Overall - a very good machine - happy with my purchase.
I orded the machine fully loaded - 24GB of memory and three hard drives (in a raid 0 config for performance). However, when the machine arrived it did not have the hard drives configured in a Raid Array. I figured I was going to have to wipe the machine and start from scratch. However, after a call to their support - they took me through a quick process where the drives where reconfigured into a raid array - and I got to keep all the data on the operating system drive! (other drives were empty). This was incredible - and very easy to do. No lost time configuring a raid array and loading the op sys!
Pros: 1. Support for this product is VERY good! 2. The performance on this machine is excellent! It is fast and responsive. 3. The keyboard is good to type on - and the added function keys on the side are useful 4. It doesn't come with a lot of bloatware on it. 5. The screen is big, crisp and clear. Movies look incredible on the display. The 18 inches really make a difference3:45 PM 16/11/2012a 6. I find it a joy to play with.
Cons: 1. The only real downside of it - is the lighting areas on the keyboard, etc. They are very good with the exception of the two areas that you cannot be turned off. That would be the area around the track pad and the system information above the keyboard. Now I can understand not wanting to let the user turn off the lighting for the system area - but not letting me turn it off for the touch pad is really annoying - especially since it is a little (lot?) brighter than the keyboard. A call to support confirmed that this is the case - that it cannot be turned off at this time.
2. It is big and heavy (hey I have three hard drives in it). But it not any heavier than I expected - and I am willing to have a little more weight for the added performance and features. Not really a con - just an observation.
Summary: Am I happy with the purchase - Yes Would I recommend it to others - Yes Would I purchase it again - Yes
The issue with the lighing around the Touch Pad is annoying - but a minor thing in the scheme of things.
Pros:software development, general use, some gaming
Overall the laptop works great. A little heavy so the m17 might have been a little better choice if you are moving it around much. Only complaint so far is the speakers dont seem to be the best. The left front speaker seems to overpower the right front speaker by a long shot. I am not sure if this is normal or if I have a bad right front speaker.
Nothing to complain, except overheating issue, playing FarCry3, Crysis or Civ5 temperatures are easily reaching 80C +. During summer even more, I recorded few times 100C. After two services which helps shortly, laptop is overheating again after as short as a few weeks. Cooling pad helps, cleaning fans helps but did not solved the problem. But, anyway it is great machine. Just be aware about cooling problem, at least in my configuration (or equivalent as mine is ancient).
Extremely well built, with No Lack in performance!! Built with 32GB or Ram and dual SLI Nvidia Geforce GTX 680M gaming cards ...who could go wrong! Oh and don't forget the 18.4 inch 1080P Display...WOW talk about clear!
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Review 5 for Alienware M18X R2
I use my PC for:Everyday Computing
PostedMay 16, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
Great computer for overall use -- home,work, gaming, etc.
This has to be the best high end gaming laptop I have ever owned. At first I was leary of spending as much as I did on a laptop for gaming. Now that I have had it for a few months I can say with all honesty that it was very well worth the money. The graphics in games like Skyrim are simply astonishing. The color depth and all around graphic capability can't be beat.
I recently bought an MX18 pretty much fully loaded. The ordering process was easy and it arrived 3 days early. I've had the computer for about a month and couldn't be happier with it. I'd buy another Alienware in a minute. I read many reviews that questioned the value of Alienware but I have to say I didn't find anything else with close to the same specs for the same price. My advice to you is make your life easy, buy Alienware - you won't regret it.
Pros:screaming fast, great screen
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Review 9 for Alienware M18X R2
(Kiev, Kyiv city, Ukraine)
I use my PC for:Design/graphics
A Masterpiece from the Outer Space ;)
PostedMay 5, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
I am 3d character animator, besides my work in the office I also participate in different projects as a freelancer. Last years I began to feel that average usual 'good laptop' is not good enough for me, (I also own Dell XPS17) as animation tasks become more and more complex, number of polygons increase and 3d software becomes 'heavier'. Yes, you can say - 'hey, man, buy a desktop, laptops are not meant to be professionally used with 3d graphics!' But due to several reasons desktop is not suitable for me, it is LAPTOP I needed. It is great that now I can have all the power or professional desktop in form-factor of a laptop! (Well... a laptop with almost 6 kilo of weight, but STILL it is a LAPTOP ;)) I got Alienware m18x r2 with Intel® Core™ i7-3840QM, Windows® 7 Ultimate, 32GB (4 X 8GB) Dual Channel DDR3 at 1600MHz, 256GB SSD SATA 6Gb/s, Dual 2GB GDDR5 AMD Radeon™ HD 7970M. This machine is a real crazy beast, it tears apart any complex task I throw at it. My animation work process was never flowing as smooth and as fast as now. So there is only one thing I can say: If you can afford it - buy it! That's it. Really.
I upgraded to the M18x R2 from an M17x that I had for 3 years prior.
I use my Alienware exclusively in a business situation where I commonly model large 3D spatial datasets (with hundreds of thousands of data points and 3D model facets), work with high resolution satellite imagery files up to 2Gb in a GIS environment, produce high resolution large-scale maps and plans, and also produce large high resolution graphic designs in Photoshop with PSD file sizes up to 1.5Gb in size.
When purchasing a computer, I've seen again and again over the years businesses buy a computer at the cheapest possible price then within a year or so begin to complain more and more about how it's getting slow and useless - mainly due to being overloaded with dozens of new memory-hungry programs and having the increasing requirement for program multi-tasking.
No problems with this at all with my M18x R2 (or my old M17x R1 for that matter either).
When purchasing the system I customised my M18x to the highest specs so that I wouldn't have to worry about memory or graphic time-lag problems.
Whilst upspeccing the Alienware to the max does add to the base system price, the business benefits were astounding for me! The extra cost of customising my M18x to the top specs was repaid in productivity benefits probably within a month of purchase, and it continues to benefit my business every day.
Whilst the Nebula Red M18x does raise the occasional eyebrow at the boardroom table, all my business clients know that I can work with massive amounts of data and graphics to produce high quality work on time every time!
I highly recommend the M18x, and I don't consider the extra couple of kilos in weight to be an issue as the system benefits far outweigh this.
The specs of my M18x system are: M18x R2, Win7 64-Bit Ultimate, 3rd Gen Intel i7-3940XM, 3.00GHz (up to 3.90GHz with turbo boost), 4Core, 32Gb RAM, 64Gb total virtual memory, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680M graphics (x2), 2Tb HDD (2x1Tb in Raid0).
This M18X R2 sure is an impressive machine. Right out of the box will only take a few minutes to set up. All Hardware and software works perfect. A few updates to GPUs and Network cards may be needed but are not difficult to apply. Tec support thus far has been excellent, no complains there. To provide an idea of the power of this machine It can run Crysis 3 maxed out. It is stylish and a powerhouse for gaming!
Pros:amazing all around!
Cons:price but its to be expected due to awesome specs
It is now about a year since I bought my computer after being so frustrated with the Asus I had. I would tell anyone who likes to game and likes to use their computer for whatever other uses, that you will never find any computer - desktop or laptop - better than this one. I added some extras and spent about $4,000.00 to get what I really wanted. It may sound like a lot, but let me tell you, this computer is fast, gameplay on it blows everyone away when they see it. No lagging, no crashing. I have no telling how many mods on Skyrim and never have problems like everyone else complains about. I could go on and on about this computer, but I listen to music on it, have family photos on it, but really game on it the most. The smartest purchase I have made was investing in an Alienware computer that is geared to last a long time. I have no regrets and would advise anyone that is tired of being aggravated by their computer to choose Alienware.
Cons:have not had any
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Review 13 for Alienware M18X R2
(Flag Pond, TN 37657, USA)
Duration of Product Use:Less than a month
Level of Expertise:Expert
I use my PC for:High Performance
PostedMarch 12, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
I have used Macs for most of my career but always keep a PC around for the many benefits offered that are generally not available on the Mac. This is especially true in Astrnomy . Alienware laptops seem to last me almost double the time I get from a basic systems, and are running my software software at reasonable speeds several years after purchase. Of course getting the newest model, is always a pleasure when one sees the capabilities of the latest and greatests. The M18 is no exception and it's performance is well worth the price.
Pros:reliable, smooth operation
Cons:a little heavy on battery power
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Review 14 for Alienware M18X R2
I use my PC for:Everyday Computing
Pretty disappointed to be honest.
PostedMarch 9, 2013
No, I do not recommend this product.
I have had my laptop for nearly 3 months now and I really am very disappointed with it.
I have had trouble with laptops ever since my first one years ago. I don't know why, I don't download anything dodgey or things like that and always have top anti-virus software. I literally surf the web and play games mainly.
What always happens is the performance get's slower and slower over a period of months, then little niggly problems start to pop up and then after 6-12 months I end with the blue screen of death and have to keep sending it in to get fixed or buy a new one. The performance is still never the same even after getting them mended either.
I even went over to the dark side for a bit and got myself a Macbook, it was actually almost flawless for nearly a year then suddenly, same thing started to happen. I may one of the first people i the world to get a Macbook blue screen of death! It actually happened!
I'd heard about Alienware for ages and finally decided, after my Macbook failure, to splash out good and proper on a serious piece of kit that surely couldn't fail me. Yet, here I sit, only 3 months on, typing away on nearly two thousand pounds worth of laptop and already suffering from the same problems, in record time no less!
Performance has declined tremendously, there is a lot of watching that spinning blue thing while waiting, for what feels like hours, for this high performance machine to complete the simplest of tasks. Video play back is jerky 95% of the time, games can be slow and jerky too. Booting up and then signing in takes an absolute age. It basically feels and acts exactly the same as a four/five hundred thing I could pick up at PC World except it weighs more than a metric tonne and looks pretty. And that is it's only redeeming feature, it looks nice, but for the experience I have had it's like the computer equivalent of putting a Lamborghini body kit on a Peugeot 206.
I'm not what you would call "tech savvy" so I can't properly understand everything that is in this machine, I'm just commenting on the experience I have personally had with it and, like I have said, it really feels no different to any normal laptop I've had in the past. Just waiting for the inevitable, full-on crash now, better start backing up!
Response from Dell.comBy DonaldDforDell, Customer Reviews, March 19, 2013
I am sorry to hear you are having so many issues with different systems. The best thing I can recommend, is look at the pattern. If every system you have does the same slow down and crash, it is either virus, or downloaded software. Especially "freeware", games you can download and play for free. These programs come with additional, little pieces of software. These programs can be very invasive and damaging to your OS. Too many running in the background can use up your memory and crash the system. I am going to recommend you reach out on the Alieware forums. There are many technical users out there that will be willing to help. (If you call Dell, we will call this software support and charge you) Checkout the Alienware owner's forum here:
first of all i'll start with the only problem ive had with my m18x so for and its not really a problem its just a QC thing the four screws that hold the bottom cover on, on two of them they were put in too tight and split the plastic tabs, but like i say not really a problem more of an observation, actually i was wrong there is one other thing, you have to be careful which hdmi cable you use as if its a chunky connector it might not work on the output side but works fine on the input side so a small error when building maybe, or i should stop buying cheapy cables :)
Now the good stuff for starters the laptop is stunning to look at the design of the computer is perfect. the keyboard is very nice to use especially when compared to some of the others on the market. the screen is B E A UTIFUL to look at, it does get some glare but so do all glossy screens and the sacrifice is worth it.
As far as playing games ive not found one yet that i cant play on full graphics even those that dont support crossfire have no problems on this beasty. and the laptops features all together make for a better gaming experience for me. the great cpu and gpu create the best image for the screen and then the sound system this thing has is great ive never heard sound like it on a laptop before, infact i'd go as far as saying its better than some of the speaker sets you can get for pc.
all in all im sure you can tell im happy with my purchase and i could go on for hours singing its praises. however id like to take a moment to compliment the service i have received from dell. before purchasing this laptop the only worry i had was all the reviews on poor service that dell gives, i think its a case of getting the right person, and i certainly did they helped me from start to finish with my pruchase no problems. I'd also like to mention that for me my expected delivery was 4 weeks and i got mine in 2 very impressive.
and to all those of you thinking about getting one i would SERIOUSLY recommend getting the m18x
Pros:fx lights, hd screen, sound, design, number of ports, packaged software, graphics, processor, upgradable
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Review 16 for Alienware M18X R2
(Owensboro, KY, USA)
Duration of Product Use:3-4 months
Level of Expertise:Good
I use my PC for:Hardcore Gaming
What a Beast!
PostedFebruary 18, 2013
Yes, I would recommend this product
First off, I want to say that I've come to use this for a multitude of activities other than gaming. I find myself using it for pretty much anything from casually surfing the web, to watching BR movies.
The game I'm going to talk about in this review is Skyrim. I originally bought a copy of this game for my PS3. It was a painful experience over the 300+ hours I put into that game on the between the console freezing, to corrupted saves, to the DLC not being available. So Skyrim is pretty much the reason I started looking into a more mobile gaming platform that could handle a massive game.
Enter the m18x. I wanted a PC that would be able to handle pretty much anything as far as playing games went, so I chose every top option I could when ordering this. I bought Skyrim and it's DLC from the preinstalled Steam Store. There is just a night/day difference between playing on a PS3 and using this laptop. Second-long to completely absent load times, no freezing, no glitching up graphics. It surpasses my wants and expectations as a gamer. I also downloaded Skyrim on my 360 later on and I've put about 50 hours into so far with the gaming freezing up on me twice already and I'm instantly reminded of the long load times. I love the m18x and how it performs.
The customization on the backlights is pretty cool, but not a necessity of course. I use a controller when gaming so I don't need the backlit keyboard but I suppose it would be great for others who do use the keyboard. While the trackpad is spacious and there are settings to adjust, I still find it interfering when typing so I use an external mouse. The operations buttons along the top row are also nice, but I'd probably prefer touch-sensitive ones vs pressing firmly on these. With the row being at the top of the keyboard, even if they were touch-sensitive, it wouldn't interfere when using the laptop.
The speakers could be a bit louder. When gaming or watching a movie, I find I prefer to use headphones or earbuds because the speakers just aren't loud enough if there is background noise in the same room. If you're in a quiet room, the sound is great. I hooked up the laptop to a resort TV and while no sound was coming through the TV speakers, I was still able to hear just fine from the laptop's across the quiet room.
Weight. So this machine is just shy of 15lbs on a bathroom weight scale. It's tiresome moving it. I suppose this technically isn't a laptop, but a portable desktop. It does get to be a hassle moving it and the charger from room to room. With the TSA friendly backpack from Alienware, I was able to take my m18x with me to Hawaii, but it was fatiguing carrying that weight in the terminals.
I will mention on here that the m18x gets VERY hot when in use. A chillmat is a necessity with this laptop or you're going to burn your lap or risk overheating it. You probably won't find a big enough chillmat for it. This site has a Targus one mentioned that still is too small for the m18x.
The primary reason I selected the M18 R2 over competitors were:
1) Nvidia 680m Sli (some have it, but most don't). 2) HDMI in - this is a big bonus since I have a number of devices that output HDMI. Now when I am on the road / water I have an excellent platform for all of my visual needs. HandyCam, Camera, Tablets and even some console(s). 3) The programmable gaming keys, I use these for macros in various programs and find them to be a big time saver. 4) Keyboard lighting, I do NOT use the fancy effects, but the brighter solid colors are great for working in the dark, something I tend to do frequently. 5) Internal SATA capacity, Having a notebook with 4 Sata Drives is great. I have the mSata as a boot drive, a very large Raid0 drive on the Sata 3 ports and an enterprise SSD drive for reliable storage. Bottom line my drive capacity is excellent. 6) Card Reader, in addition to the main storage the SDXC slot provides an easy 64 gb (plus) removable capability for my music / picture libraries. 7) Did I mention 90 plus fps in many games <grins> 8) Warranty, I have had great luck overall with electronic devices. But, the assurance of a 4 year warranty is comforting. 9) Sound .. I have some high end headphones that I like to use with an external amp, the optical digital output is a big bonus here. 10) I regularly use 3 screens when developing software. Having the HDMI (out), DVI (out) and Laptop screen allows me to completely replace my desktop in this regard. I only wish Nvidia Surround was supported.
In addition, once the laptop arrived I came to appreciate the build quality, the screen and my overall appreciation of a high quality instrument.
I purchased my M18x because I had bought from Alienware before. I was impressed with my old M17, and it lasted me for quite sometime. Apparently, Dell's buyout changed that - I've had my new Alienware M18x for just two months now, and I've managed to get the following:
-Three (!) blue screen errors -One catastrophic system error while attempting system restore -One instance of failed hardware recognition (no audio devices detected upon startup) -One failed video card error -Several game crashes
The system itself looks cool, and when it actually runs the way I want it to, it runs well (two current gen games on high setting simultaneously without issue). But this is a rarity.
Overall, it's not the *worst* system ever. But for the price tag they put on it, you're so far from getting your money's worth, it's not even funny.
Response from Dell.comBy AnthonyAforDell, Customer Reviews, February 26, 2013
I am sorry to hear that you had a poor experience with the Dell Alienware M18x. It is unusual that customers report having the types of concerns you have shared.
We value your feedback and would like the opportunity to try and correct the issues.
Please join the Alienware Dell Community Forum (http://dell.to/KZBaoK) so we and other Alienware users can assist you in troubleshooting. You can also email us at AWCC-Resolution_Experts@Dell.com
I am confident that we can help improve this experience.
15 yrs IT/Server experience and know my way around hardware/software. This is close to a portable server with great graphics, which is why I opted for it over an elitebook, but I've had more issues with software/hardware than I care to expand on.
Audio has been an issue since day 1, with Bios flashing or reboots fixing the issue temporarily. Now I have audio issues crashing RDP sessions when sound plays through after having worked yesterday and no changes. Using all correct/recommended drivers. Web cam also decides it doesn't want to work sometimes. I'm tired of flashing my bios and not being able to showoff a system that should impress people, not have them ask me why I bought something so broken...
I've tried different drives, OS's, etc, yet issues still arise. Just as I think it's resolved, something else occurs.
For the price of this laptop, it should have been flawless. I've had less issues with cheaper laptops. Dell has let Alienware go downhill big time while riding the name and I regret this purchase; I could've built a gaming rig and gotten a laptop for the same price as this. Emailing customer support is a waste of time as no one replies and phone calls are required for support; some of us don't want to deal with phone calls after being on the phone a good bit of the day.
Issues definitely outweigh perks of this system and after plenty of research to troubleshoot, many people experience issues with this system.
Would highly recommend if it worked all the time, but the headaches have made this a very bad buy from my perspective.
Pros:work, general use, Gaming
Response from Dell.comBy JohnBforDell, Customer Reviews, March 11, 2013
Very sorry to hear about all of the issues you have been having with your Alienware M18x. Use the information below to contact us. The team members below will get you taken care of. Please reach out to our Dell Support Team at:
• Dell Community Forums – New to the Community: http://dell.to/GY65Xz • You can contact our Dell Cares Team on Twitter (@DellCares): http://bit.ly/Hhh2SQ • If you don’t have a Twitter account, you can also go to Dell’s Facebook Support Form: http://bit.ly/HlJ9LZ A Facebook account is not required to use this form. You will be asked to provide your Name, service tag, email address and a brief description of the issue.