There are very few gaming laptops in the market right now that strikes the perfect balance between portability and crazy high specs. But this guy seems to have it figured it out by hitting that sweet spot. So is there a catch find out in this review of the Alienware M15 R3.

Pricing

Before I dive straight into the specifications let’s check out the pricing and the variance. Alienware m15 r3 series is actually really powerful featuring intel’s 10th gen comet lake edge series processors and it also comes in two variants. The base model priced at around rupees 2.65 lakhs.

Comes with an intel core i7 RTX 2070 GPU and the specs that you can see on the screen right now. The top of the line variant the one that I received for this review takes it a notch further with the Core i9 CPU and RTX 2080 supermax q and costs around 3.4 lakh rupees.

Build Quality & Design

The m15 r3 is built very well it has an outer shell and a keyboard deck that is made out of magnesium alloy to keep its weight low. While ensuring a solid build quality it’s soft to touch but it doesn’t feel the same as soft-touch plastic. It is significantly more resistant to fingerprints smudges and scratches something that is very important to the Cheetos gobbling gaming audience. It is going for but you can expect it to get discolored sooner or later as this is only available in white color.

Interestingly the laptop doesn’t have a single sharp corner anywhere the grippy texture and rounded corners make it relatively portable as you can move around with relative ease. Even though it’s not that light at two and a half kilograms just like most gaming laptops. It is also laden with RGB lighting everywhere. You can find RGB around the rear vent the Alienware logo on the lid and of course on the keyboard all of which is customizable through the proprietary app that we will get to in just a moment.

There’s also very little flex on the display and the keyboard deck which again owes a lot to the choice of materials while I do understand that RGB lighting isn’t for everyone. I kind of dig this look of just having a neat exterior but still having some sort of lights on it.

Input/Output

Alienware m15 r3

In terms of io on the left of the laptop, you will find a USB 3.2 port the only one having power share an ethernet port and a multifunctional 3.5 mm jack. On the right, you will find two more USB 3.2 ports without power share and a MicroSD card slot. At the back, you will find charging mini display HDMI and thunderbolt 3 compatible type c ports as well as Alienware’s proprietary graphics amplifier port.

The speakers are decent if not great they are front-firing. This time as the m15 r2 had a bottom-firing set. They have good bass and mid response. So you should be able to hear the gunshots in a game clearly but they miss out on high frequencies.

Display

Alienware m15 r3

My variant came with a 15.6-inch OLED display with a resolution of 3840 by 2160 and a refresh rate of 60 fps. Since it has that UHD resolution and that OLED pick the colors are vibrant and almost everything appears gorgeous. It is also hdr 500 certified which means you get local dimming and 400 nits of brightness but it’s not good for gaming as.

It lacks a high screen and input refresh rates. it’s also got a glossy finish not just on the display but also on the bezels. So you would be struggling to fight the glare if you’re going to use this in bright environments. If you’re looking to watch movies though you can’t beat this panel.

Performance

Thanks to that bleeding edge no-compromise specifications. you get really good gaming performance all the time. Every single game i threw at it heavy or light ran smoothly on high settings. It even runs rate racing titles at 4k with relative ease warzone with ray tracing enabled at ultra graphics at 4k resolution ran consistently at around 55 fps while at 1080p i got to see 65 fps.

  • Shadow of the tomb raider ran on average at 75 fps with ray tracing and dlss enabled at 1080p when cranked to 4k it could manage up to 51 fps which is playable.
  • Far cry 5 at 4k ran at 43 fps with graphics at the highest slightly less heavy titles such as horizon zero dawn ran at an average of 71 fps at 1080p using the high graphics settings.

Coming to thermal performance if you play games with quieter fan modes enabled. You will observe some sort of thermal throttling. I tried this with horizon zero dawn which ran at 40 fps with the quiet fan mode enabled while at higher fan modes. I observed 71 fps that I just mentioned before this was at 1080p with the high graphics settings.

It wasn’t uncommon to see the CPU temperature to go up to 80 to 90 degrees and even 100 degrees at times while playing games like far cry and shadow of the tomb raider. This laptop has a tendency to run very toastily even when the fans are set to high but hey the games run smoothly.

Benchmarks

  • In terms of synthetic benchmarks pc mark, 10 posted scores of 5349 and 6413 in standard and extended runs respectively.
  • Cinebench achieved 3065 and 460 points respectively in multi-core and single-core tests while pov ray finished its benchmark in one minute 32 seconds.
  • 3d marks times spy and times by extreme scores was 7 349 and 3494 respectively while the port royal test managed 4931

In regular non-gaming use surprisingly. I observed some periodic stutters while navigating between tasks. If the fans were set to run quietly the laptop runs slightly hot even though if it’s not loaded with heavy apps.

Software

The Alienware m15 r3 comes pre-loaded with dell utilities such as Alienware command center and mobile connect command center. Let’s you tweak things like lighting fan speed CPU and GPU frequency and even voltage and it is very elaborative and you can also save specific profiles for specific games. I found it to be really intuitive to use and you will find yourself using it more often than you may think.

The laptop also comes with Tobii eye-tracking which has support for a few recent titles. It works beautifully especially in games like f1 2020 were supposed to focus on a particular corner while executing a turn. It is also built into the Windows UI which means you can control certain elements of the os such as multitasking and even moving the cursor just with your eyes. It’s felt a bit unnatural at first but I picked it up quicker than I had expected and when I did go back to my own laptop. The lack of eye gestures really bugged me.

Trackpad

Alienware m15 r3

Coming to trackpad and keyboard this is the area that actually impressed me more than the raw performance. Some high-end gaming laptops try to move customers by including a half-baked mechanical keyboard but not this one. It has a fantastic membrane keyboard with slightly shallow travel and satisfying feedback. It is not noisy. It’s properly spaced out and has buttons that are ever so slightly concave and are of the exact size. I love it’s a very subjective thing I know but it’s very well implemented

The trackpad 2 is great it’s precise and it has a very nice texture to it and more importantly, unlike other gaming laptops. It’s not an afterthought it’s very much an integral part of the package and that just gets a chef’s kiss from me.

Battery Performance

I’m not gonna sugarcoat this bit because it’s just straight-up unhealthy the Alienware m15 r3 comes with eighty-six work unit battery and a large power adapter that weighs around 800 grams which can build the complete package a bit heavy. If you’re planning to take it around in a bag beat synthetic battery tests or real-world performance the laptop can only last a couple of hours at most which aren’t ideal.

The battery eater test ended in a measly 1 hour 15 minutes and it takes about 2 hours to charge this entire thing from 0 to 100. This can be attributed to the power-hungry configuration. Therefore it’s fine for those who are okay with keeping it on ac power for many of the time.

Conclusion

To sum it up the top variant of the Alienware m15r3 is a great laptop but it is hard to recommend to hardcore gamers despite its crazy specifications mainly because of that display we would also have loved a slightly better thermal performance and of course a lower price tag and that brings us to the end of this review. Are you planning to buy an Alienware m15 r3 laptop let us know in the comments?

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