Refresh my memory please ! Picking up Alienware 18 and looking for some basic help..

Discussion in 'Alienware 18 and M18x' started by Emm3, Nov 4, 2020.

  1. Emm3

    Emm3 Notebook Evangelist

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    Been a while since I’ve been back into an older machine since the few 17 R2s I had. Currently using an Alienware 14, daily driven for 7 years straight now and it’s been great. Came up on a tempting machine and it’s an Alienware 18 (looks like my Alienware 14 design wise). Had some questions about it:

    Is the Alienware 18 , the r3 ? Same thing or different ?
    Any thoughts on the 4940xm or dual 880m sli in the machine ? Is there any upgrade or support for the 880m to anything newer ? I believe the 980m was the last top end card in the 18s ?
    How many hdd slots in the 18? My 14 has an early nvme m.2 (think that’s what it’s called?) that I plan to remove use as a boot drive in the 18 and hoping I can fit 2 2.5” ssds inside.
    Are there any screen upgrades available ? I doubt it being a d/c size in 18” but there are a few videos on YouTube showing a 4k screen ? would love a 1440p or 4k option no matter the cost.
    I used to have a link for drivers list for the 18 but I can’t see it anywhere. Is there one anywhere someone can share ? Want to do a fresh install of everything from scratch.
    Lastly I read something about the killer WiFi but this machine has the killer e2200. Should I upgrade to any other WiFi card ? Another post mentioned there was a better intel card upgrade.

    looking for any input and feedback. Pretty excited to get this machine in the next few days.
     
  2. Chivalrous Roamin Knight

    Chivalrous Roamin Knight Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hey, since I'm a Alienware 18 owner, I'll answer a few of your questions, the other questions I'll leave to everyone else as I am anticipating the amswers to these good questions you are asking. The Alienware 18 is yes, the Alienware 18 R3 and is even sometimes called the Alienware 18 Viking. I have the 4940XM CPU. And even though, I bought mine with dual SLI GTX 980m's but right now, I'm only running it with a single GTX 980m because one of the 980's went bad probably from being overheated; watch and monitor that the fans work as they should. There are forums on here where owners and modders have upgraded the GPU to as high as a GTX 1070; search the forums on this upgrade. That's all from me, and waiting for the other Alienware enthusiasts to field the other questions.
     
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  3. Raidriar

    Raidriar ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)

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    BIOS A12 and later added native 980M support to the Alienware 18. I have factory 980ms and secondary heatsink special for 980M available if this is the route you want to go. 980M must be flashed with special Alienware VBIOS to work in Alienware 18 or else the fans won’t work and the cards will cook themselves to death
     
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  4. Emm3

    Emm3 Notebook Evangelist

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    appreciate the replies ! I’ve been going through the long threads trying to absorb as much as I can ! From what I gathered I think the 880m heatsinks were the ones that will work on the 980m? Seemed that way some said the lower model gpus had a smaller heat sink etc.

    I may not look to upgrade right away but I’m surprised I see the 880m aren’t exactly the most favoured cards. I don’t really Play anything too demanding (fortnite, wc3 tft, wow) etc
     
  5. Azther

    Azther Notebook Consultant

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    from what ive read, i think the reason why 880m arent popular is because they are essentially heavily overclocked 780m, and are prone to failure due to that, even more so inside of the newer 18 models due to space constraint and heat generation
     
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  6. Raidriar

    Raidriar ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)

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    880M ate too much power and delivered mediocre performance compared to 980M, that is why people immediately opt fir the 980M. The NV100 heatsink was used for 780M and 880M but Dell released GTX980 heatsink when they released it again with 980M. It was made to accommodate extra phase and power consumption on the 980M
     
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  7. Emm3

    Emm3 Notebook Evangelist

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    Showed up today pretty excited. Still undecided which configuration to go with for the drives .. comparison shot beside my 14, which has been rock solid being used 8-12 hours a day 6/7 days a week for around 7 years straight without an issue.

    trying to read up on wether or not I should go with Windows 10 or not ..


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Maxware79

    Maxware79 Notebook Deity

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    Looks to be in fantastic condition! Many would disagree but I love the glossy display compared to the matte one.

    I'd definitely go for Windows 10 but it's up to you.
     
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  9. Emm3

    Emm3 Notebook Evangelist

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    Thanks I think I got a pretty good deal just wish it had the box too.. I tend to keep all my stuff. The condition is quite good and screen is perfect and hinges very tight. I agree 100% I prefer glossy.
    What I loved about the 14 is I felt it was a great size and the proportion. The screen to body etc just looked right. The 18 has some big bezels.. but I’m excited to see the screen when using it. my hope is the nvme drive from my 14 will work in the 18 as a boot drive, and then I can put in a few 2.5” ssds for my stuff.

    Anyone know off hand how many drive bays are available ? is it a double cage and is everyone referencing a 3rd bay as a dvd slot replacement or are there 3 actual slots ?
     
  10. Maxware79

    Maxware79 Notebook Deity

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    Yeah it has a dual sata cable so unfortunately 1 less than the M18x R2. Do you use a 2.5" Sata to NVMe adapter in your 14? I'm not sure how this will work in the 18 but hopefully it does.
     
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