Dell XPS M2010 - Mobile Entertainment PC (Centrino Duo)

Dell's Showstopper

Dell's Showstopper

It's not easy being king of the hill. Despite being the largest and one of the most profitable computer manufacturers worldwide, Dell does not have the charisma of an Apple, the blue-blooded reputation of IBM or the glamour of Sony. What it does offer to consumers are attractive all-year-round discounts due to the lower costs sustained by its direct sales model and excellent supply chain management. Judging from its success, this business model works but Dell just does not inspire the same kind of brand loyalty that Apple or Sony can.

The company's recent acquisition of enthusiast oriented PC boutique firm - Alienware -may be a sign that Dell is aware of its relatively bland image and aims to broaden its appeal to this niche. However that doesn't mean that its own XPS enthusiast line of computers will be neglected to play second fiddle, for the hip quotient for a Dell product just went through the roof with the latest XPS notebook, (if a monster of a system weighing more than 8kg could still fit that description) the Dell XPS M2010. A prototype was showcased at this year's Consumer Electronic Show as a concept PC but apparently, it has crossed over from being a fancy idea to reality. And like what its marketing blurb claims, it's undoubtedly a showstopper.

The impressively huge Dell XPS M2010 'notebook' has a magnificent 20-inch widescreen LCD display. And no, that shiny circular thing is neither the subwoofer or the drink coaster. It's actually a cool slot-in DVD drive.

Imagine a high-end performance desktop squeezed into the form factor of a notebook and you'll get the Dell XPS M2010. However, its enlarged dimensions will stretch your idea of a notebook though Dell seems to be trying to de-emphasize the notebook aspect in its marketing. Decked out with the some of the best hardware components that would put gaming rigs to shame, it is an outstanding integration of form and function that shows off the company's engineering and design prowess. It's so unlike Dell's typically faceless black boxes or their utilitarian but hardly sexy notebooks. In case you're not convinced, how would you like to own one of these?

The adjustable screen can be brought forward so that it resembles your orthodox notebook. However, you won't be able to access the DVD drive then. In any case, adjusting the screen to any height or angle within its mechanical means is easy, and surprisingly feels robust too.

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