Dell Adamo First Look

iFixit partnered with TechRepublic to show off the fine inner details of Dell’s all-new Adamo. Dell has clearly positioned the Adamo as a competitor to the MacBook Air. Does it have a chance? Dell’s industrial design team is certainly giving Apple a run for their money.

Dell Adamo teardown

First Look Highlights:

  • Dell created a clever locking system that snaps the bottom plate of the computer into place. This allows them to completely avoid screws on the bottom of the computer, giving the Adamo a cleaner look than the MacBook Air. However, the Adamo does have larger gaps between the bottom plate and the computer frame, slightly exposing the internals.
  • Dell labels a lot more parts than Apple does. This definitely makes our job easier, even though it’s not quite as photogenic.
  • The 11.1 V battery is rated at 40 Watt hours, an improvement over the MacBook Air’s 7.2 V, 37 Watt hour battery. The Adamo’s advertised operating time is 5 hours, outliving Apple’s claims for the MacBook Air by 30 minutes.
  • According to the manual, the battery weighs in at 489 grams. That’s 27% of the Adamo’s weight. In comparison, the MacBook Air’s battery weighs in at 287 grams, only 21% of the Air’s total weight.
  • The Adamo is not a ‘value’ computer. Apple has demonstrated that people are willing to pay Steve Jobs more for their luxury products, but are people willing to grant Michael Dell that same premium?
  • The standard SSD (although you’re paying for it) is a nice touch compared to the Air.
  • Dell managed to eschew the standard Windows and Intel stickers for elegant integrated logos on the bottom plate. This is a first in the PC marketplace, and we’re told it took quite a bit of convincing on Dell’s part.
  • The hinge on the Adamo feels solid, but time will tell how well the hinge design will hold up. Hinge problems have plagued a number of MacBook Air owners.
  • The Adamo is not nearly as light as the MacBook Air, but a quick glance at our photos shows the reason. Adamo packs in a lot more technology than the Air into a thinner package.
  • An amusing aside: Dell’s manual says the Adamo has 803.11n wireless. Is Dell employing technical writers from the future? What else can they teach us?

View Adamo First Look