If the Alienware 15 R3 is a tank, its 17-inch large brother, the Alienware 17 R4, is extra of an AT-AT, stomping on every part in its path. 

The 17-inch mannequin begins at $1,350 (£1,500, AU$2,800), which is just $100 greater than the 15-inch’s base value, however that is with a Core i7 as an alternative of Core i5 — until the marginally smaller measurement actually issues to you, the 17-inch is definitely a greater worth.

Our check configuration prices about $2,750, which looks as if a very good value given the parts. The closest configuration in the UK is £2,757, with a unique model of Killer wi-fi; costs begin at £1,500. In Australia, it’s AU$5,000 with alternate options beginning at AU$2,800.

There are numerous show choices: a fundamental 1,920×1,080 60Hz IPS 300-nit panel, the identical however G-Sync enabled, a QHD (2,560×1,440) 120Hz TN 400-nit G-sync with Tobii Eye-tracking, and a UHD (Three,840×2,160) 300-nit IPS panel with Tobii. You may also go for an AMD Radeon RX 570 GPU. 

4K in all probability seems to be fairly good on this technique, although I feel 2,560×1,440 is a pleasant value/efficiency compromise. It really works out to 173 pixels per inch, which makes it sharp sufficient for all types of labor, and a 120Hz refresh plus G-Sync compatibility, which is true for all types of play. You’ll be able to all the time connect a giant, high-resolution show to it, and should you do it through the Mini DisplayPort, you will get G-Sync assist. 

Specs

Alienware 17 (R4, 2017)
Value as reviewed $2,925, AU$5,000
Show measurement/decision 17.Three-inch 2,560×1,440 show
PC CPU 2.9GHz Intel Core i7-7820HK (OC to 4GHz)
PC Reminiscence 16GB DDR4 SDRAM 2,400MHz
Graphics 8GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080
Storage 1TB HDD+512GB SSD
Ports 1 x Ethernet; 1 x Mini DisplayPort (1 x G-Sync); 1 x HDMI; 2 x USB-C (1 x Thunderbolt/DP); 2 x USB Three Sort-A (1 charging); mic; headphone/audio; devoted eGPU connection
Networking Killer E2500 Gigabit Ethernet, Killer Wi-fi 1535, Bluetooth four.1
Working system Home windows 10 House (64-bit)
Weight 9.7 lbs/four.4kg

Plus, the battery life is not nice with this panel; it makes use of the identical measurement battery because the Alienware 15 we examined (99 Whr) however it’s driving a ton extra energy and an even bigger display for a miserable Three.2-hour life on our assessments. 4K would probably tank that much more. At the very least there’s an choice with 4K and G-Sync (although solely 60Hz) on the higher-end fashions.

Our check system got here with the TN+WVA show, which seems to be a reasonably good compromise if you need velocity and do not care about colour accuracy. On this case “WVA” stands for “broad viewing angle,” to not be confused with VA (Vertical Alignment) panels. Viewing angle is healthier than an inexpensive TN panel, however I nonetheless would not name it “broad.” 

Its colour gamut measures 90 % of sRGB, worse than the same HD panel within the AW15. In apply, video games look fantastic and pop sufficiently. It hits a peak luminance of about 458 nits — typical is nearer to about 320 nits until you permit it on the default 100 % brightness. There’s little ghosting, and at 120Hz video games run fairly easily. When urgent the system, I might see the distinction between G-Sync enabled and disabled utilizing the Metro Final Gentle benchmark — some tearing when working at 60-70fps and 100fps with the refresh fee at 120Hz, for instance. Nothing uncommon, although.

If you’d like higher colour you may all the time hook it as much as an exterior monitor. You’ll be able to join a show through USB-C/Thunderbolt, however that is not on the GPU bus; it could solely run off the Intel HD 630 built-in graphics, so no G-Sync. It’s a must to use the Mini DisplayPort for that.

Tobii or not Tobii?

One of many predominant options (other than the dimensions) that differentiates the AW17 from the AW15 is the Tobii Eye-Monitoring constructed into among the higher-end monitor choices on the AW17. I am not an enormous fan of the attention monitoring; it jogs my memory of Canon’s eye-controlled focus launched to its movie cameras within the ’90s. You discovered it both invaluable or in the best way. 

Tobii’s system at present works with about 90 video games, not an enormous quantity given the breadth and number of video games that exist. It consists of two sensors beneath the display and software program.

In principle, it ought to really feel extra pure than different types of recreation navigation, however I discover my eyes wander across the display an excessive amount of, and if I begin heading a technique with the mouse whereas I briefly look elsewhere, it simply will get complicated. Aiming did not appear any faster or extra exact, both, at the very least in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided — and that is the place I would like it most. 

It incorporates a function known as Gaze Hint, the place a blob zips across the display to point the place you are trying, and it was type of enjoyable for five minutes earlier than I began to get a headache. That is actually extra for working with various, hands-free operation in accessibility instances than for  video games, although I might see how the expertise typically may be nice in VR. Microsoft’s also working on adding support for it in Windows 10.

The system additionally works along with energy administration to wake if you stare upon it, for example. Good, however not likely that essential.

Some Greatest Purchase shops have stations arrange the place you may attempt it before you purchase should you’re on the fence. You do not have to make use of it if it comes in your system, although, and it solely prices further when upgrading from the bottom show choice to the following one up.

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