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I have to admit from the start that while I'm no technophobe, I'm no computer expert either. My previous laptop was a very old Sony Vaio that was dying a slow death and failing to keep up with the modern world - I needed a computer to edit my photos on, preferably one that could connect to the internet on the same day I logged on!
My reasons for choosing the XPS M1530 weren't great - I initially planned to buy a much cheaper laptop but had heard that this was top-range, and figured it wouldn't date too quickly. I also needed a computer capable of handling Vista without going into meltdown. It's not the cheapest machine on the market - the Dell 1520/1525/1720 range are cheaper but don't look quite as good - though I'm sure they would have done a pretty good job too!
The main attractions of the M1530:
Fast processor - mine has the T5450 (1.66GHz) but better are available 2GB of RAM as standard 250GB storage - very handy but sure that won't seem like much in a couple of years! Very nice screen - high resolution Good graphics card (NVidia GeForce 8600M GT) Good battery life - see below Decent sized keyboard Relatively low weight for its specs Fingerprint reader - bit of a gimmick possibly, but makes logging on easy
I opted for one of the standard black matt covers - I'd read that these attracted fingerprints but for some reason didn't believe it - THEY DO. On the other hand, if you're not too fussy about appearances, after a few months the marks don't appear too obvious (I suspect because they merge together).
The laptop worked straight out of the box. Start-up is relatively quick. One big plus is the nice screen - the reason I hung onto my old Vaio for ages is they do have great screens with vivid colours, however I can't see a huge difference with this and in some respects it's better - certainly having the wide screen makes a massive difference to how cluttered the desktop feels.
There's a number of pre-installed desktop backgrounds - some of them very nice and a cut above what you usually get. I must say Vista doesn't always run super-quick (I've not installed SP1 yet as I've heard it's a bit buggy - but I think it does speed up certain functions). Downloading was certainly very fast, 1-2GB of data taking max 5 minutes.
The battery life is apparently 3 and a half hours - but I found the screen intolerably dim when on standard settings. It's basically on reduced brightness as soon as it goes to battery - then becomes progressively dimmer. My eyes aren't great (short-sighted) and after a while I got sick of it and changes it to "high performance". Depending on what I'm doing, it can last up to an hour and I'm usually happy with that.
It took me a couple of moments to find the DVD drive - I was looking for an old-style disc drive, whereas this just slides into a drive built into the machine. I was worried it might prove too flimsy at first - seems ok so far. There's also a 2MP webcam, but I haven't got round to using that yet so can't comment on it.
As for the fingerprint reader - can't make my mind up. I still feel it's a bit of a gimmick - not really necessary, and I wouldn't go out of my way to pay more for it. But it certainly makes logging on quicker (if you keep your computer password-protected). In terms of the registration for various websites, it seems very hit-and-miss as to whether this works.
When typing I noticed that the keys sometimes don't register - this is getting better but still a slight problem - I think some of this is partly due to a different size of keyboard, but the keys seem to need a reasonable amount of pressure. The touchpad is fairly good. On feature is a strip at the right and the base which you can slide your finger along to scroll down or across - useful but can be annoying if you forget, as what you're doing shoots off the screen!
Overall I've noticed a huge difference in how quickly I can get things done - especially for watching video clips or downloading/ uploading large amount sof data, this has made my life much easier. I'd highly recommnd this laptop to anyone wanting something more than a bargain machine - I think I have yet to make the most of all its features.
Dell XPS M1530 keyboard UK detailsColour: BlackCountry: UK QWERTY EnglishWarranty: 12 ... more
monthsCondition: Brand new originalModel: Dell XPS M1530 laptop keyboardDell XPS M1530 keyboard p/n: nsk-d930u, oyr959, op463j, ba87, op463j, So if you know your Dell XPS M1530 keyboard is broken or damaged or you experiencing particular faults such as erratic touchpad behaviour which is often but not always caused by a faulty keyboard or you have to press your keys on the laptop keyboard really hard, then look no further. This is a brand new replacement keyboard for the Dell XPS M1530 laptop and is a full UK keyboard and unlike many sites if we list UK it will be UK layout sent to you. Why buy your new Dell XPS M1530 laptop keyboard from Coywood?Brand new12mth warrantyQWERTY UK layoutNext day deliveryOriginal Dell M1530 UK KeyboardUK Company trading since 2000 Order your Dell XPS M1530 keyboard before 3pm for next day delivery. Dell XPS M1530 keyboards sent to European destinations will be shipped same day but can take up to 10 days depending on your countries local couriers.
Dell XPS M1530 laptop charger SpecificationPower input: 100-240vPower: 65w Power output: ... more
19.5v 3.34aTip pin size: 7.4mm * 5.0mm Octagonal with pin in centreDell XPS M1530 charger p/n: PA-21, XK850Dell Ac adapter warranty: 12monthsContents: Genuine Dell XPS M1530 charger & plug At Coywood we not only have this Dell XPS M1530 laptop charger but also a full comprehensive range of all the leading brands of Laptops, notebooks, netbooks and Apple Macs. All Dell XPS M1530 chargers ordered before 3pm are shipped same day on next day delivery. A UK 3 pin plug power cable is sent with all orders of the Dell XPS M1530 laptop charger and a Euro plug will sent to Euro buyers.Key points of this Dell XPS M1530 chargerNext day delivery on orders before 3pmFree power cable12 months warranty as standardGenuine Dell chargerOriginal Dell charger Octagonal tipBack to Main Dell laptop charger page Also popular choices of dell chargers are:Dell pa-10 19.5v 4.62a laptop chargerDell pa-12 19.5v 3.34a laptop charger