17-inch laptops are not popular due to their inconsistent combination of portability and performance. One aspect is that the desktop is able to easily replace a laptop of 17 inches when portability is not required. However, the majority of their 15-inch versions perform like their counterparts and are a lot more suitable for backpacking when traveling. The 17-inch laptops, however, target an extremely small category of people who are looking for maximum performance and optimal thermal efficiency from a device but are limited by the power supply, space, or even time.
The previous year’s Alienware M17 Laptop (2020) is an excellent laptop. The new Alienware M17 R4 (2021) is an average refresh of the model of last year. Contrary to Asus, Lenovo, and HP who all had to switch to AMD’s high-performance processor for their laptops with high-end specs, Dell decided to stick using Intel’s chips. This isn’t a bad thing because AMD is having a hard time producing 7nm processors because they compete with the manufacturers of smartphones’ chips. But the shortage of RTX 3000 series graphics cards has hampered the production of the most recent gaming laptops. The situation isn’t normal, as cryptocurrencies are becoming more and more well-known.
The best setup is the Core I7-10870H with 16GB RAM and an RTX 3070. It is priced at the time of writing, in March 2021 the price of $2100.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The keyboard is largely unchanged from the previous version of the M17x. However, there’s not much that required changing. The keys are huge and have a great feeling, as well as being extremely flexible. There was a little flexibility in the keyboard, however, Alienware 17in the laptop informed us that the production models would have better support.
While the M17x’s predecessor featured honeycomb patterns in its touchscreen, the latest version is smooth and is spacious 3.9 inches x 2.2 inches. The surface was smooth and offered any resistance when our fingers moved across it and that’s a good thing. Based on Synaptics, the touchpad also supports multitouch gestures, but Alienware 17 on laptops disables them in default.
The Alienware 17in laptop (2021) comes with one of the oddest screen layouts that include a 144Hz FHD panel or G-Sync not working 360Hz FHD panel that comes with G-Sync, and a 60Hz UHD panel. The best value for money alternative would be a 144Hz FHD panel that comes with G-Sync however you could opt for the 360Hz model for those who prefer FPS games, like CS: GO. 60Hz UHD totally negates the reason for the laptop’s existence except for those games that are the hardest to play on Ultra settings in 4K, perhaps with Ray-Tracing.
After streaming the Hulu video on a full-screen for over 15 minutes the M17x’s touchpad reached a comfortable temperature of 86°F, and the area between the keys G and H was an impressive 85 deg. But, the center of the underside was a temperature of 98 degrees. We consider anything that is above 95 as uncomfortable. After playing for 30 minutes and then the temperature climbed to an enthralling 120 degrees. It’s a good thing that it’s extremely unlikely to put the M17x on your lap.
Despite the huge battery that the Alienware 17in laptop (2021) comes with the capacity to only last the laptop just a bit more than two hours of continuous internet surfing.
The Alienware 17in laptop (2021) can be set up to provide up to 32GB of memory. This should be sufficient for the majority of daily tasks and applications. However, the 2933MHz speed could affect the gaming performance of the laptop. The optimal configuration for RAM would be 16GB.
The M17x comes with an integrated WirelessHD (WiHD) transmitter that is built-in and can stream data up to 4Gbps in the 60GHz band and offers a range of 30 feet. Contrary to the Intel WiDi technology WirelessHD does not have a latency issue and is able to stream protected content such as Blu-ray movies to any compatible receiver (although WiDi 2.0 will support DRM when it is upgraded). Before, users who needed this kind of feature needed to purchase a device like the ASUS WiCast EW2000, or HP Wireless TV Connect, that required the connection of a large wireless transmitter to the notebook. These gadgets use yet another technology known as WHDI. We know, it’s difficult to understand.
The Alienware 17in laptop (2021) has two models with unique names that are the dark moon’s side that indicates a black variant as well as the moonlight which refers to that the chassis is white.
The Alienware 17in laptop (2021) is excellent in its selection of ports. The Display port 1.4 and HDMI 2.1b are future-proof for external displays with 8K resolution. The inclusion of multiple USB 3.2 ports is extremely useful for gamers who have external peripheral connectivity requirements. The small omission is due to the 10th generation of Intel mobile chipsets, which restricted the Alienware 17in Laptop (2021) in its ability to include the USB4 port, however, it’s not a huge issue given that Thunderbolt 3 and USB4 have identical functions.