Laptop announced date: 1st March 2019
Last reviewed: 15th July 2020
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 M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB 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 M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop to return across the more demanding games of today.
Is the Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 good as a gaming laptop? Excellent
Processor - This laptop has an excellent processor in it for meeting modern AAA CPU requirements during 2020 gaming. This CPU comes with 6 cores, which is excellent providing it extra resource to chew through game processing when required.
Graphics Card - This laptop graphics solution can chew through modern AAA titles and is an excellent laptop gaming choice of GPU. 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 - This system memory, 32GB, is excellent for meeting 2020 AAA game requirements.
Screen Size - Our review laptop has a 15.6" panel. We certainly feel this is a good gaming laptop size in 2020 and gives a happy balance between portability and physical gaming viewability. When laptops get much smaller, it makes it harder to see in-game menus and some of the game huds can take up a lot of the screen area, leaving less space for you to see main game playing areas on physically smaller screens. Exploring for a suitable gaming laptop, we look at 17 inches for the better viewing size, 15 inches is always a good size if portability is more your focus, but in our minds we want the largest screen size while still being portable, so we can more clearly see the games.
Refresh Rate - If you want a gaming laptop then aim for a refresh rate that is more than 60Hz. If you don't clearly see the advertised laptops screen refresh rate then assume it is 60Hz. This would mean that the laptop will be capped at 60FPS when running games. The higher the refresh rate and the FPS then the smoother the game plays as it delivers more images a second to your screen and makes movement feel more responsive in game. After considering that, we can see that this laptop has an excellent 240Hz 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.
One of the most important components to a gamer for this laptop is getting it’s graphics card right. We will be taking a look at the sort of price to performance ratio the laptop hardware has and in particular help us know if how well the graphics card can run Cyberpunk 2077 at 1080p ultra settings. A good way of considering performance of this mobile graphics card is by seeing how many of today's 500 most demanding games can be run at recommended graphics settings by the GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q found in this laptop. We can also then look at the weaker minimum requirement to see how many this laptop card can run of them, and it is 493 games at their min specs and then 384 games can be run at recommended graphics requirements.
During our research for the next best gaming laptop purchase we decided to compare Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 will compare across all permutations of the Alienware M15 R1 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.
Our price and performance review leads us to allocate all laptops a P2P rating out of 10, which is relative to all laptops for comparison purposes and gets adjusted over time as the prices for hardware adjust and new more capable hardware is created. This laptop is currently given a 8.2 for P2P out of 10. There look to be a number of Alienware M15 R1 versions of this laptop and currently this hardware configuration sits at 1st in the Price to Performance order. Obviously scoring towards the 1st position represents the better value laptop from a purely gaming performance and price tag perspective.
Show Laptop Specifications
|Processor||Core i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz|
|Graphics Card||GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q|
|RAM||32GB DDR4 2666MHz|
15.6" 1920x1080 (1080p)
Available refresh rates: 240Hz
Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 model range price to performance comparison table
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$1899.99||0%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$1,849.00||2%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 4K||$2099.99||15%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 4K||$2299.99||22%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 8GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2099.99||46%|
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 M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop to that laptop we can see that it performs 101% 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 M15 R1 review laptop is 87% 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.
To get a good comparison when considering how well this laptop performs in terms of processing power, we will compare it to today’s most powerful CPU focused laptop. This will at least show us what other sorts of processor-centric laptops exist and give us a relative point of laptop processor cost comparison. So the laptop we have chosen for its CPU performance is the ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 R9 4900HS RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 1440p, which comes with a Ryzen 9 4900HS 8-Core 3.0GHz processor. That processor performs 43% better compared to our review laptop’s Core i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz.
Our laptop processor, the Core i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz, can currently meet the recommended system requirements of 466 games when compared against the top 500 most demanding games right now. This number changes to 499 for the top 500 most demanding minimum system requirements.
Let's take a look and see how well our Core i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz compares against today’s most popular games. Against the recommended CPU specs for Cyberpunk 2077 our laptop is 24% better, and compared to Watch Dogs Legion it is 24% better , where as against Assassins Creed: Valhalla it delivers 24% better performance.
We may well be looking for a GPU centric laptop, and if that’s the case then let's see how this Alienware M15 R1 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 64GB RAM 2.0TB M.2 4K, and comes packing a GeForce RTX 2080 Super 8GB video card. That graphics card performs 53% better when compared to our review laptop’s GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q.
Today’s performance comparison for all games shows our laptop GPU can currently meet or beat 384 game’s recommended system requirements when we put the 500 most demanding games into a list. With a list of 500 Minimum system specs put ina similar most demanding order this changes to it being able to run 493 games.
Lets take a look and see how well our GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q compares against today’s most popular games. Against the recommended graphics specs for Cyberpunk 2077 our laptop is 20% better, and compared to Watch Dogs Legion it is 20% better , where as against Assassins Creed: Valhalla it delivers 20% better performance.
With 4K monitors being ever present and often talked about in the same breath as the term ‘future proof’, its always worth exploring the idea that you should be looking at 4K instead of this 1080p laptop. Our Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2’s physical 15.6" panel delivers 1920 pixels across its width and 1080 pixels tall. 4K laptops have a 60Hz screen refresh rate normally, that means a game would not be able to run at more than 60 frames per second even if the hardware could deliver more. While 60FPS would provide acceptable stability, a lot of gamers would prefer higher FPS than this. However, thats not the only issue here. Modern AAA game system requirements would need more powerful gaming hardware than is normally found in laptops, to play reliably at 4K Ultra graphics settings, even at 60FPS. The Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop’s monitor can be picked up with 240Hz refresh rate versions.
Dropping a game’s screen resolution down below the native 4K resolution to 1080p or 1440p, would possibly deliver the much needed FPS for stable modern AAA gaming. Down scaling that native resolution comes at a price, though. As soon as you step away from the native resolution of any monitor/ panel it lowers the clean definition of a game as the physical number of screen pixels don't match those being sent by the game. The game starts to look blurry. And if your laptop does have the power to run some of the modern games in 4K Ultra, you are likely to want to enjoy them on a larger than 17inch laptop panel. So at a later point perhaps buy a dedicated monitor for your desk that isnt 60Hz restricted, for those games, thus keeping your laptop for mobility.
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.
Today’s best priced 1440p gaming monitor, to work nicely with our Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2, would be the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27 inch 1440p 75Hz 5ms IPS, which is priced at $294.99 and has a refresh rate of 75Hz. 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.
Perhaps you could grab something like the Asus Predator XB273K 27 inch 4K GSYNC IPS 1ms 144Hz 4K gaming monitor we have spotted today. It is our current best priced 4K monitor at $829.99 with a 144Hz refresh rate. This 4K monitor, during these past couple of weeks, has increased its price by $799. It’s still a solid purchase to accompany this laptop but it means you may find it for even cheaper at the moment, if you look around. Helping us to round out our information for this 4k monitor we can see it reached a low price on 11th Aug 2020, we noted the low price at $797.05.
[Note - check that monitor display connectors are compatible between a monitor and a laptop before purchase]
If you are looking to view 4K streaming content, while keeping yourself mobile with your laptop, then maybe a 4K resolution panel would be a better experience than the normal 1080p. In general, we think it's probably not worth the extra money for any visual gains you might not spot, without a direct comparison, especially if you are thinking to game on your laptop as well.
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.
The gaming mouse with today’s best price to value that would go well with the Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop is the Kayinuo M738 Gaming Mouse 3200DPI wired 6 Buttons. Its current price is $11.99. Price watching this mouse shows that it has had a price drop by $19 during the past couple of weeks, which gives us more reason to select it to go with today’s laptop. To give some extra insight into this mouse, we had it price tracked on 15th Aug 2020, where it was at its lowest price of $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|
You could pick up a headset to go with the Dell Alienware M15 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2. In our spotlight at the moment is the HyperX Cloud Stinger, which today is $47.14. Out of interest our lowest price tracked on this headset was on 12th Mar 2020 where we saw it for $25.98.