Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 review, including today's price to performance
Laptop announced date: 1st February 2019
Last reviewed: 10th August 2021
Today's review of the gaming Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop explores the performance to value relationship of its hardware components. We will be comparing some of the most demanding games to see some expected frame rates for the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop and understand the type of price to performance on offer.
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Gaming Laptop Analysis
Is the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 good as a gaming laptop? Good
Processor - This laptop processor can run modern AAA titles with little problem and is an excellent laptop CPU gaming choice for 2023. The 8 cores that this processor has is excellent and very capable for today and future AAA gaming.
Graphics Card - Our laptop’s GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile card is considered good for modern 2023 AAA gaming. This GPU has 6GB VRAM, which is a good amount for AAA gaming but you could find other modern GPU’s that provide more.
System Memory - An excellent amount of system memory, the 16GB is capable of running AAA titles during the 2023 gaming year and we would expect beyond that as well.
Screen Size - We were looking for 17 inch panels as the gaming standard for top tier gaming laptops. You can certainly game on smaller laptops but we have found that often the extra physical space helps provide 2023 games with the chance to read and make out in game menus and details that smaller panels can struggle to display clearly. So this 17.3" panel is an excellent gaming laptop choice for screen size.
Refresh Rate - If you want your gaming laptop to push past 60FPS, then make sure your laptop display panel has a higher refresh rate than 60Hz. Not all laptop manufacturers clearly state the screen refresh rate. If it is not clear, assume it is 60Hz. The laptop only turn out FPS (frames per second) as high as its screens refresh rate. 60hz refresh rate gets a max of 60FPS in all games, regardless of the hardware’s power in your laptop. If you were to get the 144Hz laptop screen option that we see this is available with then this would be an excellent refresh rate gaming laptop choice.
GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile graphics card gaming performance in the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop
Getting a good price to performance gaming laptop is what we are all trying to do when looking for our next mobile machine. The key component in this is usually the graphics card. So we will of course be considering this hardware setup and how well it could run modern popular games like Grand Theft Auto VI, Star Citizen and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022) to help us know if this graphics card and laptop is a good price to performance point. We do this by considering the gaming frame rates achieved at its native 1080p resolution while the games would be running at Ultra video settings. This laptop has the GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile in it. Of the 500 most demanding games around today this graphics card is capable of running 490 games at minimum system requirements and 273 games at their recommended system requirements.
Grand Theft Auto VI FPS Low to Ultra 1080p Graphics Settings Results GraphPremium Feature
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Other Popular Games
Comparing Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 to today’s best price to performance laptop ranges
When we factor in all variations of hardware and prices that the Alienware Area-51M laptop comes with, it gets very difficult to understand what value each permutation of this laptop will offer. To help us compare laptops based on their direct gaming value and capabilities, we defined a price to performance rating and allocated it to every laptop we review. Because as you have no doubt discovered during your research, it is very difficult to compare laptops for value against all other laptops. Even within their own model range. As soon as you adjust a single component and the laptop price shifts, what has that done to the gaming value of your laptop and is it still ok value for money? So we use a P2P rating to standardise the way we can look at all laptops. Of course laptops have tonnes of other values that are breathed into them when they are designed and they are not just about price to performance. But this is certainly a good way for us to help see the bigger picture, especially for a gaming laptop.
The Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 gaming laptop is currently getting a 5.6 on our P2P rating out of 10. Higher is better and this figure will adjust as new hardware and prices shift over time Looking at how this configuration of the Alienware Area-51M laptop compares against other laptops within its range we can see it currently is placed at the 5th spot. Those laptops that are closer to the top 1st place of the model range are considered better gaming laptops regarding performance and laptop price.
Show Laptop Specifications
|Processor||Core i9-9900 8-Core 3.1GHz|
|Graphics Card||GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile|
|RAM||16GB DDR4 2400MHz|
17.3 " 1920x1080 (1080p)
Available refresh rates: 144Hz
Our Alienware Area-51M laptop should also be compared to today’s best Price to Performance model, the ASUS TUF A15 R7 4800H GTX 1660 Ti 16GB RAM 512GB M.2. When stacked up against this, our laptop has 193% worse rating difference on its P2P. It's worth noting that the very best P2P model has a recorded price of $999 to consider and of course this is purely a value for performance basis. Again only comparing against Price to Performance we can see that the second best model in today’s P2P ranking list is the MSI Bravo 15 R7 4800H RX 5500M 16GB RAM 512GB M.2 laptop, and our laptop is 156% worse when compared against this price to performance rating. The price of the 2nd best laptop is listed as $1049.
How does the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 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. This top tier processor focused laptop is currently the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 R9 4900HS RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 1.0TB M.2. With a Ryzen 9 4900HS 8-Core 3.0GHz CPU in it that performs 10% better compared to our laptop’s Core i9-9900 8-Core 3.1GHz.
A snapshot today of performance for our processor, we can currently see it beating 493 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.
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 i9-9900 8-Core 3.1GHz against Grand Theft Auto VI. This CPU performance comparison saw our laptop deliver 26% better performance against the game’s recommended CPU system requirements. Then we have Star Citizen and our laptop was 13% better in processor performance and another popular title today is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022) which we saw our review laptop get 25% better compared to our laptop cpu.
How does the Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop compare to the best graphics card performance focused laptops and today’s most popular games?
Wondering how strong this laptop is in the GPU department, then let's have a look at it compared to one of the current best GPU performing laptops available today and this should show us the relative graphics performance of our review model. Our comparison GPU focused laptop today that we have selected is a MSI GT76 Titan i9-10900K RTX 2080 Super 64GB RAM 2.0TB M.2 4K, which comes loaded with the GeForce RTX 2080 Super 8GB card. This top end GPU is currently delivering 59% better performance when stacked against our own review laptop’s GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile.
Today there are 273 games recommended system requirements that are worse than our GPU’s performance capability, this is when we look at the top 500 most demanding games right now. This figure becomes 490 games, when we look at the 500 demanding games for minimum Graphics Card 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 GPU GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile against Grand Theft Auto VI. This video card performance comparison saw our laptop deliver 18% worse performance against the game’s recommended GPU system requirements. Then we have Star Citizen and our laptop was 31% better in graphics performance and another popular title today is Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022) which we saw our review laptop get 18% worse compared to our laptop gpu.
The Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 has a 1080p screen resolution, should I get a 4K resolution gaming laptop instead?
With a 1080p native screen panel our Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 has a 17.3" physical screen size. This inch panel size is measured starting in one corner, say the top corner and then across the middle of the screen down to the bottom corner on the other side. And in our case it has a fixed number of pixels in that screen that are 1920 pixels wide by 1080 pixels tall, or 1080p resolution. We normally see a 60Hz screen refresh rate accompanying most 4K laptop panels. Which means a game would reach a top 60 FPS before it maxed out, even if the laptop’s hardware was powerful enough to deliver frame rates that were better than that. Today’s AAA games are usually too demanding for a 4K resolution anyway. This review laptop has 144Hz refresh rate versions available.
So a quick lowering of a AAA game’s screen resolution, from a native 4K laptop panel down to either 1080p or perhaps 1440p would increase the frame rate. And thus improve the stability of your gameplay. But a laptop display panel has a fixed number of pixels. Moving away from that exact number of pixels in a game lowers the definition quality of the graphics in the game. Making the experience sub par and if you do this often, then this seriously puts into question your choice for a 4K gaming laptop. The laptop has got 4K capable hardware? Well when you are not on the move, plug the laptop into a 144Hz or better desktop monitor that’s 28inches and comes with a 1440p or 4K resolution to enjoy modern gaming without FPS or size limits.
4K streaming could be a viable reason to consider 4K over 1080p laptop panels.
As you can probably gather from the information above, its 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 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 i9-9900 RTX 2060 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. To help provide some further information into this desktop monitor price trends we saw it cost a recorded low of $229.99, which we tracked on 9th Mar 2021.
Today’s best 4K desktop monitor for a laptop is - Asus Predator XB273K 27 inch 4K GSYNC IPS 1ms 144Hz
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 i9-9900 RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop. It is priced at $618. Providing some more insight, this 4K Monitor has increased its price by $618 during these past two weeks. So keep your eyes out as it could be cheaper than we have recorded here today. Interestingly we spotted this 4k monitor at its lowest recorded price on 13th Nov 2020, where it was priced up as $549.99.
[Note - check that monitor display connectors are compatible between a monitor and a laptop before purchase]
Possibly a suitable purpose for a 4K laptop would be if you were keen to watch 4K streaming services like Netflix. At which point perhaps it's enough of a selling point for you to consider a 4K laptop?
Perhaps in the future the 4K gaming laptop would make sense but for now certainly move forward on the 1080p laptop over the 4K options. This way your new laptop remains, well mobile and built for purpose. Picking up a 4K laptop for gaming should be a great choice but at the moment you would sadly be turning down the display quality by dropping resolution or game settings to get the game to deliver more FPS, and even then the 4K panel will likely be capped at 60FPS due to the hertz refresh rate it often comes with.
Today's Best Priced Mouse and Headset for Dell Alienware Area-51M i9-9900 RTX 2060 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. Price watching this mouse shows that it has had a price drop by $32.26 during the past couple of weeks, which gives us more reason to select it to go with today’s laptop. Our mice price tracker had this mouse marked at its lowest price on 15th Aug 2020, where it cost $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|
Of the headset we monitor and price track, today’s top headset is the Corsair HS45-7.1 Surround, priced at $36.99. For reference, our lowest tracked price for this headset was on 28th Nov 2019 and it was priced at $34.99.