Dell precision m2800 notebook review

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Inexpensive entry.

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Dell introduces a new entry-level version of its exclusive portfolio of mobile workstations with the Precision M2800. We tested if the concept with updated Latitude cases và AMD FirePro graphics really works.

For the original German review, see here.

Dell uses familiar components for the new Precision M2800 and utilizes the case of theDell Latitude E6540. Besides its robust construction, it offers good expandability and was designed for professional purposes. With updated components & the professional graphics cardAMD FirePro W4170 GPU, Dell upgrades the Latitude khổng lồ thePrecision Workstation. This is a clever và inexpensive approach to lớn expand its sản phẩm portfolio. This solution is not unfamiliar, Dell already successfully used this concept in the case of the Dell XPS 15 UltraBook for theDell Precision M3800.

Our review unitis the current đứng đầu version of the Precision M2800-series. For around 1,800 Euros (~$2455) you get anIntel core i7-4810MQ CPU,AMD"s FirePro W4170 GPU, 8 GB RAM, a 128 GB Solid-State Drive và a matte Full HD panel.


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Case


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Some parts are not seamlessly integrated.

As mentioned before, the case of the Precision M2800 is identical to theLatitude E6540. TheTri-Metal constructionis very sturdy and once again leaves a very solid impression. The palm rest is firm, the chassis very torsion-resistant and the hinges have no problem keeping the display in position. However, somedetails of the build qualityare not so great. You can sometimes see parts that are not perfectly integrated and uneven gaps.

The weightof our đánh giá unit is slightly above average for 15-inch workstations weighing 2.9 kg (~6.4 pounds) và it is much heavier than theLenovo ThinkPad W540, for instance. You can save some weight with a smaller battery & a dummy for the optical drive, but it will limit the features significantly. More impressions of the case are available in the review of theDell Latitude E6540.


Connectivity


The port variety covers all the important aspects, but we still miss some typical business ports. HDMI & 4x USB 3.0 are morecommon for consumer notebooks. DisplayPort, eSATA or FireWire on the other hand can only be used via ExpressCard. Thunderbolt is currently not available. Theport layout is very convenient and the majority of ports are at the rear area of the sides or the back of the device. The thẻ reader is at the front và easy khổng lồ use.

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Left side: Kensington, HDMI, USB 3.0, SmartCard reader
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Front: thẻ reader
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Right side: ExpressCard/54, optical drive, wireless switch, audio in/out, 2x USB 3.0
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Back: USB 3.0, LAN, VGA, AC power
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WLAN performance

Communication

The vi xử lý core component of the communication modules is Intel"s Dual-band Wireless-AC 7260. It supports the fast 802.11ac standard with a theoretical transfer rate of up to lớn 867 Mbps. We determinedgood signal qualitywith a stable connection in our practical test. We measured WLAN performance of up khổng lồ 6 MB/s with an 802.11n router and there were no unusual connection drops or range issues. Besides the mandatory webcam, bluetooth 4.0 và a Gigabit-LAN port you also get an empty slot for aWWAN module. The necessary antennas are already integrated, so an upgrade should be no problem. You can also use this slot for an mSATA SSD.

Security

Besides the usual password protections for the BIOS, the system & the files, our reviews unit is also equipped with a drop sensor, a SmartCard reader and Dell"s security tool Protected Workspace. The Trusted Platform Module & the Computrace tư vấn are integrated, but have to lớn be activated in the BIOS first. Afingerprint readeris not available. You also cannot select it as an option in the online store, but it should be configurable according lớn Dell. The manufacturer actually offers several additional features apart from the less expensive configurations in the online store, which should be interesting for small và large companies in particular.

Accessories

Dell"s Precision M2800 can use all the accessories from theDell Latitude E6540. Especially the system-specific programis interesting, which includes docking stations, batteries, optical drives and modules. This can be a big advantage & save additional costs if you already have the related devices.

Maintenance

You can easily remove the bottom cover after you loosen some screws. This gives you comfortable access lớn themost important components. Some parts like the system memory, the WWAN/mSATA slot, the primary storage solution and the modular drive cất cánh can be upgraded. The tín đồ is accessible and can be cleaned or replaced if necessary.

Warranty

Dell equips its Precision M2800 Workstation with athree-year warranty(Base tư vấn on the next business day). As usual, Dell offers several extensions and upgrades. Such an extension of the base support to 5 years, for instance, is available for almost 108 Euros (~$147, net).


Keyboard

The keyboard uses almost the whole width of the case và has conveniently sized keys. Even the arrow keys are comparatively large & are easy lớn use. Spreadsheet users will be happy about the separate numeric keypad, which improves the input đầu vào of large number rows significantly. Besides a high-contrast lettering, the input also has a background illumination that can be adjusted in four steps. Dell is very restrained with FN functions and only integrates a couple of them with a xanh lettering. The keyboard is very firm, has an average travel & a convenient stroke. Frequent writers should have no problems with this input.

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Touchpad

The kích cỡ of the touchpad (80 x 43 mm; 3.1 x 1.7 in) suggests that it is anolder model. There is not a lot of room for gestures with multiple fingers. Otherwise we lượt thích the input đầu vào very much – gliding capabilities, response & the handling bởi vì not cause any criticism. The separate buttons have a convenient rubber coating and work flawlessly. They can also be configured according to your own needs & combined with the TrackPoint buttons. The correspondingTrackPointworks precisely as usual và is a convenient alternative, especially with limited space lượt thích on a train ride or on the plane.