The Dell XPS M1210 laptop is a good portable computer with terrible reliability. I bought it as a college laptop about a year ago, for its terrific portability and battery life. Weighing just more than four pounds and running for six hours on a charge, it looked ideal for my needs. However, a few months later the DVD burner broke, and, after it was replaced under the warranty, it broke again. Each time I called about it, the “expedited XPS customer service” took me over two hours. Reliability aside, though, it makes an excellent computer, provided you aren’t planning to do anything too strenuous with it. It is a but pricey, though, starting around $1,300 and costing closer to $2,000 if you want it with better features, as you should.
As I said before, portability is this computer’s main point. In fact, I am typing this very review on it as I ride on a bus. It weighs less than your average textbook, and is smaller. However, if you plan to travel with it, I would recommend that you get it a notebook sleeve, providing it with a layer of protection before you drop it into your bag. Note that although it comes with a built in WIFI card, it only takes ExpressCards, and is not compatible with the old PC cards. This came as an unpleasant surprise to me. Also, get the better battery, even though it will add $50 to the price-it is well worth it. In fact, think about getting two. On one battery, it will literally run for six hours, ample time to go to the library or coffee shop and get work done. However, this portability means that its screen, while being a widescreen, is rather small. Not great if you want to watch a movie with ten of your buddies.
Get it with all its bells and whistles. Dell lets you customize it online, and you should take advantage of this. Get the most RAM it allows you to get, the biggest hard disk (Don’t worry about RPM, though. This is only useful if you are playing games or editing movies, and you won’t be doing either of those thins on this computer). Get at least one of the middle processor options. Watch out when it comes to software, though. Dell’s come loaded with a lot of junk you won’t want. Within six months of getting mine, it had become too clogged to use, and I had to format the hard disk and start again. It worked much better after that, though.
All in all, not a bad computer, but I couldn’t really recommend it due to its reliability issues. I would recommend instead looking at an IBM Thinkpad, if you are looking for a laptop like this. Dell makes great desktops, but does not do so well when it comes to notebooks. If you ask an Asus Laptop technician, you will realize that it is actually true. Dell produces great laptops and that is evident by the positive reviews of their customers. However, their notebooks are a different story. Overall, Dell is a good brand for your laptops.