Alienware AW17R3-4175SLV Gaming Laptop Review

December 30, 2015
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If you have a knack for gaming, I have both good and bad news for you. The bad news is, you must pay quite a lot for your computer. But the good news is, if you have that extra money you’ll surely get a fast enough laptop to keep smooth frame rates on any game. Here’s Alienware AW17R3-4175SLV, a candidate for a hardcore gamer…


A laptop this pricey mostly has good sides only. To begin with, the processor is stellar, a quad-core Intel Core i7-6700HQ with 2.6GHz clock frequency and 3.5GHz turbo speed. It’s extremely fast for a notebook processor, receiving over 8000 points in CPU Mark – consider that average laptops often dwell in the range of 4000-5000. If there is a bottleneck in this laptop, it won’t certainly be the processor.

Alienware AW17R3-4175SLV features 16GB memory, and that’s the DDR4 2133MHz type. Two 8GB sticks are included. You should be able to up the memory to 32 gigabytes if you wanted since there are 16GB DDR4 sticks available. But don’t rush with that, the current sixteen gigabytes should suffice even for the hardcore gamers.

The storage option is excellent for anybody. There’s a 256GB M.2 SSD and a terabyte 7200RPM hard drive installed. A nice combo, offers you a lot of storage and performance at the same time. As far as I know, the operating system Windows 10 Home (64-bit) is loaded on the SSD.

Gaming in nutshell

You don’t need to worry about this laptop dropping FPS or lagging games. How do I know that? Well, there’s a high-end GeForce GTX 970M with 3GB GDDR5 speeding things up. It’s good for running all games (as of the beginning of 2016) using high/maximum settings and 1080p. Some examples of what you can expect on high and Full HD are: GTA 5 +60FPS, The Witcher +40FPS, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 +60FPS.

Connections, ports

Alienware AW17R3-4175SLV includes three USB 3.0 ports, that’s enough to connect, say, gaming keyboard and mouse. In addition, there’s the new USB Type-C port with upgraded transfer rates and support for various standards such as Thunderbolt 3. There’s one dedicated video output HDMI for hooking up a bigger monitor.

Networking interfaces are nothing to complain about, there’s Gigabit RJ-45 port and 802.11ac WiFi adapter. Bluetooth devices work with this laptop, too.

One thing to keep in mind, there’s no optical drive installed. A workaround is to get an external one – that will allow you to install games and programs from discs. Might be you also find the SD card slot useful.

A quality 2.0MP Full HD webcam is available, it’s no problem to shoot HQ videos or chat with your buddies using that.

Miscellaneous things

Alienware AW17R3-4175SLV has a nice display, a 17.3 inches one with 1920×1080 maximum resolution. Touch is not supported, but I don’t think gamers are sad about that anyway.

These gaming notebooks often have a beefy battery. With the 8-cell 92Wh unit this Alienware is not different, but unfortunately it’s not going to last more than 1.5-2 hours when gaming. If you’re just surfing the web the duration will however be around 4 hours.

Naturally, the keyboard is backlit here.

Summing it up

Well, now I’ve told you about Alienware AW17R3-4175SLV and as you probably noticed, there were only good things to be said. So is it really a flawless computer, or is there a catch somewhere? I’d say the “catch” is the price: Not often do laptops cost this much. You can get four average laptops for the same price. But that surely doesn’t help if it’s indeed one high-performance unit you require. And that’s exactly what this Alienware is all about. It’s going to run any game you have with smooth and clean FPS no matter what settings you use. If that’s your cup of tea, consider taking a closer look at this rig.

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