The Alienware m15 and the alienware m17 are both mid-range gaming laptops. The main difference between them is their GPUs, with the M15 getting a GTX card while the M17 gets an RTX one. There’s also key differences in terms of processor performance as well as RAM and storage capacity which you’ll need to consider if you want to make the best decision for your needs..
The “alienware m15 vs m17 r4” is a comparison between the Alienware M15 and M17. The M15 was released in 2019, while the M17 will be released in 2020.
We put the Alienware m15 and m17 to the test in terms of gaming performance, portability, price, display quality, battery life, and other factors.
The rankings with results can be seen above, while detailed reports on each Alienware Gaming Laptop can be found below.
The Alienware m17 comes in first place.
- Even better gaming performance than the M15, with superb Turbo Boost use
- Stunning gaming display with a refresh rate of 144 Hz
- Thunderbolt 3 + 2.5 Gbps Ethernet + low fan noise
- Alienware m15 is more costly.
I always think of the huge computers my colleagues used to haul about on LANs when I hear “17-inch laptop.” When the laptop is as heavy, bulky, and portable as a CRT display, I’ve never seen the benefit.
Today, however, everything is changed, and the Alienware m17 is the epitome of this. It’s little and light, but it packs a punch!
As a video producer, I put the gadget to the test over many days with the following daily routine: ride the train to Frankfurt in the morning for around an hour to work, conduct picture and video editing in the office, take the train home, and then go for a spin.
However, first and foremost, it’s time to unpack. The white box features a simple and contemporary appearance. I think it odd that the laptop is simply sitting there in the cushioning.
Except for the foil on the display’s border and the Alienware logo parts, this sensation you get when you open a foil for the first time to get your new favorite thing is regretfully missing.
Even the large 250W power supply (870g) is merely concealed by a cardboard cover, and no accessories such as Velcro cord ties for the power supply or stickers are offered. I believe that everyone who purchases such a gadget is pleased with some little bonus.
I went to the train station and took the laptop out of my backpack. The weight is visible. For a 17-inch laptop with an Intel® CoreTM i9 CPU of the 8th generation and Nvidia Geforce RTX 2080 MaxQ, it’s not precisely light, but it’s practically as light as a feather (about. 5.73 lbs).
It’s fantastic that you were able to fit so much gear into such a small space and make it so portable. The speed, at first glance, seems to be fantastic.
Because, owing to the NVME SSD, most apps are already running when you hit the power button. Everything starts up in under 15 seconds, including Windows, and everything else is practically instantaneous.
Touchpad & Keyboard
First, check my e-mail. The keyboard is already apparent at this location. It’s quiet and doesn’t bother other passengers on the train. It looked drastically different on my old laptop, which had Butterfly Switches. The Keytravel is also a lot of fun. The keys work in the same way as quiet MxBrown switches.
I particularly like the soft touch, since I use my fingers as hammers and had issues with the unpadded Butterfly Switches. That is not the case here. The illumination is adequate, and you can type as if you were using a complete keyboard. All I had to do was get accustomed to the DELETE key’s new location and the lack of a media control.
The fact that there are four customizable keys above the number field is really cool to me. Macro, keystroke, key combination, and text block may all be saved in the Alienware Command Center.
Let’s get down to business with the mouse. One of such items is the trackpad. I believe it’s fantastic that it supports MultiTouch and that it’s dim enough. However, it sometimes creates inaccurate input, such as when I click on a tab in Chrome and then quickly move the cursor again.
Then I inadvertently double-click. As a result, I often slide the tab around. Changing the speed of the double-click didn’t help either. But you grow accustomed to it, and after a week of acclimating, I’m lot happier.
By the way, the trackpad can be turned off by pressing FN+F11, which is useful while using the internal keyboard.
It’s also a shame that the laptop lacks Windows Hello and a fingerprint scanner. This would make logging in on the spur of the moment a lot simpler.
We’ve arrived in Frankfurt. Backpack to laptop and vice versa. I’m at the office in 10 minutes. I’m ready with my laptop on the table and just three cables: Because the m17 has a Thunderbolt 3 connection, it is completely compatible with USB-C.
In the workplace, just connect in the power supply, display port, and USB-C dock, and you’re ready to go. The additional ports provide everything you might want: three USB3, HDMI, DisplayPort, Thunderbolt 3, 2.5Gbit network connection (RJ-45), and a headphone jack. This satisfies me wonderfully.
After Effects, Premiere Pro, Davinci Resolve, Photoshop… I have nothing else to say except WOW a day later. Whatever you do, the Alienware m17 seems to be bored. You can tell it’s coping with the workloads since everything is working so smoothly and quickly that I haven’t experienced any lag or jerks in my video editing.
However, performance is always dependent on the codec, editing type, and application. I’ve had a lot of fun using XAVC-S and Blackmagic BRAW Footage. However, I strongly advise upgrading to 32GB RAM, since 16GB becomes quite constrained.
But how about the weather and the noise? When I’m connected to the power source, the CPU operates at maximum turbo, which is about 4.5Ghz. As a result, the package’s temperatures range from 60 to 70 degrees Celsius. The temperature rises to 100°C as soon as a movie renders.
Unfortunately, manually setting both fans to 100% does not help; the CPU will always fall into thermal throttling. But you have to wonder whether this is really so awful, considering 12 threads operate at 3.5 Ghz, which is higher than the 2.9 Ghz baseclock. That’s a lot of power, and it’s palpable. And the greatest part is that it keeps the laptop pretty quiet.
Of course, it’s audible throughout the room. When the 2016 Razer Blade yells, I don’t want to converse anymore, but the m17 pushes air through its cooling fins at a nice volume.
It’s certainly not silent, but it’s a lot quieter than I thought given the built-in technology. A cooling pad might help you attain even better results.
When editing images and movies, the matt UHD display makes a great impression. Because of the great resolution, I can see everything at a glance and work effectively even while I’m on the go.
The built-in IPS screen has an 8-bit color depth and covers the sRGB color space, although it still requires calibration before it can be used for professional applications. My model also has some significant backlight leakage, which I only observed while beginning games and never when playing.
The display hinge is so rigid that it takes two hands to open the screen. When working on your lap, on the other hand, the monitor does not move by itself, which is convenient when you’re on the go.
Life of the Batteries
It’s time to head home after a long day at the workplace. Up to an hour separates me from the next socket every now and again. In any event, a laptop must be capable of lasting that long. A 60 Wh battery is inserted in my test gadget. I can get by for around one to one and a half hours without tweaking the system.
If you want extra power, the 90 Wh version is the best option. You may get even more out of the 60 Wh battery if you are acquainted with the settings and know which set screws to turn.
Finally, I’m at home! I’ve always been a gamer, and I’ve played on my prior laptop, but nothing compares to the m17. On Ultra, all games run well and are simply enjoyable.
I’m now searching for games that I want to play only for the visuals, since now that I finally have a laptop that can handle everything, I haven’t been able to find anything that would make the Alienware m17 to scream.
Of course, Battlefield V is a first-person shooter that was pushes the CPU to its limit, but everything works so smoothly that you don’t get the impression that the next, or even the next but one AAA game, would burden this laptop. On a 17-inch display, 4K gaming does not appeal to me. As a result, I always play in Full HD mode.
Battlefield V, with its new visuals and RTX compatibility, plays at roughly 60 frames per second and looks stunning. Without vertical sync or future frame rendering, this was the only thing I could do. Rainbow Six Siege averages 90FPS while using ULTRA settings. Apex Legends is a video game developed by Respawn Entertainment. also averages 90 frames per second.
Emergency 5 with the Wuppertal Mod manages a reasonable 50 to 60 frames per second, which I consider to be rather impressive. Because EM 5 isn’t effectively optimized and the hardware isn’t well used. On average, CS:GO hits 200 frames per second, while Wolfenstein averages 240 frames per second.
The display is, of course, a visual treat when gaming, allowing you to immerse yourself in stunning scenes. The 60hz without streaks is just enjoyable.
It’s a beautiful monitor, from the colors to the reaction speed. I still need my 24-inch consumer monitor in the home office for business, but I don’t have to worry about kills being taken from me while I’m playing.
“…the notion that one of these Alienware laptops would ‘kill’ my Daily Driver with its performance and features to the point that it may as well be shot for mercy simply puts a grin on my face,” I stated in my application for this reader’s test.
And now I can really declare that the coup de grâce was well-deserved. I was persuaded by the Alienware m17. Although I dislike Mac OSX as an operating system, the Alienware m17’s performance is so impressive that it is the clear victor for me.
You’ve discovered the ideal choice here if you’re seeking for a laptop that combines uncompromising performance with mobility, which is why the Alienware M17 is ranked #1 above the Alienware M15.
Alienware M15 is ranked second.
- Outstanding gaming performance
- a better deal than the Alienware m17
- Stunning exhibition
- Very obnoxious
- Ergonomics are inconclusive.
For me, gaming laptops have always been a superfluous hermaphrodite entity that didn’t really belong in anywhere: they were too bulky and hefty compared to regular laptops, and they were too weak on the chest compared to desktop computers for the same money.
Furthermore, the gadgets were always constructed in such a manner that anybody standing 20 meters away might have deduced that I was one of those “crazy individuals” who spent tens of thousands of dollars on gear merely to play games with it – so that I could go to university or work? No, no, no!
Fortunately, a lot has changed in this industry in recent years, and it’s largely because to Nvidia and their Max-Q design that gaming-capable technology can now be housed in a casing that’s both small and light.
The new Alienware m15 and m17 gaming laptops are Dell’s effort to bringing this technology to market.
The 15-inch version (m15) was formerly available with Nvidia’s GeForce-10 (GTX) in Max-Q design, but has since received a “facelift” with Nvidia’s new GeForce-20 (RTX) GPUs and Intel® CoreTM i9 8th generation CPUs. I was finally given the opportunity to put one of these “new” m15s through its paces.
“Unboxing” is a term used to describe the process of opening a package The m15 comes with a thin, brown overpacking that is meant to protect the white Alienware box within from damage and dirt, but also contains a recess for the main box’s functional handle so that the entire thing can be transported securely.
You won’t have to lug about big items, either, since the whole box, with dimensions of 42x46x12mm (height/width/depth), weighs just 10.58 pounds and can be handled easily with one hand.
The laptop’s actual box is white and black, well-done, sturdy, and appears high-quality, with the elegant Alienware emblem and text in shining silver. Aside from a brief explanation of the m15’s technology (Intel inside, Killer Wireless, etc. ), the box shows the contour of the laptop and various cuts from the exploded perspective, which can also be seen in Dell’s product film.
The box isn’t then sealed with adhesive tape, but rather by the protruding plastic handle, which is more than adequate. This allows the box to be used as a well-protected transport case in the future.
Simply push the handle in to open the box and get access to the contents. To avoid the contents from spilling out, make sure you do it the proper way around (outer half up).
The m15 and all of its attachments are attractively imbedded in a sturdy foam in front of you after you’ve opened the packaging entirely. The box’s covering material is tightly bonded to it, and it seems to be of good quality and stability.
The laptop, which measures around 20x360x275mm (height/width/depth) and weighs approximately 5.07 lbs in its current form, may then be simply removed. There is still a little flyer with Dell Alienware’s history below the device, as well as a small box with a brief quick start guide and two papers with safety advice.
Viper is the codename for the Dell Alienware m15 (Model R3) non-touch Tobii laptop computer.
A chilly device cable and the large power supply are then contained in a separate box that is securely fastened to the box at the rear end: with dimensions of 30x200x100mm (height/width/depth) and a weight of roughly 2.2 lbs, the 240W power supply is over half the size and weight of the laptop itself!
But that’s all there is to it; the box is empty. A comprehensive handbook, a recovery USB stick, a mini-display port converter, and even promotional materials like as stickers and a mouse pad are not included.
On the one hand, this is unfortunate, particularly given the high cost of Dell’s Alienware laptops, but on the other hand, you have to wonder: do you really need this?
The design is not only thinner, but also more inconspicuous, when compared to prior Alienware and rival manufacturers’ gaming laptops. You can’t see what’s inside the laptop save for the somewhat uneven, angular form, the red top, and the significantly bigger air vents.
Only a true expert can decipher the Alienware insignia and letters underneath the display, indicating that this is a full-fledged gaming machine.
Personally, I think the design is overall extremely well done, since it strikes the perfect balance between flamboyant gaming design and simplicity, resulting in a laptop that is both attractive and unobtrusive.
The quality of materials and craftsmanship reflects the superb design: the magnesium alloy casing with a soft-touch surface, the rubberized wrist-rest, and the plastic loudspeaker cover are stylish, well-made, and feel wonderful.
Only the display’s edge, which is likewise made of plastic, might be improved, since it is not only thin and unsteady, but also reflects a lot of light.
Another point of contention is fingerprints: no matter how nice the laptop’s material feels, as soon as you touch it, you leave stains and streaks all over it, which can only be removed with a moist towel and are difficult to dry owing to the soft-touch surface.
Interfaces & Ports
In the m15, Dell has three USB 3.0 ports (type A), two of which are on the right side and one on the left, as viewed from the user’s perspective. Dell’s PowerShare technology is included into the single port on the left, allowing other devices, including as cellphones, to be charged even while the laptop is switched off.
A Killer Networks RJ-45-e2500 controls the Gigabit Ethernet port on the left side, as well as a combined 3.4mm jack connection for the headset. By the way, for those who need it, Dell has also put a Noble security lock on the left.
Apart from the standard connection for the adapter, an HDMI, and a tiny display port, the most fascinating one is on the rear, where Dell has included both a USB 3.1 Type-C and a connector for the in-house graphic accelerator.
I wanted to know whether these two ports had to share bandwidth or if it was feasible to operate two devices in simultaneously, such as a graphic amplifier and an external 10 Gbit Ethernet adapter, but I couldn’t find out owing to a lack of adequate gear.
But what I can tell with certainty is that not only are there enough connectors for practically anything conceivable, but they are also well-made, just like the rest of the notebook. Everything has a secure place in the foundation; nothing wobbles or falls out here.
The only thing I wouldn’t have changed would be if Dell had been able to relocate the Ethernet connector to the rear – but that’s nitpicking!
Apart from ports for cables and other devices, the m15 also features WiFi and Bluetooth for communicating with other peripherals and the outside world. The m15 comes with an 802.11 ac 22 adaptor and Bluetooth 4.1 as standard. The test model has received the “killer” update (Killer 1550), which includes not only a gaming-optimized WIFI adapter, but also Bluetooth 5.0 with dramatically enhanced range and data rate.
The earlier version of the m15 apparently still had issues with this network card, resulting in Windows not being enabled and connectivity issues. These issues seem to have been resolved; at the very least, I had no issues with connection throughout my test.
Sound, display, and keyboard / touchpad
The Dell m15 comes with a variety of display options, including Full-HD with 60Hz and 144Hz, as well as Ultra-HD with 60Hz, so there should be something for everyone. All of them are IPS displays, with Dell even offering a UHD OLED panel in the laptop’s top version in the US store.
When picking a monitor, bear in mind that Full-HD models “only” provide 72 percent sRGB color coverage, whereas UHD displays have 100 percent coverage.
If you want to utilize the m15’s focused computational power for mobile video editing or image processing, this panel is definitely the superior choice.
Dell has included an FHD 144Hz option in the tested unit, which seems much smoother than my typical 60Hz display.
When playing quick shooters, you can clearly notice the difference. However, the display is excellent in general: it’s matte, has a sufficient, consistent brightness, broad viewing angles, and decent black values – I didn’t notice any pixel defects or other issues. The display’s edges are fairly thin, with 7mm on the sides, but rather thick at the top and bottom, according to Dell’s product website.
In terms of picture quality and location, this enables Dell to employ a reasonably priced camera with Full-HD resolution, which is ideal for Skype chats and aspiring Twitch broadcasters. This is likewise true of the built-in microphone.
Dell has fitted stereo loudspeakers in a 2.0 configuration underneath the display, which, to put it another way, are mild in comparison to the display. You can’t advocate spending more time with them listening to music or seeing a movie.
When you connect in headphones, however, the image changes: Dell has included a really excellent sound chip inside, as well as super-tuned profiles. Additionally, the HDMI connection allows for the production of up to 7.1 sound, which I was unable to test.
The laptop’s built-in keyboard is adequate for a laptop. It is quiet and has a short release path, as is usual of notebooks, but it also has a full-featured number pad and four keys for fully programmable macros.
Because Dell can’t seem to get away from the current RGB craze, the keyboard (along with the two Alienware emblems) lights in all available freely changeable colors. Not every key can be set separately, but the whole keyboard is split into four zones from left to right.
The touchpad is therefore positioned in the middle of the laptop, under the space bar, and is slightly offset from the laptop’s center. I have to say, this is one of the greatest mice I’ve ever used: it has excellent gliding properties, responds fast and consistently, is quite accurate, and the mouse keys have a pleasant tactile feel.
Battery, Hardware, and Cooling
You can simply remove the bottom and see the underlying components by gently opening the nine screws on the bottom and the two on the rear.
The four heatpipes (2x CPU/GPU, 1x CPU, 1x GPU) that carry heat to the two heat sinks in the rear corners are noticeable — the fact that each processing cores share two heatpipes will be fascinating in future benchmark testing.
The two radial fans then take in cold air from underneath and blast it through the heatsinks to the back, where it is cooled on the sides before being blown out to the outside.
When playing games, you should avoid placing the laptop on the couch or bedspread since it won’t be able to operate at its best if there isn’t enough air drawn in from underneath.
The battery, in addition to providing cooling, takes up some space beneath the hood. For the m15, Dell provides two battery sizes: 60Wh and 90Wh. When the loudspeakers and display brightness are both set to 50%, the smaller 60Wh battery fitted here can play YouTube material in Full HD for roughly 3.5 hours on a full charge.
For light work and internet browsing, you’ll need a little more than 4.5 hours. When you play a game, however, your energy supply truly disappears and lasts for a maximum of 1.5 hours, maybe hours if the game isn’t too demanding.
However, using the provided 240W AC adapter, the battery can be recharged reasonably rapidly, taking at least 40 minutes to reach 100% capacity.
A bigger battery may be utilized instead, however the extra 2.5′′ space for a mass storage device is no longer required. Unfortunately, I am unable to speculate on the possibility of a future update to the greater energy storage. This seems to be the case, and it is plausible since Dell seldom uses multiple casings and boards with different batteries, but there is no guarantee of security.
As a result, everyone must determine if they need a cheaper 2.5′′ mass storage or whether they’d prefer go longer without a mains connection at the time of purchase.
As a result of the lower battery, the test device can accommodate a total of three data carriers: two M.2 and one 2.5”-SATA. Every m15 comes standard with at least one 256GB M.2 SSD (Toshiba KXG50ZNV256G), but there are a variety of additional alternatives, leaving the configuration up to the customer’s preferences and budget.
Apart from the M.2 for the operating system, Dell has included a 2.5′′ SSD (Seagate ST1000LX015-1U7172) with 1TB RAM for data in the current test device (games). This frees up one M.2 slot for future upgrades, as well as the ability to swap out current data carriers without difficulty.
If a flaw exists or an update is required, the main memory and WiFi adapter may be changed without difficulty. Dell employs 8, 16, or 32GB RAM depending on the configuration, whereas the test device has two 8GB Hynix (HMA81GS6CJR8N-VK) DDR4-2666 bars installed.
A board with an Intel® HM370 chipset, an Intel® CoreTM i9-8950HK CPU, and an Nvidia RTX 2080 in Max-Q design is installed in the tested laptop, however it is not readily replaceable.
You can adjust anything you need in the Command Center, which I believe is extremely successful: fan control, performance profiles, numerous sound settings, RGB lighting, and much more.
It’s also worth noting that the program automatically identifies installed games and allows you to apply your own profiles to them, such as changing the sound option to “strategy” for a strategy game, or creating macros for role-playing games that are only active when the game begins.
In addition to the Alienware Command Center, Dell has added an application for upgrading drivers and other Dell software, which works well and is quite handy.
BUT: Between six and seven gigabytes (!) of a total of 16 GB of RAM are already consumed after launching the laptop, and I couldn’t figure out why till the conclusion of my test.
It didn’t bother me since there was still enough reserve, but given that Dell also sells the m15 with just 8GB RAM, you have to wonder how this should function.
I came into the “SupportAssist” when looking for RAM eaters. This is Dell software that is designed to monitor the system, warn of faults, and provide remedies to problems. Why does the software use about 700MB of RAM?
In general benchmarks, the m15 can thoroughly persuade. Sure, a laptop won’t set any records here, but a Firestrike graphics score of over 8000 points is quite impressive, particularly given the laptop’s size. Let’s see whether it can give a believable number in games as well.
In the testing, all visual settings are set to the highest feasible level. This is supplied with the individual game if it didn’t run well and had to be toned down a notch.
Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 is a sequel to Tom Clancy’s The Division.
7860 points are the internal benchmark.
At highest settings in The Division 2, the frame rate was consistently over 80, with an average of 92FPS.
On this laptop, the game I was most looking forward to (keyword raytracing) created the greatest issues: The game wouldn’t start when I enabled DX12 and DXR, or it would crash repeatedly throughout the start! I just got back into the menu after reinstalling the graphics card driver and was finally able to attempt raytracing.
I experimented with numerous settings in the mission (War Story) “Tiralleur” before settling on the following: everything on “Ultra” or as high as possible, DXR quality on “medium,” and FX count on “high.” As a result, I was able to play at a consistent frame rate of over 70FPS while enjoying raytracing.
The frame rate bounced dramatically back and forth (50-85FPS) in Anno 1800 with “ultra-high” settings, yet it was never choppy and was quite enjoyable.
Battlegrounds: Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG)
At PUBG, the FPS never fell below 100 in “Ultra” settings, averaging about 120, with a bit less depending on visibility.
With the “Epic” settings, an image comparable to that of PUBG was drawn: In the wide terrain, I got about 103FPS on average, however in the rooms, I got above 130FPS.
The m15 also has enough of power for Apex, with an average frame rate of about 98FPS.
On average, 95 frames per second. The frame rate lowers to roughly 70 when there is a lot going on on the screen, which is still more than fluid.
Because Dell promotes the VR capabilities of the m15 and m17 series, I had to give it a shot: For aesthetically “adapted” VR games like The Climb, the visuals and CPU power are more than enough. However, if you want to play visually demanding titles like Ark in VR, the m15 will have to put up a fight.
The m15 not only performs well in general benchmarks, but it may also impress in gaming. Except for Battlefield 5, all current games run well on the Alienware laptop at the maximum settings and are therefore a lot of fun.
The only drawback I found while playing was that the keyboard became pretty warm. If you intend on playing for many hours at a time, an external keyboard is generally a good idea to prevent sweaty palms.
First and first, let me state unequivocally that there are no technical marvels! Even though many businesses with fruits as their emblem would want to offer them to their clients, technological equipment are always a mix of performance and mobility.
If I want performance, I’ll have to sacrifice mobility, and if I want mobility, I won’t be able to rely on high visual settings and a fast frame rate. With the Alienware m15, Dell has built a gaming laptop that, in my view, has successfully bridged the gap between the two worlds.
The m15’s design, materials, and craftsmanship are all excellent, and the small size and light weight are also evident advantages. The Alienware has the essential performance for a gaming laptop, and I was astonished at how well such a compact computer performed in our test.
With its 144Hz refresh rate, the display is ideal for gaming, and the sound (headphones are included) is excellent.
As previously said, there are a few compromises to be made in such a tiny design: the battery life isn’t exactly stellar, and the endurance for light work or internet browsing may be much improved. Because of the laptop’s modest overall size, the built-in loudspeakers may only be utilized as a last resort if headphones or external speakers are not accessible.
Would I consider purchasing or recommending this laptop?
Without a doubt! The m15 is an excellent design and performance bundle with a few fair or understood flaws. Would I make any changes to the current setup?
I’d probably get the laptop with a bigger battery and a normal M.2-SSD with 256GB and then upgrade an M.2-SSD for data myself, which is why the Alienware m15 behind the Alienware m17 in terms of performance.
It is, however, a fantastic gaming laptop that is less expensive than the m17, so if you can’t afford the m17, the m15 will suffice!
The “alienware m15 r4 vs r6” is a comparison between the Alienware M17 and the M15. The two laptops are both 2020 models, and they have similar specifications. The M17 has a higher resolution display, but the M15 has better performance.
- m15 r4 vs m17 r4 reddit
- alienware m17
- alienware m15 r3 (2020 ram upgrade)
- alienware r2 vs r3 2020
- alienware m17 r4 vs r3