Notebookcheck

Dell XPS 13 9380 (i7-8565U, 4K UHD) Laptop Review

Now with a standard webcam. What benefits does the Core i7 SKU offer over the Core i5 SKU? We benchmark the most expensive XPS 13 9380 configuration and compare it to the less costly Core i5 SKU to show all the differences users can expect. Update: 5 hours more with FHD.

Dell introduced the XPS 13 9380 series at CES 2019 as a relatively minor update to last year's XPS 13 9370 series. Its two biggest upgrades are the re-positioned webcam (finally!) and the upgrade from Kaby Lake-R to Whiskey Lake-U. We've already checked out the Core i5 XPS 13 9380 and now we'll be checking out the pricier Core i7-8565U SKU to see how much of a performance differential actually exists between the two configurations. As of this writing, the price difference between the Core i5 and i7 SKUs is almost $250 USD.

We recommend reading up on our existing reviews of the Core i5 XPS 13 9380 and the last generation XPS 13 9370 series below for our take on the hardware since the chassis has remained essentially identical year-over-year. This review will instead dive into the performance of the Core i7 configuration.

Update 3/12/19: we had the possibility to review the i7/FHD SKU, and have updated the display, power consumption, and battery life sections with our findings. 

Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K (XPS 13 Series)
Graphics adapter
Intel UHD Graphics 620, Core: 300 MHz, Memory: 1067 MHz, DDR3, 25.20.100.6325
Memory
16384 MB 
, 1200 MHz, 16-20-20-45, Dual-Channel
Display
13.3 inch 16:9, 3840 x 2160 pixel 331 PPI, 10-point capacitive, ID: AUO 282B B133ZAN Dell: 90NTH, IPS, glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel Cannon Lake-U PCH-LP Premium
Storage
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, 512 GB 
Soundcard
Intel Cannon Lake-LP - cAVS
Connections
3 USB 3.1 Gen2, 2 Thunderbolt, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: 3.5 mm combo audio, Card Reader: MicroSD reader, Brightness Sensor
Networking
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1435 Wireless Network Adapter (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.2
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 11.6 x 302 x 199 ( = 0.46 x 11.89 x 7.83 in)
Battery
52 Wh Lithium-Polymer
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: 720p
Additional features
Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, Quick Start guide, Warranty card, USB Type-C to Type-A adapter, Dell Power Manager, Mobile Connect, 12 Months Warranty
Weight
1.226 kg ( = 43.25 oz / 2.7 pounds), Power Supply: 243 g ( = 8.57 oz / 0.54 pounds)
Price
1900 USD
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

310.4 mm / 12.2 inch 206.5 mm / 8.13 inch 16.5 mm / 0.65 inch 998 g2.2 lbs304.1 mm / 12 inch 212.4 mm / 8.36 inch 14.9 mm / 0.587 inch 1.4 kg3.02 lbs302 mm / 11.9 inch 189 mm / 7.44 inch 16.9 mm / 0.665 inch 1.2 kg2.62 lbs302 mm / 11.9 inch 199 mm / 7.83 inch 11.6 mm / 0.4567 inch 1.2 kg2.7 lbs302 mm / 11.9 inch 199 mm / 7.83 inch 11.6 mm / 0.4567 inch 1.2 kg2.67 lbs286 mm / 11.3 inch 211.1 mm / 8.31 inch 15 mm / 0.591 inch 1.3 kg2.87 lbs
SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
176.6 MB/s ∼100% +4%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 64 GB UHS-II)
170.1 MB/s ∼96%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
163.8 MB/s ∼93% -4%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 microSDXC 64GB)
80.5 MB/s ∼46% -53%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 microSDXC 64GB)
23.91 MB/s ∼14% -86%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
212.4 MB/s ∼100% +3%
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
207.82 MB/s ∼98% +1%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 64 GB UHS-II)
205.68 MB/s ∼97%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 microSDXC 64GB)
89.65 MB/s ∼42% -56%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro M501 microSDXC 64GB)
26.71 MB/s ∼13% -87%
Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1435 Wireless Network Adapter
682 MBit/s ∼100%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
673 MBit/s ∼99% -1%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
Intel Wireless-AC 9260
656 MBit/s ∼96% -4%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
649 MBit/s ∼95% -5%
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
530 MBit/s ∼78% -22%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
655 MBit/s ∼100% +14%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1435 Wireless Network Adapter
577 MBit/s ∼88%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
539 MBit/s ∼82% -7%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
Intel Wireless-AC 9260
479 MBit/s ∼73% -17%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
347 MBit/s ∼53% -40%

Display 4K UHD Touch

The 4K UHD touchscreen on our Core i7 SKU is the same high quality AU Optronics 282B B133ZAN IPS panel as found on our Core i5 SKU. Thus, all our existing comments still apply here. Dell advertises 100 percent sRGB coverage, a high 1500:1 contrast ratio, and a 400-nit backlight on its 4K UHD configuration. Our independent measurements more or less confirm these claims even though sRGB is closer to 95 percent than 100 percent.

The main drawback to the touchscreen continues to be its very slow black-white and gray-gray response times. Ghosting is more noticeable on the XPS 13 especially when compared to the 120 Hz panel on the EliteBook x360 1030 G3. Video playback becomes significantly smoother and clearer on other laptops where ghosting is less of an issue. We're hopeful that Dell will one day offer 120 Hz or 144 Hz panels with 5 ms or 3 ms response times in the future.

Further measurements with an X-Rite colorimeter reveal generally accurate colors and grayscale out of the box. Our own calibration improves grayscale and colors even further. Blue, however, appears to be the least accurate out of all all tested colors.

The pre-installed Dell CinemaColor software has preset color settings for Movie, Evening (blue-light filter), Sports, and Animation. It carries no manual sliders or any other controls.

High 80.7 percent screen-to-body ratio
High 80.7 percent screen-to-body ratio
Some of the most narrowest bezels in its size class
Some of the most narrowest bezels in its size class
4K UHD pixel array with a very high 331 PPI
4K UHD pixel array with a very high 331 PPI
Light-moderate backlight bleeding around the edges and corners
Light-moderate backlight bleeding around the edges and corners
402.1
cd/m²
440.3
cd/m²
444.6
cd/m²
400
cd/m²
428.3
cd/m²
415.1
cd/m²
394.5
cd/m²
413.7
cd/m²
391.6
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 444.6 cd/m² Average: 414.5 cd/m² Minimum: 19.44 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 88 %
Center on Battery: 370.2 cd/m²
Contrast: 1586:1 (Black: 0.27 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 2.69 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.1, calibrated: 2.01
ΔE Greyscale 3.7 | 0.64-98 Ø6.3
93.5% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 60.4% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.1
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
ID: AUO 282B B133ZAN Dell: 90NTH, IPS, 13.3, 3840x2160
Apple MacBook Pro 13 2018 Touchbar i5
APPA03E, IPS, 13.3, 2560x1600
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
AU Optronics B133HAN05.C, IPS, 13.3, 1920x1080
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
ID: Sharp SHP148B, Name: LQ133D1, Dell P/N: 8XDHY, IPS, 13.3, 3840x2160
Dell XPS 13 9370 FHD i5
SHP1484, IPS, 13.3, 1920x1080
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
Chi Mei CMN8201, IPS, 13, 2160x1440
Response Times
23%
9%
-12%
-8%
25%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
64.8 (31.6, 33.2)
46 (21, 25)
29%
54.4 (24.4, 30)
16%
69.6 (32.4, 37.2)
-7%
62.4 (32.4, 30)
4%
43.2 (22, 21.2)
33%
Response Time Black / White *
38 (19.2, 18.8)
32 (17, 15)
16%
37.6 (18.8, 18.8)
1%
44 (24.4, 19.6)
-16%
45.6 (24.4, 21.2)
-20%
32 (18, 14)
16%
PWM Frequency
118000 (75, 150)
3759 (20)
1008 (20)
Screen
24%
-19%
-2%
-6%
-8%
Brightness middle
428.3
519
21%
276
-36%
478.5
12%
428
0%
366.6
-14%
Brightness
414
504
22%
263
-36%
466
13%
405
-2%
360
-13%
Brightness Distribution
88
95
8%
89
1%
86
-2%
87
-1%
93
6%
Black Level *
0.27
0.33
-22%
0.21
22%
0.43
-59%
0.26
4%
0.39
-44%
Contrast
1586
1573
-1%
1314
-17%
1113
-30%
1646
4%
940
-41%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
2.69
0.4
85%
4.85
-80%
3.09
-15%
3.8
-41%
2.76
-3%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
6.19
2.8
55%
8.24
-33%
5.94
4%
7.2
-16%
6.19
-0%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
2.01
1.6
20%
2.06
-2%
1.53
24%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
3.7
2.2
41%
5.7
-54%
2.4
35%
4.4
-19%
4.2
-14%
Gamma
2.1 105%
2.22 99%
2.08 106%
2.063 107%
2.21 100%
2.22 99%
CCT
6706 97%
6908 94%
7424 88%
6883 94%
7067 92%
6271 104%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
60.4
77.3
28%
63
4%
69.47
15%
62.8
4%
63.2
5%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
93.5
99.99
7%
98
5%
98.36
5%
96.4
3%
97.6
4%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
24% / 24%
-5% / -14%
-7% / -4%
-7% / -7%
9% / -3%

* ... smaller is better

vs. sRGB
vs. sRGB
vs. AdobeRGB
vs. AdobeRGB
Grayscale before calibration
Grayscale before calibration
Saturation Sweeps before calibration
Saturation Sweeps before calibration
ColorChecker before calibration
ColorChecker before calibration
Grayscale after calibration
Grayscale after calibration
Saturation Sweeps after calibration
Saturation Sweeps after calibration
ColorChecker after calibration
ColorChecker after calibration

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
38 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 19.2 ms rise
↘ 18.8 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 94 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (25.4 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
64.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 31.6 ms rise
↘ 33.2 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 97 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (40.6 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9643 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Outdoors on cloudy day
Outdoors on cloudy day
Outdoors under shade
Outdoors under shade
Outdoors under sunlight
Outdoors under sunlight
Wide IPS viewing angles
Wide IPS viewing angles

Display FHD Non-Touch

Subpixel array AUO FHD-Panel
Subpixel array AUO FHD-Panel
Black background, no backlight bleeding visible (FHD)
Black background, no backlight bleeding visible (FHD)
Black, dramatically increased exposure (FHD)
Black, dramatically increased exposure (FHD)
HWinfo AUO B133HAN Dell P/N: 06VG6
HWinfo AUO B133HAN Dell P/N: 06VG6

The matte FHD panel is also provided by AOU. Its resolution of 1920 x 1080 is obviously lower than on the 4K panel, however its brightness and contrast ratio remained identical 408 vs. 414 nits and 1,646:1 vs. 1,586:1.

Both panels are dimmed on battery as well, and the FHD panel’s brightness is reduced to 385 nits (4K: 370 nits). Brightness distribution is ever so slightly better on the 4K SKU (88 % vs. 84 %).

Color space coverage, on the other hand, is the FHD panel’s strong suit as it covers 65 % of AdobeRGB and 99 % of sRGB. Compare that to the 4K panel, which covered 60 % AdobeRGB and 93 % sRGB. In other words: the FHD SKU is much better suited for professional photo editing purposes where accurate color representation is key.

And while we are on the subject of accuracy, the FHD model was slightly more accurate out of the box already. The DeltaE for grayscale was just 1.23 (4: 3.7) prior to calibration, and we were able to lower it even further to 0.89 after calibration (4K: 1.0).

We failed to detect the blue tint that was present on the 4K panel, which explains the DeltaE of 3.7 for grayscale.

DeltaE for colors was just 1.2 and further reduced to 0.9 through calibration. Compare that to 2.7 prior to and 2.0 after calibration for the 4K SKU.

Just like on the 4K SKU we found no traces of PWM on the FHD SKU either. Response times were slightly lower but were still far from good and remained average for a typical IPS panel. Given that this is a standard 60 Hz panel the response times for black-to-black and gray-to-gray are far from ideal.

Outdoors and in bright sunlight, the FHD SKU turned out to be the better choice thanks to its matte finish. At its maximum brightness of 385 nits on battery at the center of the screen it was bright enough for almost all conditions. Our Photos were taken on an overcast day, and you might want to prefer a shady spot on a bright sunny day.

Viewing angles were as wide as expected of an IPS panel. Colors and contrasts remained undistorted regardless of angle and position.

437
cd/m²
437
cd/m²
412
cd/m²
416
cd/m²
428
cd/m²
384
cd/m²
399
cd/m²
393
cd/m²
365
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 437 cd/m² Average: 407.9 cd/m² Minimum: 14.6 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 84 %
Center on Battery: 385 cd/m²
Contrast: 1646:1 (Black: 0.26 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 1.16 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.1, calibrated: 0.9
ΔE Greyscale 1.23 | 0.64-98 Ø6.3
99% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 65% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.46
AUO FHD Non-Touch vs. sRGB
AUO FHD Non-Touch vs. sRGB
AUO FHD Non-Touch vs. AdobeRGB
AUO FHD Non-Touch vs. AdobeRGB
Grayscale (uncalibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Grayscale (uncalibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Saturation (uncalibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Saturation (uncalibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
ColorChecker (uncalibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
ColorChecker (uncalibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Grayscale (calibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Grayscale (calibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Saturation (calibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
Saturation (calibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
ColorChecker (calibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch
ColorChecker (calibrated) - AUO FHD non-touch

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
33 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 17 ms rise
↘ 16 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 85 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (25.4 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
54 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 26 ms rise
↘ 28 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 88 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (40.6 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected ≤ 100 % brightness setting

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9643 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

IPS viewing angles - AUO FHD non-touch
IPS viewing angles - AUO FHD non-touch
Outdoors, overcast - AUO FHD non-touch
Outdoors, overcast - AUO FHD non-touch
Outdoors, overcast - AUO FHD non-touch
Outdoors, overcast - AUO FHD non-touch
Outdoors, overcast - AUO FHD non-touch
Outdoors, overcast - AUO FHD non-touch

Performance

Processor options range from the Core i3-8145U up to the Core i5-8265U and i7-8565U with 4 GB to 16 GB of soldered (non-upgradeable) LPDDR3 2133MHz RAM. Note that most competing Ultrabooks tend to skip the lower-end Core i3 and 4 GB RAM SKUs whereas Dell is able to advertise lower starting prices with these bottom-of-the-barrel configurations.

Dell doesn't talk about it much, but its Power Manager software is very important when it comes to adjusting the performance and battery life of the XPS 13. It allows users to monitor battery health and change recharge behavior, AC power behavior, performance, and brightness. Most importantly, it offers four different fan settings (Quiet, Cool, Optimized, And Ultra Performance) that directly affect CPU performance and fan noise. Since we're interested in obtaining the best possible performance out of our unit, we'll be diving into the differences between Optimized and Ultra Performance in our CPU benchmark below.

Battery health information
Battery health information
Advanced Charge seeks to prolong battery life by recharging and discharging at certain hours and percentages
Advanced Charge seeks to prolong battery life by recharging and discharging at certain hours and percentages
Peak Shift reduces AC power consumption to reduce strain on the power grid
Peak Shift reduces AC power consumption to reduce strain on the power grid
The thermal settings trade warmer temperatures and louder fans for higher CPU performance
The thermal settings trade warmer temperatures and louder fans for higher CPU performance
Extend battery life by reducing CPU performance or brightness
Extend battery life by reducing CPU performance or brightness
Alert settings
Alert settings

Processor

CineBench R15 on Ultra Performance mode
CineBench R15 on Ultra Performance mode

We run CineBench R15 Multi-Thread on a loop on both Optimized and Ultra Performance modes to see if there are any performance differences. The red line below are our results on Ultra Performance while the orange line are our results on Optimized. CPU performance is steadier for longer when on Ultra Performance before heavy clock rate cycling occurs. Scores can alternate from 585 to 705 points as a direct consequence for a rough average of 645 points.

When on the default Dell Optimized mode, CPU clock rates begin to throttle and alternate much sooner into the CineBench stress test loop. Scores alternate between lower values of about 540 and 680 points for a rough average of 610 points. Thus, the performance benefits between Optimized and Ultra Performance are generally minor at just a few percentage points on average after an extended period of time.

It's worth noting that Dell takes a unique approach to CPU Turbo Boost. The fluctuations in CineBench scores are much larger compared to other Ultrabooks equipped with Intel ULV CPUs. Whereas most OEMs avoid CPU temperatures reaching 100 C, Dell actually embraces it for short periods in order to run at higher clock rates at short bursts. Such a strategy allows the XPS 13 to perform faster than a competing subnotebook on average even if its clock rates are generally more unstable.

As an example, the Huawei MateBook 13 subnotebook is equipped with the same Core i7-8565U CPU as our Dell. Its Turbo Boost clock rates are narrower and stabler than the Dell for only minor clock rate fluctuations when running our CineBench R15 loop test. Overall CPU performance is about 10 percent slower than the Dell since Huawei prefers to maintain a cooler core temperature of 67 C.

See our dedicated page on the Core i7-8565U for more technical information and benchmark comparisons.

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; CPU Multi 64Bit: Ø675 (576.21-734.96)
; CPU Multi 64Bit: Ø621 (517.08-693.73)
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
Intel Core i9-8950HK
190 Points ∼87% +3%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Intel Core i7-8565U
184 Points ∼84%
Dell G3 15 3579
Intel Core i5-8300H
168 Points ∼77% -9%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U
  (73.1 - 191, n=27)
168 Points ∼77% -9%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
Intel Core i7-8550U
165 Points ∼76% -10%
Dell XPS 13 9380 2019
Intel Core i5-8265U
148 Points ∼68% -20%
HP EliteBook 735 G5 3UN62EA
AMD Ryzen 7 2700U
147 Points ∼67% -20%
Lenovo ThinkPad 13 20J1005TPB
Intel Core i7-7500U
146 Points ∼67% -21%
Dell Latitude 3490
Intel Core i5-8250U
143 Points ∼66% -22%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
Intel Core i9-8950HK
1163 Points ∼27% +62%
Dell G3 15 3579
Intel Core i5-8300H
768 Points ∼18% +7%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Intel Core i7-8565U
717 Points ∼16%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Intel Core i7-8565U
677 Points ∼15% -6%
Dell XPS 13 9380 2019
Intel Core i5-8265U
666 Points ∼15% -7%
Dell Latitude 3490
Intel Core i5-8250U
646 Points ∼15% -10%
HP EliteBook 735 G5 3UN62EA
AMD Ryzen 7 2700U
640 Points ∼15% -11%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
Intel Core i7-8550U
639 Points ∼15% -11%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U
  (361 - 815, n=28)
596 Points ∼14% -17%
Lenovo ThinkPad 13 20J1005TPB
Intel Core i7-7500U
338 Points ∼8% -53%
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
184 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
677 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
57.65 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
97.8 %
Help

System Performance

PCMark 10 benchmark results are consistently higher than last year's XPS 13 9370 by 12 to 26 percent. We didn't experience any software or hardware glitches on our unit unlike on the XPS 15 series. Some of the Dell applications, however, can take unusually long to launch including the Power Manager.

PCMark 10 Standard
PCMark 10 Standard
PCMark 8 Home Accelerated
PCMark 8 Home Accelerated
PCMark 8 Work Accelerated
PCMark 8 Work Accelerated
PCMark 10
Digital Content Creation
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
5444 Points ∼49% +62%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3645 Points ∼33% +8%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
GeForce MX150, 8550U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
3518 Points ∼31% +4%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3370 Points ∼30%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
3142 Points ∼28% -7%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
2994 Points ∼27% -11%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2264 - 3370, n=11)
2948 Points ∼26% -13%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
2770 Points ∼25% -18%
Productivity
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
7281 Points ∼75% +5%
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
7212 Points ∼74% +4%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
7006 Points ∼72% +1%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
6911 Points ∼71%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (3381 - 7588, n=11)
6559 Points ∼68% -5%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
GeForce MX150, 8550U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
6152 Points ∼63% -11%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
6025 Points ∼62% -13%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
5475 Points ∼56% -21%
Essentials
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
8951 Points ∼84% +6%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
8466 Points ∼79%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
8382 Points ∼79% -1%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (5450 - 8787, n=11)
7985 Points ∼75% -6%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
7786 Points ∼73% -8%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
GeForce MX150, 8550U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
7659 Points ∼72% -10%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
7410 Points ∼69% -12%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
7217 Points ∼68% -15%
Score
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
5059 Points ∼65% +21%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4344 Points ∼56% +4%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4172 Points ∼54%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
GeForce MX150, 8550U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
3938 Points ∼51% -6%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2486 - 4172, n=11)
3840 Points ∼49% -8%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
3787 Points ∼49% -9%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
3728 Points ∼48% -11%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
3723 Points ∼48% -11%
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (3596 - 5181, n=9)
4733 Points ∼73% +10%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4709 Points ∼72% +9%
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
4620 Points ∼71% +7%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
4341 Points ∼67% +1%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
GeForce MX150, 8550U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
4323 Points ∼66% 0%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
4304 Points ∼66%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
4303 Points ∼66% 0%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
4125 Points ∼63% -4%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
3840 Points ∼63% +17%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3616 Points ∼59% +10%
Average Intel Core i7-8565U, Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (2577 - 4179, n=10)
3551 Points ∼58% +8%
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
3525 Points ∼58% +7%
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
GeForce MX150, 8550U, SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
3482 Points ∼57% +6%
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
3371 Points ∼55% +2%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
3296 Points ∼54%
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
3150 Points ∼52% -4%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3296 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4304 points
Help

Storage Devices

Our test unit carries the same 512 GB Samsung SSD PM981 NVMe SSD as on the Huawei MateBook 13 and Razer Blade 15. Samsung SSDs tend to perform faster than competing drives and this is no exception. The Western Digital and SK Hynix drives in the ZenBook 13 UX333 and HP Spectre x360 15, for example, have measurably slower sequential write rates. There are no secondary internal drive options as one would expect from a subnotebook.

Interestingly, our 9380 Core i5 SKU carries a slower 256 GB SSD from SK Hynix. It is therefore likely that Dell is sourcing its drives from multiple OEMs and not just from Samsung which is somewhat unfortunate.

See our table of HDDs and SSDs for more benchmark comparisons.

CDM 5.5
CDM 5.5
AS SSD
AS SSD
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
HP Spectre x360 15-ch011nr
SK hynix PC401 NVMe 500 GB
AS SSD
-29%
-40%
-4%
-8%
-34%
Copy Game MB/s
1147.63
418.59
-64%
412.95
-64%
981.8
-14%
1119.94
-2%
1041.75
-9%
Copy Program MB/s
503.31
541.16
8%
713.52
42%
385.59
-23%
515.14
2%
486.79
-3%
Copy ISO MB/s
1294.49
1103.44
-15%
1089.99
-16%
1799.53
39%
2576.73
99%
1667.62
29%
Score Total
4526
3051
-33%
1870
-59%
4147
-8%
4507
0%
2037
-55%
Score Write
2379
941
-60%
705
-70%
1871
-21%
2059
-13%
757
-68%
Score Read
1430
1420
-1%
776
-46%
1502
5%
1616
13%
859
-40%
Access Time Write *
0.029
0.036
-24%
0.032
-10%
0.032
-10%
0.044
-52%
0.051
-76%
Access Time Read *
0.036
0.061
-69%
0.068
-89%
0.041
-14%
0.061
-69%
0.054
-50%
4K-64 Write
2104.54
738.67
-65%
510.35
-76%
1571.07
-25%
1814.74
-14%
544.89
-74%
4K-64 Read
1178.92
1196.1
1%
617.52
-48%
1257.1
7%
1453.01
23%
646.23
-45%
4K Write
127.4
104.1
-18%
113.99
-11%
118.45
-7%
94.4
-26%
93.24
-27%
4K Read
53.26
41.84
-21%
39.69
-25%
55.51
4%
30.73
-42%
38.76
-27%
Seq Write
1473.18
986.15
-33%
808.71
-45%
1812.34
23%
1500.4
2%
1188.51
-19%
Seq Read
1981.01
1823.78
-8%
1186.04
-40%
1888.96
-5%
1319.61
-33%
1738.6
-12%

* ... smaller is better

Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 3480 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 1869 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 454.8 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 771.8 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 2494 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 1863 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 61.25 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 139.5 MB/s

GPU Performance

The XPS 13 holds no surprises here as its integrated UHD Graphics 620 is very common amongst Ultrabooks. 3DMark benchmarks reveal it to be nearly identical to the Core i5-8265U configuration and so users should not expect a graphics boost between the Core i5 and i7 SKUs. Dell has said that XPS 13 SKUs with more powerful Intel Iris or dedicated GeForce graphics are not in the works. Users who may desire such features are instead encouraged to consider the larger XPS 15 series.

See our dedicated page on the UHD Graphics 620 for more technical information and benchmark comparisons.

3DMark 11
3DMark 11
Cloud Gate
Cloud Gate
3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance Combined
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK
8450 Points ∼37% +329%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8565U
4163 Points ∼18% +112%
Acer TravelMate X3410-M-50DD
NVIDIA GeForce MX130, 8550U
3031 Points ∼13% +54%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8565U
1968 Points ∼9%
Dell XPS 13 9360 FHD i7 Iris
Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7560U
1838 Points ∼8% -7%
Dell XPS 13 9380 2019
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8265U
1795 Points ∼8% -9%
Dell XPS 13 9370 FHD i5
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
1665 Points ∼7% -15%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (959 - 1968, n=139)
1524 Points ∼7% -23%
Lenovo Ideapad 720S-13ARR
AMD Radeon RX Vega 10, 2700U
1157 Points ∼5% -41%
Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Intel HD Graphics 515, 6Y30
1014 Points ∼4% -48%
1280x720 Performance GPU
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK
9032 Points ∼18% +387%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8565U
4514 Points ∼9% +143%
Acer TravelMate X3410-M-50DD
NVIDIA GeForce MX130, 8550U
3203 Points ∼6% +73%
Lenovo Ideapad 720S-13ARR
AMD Radeon RX Vega 10, 2700U
2688 Points ∼5% +45%
Dell XPS 13 9360 FHD i7 Iris
Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7560U
2124 Points ∼4% +15%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8565U
1855 Points ∼4%
Dell XPS 13 9380 2019
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8265U
1815 Points ∼4% -2%
Dell XPS 13 9370 FHD i5
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8250U
1776 Points ∼3% -4%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (1235 - 1979, n=139)
1700 Points ∼3% -8%
Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Intel HD Graphics 515, 6Y30
1186 Points ∼2% -36%
3DMark - 1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
Dell XPS 15 9570 Core i9 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8950HK
42202 Points ∼23% +340%
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8565U
21260 Points ∼12% +122%
Acer TravelMate X3410-M-50DD
NVIDIA GeForce MX130, 8550U
14880 Points ∼8% +55%
Dell XPS 13 9360 FHD i7 Iris
Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640, 7560U
11232 Points ∼6% +17%
Dell XPS 13 9380 2019
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8265U
10126 Points ∼5% +6%
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
Intel UHD Graphics 620, 8565U
9582 Points ∼5%
Lenovo Ideapad 720S-13ARR
AMD Radeon RX Vega 10, 2700U
9364 Points ∼5% -2%
Average Intel UHD Graphics 620
  (6910 - 11294, n=125)
9069 Points ∼5% -5%
Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Intel HD Graphics 515, 6Y30
6078 Points ∼3% -37%
3DMark 11 Performance
2117 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
9160 points
Help
low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 81.539.132.510fps

Emissions

System Noise

Sharp and noticeable fan noise increase when running at full speed
Sharp and noticeable fan noise increase when running at full speed

The fans are idle and therefore silent during very low loads like browsing or streaming. Our particular test unit, however, exhibits slight but noticeable electronic noise and so it is never truly silent. We don't know if this is specific to our test unit or if it's present on retail units as well, but we suggest checking for electronic noise regardless.

Running 3DMark 06 will bump fan noise up to 34.6 dB(A) to be louder than on the Core i5 XPS 13 SKU. Fan noise appears to cap out at 34.6 to 36 dB(A) when running on the Dell Optimized power profile. When running on the Ultra Performance profile, fan noise will cycle between 34.6 to 46.8 dB(A) when under heavy sustained load like Prime95. This temporary maximum is louder than on most Ultrabooks which is the price to pay for squeezing out more performance out of the processor.

Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
UHD Graphics 620, 8565U, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Huawei Matebook X Pro i5
GeForce MX150, 8250U, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
UHD Graphics 620, 8550U, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G
Apple MacBook Pro 13 2018 Touchbar i5
Iris Plus Graphics 655, 8259U
Razer Blade Stealth i7-8565U
GeForce MX150, 8565U, Lite-On CA3-8D256-Q11
Dell XPS 13 9380 2019
UHD Graphics 620, 8265U, SK hynix PC401 HFS256GD9TNG
Noise
3%
5%
-2%
-1%
2%
off / environment *
28.4
27.9
2%
28
1%
29.6
-4%
28.4
-0%
30.4
-7%
Idle Minimum *
29.4
27.9
5%
28
5%
29.6
-1%
28.5
3%
30.4
-3%
Idle Average *
29.4
27.9
5%
28
5%
29.6
-1%
29
1%
30.4
-3%
Idle Maximum *
29.4
27.9
5%
28
5%
29.6
-1%
29.1
1%
30.4
-3%
Load Average *
34.6
36.2
-5%
32.5
6%
36.7
-6%
42.8
-24%
31.7
8%
Load Maximum *
46.8
45.2
3%
42.2
10%
46.7
-0%
41.6
11%
38.1
19%
Witcher 3 ultra *
45
32.5
41.4

* ... smaller is better

Noise Level

Idle
29.4 / 29.4 / 29.4 dB(A)
Load
34.6 / 46.8 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 28.4 dB(A)

Temperature

Rear exhaust (maximum load)
Rear exhaust (maximum load)

Surface temperature development remains essentially identical to last year's 9370 series since the internal GORE cooling solution has not changed. The left half of the laptop will generally always be warmer than the right half due to the positioning of the processor and heat sink inside. Thankfully, the palm rests remain relatively cool no matter the load. The keyboard can become much warmer on the Dell when under very high load compared to the competing Asus ZenBook 13 UX333 (46 C vs. 36 C).

System idle (top)
System idle (top)
System idle (bottom)
System idle (bottom)
Maximum load (top)
Maximum load (top)
Maximum load (bottom)
Maximum load (bottom)

Stress Test

We stress the laptop with synthetic loads to identify for any potential throttling or stability issues. Core temperature when idling can be as low as 39 C, but sudden increases in background activity can bump it over the 70 C range rather quickly.

The XPS 13 is unique in that Dell offers two performance modes outside of the standard Windows power profiles: Optimized and Ultra Performance. As shown by our CineBench tests above, CPU performance is different depending on which mode is selected. Our HWiNFO screenshots below compare CPU performance in more detail when running Prime95 on Optimized and Ultra Performance modes. Unlike most other Ultrabooks that eventually stabilize at fixed CPU clock rates, the XPS 13 has a much wider Turbo Boost clock rate range in order to squeeze out more performance on average over time — even if that means having a more unsteady clock rate and core temperature.

Running Prime95 on Optimized mode results in a cycling CPU clock rate between 2.1 GHz and 3.2 GHz and a cycling core temperature ranging from 70 C to 100 C. When on Ultra Performance mode, the clock rate range is higher at 2.1 GHz to 3.5 GHz while the core temperature range is essentially the same. The main difference is that core temperature remains at 100 C for a few seconds longer in order to run at faster clock rates for longer periods of time. During the start of the stress test, the CPU will attempt to run at its fastest Turbo Boost clock rate of 3.5 to 3.6 GHz before inevitably falling and initializing its cycling behavior. These observations mirrors our sinusoidal CineBench loop test results.

Running on batteries will limit CPU power even when on the High Performance and Ultra Performance profiles. A 3DMark 11 run on battery power returns Physics and Graphics scores of 7576 and 1741 points, respectively, compared to 8702 and 1855 points when on mains.

System idle
System idle
Prime95+FurMark stress
Prime95+FurMark stress
Prime95 stress (Optimized mode)
Prime95 stress (Optimized mode)
Prime95 stress (Ultra Performance mode)
Prime95 stress (Ultra Performance mode)
CPU Clock (GHz) GPU Clock (MHz) Average CPU Temperature (°C)
System Idle -- -- 36
Prime95 Stress (Optimized mode) 2.1 - 3.2 -- 70 - 100
Prime95 Stress (Ultra Performance mode) 2.2 - 3.5 -- 70 - 100
Prime95 + FurMark Stress 1.0 - 2.0 750 - 1100 69 - 91
Max. Load
 44.4 °C
112 F
46.2 °C
115 F
30.4 °C
87 F
 
 39 °C
102 F
37.8 °C
100 F
23.8 °C
75 F
 
 26 °C
79 F
24.2 °C
76 F
22.4 °C
72 F
 
Maximum: 46.2 °C = 115 F
Average: 32.7 °C = 91 F
37 °C
99 F
46.2 °C
115 F
41 °C
106 F
30.6 °C
87 F
36.8 °C
98 F
35.4 °C
96 F
28.2 °C
83 F
31.2 °C
88 F
31.6 °C
89 F
Maximum: 46.2 °C = 115 F
Average: 35.3 °C = 96 F
Power Supply (max.)  46.6 °C = 116 F | Room Temperature 20 °C = 68 F | Fluke 62 Mini IR Thermometer
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 32.7 °C / 91 F, compared to the average of 30.7 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Subnotebook.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 46.2 °C / 115 F, compared to the average of 35.8 °C / 96 F, ranging from 22 to 57 °C for the class Subnotebook.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 46.2 °C / 115 F, compared to the average of 40.1 °C / 104 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 23.3 °C / 74 F, compared to the device average of 30.7 °C / 87 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 26 °C / 78.8 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(+) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.6 °C / 83.5 F (+2.6 °C / 4.7 F).

Speakers

Pink noise at maximum volume
Pink noise at maximum volume
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2041.841.42537.3393136.2384036.237.25036.136.36335.437.48035.434.810033.83512532.638.21603246.120032.448.725030.450.231530.348.440029.855.450028.659.463027.860.68002869.8100027.475.3125027.173.2160027.173.7200026.770.6250026.866.3315026.563400027.267.6500027.670.1630026.974.8800026.774.81000026.568.11250026.6581600026.559SPL39.583.2N3.654.5median 27.4median 63Delta1.39.635.335.132.931.831.83236.535.132.428.93328.936.328.848.32761.52752.924.860.92462.822.763.32269.521.267.82174.82075.919.472.718.97117.770.117.86917.671.817.668.117.671.417.673.717.670.417.571.617.671.617.669.617.459.717.583.630.662.51.5median 69.6median 17.84.62.4hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseDell XPS 13 9380 i7 4KApple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (75.34 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 18.6% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (8.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 7.7% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (11.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 6.2% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (10.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (27.5% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 83% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 14% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 20%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 81% of all tested devices were better, 5% similar, 15% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Apple MacBook 12 (Early 2016) 1.1 GHz audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (83.6 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 11.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (14.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.4% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (4.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (9.3% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 1% of all tested devices in this class were better, 1% similar, 97% worse
» The best had a delta of 8%, average was 20%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 2% of all tested devices were better, 0% similar, 98% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Energy Management

Power Consumption

Power consumption when idling ranges from 5 W to 11 W depending on the brightness setting and power profile. Running the first benchmark scene of 3DMark 06 consumes about 44 W or over 6 W more than the lower-end Core i5-8265U SKU. Maximum consumption is about 48 W from the small (~6.0 x 5.5 x 2.3 cm) 45 W AC adapter. This is not constant, however, as power consumption dips and cycles when under such extreme processing loads in tandem with our CPU stress test observations above.

Note that the 3 W/3 A AC adapter can be used to quick charge other compatible USB Type-C devices as well including smartphones and tablets. Any of the three USB ports on the XPS 13 can be used to recharge the system.

Maximum brightness initiated at 20s mark. The difference between the minimum and maximum brightness setting is approximately 4 Watts
Maximum brightness initiated at 20s mark. The difference between the minimum and maximum brightness setting is approximately 4 Watts
Constant power consumption when running 3DMark 06
Constant power consumption when running 3DMark 06
Prime95 initiated at 20s mark on the Dell Optimized mode. Note the dip at the 3-minute mark which is when CPU performance begins to cycle
Prime95 initiated at 20s mark on the Dell Optimized mode. Note the dip at the 3-minute mark which is when CPU performance begins to cycle
Prime95 initiated at 20s mark on the Dell Ultra Performance mode. The dip is shorter because clock rates bounce back up sooner
Prime95 initiated at 20s mark on the Dell Ultra Performance mode. The dip is shorter because clock rates bounce back up sooner

Update 3/12/19: FHD is more efficient

As expected, the FHD SKU was more efficient when idle. It consistently required between 1 and 3 W less than the 4K SKU at identical levels of brightness.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.2 / 0.48 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 5.2 / 8.6 / 10.5 Watt
Load midlight 44.2 / 47.5 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
8565U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS, 3840x2160, 13.3
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
8265U, UHD Graphics 620, WDC PC SN520 SDAPNUW-256G, IPS, 1920x1080, 13.3
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, Toshiba XG5 KXG50ZNV512G, IPS, 3840x2160, 13.3
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
8565U, GeForce MX150, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ, IPS, 2160x1440, 13
Apple MacBook Pro 13 2018 Touchbar i5
8259U, Iris Plus Graphics 655, , IPS, 2560x1600, 13.3
Power Consumption
-8%
33%
3%
-11%
-3%
Idle Minimum *
5.2
4.4
15%
1.6
69%
5
4%
3.5
33%
2.3
56%
Idle Average *
8.6
11.8
-37%
4.6
47%
8.3
3%
7.5
13%
8.7
-1%
Idle Maximum *
10.5
15.5
-48%
7.3
30%
8.8
16%
12.4
-18%
12.2
-16%
Load Average *
44.2
38
14%
37.9
14%
46.4
-5%
64.2
-45%
53.3
-21%
Load Maximum *
47.5
39.8
16%
44.8
6%
48.6
-2%
65.7
-38%
64
-35%
Witcher 3 ultra *
52.5

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

Runtimes have not changed from last year's model. In fact, we recorded a WLAN runtime of 7 hours and 44 minutes — 1 minute shorter than on our XPS 13 9370. While still very good, anyone expecting longer battery life because of the new Whiskey Lake-U CPU won't find it here.

Note that the system recharges much more slowly when on higher loads. When running Prime95, for example, the recharge rate essentially grinds to a halt no matter the USB Type-C port used. Users who wish to recharge the laptop more quickly may want to avoid running very heavy loads.

Longer Battery Life Thanks to FHD Display

XPS 13 9380 FHD i7 - almost 32 hours when idle! (lowest possible brightness, wireless modules off)
XPS 13 9380 FHD i7 - almost 32 hours when idle! (lowest possible brightness, wireless modules off)
XPS 13 9380 FHD i7 - around 2 hours under load (Battery Eater Classic)
XPS 13 9380 FHD i7 - around 2 hours under load (Battery Eater Classic)

In addition to its matte display, another benefit of the FHD SKU is a much longer battery life. As already mentioned, we noticed a lower power consumption when idle, and it pays off: battery life was improved significantly.

In our idle test, the FHD SKU lasted for a whopping 900 minutes more than the UHD/i5 SKU despite its identical 52 Wh battery. In our Wi-Fi test, it lasted 70 % longer (or 13 instead of 8 hours). Opting for the FHD instead of the 4K panel thus translates into five extra hours of battery life in our real-world Wi-Fi test scenario.

Battery life under load was almost identical and did not differ significantly. Both devices powered off after around 2 hours, the i7/FHD SKU lasted just 10 minutes longer than the i5/UHD SKU.

Battery Runtime
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
7h 44min
Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K
8565U, UHD Graphics 620, 52 Wh
Asus ZenBook 13 UX333FA
8265U, UHD Graphics 620, 50 Wh
Huawei MateBook 13 i7
8565U, GeForce MX150, 41.7 Wh
Apple MacBook Pro 13 2018 Touchbar i5
8259U, Iris Plus Graphics 655, 58 Wh
Dell XPS 13 9370 i7 UHD
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 52 Wh
Samsung Notebook 9 NP930QAA
8550U, UHD Graphics 620, 39 Wh
Battery Runtime
28%
-2%
25%
0%
-14%
Reader / Idle
1668
925
819
873
WiFi v1.3
464
593
28%
457
-2%
581
25%
465
0%
398
-14%
Load
132
53
109
69
Witcher 3 ultra
94

Pros

+ cycling Turbo Boost clock rates allow for faster CPU performance on average
+ crisp 4K UHD touchscreen, high contrast ratio, full sRGB coverage
+ fast 512 GB Samsung NVMe SSD
+ no pulse-width modulation
+ compact and rigid design
+ very narrow bezels

Cons

- Core i7-8565U is less than 10 percent faster than the Core i5-8265U SKU
- USB Type-C and Thunderbolt 3 only; no full-size ports
- light-moderate uneven backlight bleeding
- slightly louder fan noise than Core i5 SKU
- slight electronic noise on our test unit
- no GeForce MX options

Verdict

In review: Dell XPS 13 9380 Core i7 4K UHD. Test model provided by Dell US
In review: Dell XPS 13 9380 Core i7 4K UHD. Test model provided by Dell US

The XPS 13 9380 is a solid subnotebook that directly addresses the webcam complaints of the 9360 and 9370 series. Everything we like and dislike about the 9370 series remain in effect here. We're instead interested in answering the question: Is the Core i7 SKU worth it over the Core i5 SKU?

Opting for the Core i7 configuration will bring an average performance boost of only 10 percent over the Core i5 configuration for $250 more. This wouldn't have been so bad if Dell had also doubled the RAM and/or storage between the two price points, but this is not the case. We highly recommend going for the Core i5 SKU and then investing in longer warranty or more RAM instead if possible.

Users who prefer the Core i7 SKU anyway will find that battery life and temperatures are not all that different when compared to the Core i5 SKU. Fan noise is louder, though this only becomes apparent when under higher loads. Thus, the small boost in CPU performance fortunately does not come with any major disadvantages.

The most expensive XPS 13 configuration is faster than the mid-tier configuration, but the delta is relatively minor in contrast to the wide price point differential between the two SKUs. We recommend investing those dollars on more tangible attributes for the system instead such as additional RAM, storage, or the 4K UHD touchscreen.

Update 3/12/19: Five Extra Hours With FHD

If you are out and about regularly and tend to work outdoors often, the matte FHD option is the much better choice. Not just because of its matte panel but also because it also gets you five extra hours of battery life (Wi-Fi test), which came as a very welcome surprise.

Besides the lower resolution and the lack of touch the FHD panel is not any worse than the 4K panel. It covers 99% of sRGB (94 % for the 4K model) and has a higher color accuracy to boot, regardless of whether it was calibrated or not.

If color accuracy and portability are important to you, we highly recommend the AOU FHD panel over the 4K panel.

Rating: the extra battery life would increase our battery rating from 90 to 96 % and the overall rating from 87.7 % to 88.4 %.

Dell XPS 13 9380 i7 4K - 03/12/2019 v6
Allen Ngo

Chassis
92 /  98 → 94%
Keyboard
85%
Pointing Device
87%
Connectivity
60 / 80 → 75%
Weight
72 / 35-78 → 87%
Battery
90%
Display
86%
Games Performance
61 / 68 → 89%
Application Performance
90 / 87 → 100%
Temperature
90 / 91 → 99%
Noise
88%
Audio
80 / 91 → 88%
Camera
29 / 85 → 34%
Average
78%
88%
Subnotebook - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Dell XPS 13 9380 (i7-8565U, 4K UHD) Laptop Review
Allen Ngo, 2019-02-19 (Update: 2019-03-15)
Allen Ngo
Allen Ngo - US Editor in Chief
After graduating with a B.S. in environmental hydrodynamics from the University of California, I studied reactor physics to become licensed by the U.S. NRC to operate nuclear reactors. There's a striking level of appreciation you gain for everyday consumer electronics after working with modern nuclear reactivity systems astonishingly powered by computers from the 80s. When I'm not managing day-to-day activities and US review articles on Notebookcheck, you can catch me following the eSports scene and the latest gaming news.