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

  • ggathagan - Sunday, September 30, 2012 - link

    You can elucidate all you want, but DeeeNYC can't be elucidated. Reply
  • scook9 - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    I know it cost an arm and a leg, but the extreme CPU with the BIOS in this laptop is very impressive. People have been running the 2920xm in the M18x R1 at 4.5+ GHz with stock air cooling (no repaste needed - Dell is actually using quality paste on these Alienwares). I have not been following the R2 since I returned my R1 (loved it but the GPU died and dell did not have any new ones in stock so gave me a full refund 15 months after purchase!) but I imagine people are pulling off similarly impressive scores. Reply
  • Harmattan - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    It will be very interesting to see results of the 7970m Crossfire test. In my experience with my previous m18x with dual 7970m vs. my current dual GTX 680ms, while the AMD solution worked well when it did, in some cases Catalyst drivers failed miserably e.g., worse performance than a single 7970m. 680m drivers with SLI on the other hand have been rock solid for me.

    As for the case for this ultra-powerful laptop, it's this: it's a portable desktop replacement. The reason I own an m18x r2 with dual 680ms is not because I want the most powerful laptop in the world, but rather because I want a laptop that rivals and in some cases exceeds the power of a desktop. I live in a relatively small apartment in NYC where every square ft counts. The m18x allows me to save space/reduce clutter, utilize my 2560x1600 monitor to its fullest AND be able to take a no-compromise gaming experience on the road if I want.
  • geniekid - Friday, September 28, 2012 - link

    Those are impressive performance numbers, but they better be for what they're charging. The baseline model makes the new Razer Blade look like a pretty decent deal - I'd pay an extra $500 for the SSD and superior build quality. Reply
  • twtech - Saturday, September 29, 2012 - link

    How does the keyboard feel? Are there any issues with it? How do your palms feel resting on it? Is the touchpad decent? Are there any issues with accidentally moving the mouse pointer or clicking when you're trying to type? Reply
  • Notmyusualid - Sunday, September 30, 2012 - link

    The keyboard is 'ok'. Its not the best I've ever used, but indeed is far from the worst too.

    The fact that it can change colour is lost on me, as I have set it to blue, and it stays like that, unless I fire up BF3, when it decides to change colour on my anyway, which is kind of interesting to see, but thats about it. It flashes red when you are near to death, and can be configured to do just about anything you want, but I've not really explored that.

    The touchpad does not suffer from much interference from your palms whilst you type, whereas the last laptop I had, did interfere very much. I'm sure this is the best touchpad I've had on a laptop to date. With the curve on the case in front of it, using the touchpad feels good too, but...

    When typing, the curved case ends where you wrists go, and makes it less comfortable. That curved edge should go right across the whole front of the laptop I think.
  • PresenceOfMind - Monday, October 1, 2012 - link

    I'm about to purchase a M18X with SLI GTX 680M and I've been reading all I can to make the best choice.
    I'm very surprised with your article conclusion.
    I don't understand how can you make such a statement when your benchmarks, most of them, were not even done on game max settings and max display resolution. With lower settings you got average of 60FPS in same games, that's the minimal FPS expected for a hard core gamer machine.
    Furthermore, I would like to point out that M18X R2 scored 40 FPS more than a M17X R4 and also the fact that a M18X R2 built quality is a lot superior to the M17X R4. The M18X R2 is only 800 dollars more expensive than M17X R4.
    And as conclusion, I would like to bring up the fact that for this kind of machine, we should expect it to run it for at least 3 years before replacing. Do you really believe that a single card will be able to run the incoming games and new graphic technologies?
    PS : My only complain about the M18X R2 is the fact that it doesn't have 3D display and it doesn't support 1920X1200 resolution.
  • Dug - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    I wish they would change the style or come up with alternative.
    Right now it looks like a Chevy.
    Many people would prefer something less annoying.
  • ronmccord - Saturday, October 6, 2012 - link

    I own the Mx18 running 2x580 m is sli and 2x256 in raid ssd, killer wireless everything top notch.
    I own this rather then a desktop for two reasons. I live in Colombia so bought it in Usa and was easy to bring with me vs a desktop which would be not possible. Also the M18x is aluminum and larger then the m17x which helps with cooling. I am hoping for a good 3 years out of it. I also like Alienware support which is the only! I repeat only company that will come to your house here in Colombia there is not one other manufacturer here that has a warranty except Apple. Had my Dell Xps laptop repaired twice here new hardrives. I also am running a Dell 30 inch with 2550x1600 res so good graphics is a must!. Now I am am a tech junkie and I also own a R2 M17x in sli with the aluminum case. I still check around like Sager and Msi to find options to Alienware but you can't beat the construction quality, warranty or look of the Alienware. Also I have it laying on top of the ZVOX speaker if you have not checked them out it fits perfect on it.. Matter of fact only thing that looks good is a laptop on it, and X51 style or an htpc style case. Only one speaker needed and the sound is incredible to watch movies and videos etc. With the Alienware Blacklaptop on top with Green lighting looks menacing. I love this look so much I actually would consider the Alienware x51, if that thing can run well with the equivalent of gtx 670 power I may consider passing the M18x to gf. Look forward to what Alienware and others come out with by next year this time. Who knows may be external graphics options that will allow me to have A small Alienware for travel and home or a 680m equivalent power in a m14x. Until then very happy with the M18xx and remember for those not appreciating it the more space you have to cool the better off you are! Thanks for reasing my long post hope it helps some in deciding I enjoyed everyones post especially the guy who lugs his m18x all over the world makes me feel better for my upcoming 30 day trip to Argentina however I only have the messenger bag vs backpack so I am jealous
  • etundidor - Thursday, May 9, 2013 - link

    Hey guys, Is there any chance of upgrade the M17x R2 mobo in order to increase the RAM to 32 GB or 16GB at least , Get SATA III 6G capacity, manage two GTX 680M and maintain the M17x R2 awesome HD display? Reply

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