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The new Alienware m15 is better with AMD Ryzen CPU

Alienware m15 R5
Alienware m15 R5
Alienware offers its new m15 either with AMD Ryzen or Intel Tiger Lake-H processors, but the AMD model offers a better price-performance ratio and the more efficient CPU.

Alienware expands its portfolio of gaming laptops and the new m15, which starts at 1750 Euros with the RTX 3060, is not the flagship device anymore. This position is now taken by the new Alienware x15, which is extremely thin and only available with Intel CPUs starting at 2199 Euros.

The new m15 is either available as R5 with AMD Ryzen processor or as R6 with Intel Tiger Lake-H chips. The new case uses the familiar design language, but the overall design appears a bit more rounded. However, we are not completely happy with the quality, especially the creaking noises from the lid affect the quality impression. You also have to accept reduced number of ports, because there are no more USB ports on the left side, the micro-SD reader has been removed and the Graphics Amplifier port seems to be gone completely as well. The AMD model does not support Thunderbolt, either.

Considering the performance, the AMD model is the better choice. While the base model of the m15 R6 only gets the 6-core processor Core i5-11400H, the m15 R5 comes with the Ryzen 7 5800H with 8 cores by default. It can easily keep up with the more expensive Core i7-11800H (+100 Euros) and even consumes less power. The gaming performance of the base model is very good with the fast GeForce RTX 3060 (125W TGP) and the default matte 1080p screen with fast response times and a refresh rate of 165 Hz. Even demanding titles like Cyberpunk 2077 runs smoothly at the highest settings. The AMD model is also available with the more powerful RTX 3070, but it makes most sense with the optional QHD panel (240 Hz, G-Sync). If you need even more GPU performance, you are forced to get the Intel model, which is available with a RTX 3080 and a fast 360 Hz panel (FHD).

The vapor chamber cooling solution works well and the fans are not too loud while gaming. You have to deal with high chassis temperatures at the rear of the base unit, but the performance of the components is stable and there is no performance drop in long gaming sessions. The standard keyboard is also very good, but you can even get a mechanical keyboard (+100 Euros) if you want more feedback. It is very good, but you also have to consider that the mechanical keys are much louder compared to the standard keyboard.

Please see our full review for more information on the Alienware m15 R5 Ryzen Edition.

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Andreas Osthoff, 2021-06-25 (Update: 2021-06-25)