Alienware 17 preview – the powerful hardware is just part of the bigger picture
We recently previewed the refreshed Alienware 15 and now it’s time to do the same with the 17-inch version, which is suitable for users who enjoy having more “gaming” space. However, the difference between the 15-inch and 17-inch models isn’t only in the size. The bigger variant has all of Alienware 15’s perks and even more.
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Aluminum design and customizable LED backlight
As all other Alienware devices, the new 17-inch model features an LED backlight that complements its design. LED lights can be found on the keyboard, which is separated into several areas, on the touchpad, the logo and the notebook’s lid. The color of the LEDs is customizable in different colors.
Anyway, the design of the Alienware 17 inherits the appearance of the last generation, as it has the same aluminum housing reinforced with carbon fiber, allowing the device to be in the normal weight range, without sacrificing its rigidness and aggressive, but at the same time stylish, design. The interior, however, is covered in soft-touch matte plastic.
Comfortable keyboard, macro keys, responsive touchpad and crystal clear sound
Although, the keyboard is separated into several areas with individual LED backlight, buttons offer long key travel for better control, while the macro buttons, which are located on the side of the keyboard, provide quick and easy access to various settings and apps even during gameplay.
As for the touchpad – it’s comfortable to use and features dedicated mouse buttons and LED backlight that effectively complements the overall appearance of the machine. Despite the fact that Dell hasn’t included branded loudspeakers, the device is still capable of performing in par with other competitor models and its sound is rich and clear for more enjoyable gaming experience.
4K UHD display and two external display ports
Everybody knows that ultimate gaming experience isn’t achieved only by having powerful hardware under the hood, but rather a combination of that with a gorgeous and detailed screen. This is the reason why Alienware 17 boasts a 17-inch display with UHD (3840×2160) resolution and high-quality IPS panel with matte finish. Due to the IPS panel, colors are richer and more vivid, the sRGB color gamut coverage is higher and the viewing angles are excellent.
However, if you feel that the 17-inch screen isn’t enough, you can always connect an external monitor via the HDMI 1.4 port and DisplayPort.
Top-tier performance and Alienware Graphics Amplifier
Even though the laptop boasts the latest generation Intel Skylake SoC – Core i7-6700HQ with 16GB DDR4-2133MHz RAM and the most powerful GPU currently on the market – GeForce GTX 980M (4GB GDDR5), we all know that some games are just too demanding to run on 4K resolution. At times like these, you’ll require performance that only a gaming desktop PC can provide.
Luckily, Dell offer a solution called Alienware Graphics Amplifier. It can be connected via a special connector, which the notebook has, and the Amplifier is capable of supporting desktop GPUs. When you plug it in, the laptop starts operating at the full throttle while drawing the performance from the desktop GPU and overclocking the CPU thanks to the smart integrated system.
|CPU||Intel Core i7-6700HQ (4-cores, 2.60 -3.50 GHz, 6MB cache)|
|RAM||16GB (2x 8192MB) – DDR4, 2133MHz|
|GPU||NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M (4GB GDDR5)|
|Storage||1256GB (256GB SSD + 1TB HDD (7200 RPM)|
|Display||17.3-inch (43.94 cm) – 3840×2160 (UHD), IPS matte|
|Connectivity||LAN 10/100/1000 Mbit/sec, Wi-Fi 802.11ac 2×2, Bluetooth 4.0|
|Weight||4.15 kg (9.15 lbs)|