Dell launches 14z laptop: the new midsize?

Dell has announced the launch of its high-end XPS 14z thin-and-light portable, which was first shown at the IFA 2011 exhibition, and will be available from November 15. According to Dell, the 14-inch HD display "easily fits into a 13-inch laptop form factor while offering 10 percent more viewing area than a 13.

Dell XPS 14z

Dell has announced the launch of its high-end XPS 14z thin-and-light portable, which was first shown at the IFA 2011 exhibition, and will be available from November 15. According to Dell, the 14-inch HD display "easily fits into a 13-inch laptop form factor while offering 10 percent more viewing area than a 13.3-inch display". Although laptops with 13.3 and 15.6-inch screens are common, 14-inch portables are not. However, Lenovo sells a ThinkPad Edge E420s and Asus has recently launched the similar Asus U46, both sporting 14-inch screens, so perhaps this will become a new trend.

The XPS 14z also follows up the £899 XPS 15z, which was introduced in the summer, but there's a major difference in screen resolution. The 14z provides the 1366 x 768 pixel resolution that is standard on laptops with 13.3-inch 16:9 widescreens. You may get "10 percent more viewing area" on a 14z, but you won't actually see any more data. The 15z, by comparison, has the option of a "full HD" screen resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, albeit in a bigger, much heavier machine.

In other respects, the XPS 14z is pretty much a full-spec laptop in a thin-and-light form factor. It includes an Intel Core i5 or i7 Sandy Bridge processor, 4GB or 8GB of memory, a 500GB or 750GB hard drive (or a 256GB SSD), and a slot-loading DVD +/-RW drive. The case measures 335 x 234mm (13.9 x 9.2 inches) and is 23mm (0.9 inches) thick. Weight is 1.98kg.

Connections include USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports, 7-in-1 memory card slot, HDMI 1.4, Mini DisplayPort, WiDi, Ethernet, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Dell claims the battery life is "up to six hours, 49 minutes" with an 8-cell battery.

Dell XPS 14z prices start at £799, which is competitive but not aggressive. An Asus U46SV costs £699, while a comparable Apple MacBook Pro with a 13.3-inch screen is £999. The obvious drawback with the Dell and Apple laptops -- but not the Asus A46SV -- is that they have non-removable batteries.

@jackschofield

Create/Work/Inspire with the Dell XPS 14z https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=miYk4lgF07Q

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