This time I have with me a laptop that belongs to a race, or I would even say a species, completely different from the usual. It is a laptop designed to be able to play with it the most demanding titles on the market and, incidentally, behave as God intended before any task you want to impose on it. In short, a computer designed to be the only computer for the most demanding users , and with a price that reflects this. Does it meet such expectations? For starters, it is a laptop with a design that does not go unnoticed. It is not a sleek, minimalist laptop in the style of a Macbook or Surface Laptop. It is a design that is saying “hello, I’m here”, but that is far from the usual black with red lights and sharp angles that define so many other laptop models designed to play. That it is powerful is evident in the care they have put into the ventilation. Above and below they have honeycomb-shaped grilles of rich honey that take in the air to expel it at a much higher temperature in these two rear grilles, one that takes care of the processor and the other of the graphics. It has RGB backlighting that does not look bad, neither on the keyboard nor on the back or in the logo of the alien of the Dell gaming brand .
It’s a chunky laptop overall, but compared to its competitors on the market, including previous Alienware laptops, it’s pretty content. Unfortunately with this comes a price: the RAM is soldered to the board and really the only thing that we can expand on our own is the SSD: one is occupied by the one who comes with the computer and the other is free. And with what the games occupy, surely we want to expand it at some point. The wide selection of ports answers the rallying cry of this is the only thing you will need. We have a USB-C Thunderbolt, three normal USBs, network port, headphones, HDMI, Mini Display-Port and even a proprietary port to connect an external graphics card of the brand. The only thing that can be missed, and almost more for getting fussy than for anything else, is a card reader. In a very well equipped laptop .
Battery and autonomy
How does all this translate into weight? Well, thanks to the use of magnesium instead of aluminum on the outside it is quite contained: it is 2.2 kilograms , which takes it away from the ultrabook territory but allows it to be carried in the backpack without ending up wasted. The real problem in terms of mobility is that the 76 Wh battery is not capable of holding more than about four hours, so we will have to carry the charger, which is this brick that in addition to taking up a lot of space weighs about 900 grams that we will have to add to the total of just over 3 kilos. And that is already starting to weigh. In short, we can take it around, yes, but it will cost us. It is likely that with another screen the battery would last longer. And it is that this beautiful example includes a 4K resolution OLED panel that is a glory to see . It is bright, with very strong and vivid colors, HDR compatibility, close to 500 nits and is possibly the most suitable if what you want is to use the laptop for graphic or video work. But to play it has the problem that it is limited to 60 hertz and that no matter how powerful it is graphically, it is very difficult that in demanding games it has enough capacity to reach 60 frames per second. With The Witcher 3He is usually around 20 or 25, for example. However, there are other options of IPS Full HD screens at 144 or 240Hz that are sure to consume less battery and are much better for games, especially if you are addicted to competitive shooters .
Of course, playing the battery ran out in three quarters of an hour and the base heated up, which gave glory. Luckily we are still in winter, because I would rather not have this on my knees in summer, if I’m honest. In short, it plays very well, but plugged in and on the table.
Keyboard, trackpad, camera …
The keyboard is comfortable and friendly, with keys with a lot of travel. Although the laptop that I have borrowed does not have the eñe and you have to write from memory, I must admit that I like the layout, with large keys, and without giving up the cursor arrows. It is better that they stand out from the theoretical rectangle where they have been placed to reduce the up and down keys so that they occupy the same space as a normal key, as is unfortunately so common in other laptops. I can not, yes, extend the praise to the trackpad. It is quite small for a device of this size and does not respond all that well. When you scroll with two fingers, for example, until you stop moving your fingers it doesn’t scroll the screen. Perhaps Dell concluded that, being a notebook intended for gaming, no one with two fingers of a brain was going to buy it and not have an external mouse. And possibly he is right. But it is still a point against portability. As for its own software, it has the Alienware Command Center , which allows you to customize the RGB lights or control overclocking and temperature. In theory. Unfortunately as the latter did not work I have been reinstalling it and in addition to not fixing it I have ended up with a keyboard that does not work. I don’t know if it’s my fault or that this thing has been through so many hands before that it’s a bit broken, but in any case it gives me a bad feeling. Apart from this, the most notable thing about this laptop is its Tobii stand, which is this camera located under the screen and that protrudes, whose function is to keep track of your eyes. For what? Well, first of all, and possibly the most useful thing, is to lower the brightness of the screen to a minimum when you are not looking, which is appreciated given the little autonomy of the laptop. But the main thing is that the games detect it and act accordingly, for example directing the character wherever you are looking. Unfortunately the only game Tobii supports in my catalog is Master of Orion and it doesn’t work particularly well. Yes, the screen does move a little in the direction you are looking, but it is more of a hindrance than anything else.
The camera is 720p and it is neither bad nor good: it is to be expected. The downside is that despite even having an eye-tracking system, what it lacks is Windows Hello facial recognition, nor is it a fingerprint reader . We return to the keys and the PIN! How comforting it is to go back to 2018 every now and then.
This equipment with the configuration it brings is not available in Spain, which surely explains the keyboard. The closest thing to its ninth generation Core i7, its 16 GB of RAM, RTX 2070 MaxQ, 4K OLED screen and 512GB of SSD costs 2,550 euros and has a slightly less powerful 2060 graphics. I mean, it’s expensive. Enough that it can be more affordable to buy a regular laptop for work and a desktop computer for gaming and other tasks that require graphics and processor power, for example, if that combination is appropriate for your needs. Also, remember, you have almost no options to improve it after purchase: it has two m.2 slots to add more disk, and that’s it.