Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 review, including today's price to performance
Laptop announced date: 1st February 2019
Last reviewed: 10th August 2021
If you adjust the spec you are looking at on a gaming laptop, the price hikes up and makes it harder to judge price to performance. Today's Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop review is going to give us all a good sense of these sorts of values. We will take a look at what sort of performance you can expect the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop to return across the more demanding games of today.
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Gaming Laptop Analysis
Is the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 good as a gaming laptop? Excellent
Processor - This processor, the Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz, is excellent and can meet 2021 AAA title requirements with relative ease. With 8 of CPU cores available, this processor doesn’t have to worry too much about gaming processes bottlenecking as few games will be able to use all of these cores completely
Graphics Card - This graphics card is considered an excellent 2021 choice for modern AAA games. Dont underestimate the importance of your GPU VRAM in modern gaming. Fortunately this GPU has 8GB, making it an excellent gamers choice of GPU.
System Memory - The system memory (16GB) we find in this gaming laptop can meet modern AAA game requirements. This amount of RAM is an excellent 2021 gaming laptop choice, that will help meet game requirements now and into the future.
Screen Size - The review laptop here has a 17.3" physical screen, which we find a lot of modern gaming laptops sport nowadays. This panel size is an excellent size for 2021 gaming, that will help a gamer make out the details and menus in a game. Obviously the native resolution of the screen size will also make a difference to the on-screen definition, but the physical panel real estate offered here will be appreciated again and again for today’s gaming.
Refresh Rate - The higher the screen panel refresh rate, the better for gaming laptops. The refresh rate is the number of times a second the screen is capable of refreshing the game’s image. If a laptop can deliver 100 frames per second (FPS) in a game and your laptop has a 60Hz refresh rate, then you will only get a max of 60 frames per second. The higher the refresh rate and the game’s FPS the smoother the sharpness is as the screen view moves around in game. This laptop can be picked up with a refresh rate of 144Hz option. It is an excellent gamers choice for screen refresh rates.
GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile graphics card gaming performance in the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop
While it can be tricky to work out the best price to performance hardware for a gaming laptop, we will be looking at how well this mobile graphics card can run demanding games that are available today or coming out over the coming months.We will consider how well it can perform while gaming at Ultra graphics setting on a 1080p resolution, which is the native resolution for this laptop. We will also look at a few of the more popular games like, God of War 2018 or Far Cry 6. This laptop has the GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile in it. Of the 500 most demanding games around today this graphics card is capable of running 499 games at minimum system requirements and 482 games at their recommended system requirements.
God of War 2018 FPS Low to Ultra 1080p Graphics Settings Results GraphPremium Feature
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Other Popular Games
Comparing Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 to today’s best price to performance laptop ranges
If we want to look at the gaming value offered by the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop compared tto other gaming laptops, we focus on the performance ability of the hardware and then the relative price of the laptop. Of course a laptop is often more than just its core tech components, like CPU and GPU, but for this exercise we want a standardised way of looking across laptops to see what value they have to today’s laptop gamer. So we consider $3899.99 of each laptop and its core hardware capability in running modern games.
With a P2P rating of 4.5 today the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2. Our value to performance rating score will auto adjust as new hardware capability improves and prices drop. This version of the Alienware Area-51M laptop is currently positioned at 29th when ordered in the range lineup for Price to Performance value rating. The closer to 1st place the better gaming performance it deliver for its price.
Show Laptop Specifications
|Processor||Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz|
|Graphics Card||GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile|
|RAM||16GB DDR4 2400MHz|
17.3 " 1920x1080 (1080p)
Available refresh rates: 144Hz
The best performing laptop for Price to Performance is currently the ASUS TUF A15 R7 4800H GTX 1660 Ti 16GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop. So if we compare this Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop to that laptop we can see that it performs 249% worse on Price to Performance rating. Out of interest, the top P2P laptop currently has a recorded price of $999. How about we also look at the 2nd ranked laptop for excellent Price/Performance ratings, which is the MSI Bravo 15 R7 4800H RX 5500M 16GB RAM 512GB M.2 and has a recorded cost of $1049. We see our Alienware Area-51M laptop scores 205% worse against it for price to performance.
How does the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop compare to the best CPU performance focused laptops and today’s most popular games?
If you are looking for a strong CPU focused laptop then let's compare this Alienware Area-51M laptop with the top CPU performance focused laptop available today and see how it compares. We will choose the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 R9 4900HS RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop for our CPU comparison tests as that laptop currently has the best CPU in it at the cheapest laptop price. Its CPU is the Ryzen 9 4900HS 8-Core 3.0GHz which we will compare to our review laptop’s Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz processor. Our performance comparison shows the top end laptop CPU to be 7% better in performance compared to our laptop’s processor.
Our laptop processor, the Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz, can currently meet the recommended system requirements of 497 games when compared against the top 500 most demanding games right now. This number changes to 500 for the top 500 most demanding minimum system requirements.
Some of the most popular games today are really the primary benchmark for any laptop’s ability, so we thought we should compare our laptop CPU Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz against God of War 2018. This CPU performance comparison saw our laptop deliver 45% better performance against the game’s recommended CPU system requirements. Then we have Far Cry 6 and our laptop was 28% better in processor performance and another popular title today is God of War: Ragnarok which we saw our review laptop get 53% better compared to our laptop cpu.
How does the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop compare to the best graphics card performance focused laptops and today’s most popular games?
We may well be looking for a GPU centric laptop, and if that’s the case then let's see how this Alienware Area-51M mobile pc competes with a top GPU performance laptop that is available today. We have chosen this next laptop for its GPU power, which is the MSI GT76 Titan i9-10900K RTX 2080 Super 64GB RAM 2.0TB M.2 4K, and comes packing a GeForce RTX 2080 Super 8GB video card. That graphics card performs 16% better when compared to our review laptop’s GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile.
A quick review of the number of games our laptop Graphics Card can run at recommended requirements is 482, taken from the top 500 most demanding games today. For min GPU specs this figure for number of games it can run is 499.
Lets take a look and see how well our GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile compares against today’s most popular games. Against the recommended graphics specs for God of War 2018 our laptop is 59% better, and compared to Far Cry 6 it is 11% better , where as against God of War: Ragnarok it delivers 48% better performance.
The Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 has a 1080p screen resolution, should I get a 4K resolution gaming laptop instead?
This Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop has a 17.3" physical screen size and displays 1920 pixel by 1080 pixels tall native 1080p resolution. Is this 1080p laptop good for your needs though or should you instead be looking to buy a 4K screen mobile PC rather than this? A 4K panel usually comes with 60Hz screen refresh rate that would be also setting a max FPS on any game played on the laptop, even if it’s laptop hardware could return higher FPS. Factor into the decision process about getting a 4K laptop, that most AAA games would struggle to reach 60 FPS at 4K Ultra graphics settings on today’s regular laptop hardware. You can find the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 panel with 144Hz refresh rate variants.
Drop the 4K screen resolution on your AAA games to 1080p to increase the games frame rate to something more playable, and in doing so will make a game look blurry as it wouldn't be displayed in the 4K laptop’s native resolution. And so is there a point in getting a 4K screen laptop at the moment? A 1080p laptop can still have some powerful gaming hardware in it and if it is good enough to run AAA games at larger resolutions like 4K or 1440p then attach it to a desktop monitor while you are at home and stationary. If the desktop monitor is pretty good then it wont have a 60Hz refresh rate limiting its FPS count in game. And is likely to be a whole lot more enjoyable playing on a 24 inch or larger monitor than the more standard 15 or 17inch screen normally found on gaming laptops.
Maybe you are hoping to enjoy your 4K streamed movies and TV shows while on the move. And if you have access to this 4K content and it's your prime use for your new laptop then perhaps it's worth considering a 4K panel, rather than this 1080p.
At the moment our advice would be, stick to the 1080p laptop panels for now. Your laptop remains portable and 4K laptop’s just aren't quite there yet. The 4K needs to be a no brainer but at the moment you will still have to lower resolution in game to get playable but sub par visuals that still can't raise above 60FPS.
Today’s best 1440p desktop monitor for a laptop is - ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27 inch 1440p 75Hz 5ms IPS
If you wanted a desktop monitor to go with the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop then this ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27 inch 1440p 75Hz 5ms IPS would go well and has 75Hz and today’s price of $311.99. Our cheapest tracked price for the desktop 1440p monitor was $229.99, which we recorded on 9th Mar 2021.
Today’s best 4K desktop monitor for a laptop is - Asus Predator XB273K 27 inch 4K GSYNC IPS 1ms 144Hz
Why not grab a monitor like the Asus Predator XB273K 27 inch 4K GSYNC IPS 1ms 144Hz 4K screen. It is currently coming in with the best price tag in the 4K range of monitors that we are watching, at $618 and has a 144Hz refresh rate. We price track a number of carefully chosen laptop peripherals and during these past couple of weeks we saw that this 4k monitor has seen a slight price increase, but despite that it is still better quality to value compared to our other favourite monitors. Its recent price increased by $618, so perhaps it can be found a little cheaper elsewhere at the moment To give a bit more info about this monitor we saw it cost its lowest of $549.99, which we recorded on 13th Nov 2020.
[Note - check that monitor display connectors are compatible between a monitor and a laptop before purchase]
The primary use we can think of is for streaming 4K movie and TV content, assuming you have access to these services. If this is your primary use for the laptop, rather than gaming then it certainly might be worth considering this.
As you can probably gather from the information above, it's probably not worth the extra cash for a 4K laptop if gaming is your Laptop purpose. 1080p is likely plenty and has enough alternative gaming options for when you want better resolution. It feels like you might not get what you were after if you picked up a shiny new 4K laptop, then was needing to lower game resolution, while getting blurry in-game experience and achieving a max 60FPS when you could push the hardware into better frame rates.
Today's Best Priced Mouse and Headset for Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop
Incidentally our price track research shows us that a good gaming mouse is the Kayinuo M738 Gaming Mouse 3200DPI wired 6 Buttons. Its price tag today is $12.99 and is topping our price tracking charts as a best value mouse. Today's best value and good quality mouse has enjoyed a price reduction of $32.26, and provides another reason for us to suggest it to compliment this laptop. Reviewing all our records the lowest tracked price we have for this mouse was recorded on 15th Aug 2020, where it was priced at $11.99.
|Quality||Mouse||Price (USD)||Check Regional Pricing|
|**||IBats X8 gray 9 Btns||$12.99|
|**||PICTEK Gaming Mouse 7200DPI wired 7 Buttons||$13.99|
|***||Cooler Master MM710||$42.99|
|***||Razer DeathAdder Elite||$49.29|
Incidentally our price track research shows us that a good gaming headset is the Corsair HS45-7.1 Surround. Its price tag today is $36.99 and is topping our price tracking charts as a best value headset. For reference, the lowest price recorded by us so far for the headset is $34.99 on 28th Nov 2019.