Is this a high end machine? No. Is it fast? Relatively but certainly not at the top of the heap. Third generation i7 cpus are still faster.
It's a very quiet machine. This is probably the most noticeable aspect. It's relatively fast. If you are a casual gamer and don't expect to be taking this to a LAN competition, you'll be fine.
This computer is a workstation. In that respect it fills it's needs. Perhaps one of the Alienware computers would be more suitable for the gamers.
Once you open the case the first thing you will notice is the motherboard. I don't expect that this motherboard will last long. The chipset has no cooling. Not even a heatsink. If you have this computer running in mid summer, it will very likely die in a short time. If this motherboard dies, I don't think I will be sending it back. I'll save the money on shipping and install a motherboard of my choosing. That should increase the longevity at least two fold.
The next thing you will notice is that the cpu heatsink is cheap. It's quiet at present but likely will ramp up quite quickly as power needs demand. I expect that as soon as the warranty dies or the cpu fan dies, I will replace this with a proper cooler.
Other things like, no SLI and very poor space management make this machine a difficult sell. They say that three additional hard drives can be added. Getting them to fit inside this case however is no easy task and really compromises the air flow through the case. additional fan i limited to an 80mm near the front of the case.
To Round it All Off:
Overall, for the price, it's a decent machine. No great but good. Could I build a better one for the price? Absolutely. So what's the draw? I suppose it's the option for a payment plan. I have three other Dell products that have served me well.
It's a decent machine but in no way a show stopper. If you need a machine soon but can't afford to drop $600-$1200 in one lump this may be your best option. If you have just a bit of tech savvy and can afford to spend a little bit of money right now, build your own.
Response from Dell.comBy SaraTforDell, Customer Reviews, July 22, 2013
Thank you for sending in your review for this system. I am glad to hear that you like this machine as a quiet workstation. We do test all supported configurations to make sure that the system will run smoothly with them all. We do test to make sure that the fans and airflow are enough for the configurations we support. I hope that everything on this system run well for you for a long time. We appreciate your feedback like wanting SLI options as this allows us to know what features our customers would like to see.
If you have any questions of concerns, please feel free to reach out to our DellCares team through any of the methods below. They would be happy to assist.
beforehand, i had a inspiron 17r special edition for one year, it had a 3rd gen i7 proc and decent graphics. after my laptop motherboard went and warrently within the week. i decided for a destop. i chose this one because, lets face it, HP and ASUS destops are way overpriced. if you are looking for a low budget gaming destop, THIS is youre best option. it can play current to date games in high and ultra with ZERO lag following you have good internet. with this 4th gen i7, regardless of what people say, 4th gen proccessors HANDLE better then 3rd gen, they are quieter, produce less heat, overall wear and tear of it is MUCH less. go ahead and compare for yourself, see where you can get the best hardware, for the lowest cost. its right here in front in you. staring you in the face. the XPS 8700 is waiting.
I've had good luck with Dell products in the past and this system is pretty much what I expected from an upper-mid-tier system.
You can pay a lot more and get a small amount of performance improvement if you are a hardcore gamer. But for everyday use, this system is solid, fast and in the price/performance sweet spot.
The main reason I chose the Dell is that it is super quiet, which is critical to me because I do audio recording directly to the computer. Time will tell on longevity. But for my purposes I'm glad Dell didn't add extra fans.
On the minus side, internal expandability is not great after factory-installed options. It also has no e-SATA port, which means you must purchase a USB 3 to eSata adapter if you have an external drive that doesn't support USB 3.
I'm not a fan of all of the garbage applications that vendors pre-install on computers. Some are just an annoyance. Others, like McAfee, are unneeded resource hogs. Windows 8 already comes with Windows Defender, which is fast, light and less prone to software incompatibility. It took me several hours of work to get McAfee uninstalled. But my system runs better now.
Windows 8 is a mixed bag. The Metro UI is terrible for desktop use. And I've spent some time debugging problems with incompatible software and drivers. On the other hand, many system features are better integrated and easier to work with.
If you hate the Windows 8 UI as much as most non-tablet users, just get StartIsBack or a similar utility to bypass the App screen and restore the familiar start menu to the desktop. This gives you Win 8 under the hood with a more familiar Win 7 interface.
Pros:quiet, good performance for the price, lots of usb ports front and back
Cons:lots of pre-installed crapware, mcafee is unneeded and a pain to uninstall, no e-sata port, limited internal expandability, no windows 8 media
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Review 4 for XPS 8700
Duration of Product Use:3-4 months
Level of Expertise:Good
I use my PC for:Design/graphics
Super satisfied with my XPS 8700
PostedSeptember 2, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
I bought two XPS 8700 running Windows 7 Professional about three months ago. They start up very fast and run 10 times faster than my old computers running on XP. The people that have had problems mentioned they are running on Windows 8. Dell should not charge extra to get Windows 7 loaded on their computers since it increases the number of unhappy customers. I have only had one blue screen and it was because of a program I loaded. I went back to a previous registry setting and did not reload that program and haven't had a problem since.
Cons:dell no charges extra for windows 7, dell includes mcaffee in thier base price and does
A little disappointed with the limitations of the options. This computer can handle much more than Dell is allowing you to add. I really wanted more than 12GB of memory. That was the max though. I ended up with two 2GB and two 4GB DIMMS. I am now looking at replacing all of them for four 8GB DIMMS. Money Dell lost. I told them that I wanted to run 4 monitors. They would not add an additional card. After receiving the Dell 8700 and purchasing an external USB video port I found out that the video card that came with the computer could handle four monitors. I would have purchased the 2GB card if I had known that up front. Again, money Dell left on the table. Also wanted a second DVD drive. Dell would not add the DVD drive. Even more money they left on the table.
Dell should really listen to what we want and quit limiting us. Especially since we have to wait for them to build the computer anyway. Really poor marketing strategy.
Pros:great design and quiet., lots of room for upgrading.
Cons:needs more memory than the package allowed., had to upgrade windows 8. no pre-purchase options
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Review 6 for XPS 8700
Duration of Product Use:Less than a month
Level of Expertise:Expert
I use my PC for:Casual Gaming
Good for the price and specification
PostedSeptember 25, 2013
No, I do not recommend this product.
Overall a good price for what the latest i7 and Haswell motherboard with a separate video card. I could build a PC for a little bit more but would have to pay for all the software.
I only gave this 4 stars because when I swapped out the video card for a MSI 7950 3GB video card, it does not work, however when I put the card into my other PC it works fine. Figure out it is the power supply which is only 450 watts. Even though it had the right power connections to support the video card.
Now I need to go find a video card that will work or I may need to put in a larger power supply. I also worry about adding additional hard drives if I do not change power supplies.
in short, if you do not plan on upgrading parts in the future, it is a good PC for the money.
This is my third Dell XPS purchase in 8 years and this time I went with top of the line XPS 8700. My last XPS, purchased nearly five years ago, is still going strong and being used by other family members for games and general PC work. I bought this because I do a LOT of graphic design, video editing, and audio recording/editing/mixing, and needed all the power I could get. This has tons of power, plenty of storage, and I like windows 8.1 better than I thought I would. I've had it for over two months so far, with zero issues. In fact, I've stated to others, "Wow! It nice when a PC works the way it's suppose to work!", and it continues to do so. I'm sure in 4-5 years I'll be buying another Dell XPS.
Pros:fast, smaller than previous xps pcs, quiet operation, plenty of storage, built in wifi
I got the system on sale, so great value. Overall I've been quite happy with what I've received. The performance is as promised and has been able to run most games tested at high settings (guild wars 2, battlefield 3, etc). Startup time is about 8 seconds from boot to lock screen. Restart time is around 13-15 seconds if no applications stall the shutdown. The SSD makes a huge difference in performance.
The only issues I've had were with setting up monitors. There is only 1 HDMI output on the graphics card (the other is DVI) so I can't hook up my second monitor until I get a DVI cable. Also the system comes with some annoying bloat ware, but that is easy to remove/disable (namely the dell software and the included antivirus, I would just rather use the built in security package). Overall its not as bad as some HP's I've had but I wish I could just get a clean system and pay a little less, or if I could pick a set of software I would like (photoshop / illustrator perhaps?) and not include what I don't want.
Pros:excellent performance, ssd, good value when on sale
I replaced an aging 1st gen i7 (home built) performance system with this XPS 8700. A quick (and easy) upgrade to a more powerful power supply(pun intended) a GTX 760, the addition of 8gb of RAM and a quick swap to a brand new 250gb Samsung 840 EVO SSD using the supplied 1tb drive for storage, a Sound Blaster PCIex card and I have a screaming fast system capable of all my Photoshop editing, Light gaming and support of the latest SETI BOINC project and I couldn't be happier! This is a great little system that is really capable of upgrading both fast and easy!!!
Pros:great size, easy to upgrade, powerful processor
Great PC but in no way expandable. I bought the 8700 with 16 GB RAM and the SSD cache drive. I also go the BluRay drive and the Recon PCI-E SB sound card and the 645 GeForce GPU. Sounds great doesn't it?
The biggest drawback is the main board. No room for expansion at all and forget SLI. It has 1 PCI E 16 slot and 2 PCI E 1's . The sound card takes one so it doesn't leave much room for anything else. The 2nd issue is there are two fan headers ; one for the Chassis Fan and one for the CPU. The headers are there they,DELL, just didn't bother to put connectors for additional cooling. Kinda tacky from my point of view. 3rd issue is the case side that has been riveted on to the cookie cutter press alum frame.
So sounds pretty bad. So to the flip side. I have a HD Sony Camera and at full 1080 recording a wedding can eat 30 GB of data with 5.1 Surround. This PC with the 660 GTX GPU I added blows thru upload , processing , editing and production. I was actually able to do a birthday with the stock Windows 8 make a dvd software instead of the Sony Vegas Pro. I won't make a habit of it but the PC can handle it. Gaming World of Tanks on High FXHQ no problem. Formula One 2012 on all high settings no problem. Multi tasking is not a issue and even with a game open a video playing in 720p on YouTube a video playing on WMP from my NAS via the Ethernet cable at full 1080p all displaying on a 42" HDTV while checking emails I took a look at the performance monitor and I managed to get the processor to a whopping 7 % usage @ 3.78 GHz and and 14% of my memory 2.9GB of 16GB with an average thru put of 7.7Mbps on my network.
So I guess I will settle for what I got but DELL needs to refocus on what XPS is to the consumer. Performance PC's users are sticklers and DELL does have the Alien PC ,which I think, is perhaps where they ,DELL, want their "performance PC consumers" to spend their dollars or yen or whatever but, from my point of view Alien PC's are for the 18 to 23 year olds and XPS or X treme P erformance Series PCs are sleek and elegant like a Rolls Royce with the screaming performance of a Ferrari. Aliens give my kids nightmares and maybe a blue or green monster under a desk is Ok for some it's not what I am looking for. I want and need the SLI option and high end PSU's that are modular and lots of room in a case that gives me options for expansion without the day glow green. This 8700 is not that.
One more point. Windows 8. Obviously a OS designed for tablet and or Smart Phones. I don't own a XBox and it keeps asking for Apps to do this or do that before I reconfigured it differently; I think I had to download a app. Please DELL give us the option of Window 7 Pro or whatever OS we want. I know some that are using XP Pro and doing just fine running international businesses with it.
Pros:fast, sleek looking, processor capabilities, up to 32 gb with a 64bit os, price
Cons:not expandable, cheap chassis, low powered psu, cookie cutter mainboard, no extra cooling fan headers, 1 16x pcie slot, riveted on side panel, no extra headers of any kind, windows 8 pro
Response from Dell.comBy JohnBforDell, Customer Reviews, August 19, 2013
Thanks for the in-depth rating and review on your XPS 8700 desktop. We appreciate it. If there is anything we can do for you, please use the information below to contact us. The team members below will get you taken care of. Please reach out to our Dell Support Team at:
• Dell Community Forums – New to the Community: http://dell.to/GY65Xz • You can contact our Dell Cares Team on Twitter (@DellCares): http://bit.ly/Hhh2SQ • If you don’t have a Twitter account, you can also go to Dell’s Facebook Support Form: http://bit.ly/15zzg95 A Facebook account is required to use this option. Please use the message button and provide your Name, service tag, email address and a brief description of the issue.”
I went for the Intel Core i7, 8GB of RAM and 1TB hard disk. I also separately ordered (not from Dell) a 240gb SSD drive to make it super quick.
I have several gripes that I would not expect on a supposedly premium machine like this: - No Windows 8 DVD. This is ridiculous. My plan was to install the SSD as the main drive, with the 1TB hard drive as the data drive, and then do a clean install of Windows 8 on the SSD. I wasted time creating a Dell "recovery DVD" so that I could reinstall everything onto the SSD. This would not work and, after calling technical support, they told me that I needed to buy a Windows 8 disc. Not happy that I should pay more for something as basic as that for a product this expensive. Not only is there additional expense, it is also inconvenience as I now have to wait to receive the Windows 8 dis before installing programs etc to the SSD. - I have a wifi network that operates on both 2.4ghz and 5ghz. 5ghz is considerably faster due to the interference issue on 2.4ghz networks. However, the wifi card with this desktop is only 2.4ghz, so my internet speed is slower than on my 5yr old laptop which has 5ghz! Why have they been cheap in providing a sub-par wifi card? - Day 2 and the monitor would not wake from sleep mode (the computer did, though, as the keyboard lights would come on). This is not a problem with the monitor but maybe the graphics drivers need work? - The wireless mouse is for some strange intermittently very jerky. It worked perfectly on Windows 7. Maybe my clean install of Windows 8 on the SSD will fix it?
Pros:quite quick and slick
Cons:no windows 8 disc, monitor would not resume from sleep, mouse very jerky, wi-fi is 2.4ghz only
Response from Dell.comBy DonaldDforDell, Customer Reviews, July 23, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review the XPS 8700. I can appreciate your input on the WIFI card. We install cards that are best suited for the majority of users and most users are not willing to spend more for equipment they are not going to use. Additionally, desktops are inherently wired, for network connectivity. I would make this suggestion on Ideastorm.com. This is a great place to have your ideas heard. If more people agree and follow your suggestion, you could have impact on the next great Dell product.
I am sorry to hear of your troubles in trying to install the SSD. We support the system as it came from the factory. You can upgrade your system with additional parts but, we warrant the system to function properly as built from the factory. SSDs are finally starting to come down in price and customer demand has made them an option on current configs. We offer them to speed up boot and access times in the new 8700 Special Edition.
Product Specifications Inaccurate but Great Customer Support
PostedNovember 11, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
This would get a lower review if not for the great support.
The computer works great and I am happy with the performance, except I was surprised to realize that the Wifi card is not 5ghz enabled. I got the i7 model with 8gb ram (upgraded to 16 gb manually) and 1 TB storage.
The listing is misleading as it says it has a this wifi card: Dell Wireless 1703 802.11a/b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.0
Then late in the product specifications says:
Networking and Wireless Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6235 + Bluetooth 4.0 Dell Wireless-DW 1703 + Bluetooth 4.0
Neither make any mention of the 5ghz dual band, but one would assume a new system would have it. Still if you dig a little further you find the Dell Wireless 1703 is not Dual band but the Intel Centrino listed listed further down in the product specifications is... This is misleading.
Regardless, I contacted Tech support and they are swapping out the wifi card free as charge, therefore the get the high rating.
Still if you want a model with 5ghz wifi band, I think you need to start with the 8700 special edition.
Pros:speed, price, customer support
Cons:no dual band wifi card, no customization options for most hardware
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Review 13 for XPS 8700
(Orem, UT, USA)
Duration of Product Use:1-2 months
Level of Expertise:Expert
I use my PC for:High Performance
Bargain hardware that's got it where it counts
PostedSeptember 19, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
I've had the computer for about a month now. It's a family computer, used for both business and pleasure, and it's replacing an old iMac G5.
I'm pretty satisfied with the computer in general. I got it on one of deals that Dell offers from time to time, so I didn't pay the advertised price. Equivalent hardware from Apple (in terms of performance, anyway) would have cost 2-3 times more, at least.
This is a really well-rounded machine. It's great for the kids' games and for my music workstation software, which is fairly CPU-intensive. I also have a software development environment installed, which the computer handles just fine. I imagine I'll want to upgrade the memory before too long, from 8GB to 16, probably. That'll be inexpensive, the Dell computer is quite extendable.
The 1TB drive is plenty large enough for me, though Windows reports it as the lowest score on the performance benchmark. I also use network storage and attached USB disks. For WIP, though, 1TB of fast storage is plenty.
There is new firmware available for the HD, but Seagate's linux-based installer boots to a garbled console, and I can't read it in order to update the firmware... so, that opportunity for tuning performance will have to wait.
I've had a number of crashes, but I blame them on Windows and driver issues. It's a particular problem if I put the computer to sleep; on wake, I sometimes don't get all of my USB devices back, and I have to reboot. Occasionally there have been freezes. This was less of an issue with the Mac, but I think it will settle down over time as updates are applied.
The general quality of the exterior product is about what I would expect for inexpensive, mass-produced commodity stuff. Upon arrival, I noticed the screw holding the expansion slot bracket was missing (it must have fallen out prior to shipping) and several of the slot covers had come out and were floating freely inside the chassis and packing box. The video card had also come dislodged. I opened the chassis and saw that no damage was evident, so I put things back in order, and the computer worked just fine once I plugged it in. This missing screw would have been a deal-breaker for a less technically inclined customer, though.
Of course, the old iMac is just solid and sturdy compared to the Dell, which has a very unrefined, rattly, aluminum feel to it. Just like the old PCs I'd build for myself when I was a kid! It's not a real problem, so long as the components hold up, and I have no reason to think that they won't. The computer came with a wired keyboard and mouse (I kind of like the mouse. It has good features, such as easily adjustable sensitivity). I used my own monitor, which saved me some money. I like that I can buy the computer without the monitor.
Naturally, new stuff is always coming out and this computer will quickly be old news. For now, I say buy it-- especially if you can get a deal from Dell.
Pros:pretty fast fairly recent intel cpu, decent video gpu (opt for the upgrade to get it), not much bloatware included!, lots of usb ports, generally decent specs all around
I added a 500GB SSD and 24GB or RAM to the basic configuration. The PC goes from cold boot to login screen in just a few seconds. I do software development for living and a fast machine means more $ for me. This is the fastest machine I have ever had and absolutely LOVE it!!
Pros:lightning fast!, very fast and reliable wireless connection
I bought this machine last year for my oldest son's birthday, and he loved it so much and it still runs so great that my middle son asked for one for Christmas. Santa brought it and he has been on it every chance he gets. They play games, write code, watch Netflix, do homework, and the one from last year is still just as fast as the brand new one. My youngest son may be getting one for his birthday next year!
I make all IT purchasing decisions for the company I work for. Since 1994 I have purchased nothing but Dell Precision Workstations for our engineers and Inspiron for all other office personnel. I purchased this XPS 8700 for use in my home. It is a great compromise between cost and performance. At home I use processor intensive graphics products and 3D modeling programs. I have it hooked up to (2) Dell u2400 Monitors. Which by the way are really nice monitors. This is a very fast machine for the money. I have had no problems whatsoever and am totally satisfied with the purchase.
After owning over 8 Dell products, I am very disappointed in the quality control with this computer when I get a system that's non-functioning straight out of the box. I had to spend an hour with tech support just to now have to wait for parts. Even longer if I had requested a tech. Not a whole lot of point to get expedited shipping and then wait twice as long for parts to arrive.
Pros:great specs for price
Response from Dell.comBy JonathanNforDell, Customer Reviews, November 4, 2013
I want to thank you for taking your time and posting here about your recent experience with the XPS 8700. I do apologize about your disappointing out-of-box experience with the tower. I recommend reaching out to our @DellCares team on Twitter, Facebook or the Dell Customer Care forum and see if they can help resolve your issues in a timely and professional manner. Due to the nature of your issues, I hope that they will go out of their way to win you back as a satisfied customer of Dell!
Nothing like the features in this computer for the price, however, the computer has to work to begin with. For two weeks I spent over 60 hours dealing with having to recover my operating system and reinstalling all my programs 3 times because of glitches in either the computer or Win8...not sure which gave problems each time. Tech support really tried to go the extra mile to help, but 3 times and you are out! No more time left in my schedule to deal with system problems, conflicts, glitches and restoring to factory OS. YMMV, but this is not a computer I have any faith in any longer. We could not come to agreeable terms for an exchange, so I returned the computer.
Pros:great array of features, courteous and professional tech support
Cons:system glitches, bsod numerous times, could not restore even factory default, fast cpu but the stock graphic card is a pig, graphic card = 5.6 experience rating in win8
Response from Dell.comBy JohnBforDell, Customer Reviews, November 6, 2013
Hey DisappointedOnFLCoast ,
I am very sorry to hear about your issues with your new XPS 8700 desktop system.
If there is any chance you still have the system , or even for future reference please use the information below to contact us. The team members below will get you taken care of. Please reach out to our Dell Support Team at:
• Dell Community Forums –Desktops- h http://dell.to/H1tqrF • You can contact our Dell Cares Team on Twitter (@DellCares): http://dell.to/16KU93m • If you don’t have a Twitter account, you can also go to Dell’s Facebook Support Form: http://bit.ly/15zzg95 A Facebook account is required to use this option. Please use the message button and provide your Name, service tag, email address and a brief description of the issue.”
I usually build my own computers but I was getting a job that required a computer that wouldn't need a lot of support from the company's IT department to make it run their programs. So I picked this one, had a nice price and I figured I could upgrade it. In it's original configuration it has no problem running any regular programs like Microsoft Office, simple games etc. But the graphics were a bit weak for some of the more intense games. The inside is a bit tight for a full sized video card but it does fit. I replaced the OE with a EVGA GeForce GTX760, added 16GB of ram and a new power supply as the OE is under powered for the video card. It runs great. As for sound, well to be honest my hearing is going so I am just using the built in sound card as it won't improve my listening experience to add a separate card.
Pros:4 memory slots, has a separate video card
Cons:slightly small case, video card on the wimpy side., power supply only 460 watts