The Alienware series laptops have been really popular on the gaming front and the being the smallest in the series Alienware 13 has to be given some extra brownie points because of its small size which enhances the portability factor of this gaming laptop.The Alienware 13 is the smaller in size in comparison to the other Alienware laptops which include the Alienware15 and Alienware 17.
Screen Size: 13 inches
Screen Resolution: 3200 x 1800 pixels
Processor: 2.5 GHz Core i7 6500U
RAM: 16 GB DDR3L SDRAM
Hard Drive: 500GB Hybrid (8GB Cache) SATA
Video Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M with 2GB GDDR5
Series Alienware: 13 R2
Operating System: Windows 10
Item Weight: 4.6 pounds
Optical Drive Type: None
Price: Starts from $ 1,129.00
Best Buy: www.amazon.com
Amazon Ratings: 4.1/5 (56 customer reviews)
Display and Design
The design on this Alienware laptop is amazing and it looks pretty much similar to the Alienware 15 and 17 laptop cases.The chassis is visually appealing and does have a strong and sturdy built. Among the various gaming laptops, this one is very light and weighs around 2 kg which makes it join the category of “gaming on the go” since it is easily portable. The cover is made up of carbon fiber which makes the laptop light and the overall build and much better than a lot of other gaming laptops.
The display has Wide Quad Extended Graphics Array which has a resolution of 3200x 1800 pixels which is way better than the HD1080. The display is anti-glare which makes it a win-win situation for all the gamers in the team matte display. The HD1080 is usually what we expect from a quality gaming laptop but with 400 nits display the laptop has surpassed all expectations when it comes to display. The gaming just gets a lot realistic with this kind of detailing included in the laptop.
Keyboard and Touchpad
The keyboard is small compared to the other 15-inch laptops.There is no number pad as we have in the case of the large sized laptops.The keyboard is pretty impressive as it is comfortable even though it is small and the backlit key’s colors can be customized with a software installed on the laptop. I really liked the keyboard and the way the keys felt when you typed on them, the best part being it is much comfortable to type something because of less travel on the keyboard.
The arrow keys are really comfortable while gaming as they are sturdy and not flimsy which might help in the long run.The touch-pad is beautiful if you add up the lighting effect in it, apart from being visually appealing there is a huge room for the touch which makes it pretty comfortable to use.There are a few downsides to the touch-pad which include few gestures being difficult to track, however, this problem was reported only in a few laptops and is mainly considered as a defect in few of the manufactured pieces.
Audio and Webcam
The audio in this laptop is powered by Klipsch certified speakers and software provided by Sound Blaster. The audio is loud so for an increase in volume you may have to sacrifice the audio quality, however with some adjustments in the software you can minimize that effect.The audio quality was really impressive in all the Alienware laptops and this laptop here continues to impress although not to the same level as the others.
This laptop has a 2MP webcam and can be used for HD quality video recordings, Skype, and video chatting. It is a nice quality webcam and quality is much better than most of the gaming laptops.
Gaming and Graphics
The GPU is powered with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M which is a great graphics card, to begin with for moderate gamers. It makes all the games playable in the low to medium settings and the low graphics demanding games like Fifa 16 and Tomb Raider 2013 will play easily on the high settings, however there might be a little trouble when it comes to graphics demanding games like The Witcher 3, GTA 5, etc in which case the graphics might need to drop down to the low or medium settings.
The gaming experience will be great for a moderate gamer, however, if you want to game on the ultra settings using the display quality to the fullest you have to opt for laptops having the 980M or 970M graphics card which can be found in a few laptops within the same price range (ASUS ROG GL502VS) but at the expense of size and weight.
The performance of this laptop is extremely good and top notch quality performance is something Alienware laptops are known for.The SSD makes multi-tasking really fast and the 16 GB RAM included is more than enough for smooth operation on this laptop.
Ports and Warranty
The ports right out of the manufacturer’s manual are – 1 Killer E2400 Gigabit Ethernet IPV6,2 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Ports, 1 Thunderbolt™ 3 Port (USB Type-C™ with Support for SuperSpeed USB 10Gbps, 40Gbps Thunderbolt, and DisplayPort), 1 Alienware Graphics Amplifier Port,1 HDMI 2.0 Output.
The laptop comes with a 1Yr Premium Support which includes onsite service with accidental damage(Retail).
Battery Life and Overheating issues
The Alienware series is known for its battery life and with the Alienware 13, the battery just gets better.During normal internet browsing the battery might last for around 8-9 hours and while gaming it can go for about 3 hours max. The battery life of this gaming laptop series is way better than half of the gaming laptop brands in the market and if Battery life is your top priority while buying a laptop then this might be a great choice.
When it comes to overheating issues, due to the processor and the mid level gaming graphics card along with the size, the laptop goes get hot after gaming for about 3 hours.You cannot keep this laptop on your lap after gaming for a while although the palm rest doesn’t go that hot which makes it usable without any kind of discomfort even after prolonged hours of gaming.
The Alienware 13 laptop is one of the best small sized portable laptops you can find in the gaming laptops market. The display is way too good with touch screen included which is a little obsolete from the gaming point of view(touch screen) but is a nice feature to tag along in a gaming laptop especially when you plan to use it for work as well.
The keyboard and the touch are a little above average and the gaming on this laptop is pretty great for a moderate gamer who is all good with playing most of the titles on medium settings(Let me remind you a moderate player is not the one who plays Candy Crush :P).With great performance speeds and an awesome battery life this gaming laptop has done well when you look at the overall performance/price balance and I think can be a great choice to consider while buying a perfect gaming laptop.
Related Pages: Alienware 15 Review