Laptop announced date: 1st February 2019
Last reviewed: 11th February 2020
There are so many variables influencing gaming laptop prices. The hardware they have in them can be adjusted and as soon as we change it it becomes hard to know how one laptop compares to another. This laptop review will take a look at how well the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 can run today’s latest games and what sort of frame rates this Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 might achieve. Then we will look at its release price and summarise how good its price in regards to its gaming performance. From there you can compare this laptop and get a good idea of whether this is a good value choice for your gaming needs today and into the future.
Is the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 good as a gaming laptop? Excellent
Processor - The Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz is an excellent gaming CPU for 2020. Loaded up with plenty of processor cores, this CPU has 8, which is excellent for AAA gaming that wants extra cores for processing.
Graphics Card - A GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile graphics card that is housed in this laptop is excellent for modern AAA gaming during 2020. This GPU has 8GB of VRAM. This is excellent and plenty for modern AAA gaming.
System Memory - The 32GB RAM found in this machine is considered an excellent 2020 amount for modern AAA titles and a solid gaming machine.
Screen Size - This panel, which is 17.3", is excellent for displaying 2020 AAA game details and having some nice space to showcase games on. We are often looking for a gaming laptop to have at least a 17 inch screen, to give the gaming laptop enough viewability for game details. The smaller the screen, the harder it can be to see some details on the game menus and hover over tips, that are so common in games nowadays.
Refresh Rate - Look for higher refresh rate hertz for a gaming laptop. Ideally around 120Hz or more refresh rate on a gaming laptop screen. The laptop can only deliver FPS(frames per second) up to the listed refresh rate. So if you have hardware in your laptop that can turn out awesome frame rates on all the latest AAA titles, but a 60hz refresh rate, your laptop will be stuck at a maximum of 60FPS in all games. After considering that, we can see that this laptop has an excellent 144Hz gaming laptop refresh rate. But otherwise for peace of mind, try and find a laptop panel that is more than 60Hz and that will still be ok.
Gamers looking at laptops will be needing to carefully consider the performance of the machine in relation to modern, often demanding, games. So getting the mobile graphics selected correctly is key to identifying the best price-to-performance laptop for you. We will take a look at the hardware and graphics card in this laptop in relation to how well it can deliver frame rates when running modern demanding or popular games like, Cyberpunk 2077 or Watch Dogs Legion. We will consider the laptop when it runs these games in ultra graphics settings while gaming at its native 1080p screen resolution. 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 500 games at minimum system requirements and 492 games at their recommended system requirements.
During our research for the next best gaming laptop purchase we decided to compare Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 will compare across all permutations of the Alienware Area-51M model range. This will give us a good sense of how well it sits in terms of cost to performance within its own lineup, and will better help us decide if this laptop represents good value to us today.
We review performance and allocate a P2P rating out of 10 that will adjust over time as the prices for hardware adjust. This laptop is currently given a 5.4 for P2P. This Alienware Area-51M configuration is placed at 9th position, when we order the range by their price to performance ratings. Those getting closer to the 1st position in this list will be better gaming laptops for their price.
Show Laptop Specifications
|Processor||Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz|
|Graphics Card||GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile|
|RAM||32GB DDR4 2400MHz|
17.3" 1920x1080 (1080p)
Available refresh rates: 144Hz
Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 model range price to performance comparison table
|i7-9700K RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2649.99||12%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2060 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2749.99||8%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2060 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2849.99||8%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2070 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2,949.00||6%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2899.99||4%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2999.99||1%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2070 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2999.99||1%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3099.99||1%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2||$3,499.99||0%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2060 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3199.99||1%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2070 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3199.99||2%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2070 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3299.99||2%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2060 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3149.99||2%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2060 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3249.99||2%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2,949.00||3%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2070 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3349.99||5%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3449.99||7%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3549.99||7%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2070 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3449.99||8%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2070 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3549.99||8%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3499.99||8%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2070 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3649.99||10%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3649.99||10%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3749.99||10%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2060 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3599.99||10%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2070 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3599.99||10%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2070 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3699.99||10%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3799.99||13%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3899.99||15%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3999.99||15%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2070 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$3949.99||16%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$4099.99||17%|
|i7-9700K RTX 2080 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$4149.99||17%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2070 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$4049.99||18%|
|i7-9700 RTX 2080 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$4049.99||18%|
|i9-9900 RTX 2080 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$4399.99||22%|
|i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 64GB RAM 256GB M.2||$4499.99||25%|
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 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop to that laptop we can see that it performs 207% worse on Price to Performance rating. Out of interest, the top P2P laptop currently has a recorded price of $986.99. The next best model is Acer Nitro 5 2020 R5 4600H GTX 1650 Mobile 16GB RAM 512GB M.2, which costs $858.54. Our Alienware Area-51M review laptop is 185% worse when comparing Price/Performance against the next top P2P laptop. Again this is purely a value for performance comparison, and many things go into helping us choose the right laptop for us. This is a good indicator but it's certainly then worth looking through the range for other configurations of a laptop you are interested in to find the right price point for you.
If you are wondering if this laptop is relatively well endowed in the CPU department then let's take a look at how it stacks up against the current best priced CPU focused laptop available today, to see its relative performance. The ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 R9 4900HS RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 1440p is today’s best performer in the laptop CPU department. It has a Ryzen 9 4900HS 8-Core 3.0GHz processor in it, which currently has 7% better performance than our laptop’s Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz.
A snapshot today of performance for our processor, we can currently see it beating 500 of the 500 most demanding games available right now. This is considering their recommended system requirements. For a the top 500 Minimum system specs this is 500 games.
But the real test is seeing how well the laptop CPU performs against today's popular games. Our Core i9-9900K 8-Core 3.6GHz compared against recommended processor requirements for Cyberpunk 2077 delivers 43% better performance while against Watch Dogs Legion it’s 43% better and finally compared to Assassins Creed: Valhalla it has a performance difference : 43% better.
A good comparison in terms of graphical power for our review model would be to compare it to one of the most powerful GPU focused laptop’s around today. This type of comparison can show us what another laptop, with a top end graphics hardware solution, can deliver and in turn provide us a relative point of laptop Graphics Card cost comparison. A good laptop to compare against, that is GPU focused, would be the MSI GT76 Titan i9-10900K RTX 2080 64GB RAM 2.0TB M.2 4K. This showcases one of the laptops for the current cheapest price, while still housing one of the most powerful laptop GPUs. It comes with a GeForce RTX 2080 Super 8GB graphics card slotted inside it, which can deliver 16% better performance when compared to our GPU, GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile from our review laptop.
Our laptop Graphics Card, the GeForce RTX 2080 Mobile, can currently meet the recommended system requirements of 492 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.
When compared to the most popular games around today, against their recommended graphics requirements, our laptop graphics card performs as follows - Cyberpunk 2077 our laptop video card is 59% better and then looking at Watch Dogs Legion our laptop GPU is 59% better and finally compared to Assassins Creed: Valhalla it has a performance difference : 59% better.
This Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB 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? Screen refresh rate on a 4K panel laptop will normally be 60Hz and this will cap out any game’s Frames Per Second at 60 even if it’s hardware could deliver more FPS. Along with that upset most AAA games would struggle to reach that 60 FPS at 4K Ultra graphics settings on most laptop hardware today. It’s worth noting that the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 panel is available with the following panel refresh rates 144Hz.
As a somewhat last resort a gamer could lower a game’s displayed screen resolution away from the 4K laptop’s native pixel count. Dropping down to 1080p or maybe 1440p would deliver more frames per second in game and help provide a more stable FPS in modern AAA games. But taking this action, moving away from the native 4K resolution, immediately reduces game graphics definition and makes it look blurry. Not an ideal situation on a new gaming 4K laptop. If the new 4K laptop has the performance to play modern games at 4K resolution, then perhaps the laptop’s 15 or 17 inch screen isnt enough to fully enjoy the high pixel count? So if you have or can get a desktop monitor that delivers more than the 60Hz frame rate limiter, for that gaming experience then you can keep your laptop mobile and still enjoy high end gaming.
However, you could be after watching 4K streaming content on your laptop, while on the move. Then perhaps the 17inch laptop screen and 4K resolution is going to net a more enjoyable experience than a 1080p alternative.
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.
The 1440p gaming monitor that has a great price today and should be a nice accompaniment to the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop is the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27 inch 1440p 75Hz 5ms IPS. Its current price is $294.99 and it has a 75Hz refresh rate. We like to price track our favourite laptop hardware and peripherals. And as a point of note the lowest tracked price for this 1440p monitor was recorded on 5th Aug 2020, which was priced at $272.99.
Today’s most competitive 4K gaming monitor by price is Asus Predator XB273K 27 inch 4K GSYNC IPS 1ms 144Hz and could work well with the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop. It is priced at $829.99. We have noticed that this 4K monitor has raised its price by $799 recently. And while it is a good 4K monitor even at this current price, it could probably be found for a bit cheaper. Our 4k monitor price tracker recorded and marked its lowest price on 11th Aug 2020, it reached the lower price of $797.05.
[Note - check that monitor display connectors are compatible between a monitor and a laptop before purchase]
So why would you get a 4K capable laptop? If you enjoy movies or Netflix at 4K and have access to 4K content via those types of services then perhaps the quality of 4K resolution on a 17inch panel would be a great experience, but we still think you wouldn't miss that 4K.
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.
A mouse that is well priced at the moment and could accompany the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop is the Kayinuo M738 Gaming Mouse 3200DPI wired 6 Buttons. Of the mice we price track, it is one of the best valued mice today and currently priced at $11.99. We have seen this mouse lower its price during these past couple of weeks by $19, which is part of the reason we are considering it as a good option for 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|
|*||Kayinuo M738 Gaming Mouse 3200DPI wired 6 Buttons||$11.99|
|**||PICTEK Gaming Mouse 7200DPI wired 7 Buttons||$16.99|
|**||Redragon M711 Cobra||$19.99|
|***||Cooler Master MM710||$44.99|
|***||Logitech G502 SE Hero||$55.99|
If you are looking for a good value headset to go with your Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900K RTX 2080 Mobile 32GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop, then the HyperX Cloud Stinger is our favourite today, of those we are price tracking. Currently it’s priced at $47.14. Checking our records our lowest tracked price for this headset was on 12th Mar 2020 which had it priced at $25.98.