Alienware M14x review: Alienware M14x

To be honest, no one expects great battery life from a gaming laptop. but when they start getting smaller in size, those expectations change. Add to that Intel's currently great reputation for helping extend battery life with its new CPUs, and you can't blame us for expecting a little more. And a little more is exactly what you get, with the M14x running for 2 hours 42 minutes in our video-playback battery drain test. That's about an hour longer than the most recent 15-inch Alienware laptop we tested, but almost 90 minutes less than parent company Dell's current XPS 15 laptop.

Alienware provides an industry-standard one-year parts and labor warranty with the system, which includes in-home service. Support is accessible via a 24-7 toll-free phone line, an online knowledge base, and driver downloads.

Multimedia multitasking test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Adobe Photoshop CS3 image-processing test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Apple iTunes encoding test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)

Unreal Tournament 3 (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,280x800, 0X AA, 0X AF  
1,440x900, 4X AA, 8X AF  
Alienware M14x
291.6 
240.4 
Alienware M15x
165.7 
128.9 
Toshiba Satellite M645-S4118X @ 1280x768 / 1366x768
155.6 
140.9 
Dell XPS L502X
106.2 
81.5 

Video-playback battery drain test (in minutes)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)

Find out more about how we test laptops.

System configurations:

Alienware M14x
Windows 7 Ultimate (64-bit); 2.3GHz Intel Core i7-2820M; 8GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,600MHz; 3GB Nvidia GeForce GT 555M + 64MB (Dedicated) Intel HD 3000; 720GB Seagate 7,200rpm

Alienware M15X
Windows 7 Ultimate (64-bit); 2.0GHz Intel Core i7-920XM; 4GB DDR3 SDRAM 1,066MHz; 1GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 260M; 500GB Seagate 7,200rpm

Toshiba Satellite M645-S4118X
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 2.3GHz Intel Core i5-2410M; 6,144MB DDR3 SDRAM 1,333MHz; 1GB Nvidia GeForce GT 415M + 64MB (Dedicated) Intel GMA HD; 640GB Toshiba 5,400rpm

Dell XPS L502X
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 2.0GHz Intel Core i7-2630QM; 8,192MB DDR3 SDRAM 667MHz; 2GB NVIDIA GeForce 540M + 64MB(Dedicated) Intel GMA HD; 750GB Western Digital 7,200rpm

Apple MacBook Pro - Core i7 Sandy Bridge 13.3-inch 2.7GHz
OS X 10.6.6 Snow Leopard; 2.7GHz Intel Core i7; 4,096MB DDR3 SDRAM 1,066MHz; 384MB (Shared) Intel HD 3000; 500GB Hitachi 5,400rpm

What you'll pay

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