|Screen Size||18.4 Inches|
|Max Screen Resolution||1920x1080|
|Graphics Coprocessor||Dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770M|
|Number of USB 3.0 Ports||4|
Alienware ALW18-6490sLV 18.4-Inch Laptop (2.4 GHz Intel i7-4700MQ Processor, 8GB DDR3L, 750GB HDD, Dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770M, Windows 7 Home Premium) Silver [Discontinued By Manufacturer]
We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock.
|Operating System||Windows 7|
|Graphics Coprocessor||Dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770M|
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Base facts, here are some of the systems that I have owned -three different version of the Toshiba Qosmio laptop, the last one being an X505-Q896. Samsung Series 7 Gamer NP700G7C-S01US being my last gaming laptop, and I can't tell you how many different laptops over the years.
For this purchase, I looked at every conceivable configuration from Dell Alienware for ALW 17 and 18 models. I also considered the following models for purchase, MSI G Series GT70 2OD-039US, Qosmio X70-AST2GX1 and several other vendors including the top tier for building a custom laptop i.e. Sager/Xoticpc. Those were my considerations and I keep reading about manufacturing concerns and I keep thinking that I did not want to deal with these issues. To be fair, I know that all builders are going to have issue and I am confident that I could fix the issue myself if needed, but I just did not want to have to deal with the hassle if I spent over 2K for a laptop.
Last notes and then we will discuss this laptop, I went with ALW-6490sLV vs. ALW-6491sLV for two simple reasons. First, 6490 which represents Windows 7 is always at least 30-50 bucks less expensive than 6491 (Windows 8) version. Although I like Windows 8, it is not as intuitive on a non-touch screen. I also selected this model, because the 770M-SLI when it is supported will outperform the single 780M. The number are not dramatic, but if you watch performance closely, you will understand the logic. 770M in SLI will perform about 17% better than 780M (Single) and if it is 770M vs. 780M then I am at a disadvantage of -20% to the 780M.
I ran the stock laptop for a couple of days and it has been a joy. I did upgrade the following on my system. (This is the fun part!) I went from 8 gigs of memory to 32 gigs. (For all with that concern, this system will handle up to 32 gigs. I was not able to verify prior to adding the memory and one of my concerns when making this purchase.) I also added a Samsung Solid State drive into the system. The only modification that I will make going forward will be to remove the DVD drive and install a BLU Ray drive.
I recommend the following add-ons, additional HDD, be it Solid State or mechanical and BLU Ray since they are easy to reach and located at the bottom of the unit. They can be quickly upgraded without much hassle. The memory, unless you specifically need it, I would only recommend going up to 24 gigs on this model. 32 gigs is fantastic and I use when using Photo Shop and VMware while simulating the functionality of 6-8 Windows servers in a domain. The process to replace the memory is two slots in the back and two slots in the front. Accessing the back is a piece of cake, while access the front requires time, attention to detail and disassembling multiple parts of the laptop. Including the cable connections to keyboards and drives ¡V this is a big negative for users who are not handy. The process added about 90 minutes to replace the top two SODIMMs. For all interested, I purchased the memory from Crucial and I have had no issues. I would only recommend going to 16 gig or 24 gigs, since that will allow you to upgrade with our headache of touching the top two memory modules. The combination would be 8 gigs on top and either 8 or 16 on the bottom. (16\24 should be plenty of memory for most individuals!) BTW, I did do a Windows Anytime Upgrade to take advantage of the extra memory added to my system. I was aware that I would have to do this for Windows 7 and since I already own the key, it was a simple process. I will only run Windows 7 Ultimate for multiple reasons and is my personal choice. But if you are going to get Windows 7, it will be needed to utilize memory over 16 gigs. Specifics: Windows Home Premium will only support 16 gigs of Memory and to utilize more, you need to upgrade. This will not be a concern if you decide to get 6491 with Windows 8, the base Operation system will be able to see 32 gigs or less memory without an issue.
My first thoughts on the laptop, it is huge and heavy and appears to be well made. I feel like I could use this to stop a bullet. The item weighs 11.9 pounds and is not something that you would want to carry every day to class or work. It is heavy, but is a desktop replacement that produces results.
The keyboard area is massive and I have plenty of space, it is extremely conformable and allows me to rest my wrists while typing. Probably my favorite of all of my laptops. I will not focus on the customization of the lights and back light keyboard, but understand that is highly customizable. (Just not the reason that I purchased the system. I will even state that I am blown away that this system has the option ¡V just not a consideration when I made the purchase. º)
The screen is massive, it is 18.4 and one of the reasons that I went with the ALW 18. 18.4 inch (467.36 mm) WLED FHD (1080p) TrueLife TN 400 Nit Display (1920 X 1080). It is beautiful and I have had no issues. This is basically the same screen that I have on my Samsung Series 7 and I love the display. It is worth it if you work in Photo Shop and other similar applications.
The sounds, is by far, the best that I have heard on any system. The sounds are crisp, clear and loud. I can¡¦t complain and I usually have to turn it down so that I don¡¦t disturb my wife. The experience delivered between sound and display is amazing. I have watched one movie, Into Darkness and played Civilization 5. The experience was fantastic. Although I just wanted to test the Video Capabilities, since the game was fluid, it prompted me get right into the game and I had to pull myself out. Again, experience was engaging and performance was spot on, I loved it!
I am going to wrap up for now since I have spent more time at work this week and not really had the time to fully test my new system. I will set a reminder and update this review in 3-4 weeks. I just wanted to share my experience and provide some feedback for any users out there for any considering this system. I love it and would highly recommend it based on my week using the system. The build is high quality.
Last consideration, I ordered this system on August 12 and it arrived on September 6th. The reason is that these orders take so long to process is once accepted the orders are submitted to Dell to build the laptop. If you have an interest, then you should expect the delivery date to 3 to 6 weeks after placing your order. All I will say, if you order this same model directly from Dell, the cost will much higher. I found the starting cost from Dell for the Dual 770M-SLi to start at 3,000.00 and you are getting for a lot more on Amazon. I am a big Amazon fan and they always delivery on the cost to value.
O08152015 - Just wanted to add an update. At some point over the last 6 months, I picked up the MSI Dominator.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00IXQE81U?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00 - this exact model. I am not here to review the dominator, but I am still using my Alienware computer. Performance is much better.
Lastly, I went ahead and updated to Windows 10, of which I am fan, and it runs perfectly on this laptop. This purchase still remains as my all time favorites to date for laptop experiences.
I considered multiple different laptops,Asus G750, MSI GT70, MSI GE60, but I never considered the Alienware. I was about to order the Asus G750 with 3GB of graphics RAM, but then I noticed the Alienware 18 with 4GB of graphics RAM. I then noticed this model, with 6GB of graphics RAM. Right then, right there, in Starbucks I chose what I wanted. 6GB OF GRAPHICS RAM!!! That's what the Nvidia Titan has
I selected this model, because the 770M-SLI when it is supported will outperform the single 780M. The number are not dramatic, but if you watch performance closely, you will understand the logic. 770M in SLI will perform about 17% better than 780M (Single) and if it is 770M vs. 780M then I am at a disadvantage of -20% to the 780M.
Bootup time is insane even without an SSD. It takes 12 seconds to boot up and login.
I would like to warn everyone who is considering purchasing this laptop! This laptop is MASSIVE! I mean really massive. The screen is incredibly clear, better than my Sony HD 240Hz TV. The HDMI in is a nice feature. I was able to play my Xbox into the computer no problem. Although I wish it was a software switch, not a hardware. What I mean is I could have the Xbox playing in so I could capture it. I also would like the HDMI in and out to be separate ports, not combined.
I notice no lag at all when playing Skyrim on Ultra HD with everything set to high, I even have the 6 pack HD texture mods. I also have about 40 mods running, with no lag. I also have Fraps running in the background to determine my FPS. It never dropped below 50 even with all the mods.
I love this laptop very much and I will continue to update the review as needed. Feel free to ask me any questions about the laptop or my experience with the laptop.