Long before the outbreak of COVID-19, I was already working from home as a technology analyst. In this line of work, I tend to spend a lot of time perfecting my home office setup, continually trying new PCs, keyboards, monitors, wireless routers and other critical accessories. When many of my family members, friends and professional colleagues were forced to quarantine because of the pandemic, it became clear that many of them were suddenly in need of a premium home office setup like mine. With that in mind, I want to use this column to provide some commentary on the components in my home office setup. I consider my setup not only powerful enough, but sufficiently future-proofed to meet your work at home needs for (at least) the two or three years.
Dell XPS 8930 Tower packs whisper-free power and style
Dell XPS 8930 Desktop
Over the summer, I added the Dell XPS 8930 Tower to my home office setup. Once you begin working at home for extended periods, you begin to realize how precious silence really is. For that reason, I’ve fallen in love with this well-designed, attractive Dell desktop. Even with my configured high-end Intel Core i9 9900K processor, which runs at 3.6GHz, and my NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super graphics card, this PC remains tranquil. This is due to its thoughtful integration of high RPM (revolutions per minute) fans that efficiently cool the unit and produce lower acoustics. Prices for XPS Desktops start at $649, but Dell also offers impressively decked-out systems in the $1,300 range depending on the features that you select. The Dell XPS 8930 is also highly upgradeable with a superb tool-less chassis that facilitates easy expansion as your needs grow.
The Dell XPS brand is known for its gaming power and performance. Still, it’s also a terrific choice for content creators—especially video production (which I use it primarily for). But Dell also has a few tricks up its sleeve for work at home users. For example, Apple iPhone users (such as myself) will be delighted with Dell’s innovative Mobile Connect application, which seamlessly allows users to make phone calls, send texts and even receive notifications on their PC. After installing Dell Mobile Connect on my iPhone and linking it to my XPS 8930 via Bluetooth, I was able to mirror the iPhone’s screen on my Windows desktop. This feature allowed me to directly access my iPhone and use my favorite mobile apps (including iMessage) on my PC screen, controlling them with my PC keyboard and mouse. While this capability works with Google Android smartphones as well, the ability to do this with iOS devices is particularly notable—it allows Apple users to type text messages using a Windows-based keyboard.
Dell 49″ UltraSharp U4919DW Monitor
Since there are a few non-Windows applications that I use regularly, I do need the ability to utilize my legacy 2017 Apple Mac Mini. Like most work at home users, desktop space in my home office is scarce, and I’ve never been a big fan of having separate monitors on my desk. Once again, Dell came to the rescue with its