Since the original Alienware 51-M went downhill nearly 20 years ago, Alienware gaming laptops have continued to impress after release. Although the entry cost is still a bit high, there is still something for a variety of different players within the current squad.
With names and appearances that sound straight out of your favorite sci-fi novel, it can be hard to distinguish the latest Alienware models at a glance. There are M15 R6, x15 and more models ready to push everything from screen resolutions to frame rates to the limit.
Since finding the best Alienware laptop for you can be a tough decision-making process, we’ve broken down the company’s latest laptops below to make it easier for you.
Alienware m15 R6: Powerful specs at an affordable price
Alienware products aren’t cheap. However, the most affordable laptop offered by the Dell-owned company is the M15 R6. Individuals looking to dip their toes into the gaming laptop spectrum or aspiring esports players will have a lot to appreciate here.
Starting at $1,379, the gaming laptop features an 11th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB solid-state drive (SSD). These specs won’t be able to showcase the best visual splendor of games like Control, Metro: Exodus, Doom Eternal, and Deathloop, but they can still run at lower resolutions and frame rates.
That’s because these settings are definitely geared towards esports games with lower system requirements. Aspiring professional gamers with an itch to compete in games like Fortnite, Rocket League, Overwatch, and Call of Duty: Warzone will have enough strength to work here. Also helping is the 15.6-inch 1080p display that has a refresh rate of 165Hz. The high refresh rate helps players outperform the competition with faster reaction times, allowing for smoother and more responsive gameplay. Just keep in mind that a title as big as COD: Warzone will take up roughly half of the SSD space. The good news is that there are three USB-A ports, a USB-C port, and an Ethernet jack for those looking to stream.
Seven other configurations, ranging in value from $1,729 to $2,859, are available to buyers looking to improve the capabilities of the GPU, RAM, and storage. At the top end, the m15 R6 comes with 32GB of RAM, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics and a 2TB SSD. This is enough to enjoy 1080p games at high frame rates.
On a general level, productivity users and content creators will have a quick and portable piece of power in their hands. When you don’t push the m15 R6’s specs to the limit with gaming, general use should give you enough battery life for a bicoastal flight while leaving a little time left.
Intel vs. AMD will forever be a never-ending argument in the world of PC gaming. Regardless, there are specific reasons many are fans of Ryzen processors, including the fact that AMD processors tend to be a bit cheaper than similarly powered Intel processors. For the past 14 years or so, Alienware has featured exclusively Intel processors thus far.
Starting at $1,379, the base-tier Alienware m15 Ryzen R5 is a spitting image of its brother Intel as well as a CPU swap. What buyers get is an octa-core Ryzen 7 processor across four configuration levels. This means that the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD still count toward this configuration. The 15.6-inch screen with 1080p resolution at 165Hz refresh rate will look good on this model as well.
Four out of six configurations featuring the same 1080p display are available exclusively for models with enhanced GPU, RAM, and SSD storage.
The top two configurations come with an octa-core Ryzen 9 processor. One option has a higher resolution of 2,560 x 1,440, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 graphics, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB of SSD storage for $2,259. At the top price of $2,459, buyers get a standard HD display with a refresh rate of 360Hz, which offers faster response time along with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070, 32GB of RAM, and a 1TB of SSD storage. Besides potentially saving some money on the higher end, having an AMD processor offers better battery life than its sibling Intel.
Alienware x15: Balancing Thin and Power
The thinnest gaming laptop in the Alienware lineup, the x15 matches great portability with premium specs. The x15 is Alienware’s best laptop for people who want to pay for top-level performance within a slim, road-ready design, weighing in at 5 pounds and 0.64 inches at an impressive thickness.
Three of the four configurations use an 11th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, with a $2,099 base model featuring Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 graphics, 16GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. You also get a 1080p display along with a 165Hz refresh rate. With these specs, the x15 should handle standard esports gaming standards quite well. For larger AAA titles, expect games to be 1080p/60fps at medium to high settings.
Configurations that provide more RAM, GPU, and storage with the same CPU will run buyers somewhere around $400 to $600. There are also a few display types, including an option for a 1440p screen with a smoother 240Hz refresh rate.
Meanwhile, the higher-priced $3,029 offers an Intel Core i9 processor, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 graphics. Buyers looking for one of the lightest gaming laptops available with serious performance power will have plenty to enjoy this style. This model’s 15.6-inch 1080p display also has a 360Hz refresh rate with ComfortView Plus and Nvidia G-Sync capabilities. ComfortView Plus is Dell’s technology that improves eye comfort by removing harmful blue light emissions without sacrificing screen color, while Nvidia G-Sync synchronizes the display’s refresh rate with the GPU to prevent screen tearing.
Keep in mind that the x15 port layout may turn off some buyers sticking with wire management. Although the power port and headphone port occupy opposite sides of the gaming laptop, everything else, including the HDMI port, is on the back, which will require access. Out of position, there is only one USB-A, USB-C, and Thunderbolt 4 port.
Alienware x17: Play games on a big screen on the go
Think of x17 as the older and last brother of x15. Available in three configurations, all versions of this large-screen gaming laptop have a 17.3-inch display and an Intel Core i7 processor. The added screen feature will surely help with everything from situational awareness in esports games to player immersion through more cinematic titles.
Along the x17 spectrum are various display options, including two 1080p displays with one offering a 165Hz refresh rate and the other running at 360Hz. The best monitor option is a 4K monitor that packs a 120Hz refresh rate, but that’s suggested for buyers who choose the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070. Playing at this higher resolution on the lower Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 will definitely cause frame rate issues unless you’re playing a title that supports Nvidia DLSS (tech It uses artificial intelligence to improve performance).
The base setup at $2,199 features an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060, 16GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. Buyers who need more GPU power and storage space can consider the $2,579 configuration that comes with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 along with a 512GB SSD. The low- and mid-tier x17 options can be upgraded up to 4TB of storage, which is ideal if you want the most space possible for gaming.
Members of the “best money can buy” club can increase their RAM to 32GB and SSD storage to 1TB for $3,029. Just keep in mind that the only monitor available at this level is a 1080p display with a 360Hz refresh rate.
Compared to its thinner brother the x15, the x17 has more ports. This includes two USB-A ports, one USB-C port, Thunderbolt 4, a small display, an Ethernet port, a microSD slot, and a power port. The X17 is not only a powerful gaming laptop but also ideal for creators looking to edit videos and photos on the go regardless of configuration level.