Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 review, including today's price to performance
Laptop product code: Alienware M17 R3
Laptop announced date: 1st May 2020
Last reviewed: 10th August 2021
Its not easy trying to find out how well today’s laptops compare against other mobile gaming solutions. This review will take a look at the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 and compare it against today's current demanding games. We will also be working out how its release price relates to the performance of the laptop, to give us a guide on how well the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 hardware compares to other laptops available today.
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Gaming Laptop Analysis
Is the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 good as a gaming laptop? Excellent
Processor - The processor we find in this laptop can meet modern AAA game requirements with ease, making it an excellent 2021 laptop gaming choice for CPU. 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 - This graphics card is considered an excellent 2021 choice for modern AAA games. Loaded up with a huge amount of VRAM, this GPU has 8GB, which makes it excellent for AAA gaming.
System Memory - Our review laptop here has an excellent quantity of RAM for 2021 AAA games. The 32GB of RAM will meet the game requirements of the foreseeable future as well.
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 - I personally wouldnt consider getting a gaming laptop with a screen panel that had a refresh rate of 60Hz. The refresh rate number is the number of times an image can be displayed to the screen by the laptop's own screen. So if I had paid more money for a good graphics card and CPU and RAM then even though the hardware might be able to get 150FPS on Ultra settings in the latest games, the laptop screen would only display 60FPS. The more FPS capable of being displayed to screen the smoother and sharper the response of the game you are playing. An ideal minimum refresh rate amount would be around 144Hz for a great gaming laptop, but you can certainly get some with even higher refresh rates than that. The top refresh rate for this laptop is 300Hz which is excellent for gaming. Get a panel with over 60Hz refresh rate would certainly be suitable for gaming.
GeForce RTX 2080 Super Mobile graphics card gaming performance in the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop
Getting the right graphics card for this mobile gaming machine will be one of our key focuses. As we know it can be tricky to break this down, but we will be looking at how this laptop hardware can run across demanding and popular modern games and therefore how well the price of the machine stacks up against other gaming laptops. A few of the modern demanding or popular games we will be looking at will be, Far Cry 6, New World and Battlefield 2042. Seeing how these games run on the laptops native 1080p resolution at ultra will certainly give us something tangible to consider and compare from. A first point of reference is seeing how many the mobile gpu, a GeForce RTX 2080 Super Mobile found in this laptop, can run of today's 500 most demanding games. In particular it would seem that it can currently run 491 at recommended graphics requirements and then 500 games at their min specs.
Far Cry 6 FPS Low to Ultra 1080p Graphics Settings Results GraphPremium Feature
Laptop Research Area
Other Popular Games
Comparing Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 to today’s best price to performance laptop ranges
Now let us compare the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB 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 $3329.99 of the laptop with regards to its key hardware capability in running modern games performance delivered by this laptop’s hardware.
With a P2P rating of 5.5 today the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2. Our value to performance rating score will auto adjust as new hardware capability improves and prices drop. Here we look at how our version of this Alienware M17 R3 laptop compares against the other laptops in the range. This laptop is currently 14th in this range for hardware value. Laptops closer to the 1st position of the model range represent the better gaming performance bang for your buck.
Show Laptop Specifications
|Processor||Core i9-10980HK 8-Core 2.40GHz|
|Graphics Card||GeForce RTX 2080 Super Mobile|
|RAM||32GB DDR4 2666MHz|
17.3 " 1920x1080 (1080p)
Available refresh rates: 300Hz
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 M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop to that laptop we can see that it performs 197% worse on Price to Performance rating. Out of interest, the top P2P laptop currently has a recorded price of $999. The next best model is MSI Bravo 15 R7 4800H RX 5500M 16GB RAM 512GB M.2, which costs $1049. Our Alienware M17 R3 review laptop is 159% 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.
How does the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop compare to the best CPU performance focused laptops and today’s most popular games?
Now we will see if our laptop compares favourably against the top CPU performance focused mobile PC that is currently available. 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 i9-10980HK 8-Core 2.40GHz processor. Our performance comparison shows the top end laptop CPU to be 23% better in performance compared to our laptop’s processor.
Our laptop CPU beats 474 games recommended system requirements when looking at today’s top 500 most demanding games. This number changes to 500 games if we compare to the top 500 most demanding games for minimum system requirements.
When compared to the most popular games around today, against their recommended processor requirements, our laptop CPU performs as follows - Far Cry 6 our laptop CPU is 17% better and then looking at New World our laptop CPU is 46% better and finally compared to Battlefield 2042 it has a performance difference : 35% better.
How does the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop compare to the best graphics card performance focused laptops and today’s most popular games?
Shall we see if our review laptop holds out favourably against a top GPU performance focused laptop PC that is currently available. 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 11% better performance when stacked against our own review laptop’s GeForce RTX 2080 Super Mobile.
Today there are 491 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 500 games, when we look at the 500 demanding games for minimum Graphics Card system requirements.
When compared to the most popular games around today, against their recommended graphics requirements, our laptop graphics card performs as follows - Far Cry 6 our laptop video card is 15% better and then looking at New World our laptop GPU is 87% better and finally compared to Battlefield 2042 it has a performance difference : 1% better.
The Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 has a 1080p screen resolution, should I get a 4K resolution gaming laptop instead?
This laptop has a 17.3" physical screen size with a native resolution of 1920x1080. So should you instead be thinking of picking up a 4K monitor rather than this Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2’s 1080p panel? Today’s 4K laptops normally have a 60Hz screen refresh rate which would mean that should the laptop’s hardware be capable of running a 4K game, it would be restricted to a cap of 60 frames per second. As game system requirements continue to push for more powerful hardware, the components in a laptop, and many desktops as well, are simply not capable of delivering playable frame rates at Ultra graphics settings and a 4K resolution. You can find the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 panel with 300Hz refresh rate variants.
It would be more likely that we would have to lower the AAA game resolution to 1080p or maybe 1440p and by doing so get back some of the FPS to a playable level. But by doing this the game moves away from its native 4K resolution and starts to look unclear. 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
A well priced 1440p gaming monitor today is the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV 27 inch 1440p 75Hz 5ms IPS. With its 75Hz refresh rate and a current price of $311.99 it should go nicely with this Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop. 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
If you wanted to pick up a 4K desktop monitor to go alongside this laptop then the Asus Predator XB273K 27 inch 4K GSYNC IPS 1ms 144Hz looks well priced right now. At $618 it also has a 144Hz refresh rate. We have noticed that this 4K monitor has raised its price by $618 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 13th Nov 2020, it reached the lower price of $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?
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.
Today's Best Priced Mouse and Headset for Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop
A well priced gaming mouse at the moment, that will go nicely with the Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2, is the Kayinuo M738 Gaming Mouse 3200DPI wired 6 Buttons. Today it is priced at $12.99. 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. Another point of interest was that we saw this mouse priced at $11.99, which we tracked on 15th Aug 2020.
|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|
If you are looking for a good value headset to go with your Dell Alienware M17 R3 i9-10980HK RTX 2080 Super Mobile 32GB RAM 1.0TB M.2 laptop, then the Corsair HS45-7.1 Surround is our favourite today, of those we are price tracking. Currently it’s priced at $36.99. Checking our records our lowest tracked price for this headset was on 28th Nov 2019 which had it priced at $34.99.