When comparing Dell XPS 15 vs System76 Oryx Pro, the Slant community recommends Dell XPS 15 for most people. In the question“What is the best laptop for programming?” Dell XPS 15 is ranked 3rd while System76 Oryx Pro is ranked 8th. The most important reason people chose Dell XPS 15 is:
Two display choices are available for the XPS 15, an Ultra HD touchscreen or a Full HD non-touch screen. Both screens have a very wide array of colors as they cover approximately 100% of sRGB color space. The viewing angle is around 170 degrees. However, at 45 degrees, slight color change can be noticed. With around 350 nit output for brightness, it’s a viable choice for outdoor usage. All of this makes it an amazing display.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Amazing display
Two display choices are available for the XPS 15, an Ultra HD touchscreen or a Full HD non-touch screen. Both screens have a very wide array of colors as they cover approximately 100% of sRGB color space.
The viewing angle is around 170 degrees. However, at 45 degrees, slight color change can be noticed.
With around 350 nit output for brightness, it’s a viable choice for outdoor usage. All of this makes it an amazing display.
Pro Solid keyboard and trackpad
The keyboard and trackpad are reliable and solid all-around. The keyboard is responsive but is not super “clicky”, rather a bit soft. It has a white backlight on black keys that illuminates them at night. The touchpad is rather large while having no buttons. Despite this, the XPS 15 can reliably distinguish between the left and right clicks which are done on the trackpad itself.
Pro Good battery life if you pick the 1080p display
Models with the 1080p screen last about 10 hours with general usage. Naturally, if more intensive tasks are involved, the battery will be drained faster.
Pro Optional password-free-sign-in via a fingerprint reader
For an additional $25 it’s possible to enjoy a password-free-sign-in by having a fingerprint reader. It will keep your laptop safe while still providing convenient access to it.
Pro Operates well on a Linux system
All essential things, like network connectivity, ports and sound, work right “out-of-the-box” with a Linux operating system. There is a compatibility issue on the new 9560 model with its graphics card but the laptop is still very usable with its integrated Intel graphics card.
Pro Can run most modern games
Being an excellent all-rounder, it can be used as a gaming laptop for games that are not exceptionally demanding, like Overwatch or Dota 2. Unless you’re using the cheapest model, you can expect a reasonable 60 frames per second for almost all modern games, provided that you’re willing to lower the game’s settings.
Pro Very well-rounded laptop
The cheapest configuration is a great choice for general non-intensive use - things like internet browsing, watching movies and similar tasks.
Whereas the more expensive configurations are gradually more capable of intensive tasks, like video editing or gaming. It’s not as good as a specialized computer built for a specific purpose, like a video editing laptop with an enormous RAM size or a gaming laptop with a superior graphics card, but it’s a very well-rounded, reliable laptop.
Pro Slick design
The whole design is quite stylish. The aluminium chassis provides a very clean look while the black carbon fiber palm rest with an almost borderless display cements it as a visually modern laptop. All of this is made with a premium build quality.
Pro Great Linux support
All System76 laptops come with Linux out of the box. The Oryx Pro comes with either Ubuntu 16.04 LTS or Ubuntu 16.10. But that does not mean that other Linux distributions are not supported, quite the contrary. Most Linux distros should work without any major problems with the Oryx pro and most (if not all) drivers are available.
Pro Excellent choice for gaming on Linux
The Oryx Pro is probably the best laptop with Linux support out of the box that is great for gaming as well. This is mostly because of the NVIDIA graphics cards. It comes by default with the GTX 1060 but for $289 more, you can add a GTX 1070 instead. The default 8GB of RAM is good for gaming but the 16GB RAM is ideal.
Pro Amazing overall performance
The default 6th generation i7 Processor coupled with the 16GB of RAM (even better with the versions with 32GB and 64GB) make for an absolutely amazing machine. It has a dedicated SSD for the OS only which massively increases startup time and for anything else you can choose up to two SSDs or HDDs of varying sizes. The Oryx Pro is perfectly capable of doing some heavy-lifting including 4K video editing and gaming at highest settings without a hitch.
Pro Good speakers
One of the bonuses of having a larger body is that you get to use good speakers instead of some small ones stuck underneath the laptop. They are also angled toward the user and the sound is crisp and loud enough, even though it lacks some bass.
Pro Good keyboard
The keyboard is very nice, it's not amazing by any means but quite comfortable to work with. The keys are pretty thick, thicker than what you may find in laptops today and with a nice springiness to them. The keyboard also supports multicolor backlighting.
Pro Good display
Has a 1080p matte display with an optional IPS matte display version. With great colors and brightness and almost no eye strain even when it's used for extended periods.
Pro Very customizable
Before buying the System76 Oryx Pro from the System76 website, you get to customize almost every aspect of the laptop as far as specs go. The price depends on what you choose to put inside your laptop and prices vary from $1475 for the basic version to $7000 for a laptop with a 17.3" Matte IPS Display, a GTX 1070, 6th Gen i7 CPU, 64GB RAM, and two SSDs of 5TB and 4TB respectively.
Con Battery doesn’t hold long with the Ultra HD screen
If you’re choosing the configuration with an Ultra HD screen, expect a very short battery life of around 6 hours for general usage. With more intensive tasks it's even less than that.
Con 9560 model's GPU has compatibility issues on Linux
The new 9560 model has some trouble accepting its GTX 1050 Ti video card while running a Linux operating system. Fortunately, the integrated Intel graphics card is capable enough to substitute it. The manufacturers are probably aware of the issue and will, most likely, release an update for it.
Con Palmrest collects sweat
The palm rest is made from carbon fiber which attracts fingerprints and sweat. After some time it gets kind of unpleasant to touch and needs to be cleaned.
Con Some ghosting in games
The display is not intended for gaming purposes so it can produce an effect called “ghosting”. Ghosting is when the pixels are not able to change their colors fast enough, so the color of the preceding frame can still be slightly seen on the next frame. This causes a blurring effect. Note that it only happens on high framerates coupled with fast objects.
Con Noisy fans
The laptop is very quiet during idle and light usage but when there is some workload, the fans get quite loud and distracting.
Con Awkward webcam location
The webcam is located under the screen instead of on top. It means that your face will be shown from a lower angle which can seem a bit weird. It also means that your fingers can partially obstruct the webcam while you’re typing.
Con Audible coil whine
Coil whine can be heard when it’s generally quiet and the fans are not running. Audible when the laptop is connected to the power supply. The manufacturers have acknowledged it as a problem and, if possible, will push out an update which should eliminate it. Until then, it’s still a gripe.
Con No 4K option
It lacks the option to have a 4K display. While not a deal breaker, it's a shame that a laptop with a display as good as Oryx Pro's does not have a 4K option which would also be a great plus for gamers.
Con Customer service could be much better
System76's technical support is pretty bad. When there's a problem that should be solved by them, they usually resort to sending replacement parts instead or blaming third-parties (even if those third-parties are not at fault) of something that they should be fixing.
Con Very heavy and bulky
Weighing at 5.5lbs for the 15.6" version it's relatively heavy and it's one inch thicker than the XPS 13. But the extra space is not put to waste, considering how it has an Ethernet port, SD card slot, 2 Mini DisplayPrts, HDMI port, 2 USB 3.1 Type-C ports, 3 USB 3.0 Type-A ports and headphone and mic jacks. The GTX 1070 version also includes a headphone amplifier. However, the power brick that comes with the charger is ridiculously large at 2lbs which understandably adds to the weight of the laptop since most of the time you have to carry both with you.