Can Alienware’s gaming goliath best its own price tag?
22 June 2012
Summary: Everything ultimately comes back to that price tag. My inner miser shudders at the thought of spending $2,600 on a laptop. “Think of all the money you could save,” it says, sending images of desktops with dual-displays, capable mid-range GPUs, and a pantry stocked with vittles that aren’t instant noodles. But I’ll always be something of a curmudgeon.
Pros: Excellent performance, Great-sounding audio, Plethora of ports
Cons: Loud, and heavy, Expensive, Considerable heat
Summary: It's partytime! While Nvidia's Kepler flagship still keeps us waiting, AMD's new Radeon HD 7970M is seriously mixing up the gaming notebook segment. In combination with Intel's new Ivy Bridge processors, Alienware had enough reasons to refresh its Luxury gamer M17x. Will the 17" notebook be able to score our "Gaming Reference" title again?
Pros: Excellent Performance, Many lighting elements, Convincing Full HD display, Good input devices, Good Workmanship, Very fast GPU, Gummed surfaces, Rich selection of accessories, Great selection of connectors, Good sound quality, Simple to service, The performance of the Radeon HD 7970M is truly impressive.
Cons: AMD's GPU auto-switching is poor, The plastic display cover causes extreme reflections., High weight, A matte, anti-reflective display
Conclusion: You also get excellent sound quality, and unparalleled control over the lighting on the keyboard and other parts of the notebook. If you can live with some fan noise and don’t plan to stray too far from a power source, this machine belongs on your short list. It'll keep up with your games today...and for quite a while to come.
Pros: Solid performance, Striking HD display, Edgy design
Cons: Expensive, Short battery life, Fans can get loud
Summary: Alienware may have lost some of its street cred since it was taken over by the Dell corporation, but by the looks of the new Alienware M17x review, it still turns out some pretty impressive gaming gear. Read our Alienware M17x review to find out more.
Conclusion: The M17x is a very good laptop for gaming. At around £1,200 for the 680m-touting model, with improved full HD screen and 8GB of RAM, we can't think of a much better rig on which to play your PC titles. HDMI out means you won't need a desktop and the build quality should make the M17x last for ages. Don't expect ultrabook weight here, or the minimal design flourishes of a Mac or Asus, this is built specially for gamers. For the most part it succeeds in its task.
Summary: Alienware’s M17x R4 is a heavyweight in every sense of the word. The Ivy Bridge processor delivers outstanding performance, the AMD Radeon HD 7970M is flat out the best gaming GPU in the mobile space at the moment, and the gargantuan chassis oozes quality from every port. It isn’t cheap, but spend some time judiciously sifting through the options and it’s possible to get the price closer to the $2500 mark.
Summary: High frame rates and fast performance are hallmarks of this high-definition notebook, but it also looks fantastic. If you don't already have the funds for it, you might want to start saving like you've never saved before!