Application and Futuremark Performance

Given that the Alienware M18x R2 we have in house features the fastest mobile CPU we've tested, the fastest mobile GPU configuration we've tested, and two SSDs in a striped RAID, it's reasonable to assume Futuremark's benchmarks are going to be pretty kind to it. With that in mind, I've added another wrinkle for both my edification and yours: I've included test results where available for AVADirect's second Quiet Gaming PC and iBuyPower's Ivy Bridge and Kepler-powered Erebus GT. Both of these are powerful current-generation gaming desktops that are available for roughly two thirds the price of the M18x R2.

Futuremark PCMark Vantage

PCMark 7 - PCMarks

PCMark 7 - Lightweight

PCMark 7 - Productivity

PCMark 7 - Creativity

PCMark 7 - Entertainment

PCMark 7 - Computation

PCMark 7 - Storage

It's pretty crazy to think about just how fast a notebook like the M18x R2 can be, though you do pay very dearly for the privilege. Note that even its SSDs in RAID and SLI graphics hardware can't quite get it in contention with the two desktops and their overclocked CPUs. This is something that you're going to see a lot of.

Futuremark 3DMark 11

Futuremark 3DMark Vantage

Futuremark 3DMark Vantage

Futuremark 3DMark06

3DMarks 11 and Vantage show a substantial performance increase between the single and dual GPU Alienwares, but what's interesting is that despite the Ivy Bridge processor's substantial performance, it looks like it still may not be fast enough for this graphics subsystem.

Cinebench R11.5 - Single-Threaded Benchmark

Cinebench R11.5 - Multi-Threaded Benchmark

x264 HD Benchmark - First Pass

x264 HD Benchmark - Second Pass

Our CPU-specific benchmarks continue to demonstrate the potential upshot of going with a custom desktop system and saving some bread, but if you need a mobile gaming system the i7-3820QM in the M18x R2 is no slouch. It very nearly breaks the 100fps barrier on the first pass of our x264 benchmark.

Introducing the Alienware M18x R2 Gaming Performance


View All Comments

  • Silma - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    The conclusion is a bit flawed though.

    A. You don't buy a gaming computer to play today's games. You buy it to play today's games plus games in the next 3 years.

    B. There is a display port. When at home you may want to play on a 30" 2560x1600 screen and still want a laptop because you are often on the road.
  • A5 - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    If you want to play for 3 years, don't buy a laptop. Reply
  • Meaker10 - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    The M18X supports intel XTU.

    The 3820QM is partially unlocked allowing you to add +400mhz to each turbo boost frequency (4 core, 2core and single core). You can also adjust TDP limits.

    If you upped the frequency by 400mhz and the TDP limits up to 75W short and 60W long then you could see for sure.
  • Steveymoo - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    Unless that screen refreshes at 120hz, I would have a hard time justifying spending this much money on a gaming laptop, even if I had all the money in the world. It's bulky, heavy, noisy, and hot, and all games are naturally capped at 60fps because of the LCD panel. There comes a point where the diminishing returns make the practicality of such a product null & void. Sure, you can say it's probably future proof, but graphics will only seriously improve when next gen consoles come out. By then, dx12 will have been released, and we will see another 1 or 2 generations of video cards from both AMD, and Intel.

    So, I have to ask, who exactly is wasting their hard earned cash on these laptop configurations?
  • Notmyusualid - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    I'm one of those who 'wasted' their hard-earned cash on an M18x R2.

    Yes, the screen is the low-point (in the daylight), and yes I'd like more resolution, but no choice. Other than Crapple, who else does a better screen now, for this sort of machine?

    Anyway, it is not noisy, and for the 70% of the time I'm not gaming, completely silent too. I have to run Sandra SiS, or something to provoke the fans to any noticeable level. Even gaming the noise is quite acceptable. The girlfriend's MacBook is actually louder in everyday use, I kid you not. When her fans spin up, I hear it clearly over my usage.

    Hot? Where? Do you sit near the back by the fans?

    Games do run over 60fps, whilst it not noticeable on the screen, it is from the mouse, in feel / fluidity of play. E.g. MW3 is capped at 91fps, if I sync every frame, then yes it will run at 60fps. At home, I use the VGA output to my 3D screen, and it looks lovely. Not a fan of hdmi.

    Heavy, it is kind of, but with the Alienware backpack, I must say, it is quite manageable, and I am a frequent traveler. In 6 weeks, this M18x R2 has been to Thailand, Saudi, Venezuela, UK, and Thailand again. No problem. Even my previous was an 18.4"er, and I carried that across the globe for 2yrs.

    Price? We are not talking about the price difference between a new GTR, or a Ferrari, 'tis just a couple of grand more than a competing quality notebook, and not every household is short of money, I can tell you.

    I can also justify it, as our in-house software is heavy on cpu / memory requirements, and sometime the databases I need to run bring the supplied Core 2 duo laptops to their knees. So, I went with Crossfire, 3920XM, 16GB 1866MHz RAM, dual SSDs in RAID0, and this machine thus performs admirably when I get to site, running 4.4GHz on all four cores, all day. I know of some that run theirs higher.

    Its a real talking-point when meeting new customers too.

    Still waiting for AMD/ATI to finalise their drivers though (no 680Ms in mine, dual 7970Ms), so gaming can be hit-miss sometimes, but I hear this will be solved next month.

    Have a nice day.
  • bji - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    I cannot even look at the pictures of this Alienware. It is so ugly that it hurts my eyes.

    Also, Anand doesn't respond to his email, so don't bother ever emailing him. Not sure why he even puts his email address up on this site.
  • AstroGuardian - Monday, October 1, 2012 - link

    If i was Anand i wouldn't even bother to reply most of the stupid emails, but would use the time to reply to constructive emails. Reply
  • tphillips63 - Thursday, May 2, 2013 - link

    It depends on what your subject is. I and many others have email conversations with him over the years. I can tell you he does answer cogent emails on subject. Reply
  • DeeeNYC - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    Aside from a pro gamer or people who are always going to LAN parties I don't even see the point in something like this. Reply
  • Notmyusualid - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    Frequent travelers, such as myself, don't have the option to own a desktop, and indeed I just sold my last desktop, because of the dust gathering on it. (but I still prefer desktops, and would have one again, if I was stationary enough)

    I also hear people living away at Uni, like to use them too, as they can have large screens for watching movies, and pack up and go home for the holidays with their computer too.

    Don't forget others needing mobile workstations.

    And thus, for those of us who need raw power & portability, this is the only way to go.

    Also, you can pack it away in 5ms, when having parties / people over to visit, can't do that with your tower & screen & keyboard quite as easily...

    I hope that elucidates you.

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