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Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: A superb, but pricey all-in-one PC

Expert Reviews Staff
9 Nov 2017
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
2,700
inc VAT

A great-looking, great-sounding all-in-one with a fast processor, but the Dell XPS 27 All-in-One is exceptionally expensive

Pros 
Superb speakers and design
Top notch performance
Wonderful, colour-accurate display
Cons 
Pricey
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I’ve seen plenty of PC manufacturers try to emulate the success of the iMac, but far fewer have attempted to make something completely different that plays to Windows' strengths. That changes with the Dell XPS 27 All-in-One, a powerful and quite different all-in-one PC.

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Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: Design

With its 27in display, the XPS 27 is a rather imposing system, grabbing attention for all of the right reasons. It's the six speakers at the front that really stand out. Housed in the glossy black frame, they hint at the audio prowess of this PC and demonstrate that this isn't just another basic all-in-one.

Then, there's the fancy stand. It lets you get the display in pretty much any position, from straight upright to almost flat. Getting comfy in front of the XPS 27 is easy as a result, and when using the touchscreen, you can get just the right angle you want.

The slight downside of the flexible stand is that it weighs a lot, and the entire all-in-one comes in at 17.3kg. Getting the XPS 27 up onto a desk isn't easy.

Dell has managed to fit a USB3 port, 3.5mm audio output and SD card reader into the side of the XPS 27, where they're easy to reach. For anything connected permanently to the XPS 27, there's a collection of ports on the rear, located in a recess cut into the back of the screen.

You get four USB3, two Thunderbolt 3-powered ports, HDMI and DisplayPort outputs and Gigabit Ethernet (there's also 802.11ac Wi-Fi built-in). It's a shame that there's no video input, preventing you from using the XPS 27's screen with external devices.

Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: Keyboard and mouse

Dell’s Premiere wireless keyboard and mouse are in the box, both of which can be connected to up to three different computers, with selector switches letting you choose which one to control.

The keyboard is great, with the keys having plenty of travel and a decent amount of feedback. The mouse is a little more basic, but it is designed for left- and right-handers alike, and has all of the buttons you could want (left and right click, a scroll wheel, and back and forward buttons).

Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: Display

Dell has fitted a 4K (3,840 x 2,160) screen, and it's a cracker. Out of the box, at maximum brightness (a decent 386cd/m2), we measured the screen was able to produce 99.3% of the sRGB and 96.2% of the Adobe RGB colour gamuts. A Delta E score of 0.74 shows that colours displayed accurately, too.

Dell also has its own calibration software built-in, which works with the X-Rite i1DisplayPro calibrator. Running this, we found that colour coverage increased to 100% sRGB and 99.8% Adobe RGB, while the Delta E improved slightly to 0.7. With the excellent contrast of 1,148:1, the IPS panel used here is fantastic, and everything looks positively sumptuous on-screen.

Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: Audio quality

And Dell’s speakers sound every bit as good as they look. You get four full-range drivers and two tweeters at the front, with two passive radiators delivering bass. Movies and TV shows spring to life with excellent dialogue and a real bass punch to soundtracks and sound effects. Music sounds just as good, so you definitely won't need an external set of speakers with this computer.

Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: Performance

Our review model arrived with a Kaby Lake quad-core Intel Core i7-7700. But, given that there's little performance difference between the two, we don't mind the older model, as it reached blisteringly fast scores of 139 in the image editing test, 144 in the video editing test, and 135 in the multitasking test. With an overall score of 138, the XPS 27 is very quick indeed.

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It helps that there's a fast 512GB SSD fitted, as this makes Windows 10 and the XPS 27 feel that bit snappier.

Graphics are powered by an AMD Radeon RX 470 GPU. This is a low-end graphics card that can cope with less-demanding titles, albeit only on lower settings. Running Dirt Showdown at 1080p with Ultra detail, for example, we saw a frame rate of 14fps; dropping detail to Medium saw performance improve to a playable 36fps.

Dell XPS 27 All-in-One review: Verdict

Gaming aside, if you want a powerful and flexible all-in-one with a brilliant display, the XPS 27 All-in-One is a solid choice. It's expensive, though, with the model we reviewed costing a whopping £2,699.

If you don't want the touchscreen, can live with a mechanical hybrid disk (with a 32GB SSD cache) and don't mind a Core i5 processor, you can pick up the cheaper model for £1,799.

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