It may have taken a little longer than I’d hoped, but I believe I now have a perfect Dell XPS M1330! The last change was to swap the the displays between the original and replacement M1330. I also had the hard drives swapped, which was a nice touch, since I won’t have to go reinstalling all my programs and setting up Vista the way I want it.
There is no wobble with either the 6 cell or 9 cell battery. There’s no detaching palm rest. Brightness and viewing angles of the display are amazing. The replacement’s DVD drive is even quieter than the original. It just doesn’t get much better than this. I was even able to keep the extra AC adapter, so that I have a spare. Now there’s no need to carry the adapter back and forth from university and home either, which is a bonus.
I can now confidently say that this is the perfect system for my needs. I no longer hesitate when trying to decide whether to take this laptop on the go. It’s a definitive yes. No worrying about battery life, size or weight. It’s truly a laptop. It feels so much more natural to carry around than the 15.4″ I had previously. I can hardly wait to try it out in its intended environment, university. Hopefully I can improve productivity in class as well, as opposed to scrawling notes down on a notepad. I’ll have to watch that I don’t get distracted by the wonderful Internet though.