It is pretty well known that oftentimes OEM machines are detuned a bit to make them more stable. This particular situation is further pushed ahead due to the design of the XPS One and its thermal/power constraints. It uses the i7 3770S chip, which is again a 65 watt TDP part as compared to the full speed i7 3770 which is a 77 watt part.
I compared this unit to two test machines. One is the full i7 3770K on the Gigabyte G1 Sniper 3 motherboard. The other is the AMD FX-8350 running on the Asus Crosshair V motherboard. These two systems both run 8 GB DDR-1866 memory (the i7 has a max memory speed of DDR-3 1600, while the FX can run at 1866), AMD Radeon HD 5870, and 1TB WD Caviar Black HD.
Something to keep in mind while viewing these results is that the Dell XPS One is pulling less power at the wall while running the system and monitor than the other two machines pull without powering the monitor as well.
SiSoft Sandra 2012 SP5
Theoretically speaking, the i7 3770S should be able to match the i7 3770K.
It seems that Dell did a bit more de-tuning than expected. There is one major difference between the two i7 chips in that the 3770S goes down to 3.1 GHz vs. the 3.5 GHz of the 3770K, but they both share the same top Turbo speed of 3.9 GHz. It seems as if the 3770S rarely reaches that, or if it does it does not stay long due to TDP issues. Memory performance also takes a hit.
3D Mark 2011
We are not expecting miracles out of the poor GeForce 640M, but I thought it would be interesting to see how it performed with a modern engine at a reasonable resolution. The Performance preset was used with this test. Remember, the i7 3770K and FX-8350 are using the AMD Radeon HD 5870 graphics card, while the XPS One 27 features the mobile based GeForce 640M. The 640M is a step above the Intel integrated graphics, but not that much.
Even compared to a three year old top end card the 640M just cannot provide a smooth experience for users even at moderate resolutions when running modern 3D games. It will have a hard time pushing even DX9 titles at 2560×1440.
Between the de-tuning of the CPU and the memory, this should tell us exactly how big of a hit the 3770S takes as compared to the 3770K.
That is pretty extreme, but not surprising. In Dell’s defense though, at least it still finishes above the AMD FX-8350 with its 125 watt TDP.