Alienware 13 R3 Notebook Review

Compact gaming miracle. While our test model of the Alienware 15 R3 had some temperature problems, we are impressed by the 13-inch system. Besides the high performance in the small chassis, we are also convinced by the brilliant OLED screen.

Even though there is a trend towards more portable notebooks with small dimensions, the choice in the range of smaller than 15 inches is still limited – at least when you are looking for a powerful gaming notebook. There are only two 14-inch laptops in our mobile Top 10 ranking (as of February), the MSI GS43VR 6RE and the 2016 model of the Razer Blade. Alienware or its parent company Dell now uses the concept of a mobile gaming system and takes it to another level with the Alienware 13 R3, the third iteration of the 13-inch gaming laptop.

The technology has changed quite considerably compared to the pre-predecessor that we reviewed back in the mid-2015. The chassis no longer uses an efficient ULV processor with a TDP of 15 watts anymore, but a conventional quad-core CPU from Intel's Kaby Lake generation with a much higher consumption of 45 watts (Core i7-7700HQ or Core i5-7300HQ). The graphics performance has also improved. Instead of the Maxwell chip GeForce GTX 960M, the graphics are now handled by a brand-new Pascal chip. Depending on the SKU you will have a choice of the GeForce GTX 1050 (2 GB GDDR5), GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (4 GB GDDR5) or GeForce GTX 1060 (6 GB GDDR5) in combination with 8-32 GB of DDR4 RAM. Games and other files can be stored on an SSD with a capacity between 180 and 1000 GB (SATA-III or PCIe/NVMe). A secondary storage device is also possible.

The definitive highlight turns out to be the high-resolution QHD display based on the OLED technology, even though it is a glossy panel due to its touch functionality. The less expensive models are equipped with "only" a Full HD IPS or HD TN panel. You can also build your own machine on Dell's website and adjust details such as the operating system (Windows 10 Home vs. Pro), the keyboard layout (German vs. English) or the Wi-Fi module (Killer 1435 vs. 1535). We will cover different options for the software and the warranty later on. The entry-level model starts from 1479 Euros (23,247,649.37 IDR).

Alienware 13 R3 (13 Series)
Processor : Intel Core i7-7700HQ 2.8 GHz (Intel Core i7)
Graphics adapter : NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop) - 6144 MB, Core: 1405 MHz

Memory : 4000 MHz, GDDR5, ForceWare 378.49, Optimus
Memory : 16384 MB , 2 x 8 GB DDR4-2400 SO-DIMM, Dual-channel, 2/2 slots in use, up to 32 GB
Display : 13.3 inch 16:9, 2560x1440 pixel 221 PPI, Touch, JJT6C_133KL05 (SDCA029), OLED, 
QHD, 60 Hz, glossy: yes
Mainboard : Intel HM175
Storage : Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPUK, 256 GB , SSD, slots: 2 x M.2 Type 2280
Weight : 2.46 kg ( = 86.77 oz / 5.42 pounds), Power Supply: 660 g ( = 23.28 oz / 1.46 pounds)
Price : 23,247,649.37 IDR


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