Laptop announced date: 1st January 2019
Last reviewed: 20th July 2020
If you are looking to buy a new gaming laptop and want to know how well the Dell Alienware M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 compares to other laptops on offer then you have come to the right place. Today we are going to explore the type of performance return we can expect from this mobile gaming solution by comparing it to today’s demanding games
Is the Dell Alienware M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 good as a gaming laptop? Good
Processor - Modern AAA 2020 gaming with the Core i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz processor is no problem. As it meets game requirements of today it will likely hold its own against future release titles as well, this is an excellent CPU for a gaming laptop. This laptop CPU has 6 cores. This is excellent for modern AAA gaming as the games start to require more cores for simultaneous activities.
Graphics Card - A good graphics card for gamers, capable of running titles during this 2020 gaming year. AAA games will use a fair amount of VRAM that is on the laptop graphics cards. This laptop GPU has 6GB of VRAM, which isnt the most amount of VRAM but it is still good enough for modern gaming.
System Memory - This laptop’s 16GB RAM can deal with everything modern games can throw at it and is a good step towards this being an excellent gaming laptop choice.
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 - If you are focused on a gaming laptop then ideally you want a refresh rate of 120Hz or 144Hz or more. A lot of laptops come with 60Hz and this will stop your games being able to run in more than 60 Frames per second. Even if you hardware is capable of far more frames per second. Ok, after considering those thoughts on refresh rates, we have 60Hz refresh rate in the review laptop here. This isn’t great but would be mostly ok for gaming. That is unless you felt like this laptop could achieve higher FPS than the refresh rate offered here. In this case, and providing your budget allowed, look for a better refresh rate screen.
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 Cyberpunk 2077, Watch Dogs Legion and Assassins Creed: Valhalla 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. Lets compare the GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile found in this laptop to today’s top 500 most demanding games. Of those games, this laptops GPU can run 493 at their minimum system requirements and then 364 games when looking at their recommended system specs.
Now let us compare the Dell Alienware M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop to other gaming laptops, with regards to the performance ability it delivers and when considering the price of the laptop. Obviously there are many things that go into a quality laptop build, but at this point we want a standardised system to compare across laptops just on that criteria. It will consider $ of the laptop with regards to its key hardware capability in running modern games performance delivered by this laptop’s hardware.
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 8.8 for P2P. This version of the Alienware M17 R1 laptop is currently positioned at 1st 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 i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz|
|Graphics Card||GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile|
|RAM||16GB DDR4 2666MHz|
17.3" 1920x1080 (1080p)
Available refresh rates: 60Hz
Dell Alienware M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 model range price to performance comparison table
|i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$1579.99||0%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$1779.99||8%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 16GB RAM 256GB M.2||$1879.99||18%|
|i7-9750H RTX 2070 Max-Q 32GB RAM 256GB M.2||$2079.99||25%|
Our Alienware M17 R1 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 77% worse rating difference on its P2P. It's worth noting that the very best P2P model has a recorded price of $986.99 to consider and of course this is purely a value for performance basis. Right, now let's look at one more of the top placed Price to Performance models today. Comparing our Alienware M17 R1 laptop against the Acer Nitro 5 2020 R5 4600H GTX 1650 Mobile 16GB RAM 512GB M.2 shows us that our laptop gets 64% worse rating against it for price to performance. The other laptop does currently have a listed price of $858.54 to consider.
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. 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’s CPU can currently run 466 of today’s top 500 demanding games meeting their recommended processor requirements. This figure is 499 for the top 500 minimum requirement games that can be run by the Core i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz.
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 i7-9750H 6-Core 2.6GHz against Cyberpunk 2077. This CPU performance comparison saw our laptop deliver 24% better performance against the game’s recommended CPU system requirements. Then we have Watch Dogs Legion and our laptop was 24% better in processor performance and another popular title today is Assassins Creed: Valhalla which we saw our review laptop get 24% better compared to our laptop cpu.
Shall we see if our review laptop holds out favourably against a top GPU performance focused laptop PC that is currently available. 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 59% better when compared to our review laptop’s GeForce RTX 2060 Mobile.
Today there are 364 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 493 games, when we look at the 500 demanding games for minimum Graphics Card system requirements.
A game’s listed recommended GPU requirements are a good way to compare the performance of our laptop graphics card. Lets see today's popular titles up against our laptop graphics. First off let's look at Watch Dogs Legion which shows our laptop video card has 16% better performance than it. How about Assassins Creed: Valhalla, where we see our GPU is 16% better. Then there is 16% better performance when compared against today’s most popular title, Cyberpunk 2077.
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 M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2’s physical 17.3" panel delivers 1920 pixels across its width and 1080 pixels tall. A 4K panel laptop is often restricted to 60Hz. This means that even if you did have the hardware inside your laptop to run a game at 4K, you wouldnt be able to get more than 60 FPS. Most laptop hardware, and desktop hardware for that matter, is not capable of 4K ultra graphics on modern games. You can find the Dell Alienware M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 panel with 60Hz 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? 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.
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.
We think don't spend your extra cash on getting a 4K laptop to game on, as it's likely to feel disappointing to buy a super shiny new 4K laptop, then have to lower the resolution while playing your games, delivering a blurry in-game experience, and only getting up to a maximum 60FPS due to the usual 60Hz 4K panel restriction.
An example of a well priced 1440p desktop monitor would be the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27 inch 1440p 75Hz 5ms IPS, which has 75Hz and is currently available for $294.99. Our cheapest tracked price for the desktop 1440p monitor was $272.99, which we recorded on 5th Aug 2020.
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 M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2 laptop. It is priced at $829.99. 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 $799, 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 $797.05, which we recorded on 11th Aug 2020.
[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.
We still feel it's not the time to spend extra cash for the 4K gaming laptop due to the limitations laid out above. It would surely feel somewhat disappointing to boot up your new 4K laptop, only to then realise you have to drop down the resolution on modern titles to get them to run smoothly. And then see that anything you play is somewhat less sharp than you have seen on your older PC and capped at a maximum of 60FPS due to the usual 60Hz 4K screen tech.
You could pick up a mouse to go with the Dell Alienware M17 R1 i7-9750H RTX 2060 Mobile 16GB RAM 256GB M.2. In our spotlight at the moment is the Kayinuo M738 Gaming Mouse 3200DPI wired 6 Buttons, which today is $11.99. Another interesting point about this mouse is that as we price track it we can see it has dropped in price by $19 during these past two weeks. Another point of reference for this mouse, is that our lowest recorded price for this mouse was on 15th Aug 2020 where it was costing $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|
We price track a number of good value gaming headset and the one that currently stands out is the HyperX Cloud Stinger, which is currently available for $47.14. For reference, the lowest price recorded by us so far for the headset is $25.98 on 12th Mar 2020.