Apple MacBook Pro 13 M1 vs. Dell XPS 13: Which Should You Buy?

Apple MacBook Pro M1
Credit: Apple

Two popular laptops, both with top-end design and all the features you expect from a big-brand laptop.

First up is the MacBook Pro 13 M1 from tech giant Apple, the other, the XPS 13 from Alienware maker and pre-built computer specialist Dell.

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The big question is can the Dell laptop, with Intel’s latest 11th Gen Tiger Lake processor beat Apple’s M1 masterpiece?

Find out below:

Specifications

MacBook Pro 13 M1

$1,475+ Amazon

CPU: Apple M1
GPU: 8 GPU Cores, 8x Neural Engine
Display size: 13.3 inches
RAM: 8 GB
Storage: 512 GB
Weight: 3 Pounds

Dell XPS 13

$1,599+ Amazon

CPU: 11th Gen Intel Core i7-1165G7
GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics
Display size: 13.4 inches
RAM: 8 GB 4267MHz LPDDR4x Memory Onboard
Storage: 512 GB SSD NVMe
Weight: 2.64 pounds

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Performance Comparison

Apple MacBook Pro 13:

  • The MacBook Pro 13 M1 is one of the first laptops from Apple to feature the company’s custom M1 processor.
  • It is based on an 8 nm process and was designed specifically for laptops. The new chip has been designed to deliver up to 2.5 times the performance of its predecessor, and it also consumes less power than before.
  • The M1 CPU features 8 CPU cores (4 performance cores, 4 efficiency cores) and can reach a total clock speed of 3.22 GHz, working at a clock rate of 3222 MHz.
  • The chip also has a battery boost mode, which can be activated when you’re using the beast on the go and need better battery life.
  • In this mode, each core will ramp up to 2.7GHz instead of 3.22 GHz in order to save power consumption while still providing good performance when needed.
  • In terms of graphical memory, the M1 includes 8 GPU cores. It’s a 16 nm configuration based on the ARM architecture that holds the superpower to render your videos and 3D models in the blink of an eye.

Dell XPS 13:

  • When it comes to performance, the Dell XPS 13 on paper beats the MacBook with its mobile 11th Gen Tiger Lake and the newest NVIDIA GPU.
  • The Tiger Lake CPU is a 10 nm chip with a maximum boost clock of 4.70 GHz. It is a 4-core processor with a 12 MB Intel Smart Cache.
  • However, the 28 W max TDP shows clear signs of underperformance, and the Dell XPS 13 features only the base integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics. A GPU that can be beaten by a 2010 NVIDIA graphics card.

Winner: Apple Mac Pro M1

CHECK OUT: Apple M1 Chip vs Intel – MacBook Pro 13-Inch Comparison

Memory:

System architecture and how it uses memory can make a massive difference to a system’s performance. So can the Dell XPS 13 come out on top in this second category?

  • The Apple MacBook Pro 13 M1 base model comes with LPDDR5 8 GB RAM working at 6400MT/s speed. You can add up to 64 GB of RAM for maximum performance. And, trust me, if you do that, your M1 Pro will be out of this world, but it will cost a fortune.
  • The Dell XPS 13 offers LPDDR4 dual-channel 8 GB RAM working at 4267 MHz. This can also be increased to 64 GB, however, it will be much cheaper to add memory compared to the Apple laptop.
  • The MacBook works more efficiently even with the base model specs. If you want to get extra performance juice from the Dell XPS 13, you’ll need at least 16 GB to match the efficiency of an 8 GB MacBook Pro.

Winner: Apple Mac Pro M1

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Conclusion

Despite the Dell XPS 13 costing as much as the MacBook, the laptop just isn’t as powerful or efficient as Apple’s MacBook Pro. And we’re not even comparing battery life and storage, which the Apple would come out on top in also.

Overall, if you are in the market for a 13-inch laptop, we recommend the MacBook Pro M1. It won’t disappoint.

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