Dell Alienware M17 Gaming Laptop Review

9

Value for Money Score

8.8/10

Reliability Score

9.0/10

Performance Score

9.1/10

Specifications and Features Score

8.9/10

Design Score

9.0/10

Pros

  • The laptop has got an attractive design
  • Thin profile
  • Decent Performance
  • Good overall features
  • Hyper-Threading is advantageous

Cons

  • The processor has been replaced by faster iterations
  • High-end models are very pricey
  • Newer options can be found in this price range
  • Only a FHD display is available in this variant
  • The keyboard is not a mechanical one, which is a drawback for gamers

Verdict

The Dell Alienware M17 looks as attractive on the inside as it looks on the outside, and there are a very few contemporary options like this that could offer so much power. The weight of the device is about 6.2 pounds and thus it isn’t too heavy.

The price doesn’t favor the budget buyers, but considering the performance it can be considered an average mid-range gaming device.

It has some flaws regarding cooling that must have crept in while trying to keep the laptop thin and the battery life could have been better. The 60 Hz screen could have been improved, given the price tag of this variant.

Dell Alienware M17 Gaming Laptop & Variants Price

Introduction

Dell Alienware M17 Gaming Laptop

The Alienware M17 is a stable blend of reliability and performance that comes in the size of a thin notebook.

You thus get all the performance you need, anywhere you go. The internal specs include an RTX 2070 GPU and 16 GB of memory to begin with.

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The refresh rate isn’t the best, but it should give you a comfortable experience. A semi-average battery life sums up the features in a package that you may find worth investing upon.

Buy for: Excellent gaming performance│Brilliant Video Card

Beware of: Price is slightly expensive│Battery life is poor

Best uses for: Gaming, GTR Evolution, video editing, Halo, Hearts of Iron IV and other purposes.

Design and Build

Despite the large screen size, the Alienware M17 is quite light and thin as you look at it for the first time, but this slim stature does cause the laptop to heat up and efficiency of the air ventilation is doubtful.

The newer models could feel a tad bit attractive, but this one here isn’t that bad to look at.

In fact, with the right color option, the glowing Alienware logo at the top of the screen lid does stand out.

The magnesium alloy is quite reliable, and it does make the laptop light and rigid. Check out best laptop brands.

The chances of a dent are slim but remember it would crack under excessive pressure.

The 1920 * 1080p display is bright enough at 17.3 inches giving you a lot of viewing area, although the bezels cannot be considered “thin”.

Performance

The laptop uses a lot of high-end parts and thus is sure to give a lot of power to the user.

The 6 core 12 threaded 8th gen Core i7 CPU is one of the best with a 9 MB cache, and was the right choice if you would have considered buying it a year ago.

Currently, when the 10th gen CPUs have already rolled out, we don’t see much benefit in spending so much for an old processor like it, although there is an i9 variant that you can buy.

The RAM is ample, and the RTX 2070 GPU should be able to run top-tier games for the next few years without an issue.

The display performance is just right, and 60 Hz being the comfortable zone for most gamers.

Again, you may choose an RTX 2080 model and a 4K display, but that would hike up the price on one hand and reduce the battery life on the other.

Benchmarks

CPU

1. Dell Alienware M17 comes with Intel Core i7-8750H. As of 11th September 2022, this Hexa core intel processor has an average CPU mark of 10043. The single thread rating of this processor is 2319.

Based on the technical analysis of this site, this processor has a low margin of error. The overall rank of this processor is 711. Based on the average CPU mark, we can say that this processor is a better option than the AMD Ryzen 5 3500U, which has an average CPU mark of 7071. Contradictory, the Intel Core i7-9750H is better than Intel Core i7-8750H.

Based on the performance of the processor we can say that the Lenovo Legion Y540,is a better option than the Dell Alienware M17.

Dell Alienware M17 Gaming Laptop cpu benchmark

2. As of 11th September 2022, the Intel Core i7-8750H has an average bench score of 75.3%. The experts of this website have analyzed a total of 1359 processes of this kind and among them, this Intel processor has occupied the 244th position.

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This Hexa Core processor has got a benchmark score of 75%, when this one is used on a workstation, it got a benchmark of 64%. And this is 78% for the workstations. So this is not a low-end processor.

We can categorize it as something between moderate and high-end processors of this generation. The users will get smooth multitasking processing and they can play the updated games on this processor very smoothly. But for high-end programming or 4K video editing, you need to find a better alternative.

3. The Intel Core i7-8750H has got a single core score of 947 on Geekbench 5, a popular benchmarking scale of this time. The multi-core score of this processor is 4438. These scores are not very satisfying.

This is an average i7 processor, not the best variant of the i7 series. The moderate users will be happy with the performance of this processor but the professional high-end users will not.

GPU

This gaming laptop comes with NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q. As of 11th September 2022, this GPU’s average G3D mark is 11178. The average G2D mark of this GPU is 811.

After analyzing a total of 363 samples, the experts have given this GPU an overall rank of 112. It will be fair enough if we consider this GPU in the high-end GPU segment.

As far as the G3D mark of the GPUs is concerned, we can see that this graphics card has a higher score than that of the Geforce RTX 3050 Ti. So between these two GPUs, our NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q is better (in terms of performance).

Dell Alienware M17 Gaming Laptop gpu benchmark

Storage and RAM

This variant of the M17 uses a single PCIe 512 GB SSD, and 16 GB of dual-channel RAM that can be expanded to 32 GB.

There are other variants as well that you can buy that have a hard drive along with the SSD, dual SSDs, and so on.

Ports and Connectivity

The device has got 3 USB 3.1 ports, two of them being USB 3.1 Type A, and another with power share technology.

At the back, you will find an HDMI out port, a mini Display Port 1.3 and a Thunderbolt Port. There is also a headphone jack at the side.

The special attraction here is an E2500 Gigabit Ethernet slot that provides fast internet connectivity even on using a wired internet connection.

Standard Bluetooth 5.0 and AC WIFI is present as well.

Battery Life

Even though the device delivers a high range of performance, its battery life is a concern no matter what variant you buy or which GPU is inside it.

The RTX 2070 is surely a great GPU, but also demands a lot of power which adversely affects the battery life of the laptop.

You might expect 3 hours of usage with the 60Wh battery, but gaming intensely will reduce it further.

The FHD 1080p display taking up so much power is somewhat unjustified.

But since gaming laptops aren’t very promising regarding battery performance, it is not a major problem unique to this particular device.

There is a bigger 90Wh battery option, but that would add some more cost.

Additional Features

The laptop comes with a backlit LED keyboard to ensure gaming in the dark is more enjoyable. It also supports VR gaming.

A standard one year warranty is present on the hardware. Dell advertises Cryo Tech V2.0 in terms of cooling, but it doesn’t seem to be very useful since heating is imminent.

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Specs:

What Do Users Think about Alienware M17?

The users have found the laptop to be very useful for gaming, and it could handle almost every game they have tried to play on it.

It performed well in video editing scenarios too. The build was found decent, and the screen performed satisfactorily. Check out Alienware M17 Manual.

However, complaints have been made regarding the battery life and excessive heating problems have been reported when the laptop is under workload for a long session.

Other Expert Views

The experts at CNET think that it is a decent laptop that provides a lot of power, but is weak on battery life. It can compete with most laptops of its time, and one should have a satisfying experience even running demanding tasks on it.

But all these come at an expensive price tag and a bit of weight, and the users would also have to adjust with heat that tends to be more than what a gaming laptop generally produces.

Questions & Answers:

Is the RAM and storage section of the Dell Alienware M17 upgradeable?

Yes, you can get easy access to the storage and RAM section of this laptop. But both the RAM slots of this device are occupied.

So if you want to increase the RAM capacity of this laptop, then you need to replace one or both of them with a higher RAM capacity.

What is the refresh rate of the Dell Alienware M17’s display?

The display panel of the Dell Alienware M17 has a refresh rate of 60Hz.

Does the Dell Alienware M17 have an HDMi port?

Yes, this Dell gaming PC has a dedicated HDMI port. Using this the users can easily attach any external monitor to this laptop.

When was the Dell Alienware M17 launched?

The launching date of the Dell Alienware M17 is 13th May 2020.

Is the Dell Alienware M17 worth buying?

The Dell Alienware M17 is a moderate-level gaming device. The users can easily play most of the trending games of this time. And while playing various updated AAA real-time games, the users can get smooth processing.

If the processor of this laptop would be a little more updated and powerful, then this one can be one of the most powerful gaming devices of Dell.

About Dominic Cooper

Dominic CooperDominic Cooper, a TTU graduate is a computer hardware expert. His only passion is to find out the nitty gritty of all computers. He loves to cook when he is not busy with writing, computer testing and research. He is not very fond of social media. Follow Him at Linkedin