“Alienware’s m15 is a gaming laptop computer you may lust after, and it’s best to indulge.”

  • It seems superior
  • Glorious show choices
  • Tons ports in all the suitable locations
  • Strong efficiency in all video games
  • Cumbersome for its class
  • Battery life is predictably ‘okay’

I used to be fast to seize the Alienware m15 when it got here into the Digital Tendencies workplace. It’s a laptop computer I’ve been ready to check. Perhaps even my most anticipated laptop computer all 12 months.

Why? As a result of it packs the design of Alienware’s attractive Space-51M in a much more sensible 15-inch chassis that weighs simply 4.75 kilos. The Space-51M was a looker, nevertheless it wasn’t a laptop computer constructed for most individuals.

The Alienware m15, although? This one’s for you. For me. For everybody. It’s not exaggeration to say Alienware m15 is, and has lengthy been, the Ford F-150 of cell PC gaming. Need to recreation, but additionally want modest portability? It’s the default alternative. Now, it’s additionally a looker.

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Every part concerning the new m15 is, properly, new – however I believe the rear mild bar, which loops completely outdoors the laptop computer’s rear silhouette, is the spotlight. It’s vivid and futuristic, but not gaudy or overbearing. That is essentially the most enticing accent lighting on any laptop computer, ever. Severely. It’s beautiful.

The remainder of the laptop computer is nice, too. It abandons the exhausting edges so frequent in gaming laptops for a softer, rounded look that recollects the aesthetic of latest sci-fi movies. Coloration path choices embrace black “Darkish Facet of the Moon,” or white “Lunar Mild,” making it clear that connection isn’t any accident.

Appears to be like aren’t all the pieces, after all, however the Alienware m15’s distinctive design is a bonus. You’ll really feel proud maintain it in your palms.

It’s a beast

Don’t be fooled. Whereas the Alienware m15 seems fashionable, it’s not essentially the most transportable machine. This can be a 15-inch gaming laptop computer that may deal with Intel’s Core i7 9th-gen processors and Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics. Meaning it has some heft.

Its weight of 4.75 kilos is mid-pack. Razer’s Blade 15 can weigh as little as 4.5 kilos, whereas Acer’s Predator Triton 500 weighs in at 4.41 kilos. The Alienware m15 isn’t a brick, however you’ll find lighter choices. It’s a hair greater than 7/10ths of an inch thick, which is correct on par with the competitors.

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Numbers don’t inform the entire story, nevertheless. The Alienware m15 is all-new, nevertheless it retains the “junk within the trunk” design of earlier Alienware laptops. Severely. The show hinge is pushed ahead from the laptop computer’s rear, which juts one other inch past it.

That places the m15 a hair wanting 11 inches deep. The Razer Blade 15 is simply 9.25 inches deep, and the Acer Predator Triton 500 is 10 inches deep. Even the HP Omen X 2S, which has a second touchscreen above the keyboard, is 10.Three inches deep.

In different phrases, the m15 is nearer to sq. than most gaming laptops. That may make it a clumsy slot in a laptop computer bag, even one designed with 15-inch laptops in thoughts.

Sadly, the sq. form doesn’t embrace room for an awesome touchpad. It’s not all that small, nevertheless it appears tiny on the m15’s in any other case giant physique. I had higher luck with the keyboard. The structure is spacious, and keys reply with agency tactile suggestions.

My god. It’s stuffed with ports

You might curse the Alienware m15’s old-school measurement when stuffing it in a bag, however you’ll adore it when it’s a must to plug in. This factor is filled with ports. Take a deep breath. Okay. Prepared?

It has a proprietary energy jack, an Ethernet port, two USB-A 3.1 Gen 1 ports, one USB-A USB 3.1 Gen 1 port with PowerShare, one Thunderbolt Three port, one Alienware Graphics Amplifier port, one HDMI 2.0b out, one Mini-DisplayPort 1.4, one combo headphone/microphone jack, and one lock slot.

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That’s rather a lot. And it will get higher. Many ports are on the rear of the laptop computer, making cable administration straightforward. Simply join equipment to the rear, slap on a Velcro tie, and also you’re finished.

And don’t overlook. The sunshine bar is on the rear, too. Plugging in a peripheral is a superb excuse to remind your self how superior this laptop computer seems.

Flip it as much as 240Hz

Ultimately, you may cease gawking on the Alienware m15 and resolve to play video games on it. Meaning shifting your consideration to the display screen. It’s not as enthralling because the laptop computer’s design, although solely as a result of Alienware has (principally) chosen practicality over specs.

There are 4 panels on provide, three of that are 1080p. That may appear unusual given the trendy obsession with decision (telephones sometimes have a extra pixels than this laptop computer), nevertheless it is sensible. 1080p seems sharp on a 15.6-inch show, and it’s a greater match for the capabilities of recent gaming laptops. I don’t find out about you, however I’ll select most element at 1080p over medium element at 4K any day of the week.

As a substitute of upping decision, the non-obligatory panels improve refresh charge. The entry-level alternative is a typical 60Hz show. You possibly can improve from there to a 144Hz and even 240Hz refresh charge, which is what my overview unit had. The improve panels additionally embrace Tobii eye monitoring expertise however, to my dismay, it doesn’t help Home windows Whats up facial login.

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I loved the 240Hz panel each out and in of video games. Along with its clean refresh charge, it delivered sharp photos with distinction and shade accuracy that may sustain with something apart from OLED which, due to its far deeper black ranges, can crush any standard LCD. The 240Hz panel’s stable high quality is price your consideration. Prior to now, I’ve examined laptops with excessive refresh charges and disappointing picture high quality. You don’t should make that compromise right here.

And wow, this show is fluid. I observed that the majority in Battlefield V, a recreation that pairs glorious artwork route with fast-paced motion. The sport’s vibrant explosions and heavy use of post-process results could make any judder, stutter, or unintended blur apparent, however all was crystal clear on the Alienware m15’s 240Hz panel.

I’m nonetheless unsure the distinction between it and a 144Hz display screen is discernible, so don’t really feel unhealthy when you “solely” go for that decrease however nonetheless spectacular refresh charge. The truth is, the 144Hz choice is probably going the higher match for efficiency – as I’ll focus on extra later. When in comparison with a 60Hz OLED display screen, nevertheless, the distinction is tangible.

There may be one catch. Nvidia’s G-Sync, which synchronizes a show’s refresh charge with a recreation’s body charge, isn’t out there on any mannequin. You’re extra more likely to see display screen tearing if a recreation’s body charge is mismatched with the refresh charge. That mentioned, display screen tearing and stutters by no means jumped out to me as an issue.

Do not forget that a excessive refresh charge is simply helpful when you can receive it. A demanding recreation, like Murderer’s Creed Odyssey, won’t ever come near 240 and even 144 frames per second.

In these circumstances, you may need to go for most picture high quality. That’s the place the non-obligatory 4K OLED panel is available in. I didn’t have probability to check it on the Alienware m15, however OLED panels have universally scored properly in our show benchmarks. They obtain distinction ratio and shade gamut figures high-refresh IPS shows simply can’t match. The one draw back is value, because the OLED is a $330 improve from the bottom display screen. That’s $150 greater than the 240Hz display screen I reviewed.

All of the framerate you want

Alienware shipped me a high-end m15 with an Intel Core i7-9750HQ processor, Nvidia RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics, 16GB of RAM, and a 1TB stable state drive. That’s an improve from the bottom mannequin, which has an Intel Core i5-9300H processor, Nvidia GTX 1660 Ti graphics, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB stable state drive.

My upgraded unit represents the slicing fringe of cell gaming. You’ll solely discover higher outcomes from laptops just like the Alienware Space-51M, which really packs a full-fat Nvidia RTX 2080 graphics chip.

Meaning 60 frames per second is definitely obtainable at 1080p and most element. I discovered that was true for Fortnite, Battlefield V, and Civilization VI. Solely Murderer’s Creed Odyssey, a notoriously strenuous recreation at most element, dipped under 60 FPS. Even then, the Alienware m15 common 55 FPS.

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These outcomes are on par with the competitors. Throughout these 4 video games, I discovered the Alienware m15 was faster than HP’s Omen X 2S, about on par with Razer’s Blade 15, and a bit slower than Acer’s Predator Triton 500 (all have been examined with RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics).

There’s a sliver of me that’s dissatisfied by this end result. That has to do with the Alienware M15’s measurement. It’s on the bigger aspect, so I hoped that could be higher efficiency as a result of improved thermals.

Nonetheless, its efficiency is respectable, and the hole between all of the laptops we’ve examined with RTX 2080 Max-Q is sufficiently small that it doesn’t make-or-break gameplay. The HP Omen X 2S averaged 52 FPS in Murderer’s Creed Odyssey at 1080p and most element. The Alienware m15 averaged 55. You gained’t discover that hole.

However what about that 240Hz display screen? Can the Alienware m15 use it to its full potential?

No. It may well’t. Fortnite, the least demanding recreation in my checks, averaged 149 frames per second at 1080p and medium element. That’s nowhere close to the 240Hz panel’s full potential.

My suggestion? Save your money and stick to the 144Hz panel. It’s one of the best match for the laptop computer’s efficiency in fashionable video games, and also you’ll save $180 {dollars} by ditching the 240Hz improve.

Predictably meh battery life

You’re going to need to present the Alienware m15 off. There’s little doubt about it. Sadly, you’ll should be choosey with the humblebrag tour, as a result of this laptop computer’s battery life sort of sucks.

That comes as no shock. Gaming laptops have picked higher show high quality and better refresh charges over lengthy battery life in recent times. It’s a trade-off that is sensible. Players don’t count on to spend a lot time away from an influence outlet.

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The Alienware m15 managed simply three hours in our net shopping battery take a look at. The extra demanding Basemark browser benchmark, in the meantime, ate by means of a cost in simply an hour and a half.

If it’s any comfort, these outcomes aren’t unhealthy for the section. A high-end gaming laptop computer with a excessive refresh charge show is fortunate to hit three hours. That is true for the Razer Blade 15, HP Omen X 2S, and Acer Predator Triton 500. It simply comes with the territory.

Alienware’s m15 beats the HP Omen X2. It basically ties the Razer Blade 15 (with 240Hz show) and Acer Predator Triton 500.

Nonetheless, you’ll have to hold the charger useful. And that provides to the laptop computer’s bulk when touring.

Our take

The Alienware m15 is a very spectacular laptop computer. It has an entirely unique and distinctive design that delivers the gosh-wow issue a gamer craves however doesn’t look or really feel gaudy. I don’t have a mantel, but when I did, I’d put the m15 on it.

Alienware backs up the seems with stable efficiency, a variety of enticing shows, and loads of ports. The one draw back is the laptop computer’s measurement, which is cumbersome subsequent to one of the best competitors.

Don’t let that cease you, although. If you need a gaming laptop computer that appears superior even when it’s off, you’ve discovered it.

Is there a greater various?

Sure. The Razer Blade 15 stays our total favourite, even when it’s not as enticing. The Blade 15 has a killer mixture of portability and efficiency. It feels much less like a gaming laptop computer, and extra like an awesome laptop computer that may additionally recreation.

Acer’s Predator Trition 500 is an effective decide when you worth, properly, worth. It delivers glorious {hardware} in a number of reasonably priced configurations. It’s not as enticing because the Alienware m15, nevertheless.

How lengthy will it final?

Alienware presents the same old one-year guarantee. This isn’t essentially the most strong laptop computer I’ve felt, nevertheless it appears sturdy sufficient to deal with on a regular basis use for a very long time to return. I count on it’ll final no less than 5 years. It might final a decade if dealt with with care.

Do you have to purchase it?

Sure. The Alienware m15 is a shocking gaming laptop computer with glorious efficiency.

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