of mind.

    You mentioned Ideapad Slim 7 Carbon in another comment. Is that a Lenovo? does it get warm as well with light usage?. I dont know much about this brand, never had one.

    • Derek Sullivan

      July 3, 2022 at 3:38 am

      Those are much better temps. That's about as good as you're going to see, so try it a while and see if that's better.

      Yes the Ideapad Slim 7 Carbon is from Lenovo. I also reviewed it here if you're interested:

      In comparison, the power profiles and cooling system on that machine were much more appropriate. It's a slightly bigger though, being a 14" screen.

      Good luck!

  13. Nati

    July 3, 2022 at 3:42 am

    You've been amazing!
    Super helpful.

  14. Elisei

    July 7, 2022 at 10:38 pm

    Going into post secondary this fall. Most work will be general MS software + some additional accounting software. Would you recommend this laptop for students? Considering the battery life, can it complete work effectively without running out of juice?

    • Derek Sullivan

      July 7, 2022 at 11:47 pm

      Should be perfectly fine for that kind of stuff. Just don't expect more than 4-5 hours of use on a single charge. If battery life is important, there's a lot of options out there with bigger batteries. But most are likely heftier than this laptop.

  15. Simeon

    July 8, 2022 at 10:03 am

    I just recently got mine with an i7-1280p, 32GB Ram, 3,5k OLED screen. It's an absolute beast but there are a few things I'm not so sure about. First off, I think the screen has a yellow-ish tinge to it. The colours are great and the picture is fantastic but I just feel like everything has a bit of a warm glow to it. Does anybody else have a similar experience with this screen? Does anybody know what could be the reason? Secondly, I'm still getting used to the keyboard and I think it's going to take a bit more time than I initially anticipated. Thirdly, it runs HOT. Really hot with this i7-1280p. I have it in Ultra Performance mode and it doesn't go below 90 when on load and stays above 50 on idle and light tasks. I am thinking of repasting it with Kryonaut Extreme. Do you think that's going to have a positive influence on the temps?

    • Derek Sullivan

      July 8, 2022 at 1:26 pm

      You might drop it by a couple degrees from repasting but that's probably it. It's a very high wattage to apply to such a small CPU with a small heatsink. Your best bet to avoid high temperatures is to just avoid the ultra performance mode.

      For the yellowish color, have you compared it to other screens or tired it in a different room? Make sure the night light setting in Windows isn't turned on too. My unit had a native white point of 6500K which is on the bluer side – definitely wasn't warm.

      • Simeon

        July 8, 2022 at 1:36 pm

        I'll give repasting it a go and see if the temperatures drop significantly. I've been into a lot of Dell laptops and their factory paste job is horrible. Even on brand new laptops (manufactured a week or two before opening) the thermal paste is all over the place, very thick and dry.

        As for the screen – I have compared it to monitors, my old FHD XPS 13 9370, other laptops and I will hopefully compare it to another brand new XPS 13 Plus with an identical configuration soon. I just hope it's not a defective display. When looking at the display from ana angle while it is turned off, the reflections are yellowish-green in colour. Maybe there is some sort of coating. It is definitely not pure white (maybe at max brightness it's more white than at 50%) and I have turned off Night Light, all sorts of automatic display adjustment features and the such.

      • Derek Sullivan

        July 8, 2022 at 1:58 pm

        Good luck with it. If it's no trouble, let us know how temps improve, perhaps with a benchmark to be consistent.

    • Richard

      July 8, 2022 at 11:18 pm

      mine just arrived today, similar problems colour temp of screen is awful to look at & it runs super hot. Windows is saying 2 hours battery life with no apps running and screen on low brightness. Gonna have a look at the thermal settings but not happy with it at all. I have contacted support about the power issue, 2 hours won't cut it for an ultra portable laptop at that price, wld rather have a MAC eventhough I don't like or have ever used them.

      • Andrei Girbea

        July 11, 2022 at 8:42 am

        Make sure you've got passed the initial updates and everything. brand new laptops might run hot/noisy the first tens of minutes as things get installed and sorted out

  16. teain

    July 10, 2022 at 12:26 pm

    Your review is of great help to me.
    Looking forward to another review.
    "surface laptop go2" I wonder what this product is like.
    Is it worth living in the present moment?
    I wonder if it will be usable as an ultrabook.

  17. Kevin

    July 26, 2022 at 2:41 am

    Between screens options, I will mainly do text applications ( Word, Excel, Outlook). Use would be indoors so I don't need the super brightness. I want to get the best looking screen that is compatible with the above uses. What would you suggest?


    • Derek Sullivan

      July 26, 2022 at 3:04 am

      They're all pretty good screen options for what you plan to use it for. The 4k is probably a little overkill but certainly drop down to the fhd panel of you want to save money. If you don't need touch, it's $300 cheaper. The main draw to the OLED panel is the contrast ratio but unless you are really picky about that kind of stuff, it probably won't matter as much to you.

  18. GM201

    July 26, 2022 at 10:34 pm

    In the default Optimized power mode laptop is throttling itself to 0.4ghz while watching YouTube & multitask another light task. I have to run it in the Cool power mode just to not experience any throttling, and this is my 2nd device, the 1st one was even worst.

  19. AK

    August 16, 2022 at 5:36 am

    That was an awesome review Derek. which one would you recommend between Latitude 9430 i7-1265U/i5-1245U and XPS 13 plus i7-1260p (16GB RAM both).
    I like the aesthetics of the XPS 13 plus but the heat issues are scaring me off. I usually have my laptops placed in a vertical stand and connected to a dock, but I'm reckoning since it will be my personal laptop I will have it on the desk (disconnected from the dock) as well from time to time. I do like Lat 9430's premium looks and build quality but I'm still a bit leaning towards the XPS.
    Does the XPS get hot even with a moderate load. My typical load is a mix of different virtual machines, Jenkins, VMware, development in Vscode Python/C#, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, SQL studio, Discord, youtube, and the usual stuff like browsing (~20 tabs) etc.
    Too much heat is generally not good for the longevity of the internal components. I will be hanging on to whichever laptop I end up buying for atleast 3-4 years. do you think shelling out another $500-1k more for Latidue 9430 would be a more sensible decision?

    • Derek Sullivan

      August 16, 2022 at 5:43 pm

      I've never reviewed the Latitude series, so that's a little tough for me to compare. On paper though, the Latitude should run cooler mainly because it's using an inferior CPU and has more vents. The base power of those U processors is only 15W, so they will definitely run cooler. That said, they underperform compared to most of the P processors. I'm reviewing an XPS 13 right now with an i5-1230U processor and the performance difference is 20-25% less than the XPS 13 plus in some tests.

      Given that you are going to be running a lot of programs at once, including VMs, I would assume you want more CPU power, but it's going to come at a cost of heat in the XPS 13 plus. Especially with the lack of vents on the bottom.

  20. Michael

    August 17, 2022 at 11:49 am

    Can't switch the touch pad off! I keep hitting the thing when I'm typing resulting in random errors on my output.
    The weird thing is that i've got it all switched off in device manager, but it still works! Must be Win 11!!
    Whatever it is, it's really annoying. Never had this problem with my first XPS13…

    • Michael

      August 17, 2022 at 12:38 pm

      Even odder. I have removed in Device Manager the HID touch pad device, and it still works. There must now be a different entry somewhere for the touchpad. But where?

      • Derek Sullivan

        August 17, 2022 at 5:34 pm

        Can't you just go into touchpad settings in Windows and switch it off?

      • Michael

        August 17, 2022 at 5:48 pm

        Coming from older versions of windows, I never noticed a touchpad settings in windows! Have done that now and it's gone off. Thanks! But it does beg the question, where in windows are these settings now kept. It's clearly no longer in device manager, even though all the entries exist there…

      • Derek Sullivan

        August 17, 2022 at 5:51 pm

        I'm not sure, I've never tried disabling it in device manager. Could also be a sensor since it's integrated in the palm rest like that? Glad you got it figured out at least.

  21. TM

    November 3, 2022 at 4:05 pm

    The XPS 9320 is a dog – QC nightmare. Bluescreens, camera fail every time, short battery life, overheats. See this video for a good summery. AVOID!

    • JustAnotherYoutuber

      November 22, 2022 at 4:09 pm

      It truly is I ended up exchanging it for a XPS 9315 and so much happier.

  22. Ira

    November 22, 2022 at 6:56 pm

    I am looking to upgrade from a Dell Inspiron 15 7000 and was considering this. After the review, I am inclined to cancel my order and buy something else. I need better battery life, earphone jack and cooler running. Any suggestions?

  23. Joe

    January 20, 2023 at 8:49 pm

    Derek, Great review! I have an XPS 7390 2-in-1 (Intel i7) and now have the possibility to trade in for 9315 2-in-1, regular 9315, or 9320 as my sd card reader stopped working. I like the 2-in-1 form factor but use it primarily as a laptop. I was excited about the possibility to trade in for the 9320 computer you reviewed as it's Dell's premium XPS 13 but I'm wary now after seeing your review, despite the much better specs. I like my computer, although it is older, and do use to lay flat or as a tablet every now and then with an Dell active stylus. But the 9315 2-in-1 has poor reviews regarding its folio keyboard lying flat. Do you think if I'm satisfied with the 7390, which is definitely an older system, I should just stick with it despite the fact I have the ability to upgrade to the xps 9320 or 9315 2-in-1 (there is no 9310 2-in-1 in stock? What would you do?
    Thank you!

    • Derek Sullivan

      January 20, 2023 at 11:29 pm

      If it were me, I'd take advantage of the trade in opportunity. Unless you're dead set on having pen input, that is. The new features of the 9320 model make it really appealing, not to mention the performance bump. The keyboard and trackpad might be a little peculiar compared to what you're used to though.

      • Joe

        January 21, 2023 at 1:53 am

        Derek, Thank you so much for your quick reply! I do ideally like the pen input, but really don't use it so frequently b/c of palm interference issues etc. Maybe a later iteration of the xps 13 2-in-1 will be powerful enough to work out the kinks. I think I'll go with your advice for to get the better computer for now, even though I'll be forgoing the pen option and the tablet option. I really appreciate your response, help and great review. Thank you!

  24. bittricks

    January 26, 2024 at 9:05 pm

    Dell has an Outlet offer that is just too good to pass up: additional 15% off current XPS 13 Plus inventory.

    I picked one up, including taxes, at $1100 USD as follows:

    32 GB RAM
    512 GB SSD

    It is Dell refurbished, but I have no idea why it was returned. There is nothing wrong with it that can find. There is trivial backlight bleed in a single corner, but I doubt the previous owner even detected it.

    My only dislike is, despite the low wattage, it still gets quite warm and it underperforms due to power and cooling constraints; I am used to the XPS 15 and Precision 5470\5480.

    I myself have not experienced any of the of historical QC issues. I even have no problems with the capacitive bar – which I personally like.

    I've thrown ThrottleStop on it and set Speed Shift to 0 and enabled Performance Mode. I would like whirring fans that cool it much better, but I personally can live with it.

    PCMark10 Basic scores 63rd percentile. The only other 13 inch device that has returned a better PCMark10 Basic is the ASUS Flow X13, which IIRC, scored 75th percentile when configured in Custom power mode set to CPU 45W, fans whirring.

    Build quality of ASUS Flow X13 is not good in my experience. The XPS 13 Plus build quality is rock solid – at least my unit is. Like a small tank.

    I want the performance of the ASUS Flow X13 with the build quality of the XPS\Precision line. That mission is fulfilled by the 14 inch Precision – but cannot get one direct from Dell for $1100 which includes taxes. Best Outlet price I could find for a 5480 (2023) was around $1700 which includes taxes, has an i7-13800H\32 GB RAM\512 SSD and a 3 year warranty as opposed to the 1 year XPS warranty.

    I like the 13 Plus. I can throw the Ubuntu image available directly from Canonical on it and it should all work as if Dell installed it; Ubuntu 22.04 LTS is Canonical certified for the XPS 13 Plus 9320 (2023).

    "But that warm underside!"

    I agree. It's an annoyance, but not a deal breaker.

    The model is not appropriate for anything more than basic virtual machines, and heavy load compiling is better done on a more aptly configured system. Coding and then sending to a Git, the unit is more than enough. Gaming. Pffff.

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