1 Nickel

Why no XPS 13 with Nvidia 960M graphics (only Intel 620)?

Why can't you buy an XPS 13 with Nvidia 960M or other dedicated graphics card? Wasn't this possible with older XPS 13 models in the past?

If you can only get an XPS 13 with Intel 620, is it still worth getting a model with 16GB of RAM for video editing or Chrome with 30 tabs open?

2 Replies
1 Copper

Re: Why no XPS 13 with Nvidia 960M graphics (only Intel 620)?

I've been using cloud-based CAD software and I would love to have dedicated graphics in my XPS 13. I'd upgrade without hesitation if Dell offered it.

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5 Tungsten

Re: Why no XPS 13 with Nvidia 960M graphics (only Intel 620)?

The XPS 13 at least since the 9333 model introduced in 2013 has never been available with a discrete GPU. I can’t remember farther back than that. The reason likely has to do with some combination of thermals, board space, and/or the system’s 45W power budget. And given that Intel’s new Ice Lake CPU platform, which is set to arrive by holiday season 2019 starting with the CPU models intended for systems like the XPS 13, will include a significant upgrade to its integrated GPU (called Gen 11), there will be even less incentive to add a discrete GPU option. Gen 11 won’t bring Intel GPUs on par with typical dGPUs, partly because Intel is ALSO planning to get into the discrete GPU market with a separate product offering, but it will apparently be a major step up from today’s integrated GPUs. So if you can afford to wait until the end of the year, I would. Ice Lake is also expected to bring a larger than normal increase in performance and battery life because Intel is finally moving to 10nm manufacturing. All of the recent CPU generations including their Core 9th Gen have basically been minor tweaks to their 5th Gen architecture, but this will be a truly new offering.

As for whether you should still buy it, even laptops that have NVIDIA discrete GPUs often have them set up through NVIDIA Optimus where the GPU is only enabled as needed (the XPS 15 works this way), and I doubt it would activate for 30 browser tabs. Video editing might be another story, but I’d personally confirm that my video editing application would be able to use a discrete GPU over Optimus.

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