Alienware Area 51-M vs Alienware M15

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by Spartan, Mar 1, 2019.

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Alienware Area51-M vs Alienware M15

  1. Alienware Area 51-M

    36 vote(s)
    81.8%
  2. Alienware M15

    8 vote(s)
    18.2%
  1. Spartan

    Spartan Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    So I'm in a bit of a dilemma here. I wanted to replace my GT75 Titan 8RG with an Alienware Area 51-M with the i9-9900K but then today I was at the mall and I saw the Alienware M15 in person and man what a machine. Looked very sexy with its sturdy yet sleek design and I loved the fact that it's much portable than these desktop replacement laptops whilst still offering decent gaming performance.

    You see, the other day I wanted to go to my friend's place to watch a movie and I took my GT75 Titan but it was too heavy and cumbersome to pack 2 power bricks in addition to this gigantic laptop and that made me think, do I really need this big of a machine?

    So here are my positives and negatives about each laptop and would appreciate your input:
    ====================================================
    Alienware M15:

    + Portability
    + sleek design
    + 8 hour battery life with the 90 WHr battery option which I configured
    + 1 power brick needed
    + Supports 2666 MHz. RAM
    - only an RTX 2080 Max-Q vs the bigger brother's full RTX 2080
    - From the benchmarks I've seen, the FPS in games is only around 100 FPS so I won't be able to enjoy the 144hz refresh rate to the max during gaming (correct me if I'm wrong)
    - Processor is just ok, nothing mind blowing (8750H)
    - I am reading in reviews that even with Liquid Metal, the laptop overheats and thermal throttles, is that true? Now I will order this from HIDevolution with Thermal Grizzly Conductonaut + Fujipoly Extreme Thermal pads but I'm not sure how much that will help
    ====================================================
    Alienware Area 51-M:

    + bigger screen
    + bigger keyboard
    + Better CPU options
    + Better GPU
    - The laptop can barely keep the 9900K even with liquid metal (MAJOR concern as I don't want to be paying so much money to buy something which doesn't run as advertised(
    - 2 gigantic power bricks
    - big and heavy, not ideal for going out to coffee shops and whatnot with it [​IMG]
    - Even with the 2666 MHz. RAM that it ships with, the RAM only runs @ 2400 MHz. like seriously what the heck DELL? :rolleyes:
    - Battery life suks big time, not complaining, I know that since it's a desktop replacement but just pointing out
    =====================================================================
    so what do you guys think? Please don't suggest other models as I'd like to get a DELL due to being able to transfer the warranty here locally in Dubai

    Custom Built Alienware Area-51M - 17.3" FHD 144Hz G-SYNC Tobii - i9-9900K - RTX 2080 - White
    Chassis Color

    White - Lunar Light
    Free Game Bundles
    GET BOTH Anthem + Battlefield V for laptops with RTX 2080, GET YOUR CHOICE of Anthem OR Battlefield V for laptops with RTX 2060 or 2070
    Processor
    Silicon Lottery Binned, Delidded Intel 9th Gen Core i9-9900K 8 Core, 16 Thread, 16MB Cache, Processor, 3.6 - 5.0 GHz (Rated to 5.1GHz) - installed by HIDevolution - $655.00
    Video Card
    NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX 2080 w/ 8GB GDDR6
    Thermal Interface Materials
    Thermal Grizzly Conductonaut between Intel CPU Die and IHS + GPU, Gelid GC Extreme between IHS + Heat Sink, and Fujipoly Extreme Thermal Pads on heat sensitive surfaces - installed by HIDevolution (ONLY SELECT THIS OPTION IF DELIDDED CPU IS CHOSEN)
    Alienware Graphics Amplifier
    Alienware Graphics Amplifier - $200.00
    LCD Panel
    17.3" FHD (1920 x 1080) 144Hz Anti-Glare IPS Display w/ NVIDIA G-SYNC + Tobii eyetracking technology
    Minimize LCD Backlight Bleed
    Yes, quality check and give me a panel with minimal backlight bleed. - $100.00
    Display Warranty
    2 Year Zero Defective Pixel Warranty (perfect panel guarantee) - $135.00
    System Memory (RAM)
    HIDevolution Approved Standard 128GB Dual Channel DDR4/2666MHz (4 x 32GB) - Operates at 2400MHz - installed by HIDevolution - $1,420.00
    RAID Options
    RAID 0 (striping) - Must select 2x identical drives in M.2 SSD Slots 1 and 2
    M.2 PCIe / SATA Slot 1
    Samsung 970 EVO 2TB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe 3D-VNAND SSD - Up to 3,500 MB/s Read-2,500 MB/s Write - Installed by HIDevolution - $720.00
    M.2 PCIe / SATA Slot 2
    Samsung 970 EVO 2TB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe 3D-VNAND SSD - Up to 3,500 MB/s Read-2,500 MB/s Write - Installed by HIDevolution - $720.00
    2.5" Drive Bay
    2TB Seagate FireCuda Gaming 7mm SSHD (ST2000LX001) - installed by HIDevolution - $90.00
    Keyboard
    Alienware TactX keyboard with per-key RGB LED AlienFX lighting, anti-ghosting, N-Key US Eng
    Wireless Cards
    Intel® Wireless-AC 9260 802.11 ac/a/b/g/n 2x2 NGFF w/ Bluetooth 5.0 - $30.00
    Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro, 64bit, English, with Multi Language Support - $60.00
    Operating System Clean Install
    None
    Recovery Media (returns system back to factory state)
    Recovery USB Flash Drive - $25.00
    Office Software
    None
    Power Adapter
    180W + 330W (510W Total) AC Power Adapters (support 100-240V)
    Extra Power Adapter
    330 Watt 3 Prong AC Adapter with 6 ft Power Cord (will work worldwide, includes FREE plug adapter for those without "U.S. style" outlets) - $175.00
    Internal Battery
    Lithium Ion (90 Wh) Battery
    Alternate Language Keyboard Laser Engraving - $179.00
    Arabic 101
    Alternate Language Keyboard Photo Upload
    KA-U.A.E.-20871.jpg 800 x 305 px.
    Warranty and Service
    4 Years Premium Support + 4 Year HIDevolution US Warranty + LIFETIME HIDevolution Technical Support - $549.00
    Accidental Damage Protection
    4 Year Accidental Damage Service - $229.00
    HIDevolution International Pre-paid Shipping (HIPS) Service
    None
    Carrying Case
    Alienware Area-51m Elite - Laptop carrying backpack - 17.3-inch - black, dark gray - $120.00
    AW-A51M-ANSER7CR0011H-9900K-2080-144-W 1 $8,631.70
    Subtotal $8,631.70
    Shipping & Handling $504.41
    Grand Total $9,136.11

    Custom Built Alienware M15 - 15.6" FHD 144Hz - RTX 2080 Max-Q - 90WHr Battery - Red
    Chassis Color

    Nebula Red - Soft-Touch Finish
    Internal Battery
    Lithium Ion (90 Wh) Battery - No 2.5" HDD/SSD Slot Available
    Free Game Bundles
    GET BOTH Anthem + Battlefield V for laptops with RTX 2080, GET YOUR CHOICE of Anthem OR Battlefield V for laptops with RTX 2060 or 2070
    Processor
    Intel 8th Generation "Coffee Lake" Core i7-8750H (2.2-4.1GHz) 6 Core - 12 Thread Processor, 9MB Smart Cache
    Video Card
    NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX 2080 Max-Q w/ 8GB GDDR6
    Thermal Interface Materials
    Thermal Grizzly Conductonaut on CPU + GPU, and Fujipoly Extreme Thermal Pads on heat sensitive surfaces – BEST PERFORMANCE – installed by HIDevolution - $95.00
    Alienware Graphics Amplifier
    Alienware Graphics Amplifier - $200.00
    LCD Panel
    15.6" FHD (1920 x 1080) 144Hz Anti-Glare IPS, 300-nits 72% color gamut, Narrow-Border Display
    Minimize LCD Backlight Bleed
    Yes, quality check and give me a panel with minimal backlight bleed. - $100.00
    Display Warranty
    2 Year Zero Defective Pixel Warranty (perfect panel guarantee) - $135.00
    System Memory (RAM)
    HIDevolution Approved Standard 64GB Dual Channel DDR4/2666MHz (2 x 32GB) - installed by HIDevolution - $660.00
    RAID Options
    no RAID (1st drive as primary boot drive, 2nd drive as storage drive)
    M.2 SSD Slot 1 (supports PCIe or SATA)
    Samsung 970 EVO 2TB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe 3D-VNAND SSD - Up to 3,500 MB/s Read-2,500 MB/s Write - Installed by HIDevolution - $640.00
    M.2 SSD Slot 2 (supports PCIe or SATA)
    Samsung 970 EVO 2TB M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe 3D-VNAND SSD - Up to 3,500 MB/s Read-2,500 MB/s Write - Installed by HIDevolution - $720.00
    Alternate Language Keyboard Laser Engraving - $179.00
    Arabic 101
    Alternate Language Keyboard Photo Upload
    KA-U.A.E.-20871.jpg 800 x 305 px.
    Wireless Cards
    Intel® Wireless-AC 9260 802.11 ac/a/b/g/n 2x2 NGFF w/ Bluetooth 5.0 - installed by HIDevolution - $30.00
    Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro, 64bit, English, with Multi Language Support - $60.00
    Operating System Clean Install
    None
    Recovery Media (returns system back to factory state)
    Recovery USB Flash Drive - $25.00
    Office Software
    None
    Power Adapter
    240 Watt 3 Prong AC Adapter with 6 ft Power Cord (will work worldwide, includes FREE plug adapter for those without "U.S. style" outlets)
    Warranty and Service
    4 Years Premium Support + 4 Year HIDevolution US Warranty + LIFETIME HIDevolution Technical Support - $499.00
    Accidental Damage Protection
    4 Year Accidental Damage Service - $209.00
    HIDevolution International Pre-paid Shipping (HIPS) Service
    None
    Carrying Case
    Alienware Vindicator 15" Backpack v2.0 - $90.00
    AW-M15-ANOM5CH002H-2080-144-90W-R 1 $6,289.95
    Razer Kabuto Mobile Mouse Mat (Black) RZ-KABUTO 1 $23.75
    Subtotal $6,313.70
    Shipping & Handling $475.16
    Grand Total $6,788.86
     
  2. GrandesBollas

    GrandesBollas Notebook Consultant

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    In the end, you have to balance your needs with the cost. Sounds like you need a system with portability, somewhat decent battery life while out and about, and able to play modern game titles passably. I think the m15 would meet that description.

    Let me explain why I called HIDEvolution and switched my m15 order to the P870TM-R. Price of both systems as I configured them was comparable - within $1k. Portability was a consideration as I would need to be able to take this system with me on travel for work. In the end, the fact that I needed this system more as a desktop replacement and less of a portable laptop, as well as ease of repairability, brought me to choose the P870TM-R.

    For comparable cost, I would need to use the m15 as a desktop replacement until I could save up for a real desktop system. The heavier system was the price I had to be willing to pay.
     
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  3. Spartan

    Spartan Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    You make a very good point. I am leaning more towards the Alienware M15 the more I watch reviews about it. Portability is awesome and 8 hour battery life on a gaming laptop is just insane, this is like the new Dell XPS 15 but more of a gaming variant of it. The one I saw at the mall was also the Nebula Red which looks super sexy.
     
  4. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    The main issue with M15/17 is aggressive low DPTF values in firmware limit the performance and cooling is subpar/garbage compared to your old GT75. If someone can install stock DPTF driver for Linux and set the limits you might be able to bypass the FW limits. To what extent it helps I don't know because I haven't heard anyone using the newer lineup on Linux.
    As for RAM speed cap I can't say much but m15/17 can run at 2667MHz and higher so if its running at 2400MHz maybe new update did something to make it perform like A51M.
    As for real battery life will be lower than advertised, you can use traypwrdwn or similar to force nvidia dGPU to use p5/p8 states to increase battery life and turning off Alienfx /MSI Lighting will help too!
    Your requirements is more inclined to Precision or Thinkpad lineup. They have very big battery, above 95% sRGB coverage, RAM speeds are 2667MHz, Quadro GPUs is bad at gaming(Not complete garbage though) and very expensive!
    A51M and M15/17's Pro are their keyboard and AGA.
     
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  5. Papusan

    Papusan JOKEBOOK's Sucks! Dont waste your $$$ on FILTHY

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  6. Spartan

    Spartan Notebook Nobel Laureate

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  7. custom90gt

    custom90gt Doc Mod Super Moderator

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    Sadly I don't know of any one with the 51-M and a 9900k yet so that's hard to answer the question about the temps/speeds.

    And since when is thermal throttling a new thing in any laptop? Sure the cooling can be better, but thermal throttling is something that can be found in every laptop (if it hits that temp or not is a different story).

    And the difference between the two is pretty large. the M15 is a portable gaming machine that will run slower/hotter than something like your GT75. No news there, but if you want more portability then that's the price you pay.

    The 51M looks awesome to me, but I'd never buy one because I already have a desktop and I don't really lan anymore. I'm glad Dell is competing again in the high end laptop area.
     
  8. Spartan

    Spartan Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    The thing is, my GT75 Titan does not thermal throttle like ever. So I don't wanna shell out so much money for the Alienware Area 51-M only to be buying something that doesn't run as advertised. Bear in mind that the configuration that I have in my cart sports a Silicon Lottery binned @ 5.1 GHz (in a desktop obviously) with HIDevolution's cooling mods but even they don't have such a configuration in stock to give me any numbers so I'd have to take the risk. Part of me says it should be ok to run at the advertised speeds since it's a delidded Silicon Lottery CPU with Thermal Grizzly Conductonaut + Fujipoly Extreme Thermal pads but I'm not sure.
     
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  9. custom90gt

    custom90gt Doc Mod Super Moderator

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    Yeah I totally understand your concern with the heat. There's a big difference between the i9-8950HK in your GT75 and a 9900K. Heck even some AIOs struggle to keep the 9900k at 5.0GHz in a desktop. Sadly until more reviews/users get their hands on the 51-M, I'd be hesitant to purchase one with a 9900k...
     
  10. Papusan

    Papusan JOKEBOOK's Sucks! Dont waste your $$$ on FILTHY

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    It seems more than you is concerned about this. Hence many go for i7-9700K/8700K.

    From what I know barely stock clocks and high temps. Ambient temp will play in how bad (good) temps will be. High inside temps the worse it will be.

    But I’m out now walking my dog and post from my iToy. Later I can see if I find some posts with info for you.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2019
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