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XPS 15 vs XPS 17... also 2006 XPS 15 vs 2021/2022 models


markd89
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Hi,

 

I have an XPS 15 9550 I7-6700HQ/UHD now and am considering upgrading. My system is loaded 64GB RAM, 1TB NVME and 4TB SATA SSD. I run under Debian Linux and use Virtualbox when I need Windows. Everything, even on this old PC seems acceptably fast. The CPU is mostly idle to 30% in normal use.

 

I'm repasted, under-volted, GPU disabled  and have fans set to only come on at 65*C or so. In practice the fans come on almost never. The left side of the keyboard does get a little warm.

 

I'm considering upgrading to a newer model and here's my questions..

 

1. In day to day operations, i.e. web browsing, am I going to see noticeably snappier performance?

 

2. I will lose the ability to have the internal 4TB SATA SSD. I'm thinking to just put it in a USB-C enclosure. Does that make sense?

 

3. XPS15 vs XPS17. I have to wear mild reading glasses anyway and 15.6 vs 17 won't make a difference with that. The 17 is just an inch or so longer. How would one decide which to get?

 

Thanks!

Mark

 

 

 

 

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So, I just ordered up a refurbished 9710. I'll report first hand on what I think after I receive it.

 

I got the FHD (don't like glossy screens), i7-11800H CPU, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD.

 

My plan is to check it out. If I don't like it, send it back. If I do like it I'll upgrade to 2TB storage, 32GB RAM.

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Let us know what you think about it.  I liked both the 17 and 15 XPS. You can add another NVMe SSD to it and keep the 512GB as a boot drive if you wanted to.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi, here's my report...

 

I liked the 9710 over the 9550 in several respects:

  •  Bigger Screen (this was a 1920x1080 as I like matte)
  •  Speakers to the left/right of the keyboard.
  •  Cool running (29*C at idle)
  •  Subjectively somewhat faster than the 9550. i.e. Web browsing renders faster.

 

There were some negatives:

 

  • I swapped in a WD Black SSD 2TB as well as a Samsung 980 Pro 2TB. Surprisingly the disk reads were only a little faster (maybe 15%) than the 9550 with the Samsung 970 Pro. I was expecting a more substantial boost based on the PCIE4 and 7000 MB/s capability of these two drives. I used hdparm -t in linux to measure the read speeds.
  • Subjectively somewhat faster, but not blazingly so. Maybe that's because the disk speed isn't much different?
  • The fan is off sometimes and when it is on it's quiet. I'd prefer total silence. On my 9550 I have the fan set to stay off until > 65*C which means it's off nearly all the time. The 9710 idled at 29*C, it would be nice to control that with software and tune it like I did with the 9550.
  • I had some glitches cloning my linux system to the 9710. Part of that was UEFI which I resolved but there was still instability. If I was going to keep the 9710 I would do a fresh install and then reinstall things.

 

As it was, I returned the 9710 and am waiting for my refund. I'm still in the market at some point for a substantially faster rig that can have the fans controlled by me. Maybe someone will hack the Dell BIOS to allow that and a future XPS will be in the cards for me. Otherwise, I'm looking to other makers. I read that the new Ryzens are more performance/watt. Maybe something with one of those might be good. Until then my 9550 is still good for what I do.

 

Mark

 

 

 

 

Edited by markd89
clicked save too soon, fixed some typos
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1 hour ago, markd89 said:

Hi, here's my report...

 

I liked the 9710 over the 9550 in several respects:

 

hm, try again on your report 😄

 

as to your initial questions: 

1) 8 vs. 4 cores and increased ipc will surely bring snappier performance. also if u bump up the ram speed to 3200 mhz or above. ram amount shouldnt matter unless u usually have a gazillion chrome tabs open.

 

2) sure makes sense. only bottleneck will be if it bothers u to lug it around externally. alternatively, u can sell off the 4TB sata and invest the money to get a 4TB nvme. theyre not THAT much more expensive anymore.

 

3) if youre used to 15, then 17 will be noticeably larger. but in the end it depends on the display res and also the scaling u set vs. the available work space density (if that makes sense) that it results in.

Mine: Hyperion "Titan God of Heat, Heavenly Light, Power" (2022)
AMD Ryzen 9 7950X / Asus ROG Crosshair X670E Extreme / MSI Geforce RTX 4090 Suprim X / G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB DDR5-6600 2x16 GB / Seagate Firecuda 530 4 TB / 2x Samsung 860 Evo 4 TB / Arctic Liquid Freezer II 420 / Seasonic TX-1600 W Titanium / Phanteks Enthoo Pro 2 TG / Samsung Odyssey Neo G8 32" UHD 240 Hz / Ducky One 3 Daybreak Fullsize Cherry MX Brown / Corsair M65 Ultra RGB

 

My Lady's: Clevo NH55JNNQ "Alfred" (2022)
Sharp LQ156M1JW03 FHD matte 15.6" IGZO 8 bit @248 Hz / Intel 12600 @ 4.4 - 4.8 Ghz / Nvidia 3070 Ti 8 GB GDDR6 / G.Skill 16 GB DDR4-3800 / Samsung 970 Pro 1 TB / Intel AX201 ax+BT / Win 11 Pro Phoenix Lite OS / 230 W PSU powered by Prema Mod!

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1 hour ago, markd89 said:

Hi, here's my report...

 

I liked the 9710 over the 9550 in several respects:

  •  Bigger Screen (this was a 1920x1080 as I like matte)
  •  Speakers to the left/right of the keyboard.
  •  Cool running (29*C at idle)
  •  Subjectively somewhat faster than the 9550. i.e. Web browsing renders faster.

 

There were some negatives:

 

  • I swapped in a WD Black SSD 2TB as well as a Samsung 980 Pro 2TB. Surprisingly the disk reads were only a little faster (maybe 15%) than the 9550 with the Samsung 970 Pro. I was expecting a more substantial boost based on the PCIE4 and 7000 MB/s capability of these two drives. I used hdparm -t in linux to measure the read speeds.
  • Subjectively somewhat faster, but not blazingly so. Maybe that's because the disk speed isn't much different?
  • The fan is off sometimes and when it is on it's quiet. I'd prefer total silence. On my 9550 I have the fan set to stay off until > 65*C which means it's off nearly all the time. The 9710 idled at 29*C, it would be nice to control that with software and tune it like I did with the 9550.
  • I had some glitches cloning my linux system to the 9710. Part of that was UEFI which I resolved but there was still instability. If I was going to keep the 9710 I would do a fresh install and then reinstall things.

 

As it was, I returned the 9710 and am waiting for my refund. I'm still in the market at some point for a substantially faster rig that can have the fans controlled by me. Maybe someone will hack the Dell BIOS to allow that and a future XPS will be in the cards for me. Otherwise, I'm looking to other makers. I read that the new Ryzens are more performance/watt. Maybe something with one of those might be good. Until then my 9550 is still good for what I do.

 

Mark

 

 

 

 

yep your conclusion is spot on with regards to the ssd performance. sata vs nvme barely makes any difference in everyday operations, unless u transfer huge files back and forth. the big jump is only going from spinning rust to ssd in general, after that those big PR performance numbers are just that...

Mine: Hyperion "Titan God of Heat, Heavenly Light, Power" (2022)
AMD Ryzen 9 7950X / Asus ROG Crosshair X670E Extreme / MSI Geforce RTX 4090 Suprim X / G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB DDR5-6600 2x16 GB / Seagate Firecuda 530 4 TB / 2x Samsung 860 Evo 4 TB / Arctic Liquid Freezer II 420 / Seasonic TX-1600 W Titanium / Phanteks Enthoo Pro 2 TG / Samsung Odyssey Neo G8 32" UHD 240 Hz / Ducky One 3 Daybreak Fullsize Cherry MX Brown / Corsair M65 Ultra RGB

 

My Lady's: Clevo NH55JNNQ "Alfred" (2022)
Sharp LQ156M1JW03 FHD matte 15.6" IGZO 8 bit @248 Hz / Intel 12600 @ 4.4 - 4.8 Ghz / Nvidia 3070 Ti 8 GB GDDR6 / G.Skill 16 GB DDR4-3800 / Samsung 970 Pro 1 TB / Intel AX201 ax+BT / Win 11 Pro Phoenix Lite OS / 230 W PSU powered by Prema Mod!

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5 minutes ago, markd89 said:

I was comparing the PCIE3 lane NVME Samsung 970 Pro in the 9550 to the PICE4lane in the 9710 w/ Samsung 980 Pro. I was expecting a speed difference on reads and it was not very significant.

sequential reads u mean? that could be either a connector bottleneck of the mobo or caused by the drive being an os drive and still doing lotsa stuff in the background...

Mine: Hyperion "Titan God of Heat, Heavenly Light, Power" (2022)
AMD Ryzen 9 7950X / Asus ROG Crosshair X670E Extreme / MSI Geforce RTX 4090 Suprim X / G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB DDR5-6600 2x16 GB / Seagate Firecuda 530 4 TB / 2x Samsung 860 Evo 4 TB / Arctic Liquid Freezer II 420 / Seasonic TX-1600 W Titanium / Phanteks Enthoo Pro 2 TG / Samsung Odyssey Neo G8 32" UHD 240 Hz / Ducky One 3 Daybreak Fullsize Cherry MX Brown / Corsair M65 Ultra RGB

 

My Lady's: Clevo NH55JNNQ "Alfred" (2022)
Sharp LQ156M1JW03 FHD matte 15.6" IGZO 8 bit @248 Hz / Intel 12600 @ 4.4 - 4.8 Ghz / Nvidia 3070 Ti 8 GB GDDR6 / G.Skill 16 GB DDR4-3800 / Samsung 970 Pro 1 TB / Intel AX201 ax+BT / Win 11 Pro Phoenix Lite OS / 230 W PSU powered by Prema Mod!

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