Gaming Performance

While the Radeon HD 6970M is essentially a known quantity, up until this point the Clevo P150HM has seemed unusually fast in our synthetic benchmarks. This could be due to any number of factors; the cooling system in the P150HM may be allowing the i7-2720QM to keep higher clocks for longer, or the hybrid graphics solution in the Alienware M17x R3 may be taking a toll on performance.

In most cases in our "High" testing suite, the M17x R3 hangs with the Clevo P150HM while trading blows with the GTX 485M in the Clevo P170HM. Individuals interested in what kind of performance to expect from the entry-level Radeon HD 6870M configuration option for the M17x R3 would do well to check out the ASUS G73Jh results, highlighted in red, as the 6870M is basically a rebadged Mobility Radeon HD 5870. The biggest takeaway is that, at least at our "High" preset, every game is playable at 1080p on the M17x R3.

Adding anti-aliasing to the mix and jacking settings up further causes certain games to fall off, but there aren't any single-GPU options that are going to make STALKER or Metro 2033 playable at these settings. The 6970Ms and GTX 485M mostly cluster together. Net result: the M17x R3 competes among the fastest single-GPU gaming notebooks on the market. Not only that, but upgrading it to the 6970M yields a marked improvement over the alternative GTX 460M and HD 6870M.

That said, while the GTX 485M isn't available in the M17x R3 and doesn't make a compelling case on its own for gameplay performance, users who enjoy PhysX or need CUDA support (as in the case of Adobe Premiere Pro CS5) are going to feel a little bit shut out that their best option is the GeForce GTX 460M, which is clearly in a different class from the Radeon HD 6970M. It's oftentimes only a bit over half as fast as the 6970M, and the fact that it costs extra over the HD 6870M makes it a dubious proposition. Bottom line: if you want gaming performance at no expense, go for the HD 6970M. If you're on a budget, the HD 6870M will serve you well. The only reason you should configure the M17x R3 with the GTX 460M is if you explicitly need the features NVIDIA offers.

Application and Futuremark Performance Heat, Noise, and Battery Life


View All Comments

  • TEAMSWITCHER - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    "Price as configured: $2,503" - Holy Shit!

    You can get a Apple 17" MacBook Pro for less. And the MacBook Pro will have a more pixels, be made of metal not plastic, and still weigh three pounds less. Who would buy this thing?
  • chinedooo - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    will have more pixels? what do you mean both have 1080p screens? And the M17x is way more powerful than the macbook pro regardless of configuration. Reply
  • Brad4 - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    The 17" macbook pro uses a 16x10 resolution (1920 x 1200), which is much better for productivity.

    This dell product, and all of dell's products, use a 16x9 resolution (1920 x 1080).
  • The0ne - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    There aren't many laptops that give 16x10 nowadays and that is a sad thing. Thankfully I still have my R2 with that resolution, despite what you've claimed as Dell using 16x9 on all products. It is great for productivity and I would not trade that in since I also use it for business and need the extra space.

    And while I ponder why anyone would hate a company who's sole slogan is to be "Alien" in its product and statements, the MBP really can't beat the R3 in gaming. Don't believe me, go look at charts!
  • esSJae - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    Cheaper? Configured comparably as possible, the 14" Macboo Pro is $2,949.00
    on Apple's site.
    And the MBP has a significantly slower CPU and GPU and only 1 HDD.

    I own both an M17r2 and a 13" MBP. They are designed for completely different tasks and users.
  • Shinya - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    But the macbook pro would get stomped into the ground spec wise and all other things associated with owning apple computers. Not to mention it gives the image of being insecure just from owning an apple product. Only hipsters and macf**s would be deterred from purchasing something this powerful because of the way it looked or because *waaaa im a huge wuss* weight.

    Thinkpads are the greatest looking things in the world, but they get more done in the REAL world than any apple toy
  • Shinya - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    Thinkpads aren't* Reply
  • scook9 - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    You ignorance comes out in every post you make

    It becomes blatantly obvious you have never bought or even looked at high end laptops - $2500 is cheap for a top tier laptop.

    I will ignore the post on looks, that is purely opinion and you are entitled to yours - even if many disagree. If it is not for you, get the painfully bland Clevo

    Your 2nd post however about price makes me laugh.....Comparing this to a MBP 17" is a joke due to the hardware and cooling involved - MBPs are some of the hottest running laptops on the market - period. Your remark regarding resolution is moot as apple is the ONLY company still offering 16:10 panels afaik (sadly - I miss WUXGA). The outer shell of the M17x R3 is in fact metal - not as thick as the R1 and R2 or M18x but still metal

    Call me a fanboy if you want but I actually have an Alienware (the newer M18x) and know that the build quality is above anything else on the market - just like the reviewer here mentioned
  • TEAMSWITCHER - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    Please - I have owned nothing but high end laptops! This thing is hamburger sold at price of steak. The 17" MacBook Pro may run hotter, but it will crush this techno frumpy laptop in battery life.

    And they are at least a couple of hundred dollars less.

    I'd buy the 17" Apple laptop in a second, then take the savings and get an SSD. Overall, it would blow this fat, ugly, juvenile, crappy PC laptop off the face of the earth. And no one would miss it!

    Paying this kind of money and getting a bouncy keyboard should be illegal!
  • Friendly0Fire - Monday, June 20, 2011 - link

    And then you'll try to GAME on your Mac and you'll suddenly understand what's this business about "GPUs" and "CPUs" and all those other fancy acronyms.

    If you can't understand this is a gaming laptop/desktop replacement, you have no business buying one anyways.

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