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Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer Teardown

30 November 2012
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Technology Teardown Services.

Main Features / Overview

All-in-one PC from Dell, the XPS One is part of a new line of Dell all-in-ones designed to compete more head-on with Apple's hardware approach. The Dell XPS One features a 20 inch LCD widescreen, an Intel Core™2 Duo E6550 processor, 2GB of Dual-Channel DDR2 667MHz SDRAM (2 DIMMs), a 500GB Serial ATA hard drive, AMD Mobility Radeon HD 2400. And the crowning feature? A Blu-Ray drive: and that's in addition to the built-in Hybrid Analog/Digital TV Tuner and a built-in 2MP camera module.

Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Motherboard TopDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Motherboard Top

In fact - Dell have obviously strived, at a hardware level at least, to outdo Apple's standard product. The XPS One is equipped to essentially take the dual role of PC and a complete home entertainment system - as is the case with other competing all-in-one systems. In fact, the only missing from that strategy of making this system a complete, self-contained home entertainment system is a cable card slot.

Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Motherboard TopDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Motherboard Top
Target Market

High-end consumer.

Released

November 2007.

Pricing and Availability

Dell XPS One's are selling on their website at the time of writing (April 2008) starting at $1299 depending on configuration (up to $2199+). The model we got is the top of the line XPS One with Blu-Ray drive at $2199.

Volume Estimations

For the purposes of this teardown analysis we have assumed that the production volume of the Dell XPS One is 1.5 million for the lifetime of the product.

As a reminder, volume production assumptions are meant primarily to be used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially), and not necessarily as a market accurate estimate for a specific model. Our estimations are based on iSuppli market research and we derive rational estimates based on overall market shares of the manufacturer in question, as well as the number of products in a given portfolio and the relative popularity of certain lines of products.

Market Sector / Performance

Per iSuppli's Compute Platforms Market Tracker - Q1 2008, in 2007 Dell dropped, per iSuppli research, from the number one to the number two slot in terms of total PC shipments, at with a level of nearly 23 million units in desktop systems, which represented an approximate market share of 14%. In 2008, we expect the desktop PC market to grow unit shipments to 163 million units, representing year on year unit shipment growth of 3.2 percent.

We have yet to forecast the all-in-one desktop PC as a separate category, but it should be expected to grow at a healthy rate as it represents an aesthetic evolution for PCs taking them out of the home office and re-purposing them to a more prominent position within the household.

Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Motherboard BottomDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Motherboard Bottom
What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing and test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.

Function / Performance

No performance testing was performed on the Dell XPS One.

Manufacturing Notes

Dell's ODM Partners and Manufacturing

Dell used ODMs Quanta, Compal and Wistron (all of them Taiwan-based ODMs) in 2006 for manufacturing the "base units" (no CPU, No ODD, no HDD, etc), and also perform configure-to-order operations in their internal facilities in Xiamen, China, Penang, Malaysia and Limerick, Ireland.

Dell has its ODMs ship base units manufactured in China to these three hubs depending on where the product's final destination is.

Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - CCFL Inverter PCBDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - CCFL Inverter PCB
Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions

As with all computer systems, this system has a number of various sub-assemblies built in various countries - see the "Overview" section on the online presentation for a list of countries of origin for the major sub-assemblies such as display, hard drive, etc. It is assumed, when not otherwise labeled, that all other unlabeled components and systems were produced by suppliers in areas of the lowest possible regional cost: China. Final assembly here is confirmed as China - and for the Accessory PCBs, we have simplified, as this is an amalgam of small PCBs our calculations to assume that all were made in China.

Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of "finished" sub-assemblies (such as chargers), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.

Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - WLAN Mini PCIe ModuleDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - WLAN Mini PCIe Module
Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity

All in one systems are typically built more like upright laptops than desktops in their architecture and design choices. They are built in this way in order to take advantage of smaller, more compact components, to allow for a sleeker envelope for the product. The end result is not only more expensive than a conventional desktop design because of the components used, but is more complicated to manufacture as the working spaces are tighter, more tightly packed, and less modular. This inevitably adds some cycle time and cost for hand assembly.

Also, in terms of interconnect: dense designs often implement expensive flex circuitry to help interconnect various ports. Flex circuits are always more costly than basic rigid PCBAs or desktop-style super-standard ribbon cables / cable harnesses.

In terms of the component count in the Dell XPS One, the component count is in line with other all-in-one computers at a total of 2729 components (not including box contents, external components, systems and accessories) of which 411 are mechanical components. One important note: modular assemblies, such as hard drives, optical drives and purchased items such as the WLAN modules, are counted as a single unit in this analysis - refer to BOM for details on which items are fully broken down and itemized to the sub-component level. In most cases where we assume the OEM or their ODM are building the unit "in-house" we will break down to the lowest level discrete component.

These all-in-one systems, are definitely complex by all metrics and entail a high number of discrete sub-assemblies which inevitably adds cycle time in manufacturing, but also affects yields, rework and ultimately returns, as more complex systems present more opportunities for system failures and defects.

Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design

Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.

Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Memory ModuleDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Memory Module
Design Notes

The Dell XPS One analyzed here features an Intel Core Duo E6550 (2.33GHz- HH80557PJ0534MG), with Intel® 3 Series Express Northbridge (82G33), ICH9 Digital Home Southbridge, as well as a host of conventional I/O chips one would expect to see in any PC architecture. There are no standout features on the motherboard that are exceptional - and this design is very much in line with other PCs whether desktop, notebook or all-in-ones.

Out of the 3 all in one systems being analyzed, the Dell XPS One is the only one that uses a desktop design - 65W desktop processor + desktop chipset. In comparing to the mobile design (35W CPUs) that is being used by Gateway and Sony, the Dell solution requires more power consumption and better ventilation; therefore, it includes a 200W power supply (about 20W more than the Gateway and Sony solution), more powerful blower + fan solution, and a better ventilating enclosure design. Furthermore, the Intel 82G33 + ICH9DH chipset solution doesn't offer any PATA support, therefore, the XPS One implemented an additional SATA to PATA bridge IC (JMicron JM20330) for the EIDE optical storage device.

Beyond the motherboard, the Dell XPS One features a 20" AU Optronics LCD panel (M201EW02V8), a Panaosnic Blu-Ray optical drive (UJ-225), a Western Digital 500GB 7200rpm SATA Drive (WD5000AAKS), a Broadcom 802.11n module (BCM94321MC), and an integrated Avermedia TV tuner module.

Motherboard

CPU

CPU - Intel Core™2 Duo Desktop Processor, 2.33GHz, 4MB L2 Cache, 1333MHz FSB, 65nm Process - Intel® - HH80557PJ0534MG (Core™2 Duo E6550 OEM)

Northbridge

Northbridge - Memory Controller and Graphics Hub - Intel® - LE82G33SLA90 (82G33)

Southbridge

Southbridge - I/O Controller Hub - Intel® - NH82801IHSLA9P (ICH9DH)

I/O & Interface

Ethernet Transceiver - Gigabit LAN Connect Interface - Intel® - RU82566DC

Open Host Controller Interface - IEEE1394a, PCI PHY/Link - LSI Logic - L-FW322 07 T100-DB

Bridge - SATA to PATA, 1.5Gbps - JMicron Technology - JM20330

Flash Memory Card Controller w/ IEEE1394 - Ricoh - R5C833

Keyboard Controller - w/ Integrated ACPI, Temperature Sensor & Fan Control - Fintek - F71858

Codec - Audio, 4-Channel DAC, 6-Channel ADC, HD, 24bit Stereo DAC, 20bit Stereo ADC - Realtek - ALC262-VC2-GR

Clock

Clock Generator - 3.3V - Silego - SLG8XP538BT

Memory

Flash - NOR, 8Mb, SPI - SST - SST25VF080B

DIMM DDR2 - 1GB, 128Mx64, 667MHz - Hynix - HYMP512U64CP8-Y5 (2x)

Camera / Microphone PCB

Camera Processor - Up to 2MP, USB Host Interface - Omnivison - OV534

Wireless USB PCB

RF Transciever - WirelessUSB, 2.4GHz - Cypress Semiconductor - CYRF6936-40LFXC

Media Control Touch Pad PCB

Mixed Signal Array - w/ On-Chip Controller - Cypress Semiconductor - CY8C21434-24LFXI

GFX MXM Card

GPU - ATI Avivo HD Video & Display Architecture, PCI Express X16 Interface, 64-Bit 2-Channel Memory Interface, DirectX 10.0, 180 Million Transistors, 65nm Process - AMD - Mobility Radeon HD 2400

Display

20.1" TFT WSXGA - 1680 x 1050 Pixels, 16.7M Color, 1680x1050 (WSXGA+), 433.4mm x 270.9mmViewable Area, 16:10 Aspect Ratio, 0.258mm Pixel Size, 300Cd/m2, 800:1 Contrast Ratio, 5ms Response Time - AU Optronics - M201EW02V8

Optical Drive

Blu-Ray/CD/DVD RW Drive - Panasonic - UJ-225

Hard Drive

3.5" 500 GB 7200 rpm SATA 3Gb/s - Western Digital - WD5000AAKS

Mini PCIe WLAN Card (Not sub-itemized in BOM)

Mini PCIe Card - 802.11 a/b/g/n - Broadcom - BCM94321MC

Baseband Processor - Dual Band 802.11n, PSK/CCK/DQPSK/DBPSK/OFDM Modulation - Broadcom - BCM4321KFBG

WLAN Radio - Dual Band 802.11n, 2x2/3x3/4x4 Antenna Options, MIMO - Broadcom - BCM2055KFBG

Mini PCIe TV Tuner (Not sub-Itemized in BOM)

Mini PCIe Card (Based on LG/Conexant/Xceive chips) - Avermedia

TV Tuner IC - Hybrid Digital & Analog, w/ Integrated Analog Demodulator - Xceive - XC3028ACQ

AV Decoder - PCI Express 1.0a/1.1 Compliant - Conexant - CX23885

ATSC Demodulator - VSB/QAM - LG Electronic - LGDT3303


Dell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Box ContentsDell XPS One (MTG) Computer_(iSi) - Box Contents



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