"I got my hands on Dell's Adamo, which is world's thinnest notebook and the most stylish Dell I've ever seen. It is a beautiful piece of machinery and something I'd like to own. Adamo is Dell's new luxury label and while it's made by Dell, it has nothing in common with other notebooks sold by the company."
My pal Xavier over at Notebooks.com had a bit of hands-on time with the new Dell Adamo (being the BSG fan that I am, I keep wanting to call it the "Adama", which it sounds like Xavier does) and it's certainly something brand new from Dell: a luxury computer. Starting at $1999 USD and going all the way up to $3000 USD, it's certainly the most "cost be damned" laptop that Dell has ever released. In the video Xavier goes through the unboxing, and Dell has certainly done some interesting things with the design, the accessories, and even the packaging.
The power brick has a flip-down set of electrical prongs, so you can use it to connect directly to the wall and leave the longer power cable behind. Slick! And most important of all: NO STICKERS. Finally, a Windows OEM matches Apple's clean, singular-branded out of box experience. I suspect that Dell was able to do that because with a premium product they don't get the discounts that (I think) the likes of Microsoft and Intel offer if you put their stickers on the notebook. Xavier mentions though that the stickers are supposedly under one of the back panels, so perhaps Dell found a loophole that enables them to hide the stickers but still fulfill their contract.
Unfortunately, the hardware from a performance perspective is less impressive than the design: it only has DisplayPort for video out, which I think falls into the "too soon" category in terms of technology - although maybe Dell has research that says people buying the Adamo have never monitors with a DisplayPort connection (none of my three 24" monitors do). A $40 accessory would do the trick though to get it connected to DVI - it would have been nice to see Dell include one in the box. The CPU is a bit of a letdown - it tops out at 1.4 Ghz, yet the Macbook Air offers a 1.86 Ghz CPU. For day to day tasks, 1.4 Ghz is certainly sufficient, but being the video editing guy that I am, it wouldn't quite cut it for me.
All in all, the Dell Amamo is a bold move by Dell - the question is, are there enough people out there willing to drop $2000 to $3000 on a notebook to make this product a success? My last notebook, the XPS M1330, cost me around $2700 CAD, so I'm one of those people willing to spend money on a great notebook - but only if it gives me performance to match.