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High-end laptops and hybrids headline CES 2016 for Dell

Dell has brought an impressive raft of products to this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, with a focus on business rigs that don’t carry the stigma of hardware intended for the world of work. The company’s Latitude line has been outfitted with a host of updates, with a particular focus on 2-in-1 devices.

7000 Series laptop and 2-in-1

Leading the charge is the 7000 Series laptop, which Dell is pitching as the world’s most secure Ultrabook. The claim refers to the laptop’s comprehensive encryption options, its authentication options, and the technology in place to protect the system against malware.

The sleek design of the laptop is realized with high-quality materials, like the woven carbon fiber used to ensure it can withstand the realities of working on the move. Meanwhile, support for Dell’s existing E-family docking station and compatibility with WiGig can help neatly integrate the new iteration of the 7000 Series into your office.

Under the hood, the 7000 Series offers Intel 6th-gen Core processors, up to 16GB of DDR4 SDRAM, an Intel Integrated Graphics 520 card (with the option of upgrading to a 540), and various storage configurations — an M.2 form factor with up to 512GB of either SATA SSD, PCIe NCMe SSD, or SED SSD depending on the purchaser’s preference.

Related: Dell rumors suggest it may be merging with EMC

The display is another major feather in the cap of the 7000 series, with top-tier options available for both the 12.5-inch and the 14-inch variants. The former offers a 12.5 FHD Touch 1,920 x 1,080 WLED display that uses Corning Gorilla Glass in its most expensive build, whereas the latter ups the resolution to 2,560 x 1,440 and opts for QHD Touch rather than FHD Touch.

Despite these impressive specifications, a full array of ports and a great deal of optional extras like a fingerprint scanner and a FHD video webcam, the 7000 Series is thinner and lighter than ever. The system’s starting weight is 2.77 pounds at the smaller screen size and just 3.32 pounds otherwise, with a thickness of less than 20 millimeters in both cases.

The traditional 7000 Series is being joined by a new hybrid offshoot, which Dell describes as its thinnest and lightest 12.5-inch business device ever. It’s built around a 4K UHD display — also available as 1080p — which has been optimized for the touch functionality included in Windows 10 and once again uses Gorilla Glass for added durability.

A 6th generation Intel Core processor is the beating heart of the device, with options up to 3.10 GHz being offered, as well as vPro support. Users can choose either 4GB or 8GB of LPDDR3 SDRAM at 1600MHz, as well as a host of SATA, SATA SED and PCIe NVMe storage options up to a capacity of 512GB.

The hybrid also boasts an Intel HD Graphics 515 card, USB Type-C connectivity, and access to a host of Dell’s advanced security options. The basic system weighs in at just 1.61 pounds, and it’s impressively just 8.11 millimeters thick.

5000 series full line refresh, and its own 2-in-1

Dell is also refreshing its 5000 Series of laptops, iterating upon the 12-inch, 14-inch, and 15-inch variants of the line for 2016 and beyond. The smallest options use 6th generation Intel Core processors up to a i7 dual core, whereas everything above a 14-inch display size can be upgraded to a quad core component.

Related: Intel Core i7-6700K (Skylake) review

This horsepower is used in conjunction with up to 16GB of DDR4 memory at 2,133 MHz, and impressive FHD displays — the 14-inch model even offers a rather attention-grabbing 1,600 x 900 HD+ option. These screens will be put to good use displaying graphics powered by either integrated Intel HD graphics, or more robust optional upgrades like the AMD Radeon R7 M370, which is included in the most capable version of the 15-inch system.

Storage options are comprehensive; up to 1TB of HDD space is on offer, with other alternatives including a 2.5″ SSD capable of holding 480GB of data, up to 512GB of SSD M.2 PCIe, and up to 512GB of SSD M.2 SATA with OPAL SED options. All storage options are protected by Dell’s Free Fall Sensor, which can activate upon the system being dropped to attempt to protect data from being damaged.

The 5000 series features three USB 3.0 ports standard, and augments its sturdy wireless communication facilities with optional support for LTE access, and optional WiGig support. Backlit and non-backlit keyboard options are available, as well as a multi-touch touchpad. The system’s starting weight varies from 3.29 pounds to 4.61 pounds depending on the model, but never exceeds a thickness of one inch.

Related: Dell XPS 15 (2015) review

Not to be left lacking, the 5000 Series is also being graced with its own hybrid spin-off. The Latitude 11 5000 Series 2-in-1 features a 6th generation Intel Core M processor, and is being offered in both its standard form and as a business-focused Security Edition with extra functionality geared towards keeping data under lock and key.

The device can be outfitted with either 4GB or 8GB of LPDDR3 SDRAM, and comes with an Intel HD Graphics 515 card standard. The 10.8-inch display uses Corning Gorilla Glass, carries a 1,920 x 1,080 resolution screen, and features anti-finger print technology to keep its touch screen clean and professional.

In terms of storage, there are plenty of options within the realm of M.2 SSD hardware. SATA, PCIe NVMe and SATA SED variants are on offer — although the latter two will only be available from March of 2016 — at storage capacities between 128GB and 512GB.

A 35 watt-hour, field-replaceable battery is being integrated into the device to ensure that it has the lifespan to do the job away from a power source, while a USB 3.0 Type-C connector will make charging as efficient as possible. A USB 3.0 Type A port and a mini-HDMI connector are included to flesh out the connectivity options of the 5000 Series 2-in-1.

Related: USB 3.1 have you confused? Here’s everything you need to know about the standard

Standard and slim keyboards accessories are set to be released in conjunction with the hybrid, although it will of course be completely functional without input peripherals thanks to its touch screen. Without an attached keyboard, the tablet measures 10.78 millimeters high and weighs just 1.56 pounds, with the security edition being a little larger and heavier.

Thunderbolt strikes

Dell is also showcasing its Thunderbolt Dock, a product that looks set to be a major part of the company’s attempt to transition customers away from its E-Dock. The device uses Intel’s Thunderbolt 3 technology to allow users to communicate data, video and power between different pieces of hardware, offering blisteringly fast transfer rates of up to 40Gbps.

The Thunderbolt Dock can receive three FHD displays, or two 4K displays running at 60Hz. It’s got a tiny form factor of just 5.7 x 5.7 x 2.0 inches, but still has space for a host of different connectivity options; two USB 2.0 ports, three USB 3.0 ports, VGA and HDMI, among others.

UltraSharp 30 OLED monitor

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Continuing on the CES 2016 trend of OLED displays, Dell is offering one of its own with the UltraSharp 30-inch PC monitor. Featuring a contrast ratio of 400,000:1 with the ability to exhibit “true black” shading, this UltraSharp rendition manages not only to pack in the vibrancy of OLED, but it also has a crystal clear 4K resolution to match, in addition to an outrageously impressive 0.1 ms response time.

Furthermore, the UltraSharp 30 boasts 100 percent Adobe RGB, with a color palette of 1.07 billion on a rather spacious screen. Likewise, it has the elegant design and narrow bezels you’d expect from a monitor of this grade.

This inconceivably luxurious display will set you back a drink-spit-inducing $5,000 if you’re interested.

Latitude 13 7000 Series


The Dell Latitude 7000 Series is back, this time with 6th-gen Intel Core i vPro processors in addition to the smallest, thinnest, and lightest 13.3-inch business-class Ultrabook design to date. As the only Ultrabook intended for business use to feature an InfinityEdge touch display, it appears to be great for those who want the portability of a tablet but the specs of a full-on laptop.

Dell says the Latitude 13 7000 bears 40 ton “space grade” carbon fiber with a “durable” and “stunning” design. And though it’s not the prettiest laptop I’ve ever seen, it does future-proof itself by including Intel’s new Thunderbolt 3 standard, which supports USB Type-C, allowing you to dock, power, and transfer data between devices with only one cable.

Further information on all of the new products being added to the Latitude line and more can be found on the official Dell website.