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Alienware Launches Laptop With QHD OLED Display After 20 Years of Business (hothardware.com) 82

MojoKid writes from a report via HotHardware: Dell's Alienware 13 gaming notebook has been popular among gamers and power users that want a little more horsepower in a relatively light 4.5 pound 13-inch machine. However, over the past couple of years, Alienware hasn't changed-up the design much -- until today that is. [In celebration of its 20th anniversary], the company is officially making the OLED display equipped Alienware 13 available today, which they debuted back in January at CES. Initial testing and review impressions show that, as expected, the OLED display sure is gorgeous. The OLED display of the Alienware 13 is also representative of a full revamp (except for the skins), including a 6th generation Intel Skylake Core series processor and an NVMe Solid State Drive. The real kicker, however, is that Alienware's 13.3-inch QHD (2560X1440) OLED display offers great saturation and contrast with an extremely crisp 1ms pixel response time that delivers beautiful image quality, whether working in content creation, or in fast-moving action while gaming. Viewing angles with the display are also superior to high-end IPS panels including Dell's own XPS 15 with its near bezel-less Infinity Edge panel. At E3 2016, AMD announced the Radeon RX 470 and RX 460, which will join the RX 480 in the company's Polaris family.
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Alienware Launches Laptop With QHD OLED Display After 20 Years of Business

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Fuck the touchpads already

  • Usually when you guys post advertisements, you try to pretend it's news, but it seems like you've dropped all pretense on this one.
    • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Tuesday June 14, 2016 @03:44AM (#52313359)

      The first laptop ever to ship with a display technology which is oft discussed here on Slashdot isn't news?

      Do us a favour and go find some other site to bitch about.

      • MojoKid is just a shill for hothardware or whatever it's called. It totally *is* a slashvertisement.

        • by dave420 ( 699308 )

          Hint: Don't use "shill" when you can spend a few seconds and figure out the correct name for the particular conflict of interest. That way you won't be confused with someone who just shouts "shill" when they hear/read something they don't approve of.

          For your information MojoKid is Dave, the Editor-in-Chief at HotHardware, so this story is just driving traffic to his site. It's repugnant, yes, but hardly "shilling".

        • MojoKid is just a shill for hothardware or whatever it's called. It totally *is* a slashvertisement.

          Irrelevant if it is of interest, which it is.

      • by hcs_$reboot ( 1536101 ) on Tuesday June 14, 2016 @04:04AM (#52313409)
        I agree on this one. Slashdot has to be present whenever there is some new stuff out of the ordinary, even if that can be seen as an ad.
      • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

        This is not the first laptop to ship with an OLED screen. Lenovo has been shipping one for a few months, and HP announced one, although I'm not sure if it's shipping yet.

    • So please enlighten us.
      Alienware/Dell Laptops suck,
      Apple Laptops suck,
      HP Laptops Suck,
      ASUS Laptops Suck,
      Lenovo Laptops Suck...

      So what is the good laptop that doesn't suck. And you will need to explain this to us without trying to sell it to us.

      News articles on product releases just as long as the coverage is unbiased or at least tries to be isn't advertisements, it may be fanboism. But not all news needs to be about serious stuff. Sometimes we are just looking for something to be fun.

      • There was a time when you could dismiss laptops for gaming and workstation use when compared to a grey-box custom build, mostly due to the limited power available for hefty graphics cards.

        In recent years, 2006 onwards, laptops have been catching up with desktops and as a result, people can now play proper 3D games on them, and yes, use them as workstations. The die-hards are not yet aware of this, and are stuck in a loop assuming all laptops are trash versions of their desktop counterparts - no longer true.

  • 13.3" (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ledow ( 319597 ) on Tuesday June 14, 2016 @03:39AM (#52313341) Homepage

    13.3".

    Gaming.

    Yeah, right.

  • by thegarbz ( 1787294 ) on Tuesday June 14, 2016 @03:47AM (#52313371)

    At this point we've solved pretty much every problem with OLED displays bar one as far as I am aware. I wonder what the burn-in is like? After 2 years of using a phone with a pretty standard phone use case (an hour or two per day screen on time) my Galaxy is showing signs of burn-in.

    I wonder if this is somehow solved as it is quite worrying on a display with potentially a much larger use case (thinking 5+ hours per day of display on time) and a device life greater than 2 years.

    • I have an LG-55EA8800, a flat 55" OLED tv. Had it about 18 months now. No problems with burn-in at all.

    • 2 years of heavy use on my S4 shows no sign of burn-in. Have since been using an S7 Edge.

    • The TVs have a problem with input lag, which is most likely caused by what they're doing to stop burn in.
      They're great for watching movies and TV, but too laggy for serious gaming.
    • by marciot ( 598356 )

      At this point we've solved pretty much every problem with OLED displays bar one as far as I am aware. I wonder what the burn-in is like?

      I think it might be time to bring back the flying toasters.

      • In the case of OLED, it is use of the pixel over time, and that a certain color (I think blue) wears out quicker. More use of the pixels will cause the burnout to happen quicker, not slow it down.

  • Hmm... Alienware (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RogueyWon ( 735973 ) on Tuesday June 14, 2016 @04:47AM (#52313491) Journal

    The display in TFA looks fairly nice. A bit on the small side for a gaming screen, but still, that's pretty decent quality and it's interesting to see OLED spreading in the laptop market.

    That said, I'd have serious reservations about buying Alienware. I used to be a fan; in fact, I continued to be a fan some way into the Dell-ownership era. Even as the mark-ups started to rise, the build quality of their desktops remained extremely good; sufficiently so to justify me going for their machines rather than a self-build.

    That changed a few years ago and they started to cut corners, while continuing to send the mark-ups soaring even higher. In particular:

    - Their customisation options became more limited, generally restricting choices to just CPU, graphics card, RAM and storage. That wouldn't be so bad per se, but at the same time, they started to massively cheap-out on the components you couldn't customise. The motherboards they started using were pretty awful, the power-supplies didn't leave much headroom and were hard to upgrade (more on this in a minute) and while you could choose how much RAM you wanted, that was as far as it went - the RAM they used tended to be cheap and nasty.

    - They started using components with non-standard dimensions. In particular, the PSUs in their desktop cases did not conform to any standard set of dimensions, so if you had a wonky PSU (and Alienware PSUs do not have fantastic reliability), then you were either scouring eBay for a replacement and hoping you weren't getting one that had already failed for somebody else, or making use of Alienware's own support. This all felt like an attempt to push the (very expensive) warranty services, by making self-repair of systems harder.

    - Oddly for a premium supplier, the latest and greatest kit often wasn't available from them. There was a period of around 6 months where it was widely acknowledged that the Nvidia 980ti was in the sweet-spot of power and cost at the top end of the graphics card market... but Alienware wouldn't sell you a PC with one. Their default configuration had a bizarre 3x Nvidia 960 configuration; fine for games which have well-optimised multi-GPU support, but those are pretty rare (and still capped at 4GB of VRAM, which isn't really enough). They'd sell you a Titan X for a huge mark-up, but it was widely know that the Titan X was only a tiny bit faster than the 980ti, despite being hugely more expensive.

    - While Alienware's systems remained blessedly free of the commercial bloatware that a lot of OEMs ship with (including "regular" Dells), their Command Centre software (which manages the case-lighting and cooling) bloated over time and had some stability issues. Moreover, they shipped quite a few PCs, both laptop and desktop, with wonky BIOS versions that caused very odd behaviour, despite their bugs being known at the time (and more stable BIOS versions being available). You could flash the BIOS, sure, but that isn't really an operation you should be expecting the end-user to undertake unless there's a desperate need (and their BIOS flash tool, which runs within Windows, is frankly terrifying to use).

    - Oh, and the mark-ups eventually went beyond the "premium" range into the "you must think I'm stupid" range.

    So yeah, while the laptop in TFA looks quite nice, I would treat it with great suspicion for the time being.

    • Why the hell was this upvoted? Updating a Bios is "terrifying". A whole bunch of unqualified bitches. Alienware was always in the "you must think I'm stupid" range. Maybe OP is just less stupid now.
      • Why the hell was this upvoted? Updating a Bios is "terrifying". A whole bunch of unqualified bitches. Alienware was always in the "you must think I'm stupid" range. Maybe OP is just less stupid now.

        Yes, updating a BIOS is indeed terrifying. If it doesn't complete, your machine is likely bricked. If it completes, your machine might still be bricked. If it completes and doesn't brick your machine, there's no guarantee your settings will remain the way they were. If you're doing it remotely and don't have a DRAC/iLO or equivalent, the machine stays down until on-site happens.

        Have there been advances in the field? Yes. Many motherboards have a dual-BIOS that gives a fail-safe option now, the updater utili

    • Dell seems to be going down this path. You used to be able to customize many aspects of Dell computers. Now if you go to Dell's website, and look at Inspiron desktops, you get 0 options for actually configuring the machine. You can choose from 1 of 4 preconfigured systems. The only options are for including MS Office and other various software and warranty services. You can't even get something as simple as lower end desktop with an SSD instead of an HDD. To get a desktop with an SSD, you have to go to the

    • by Agripa ( 139780 )

      - They started using components with non-standard dimensions. In particular, the PSUs in their desktop cases did not conform to any standard set of dimensions, so if you had a wonky PSU (and Alienware PSUs do not have fantastic reliability), then you were either scouring eBay for a replacement and hoping you weren't getting one that had already failed for somebody else, or making use of Alienware's own support. This all felt like an attempt to push the (very expensive) warranty services, by making self-repa

    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      I think I'd have more reservations about the OLED panel than anything else - mostly because of aging.

      Ars Technica's review of the Samsung Galaxy TabPro S [arstechnica.com] seems to really put a fear in the panel from the get-go - the screen dims quickly, uses screensavers, etc. All in a kinda-sorta nudging way to say it's going to be dead in a couple of years.

      And the brighter you crank it up, the shorter its lifespan. I think in the end it feels like it'll be pock-marked from use in less time than an SSD takes to die, or bef

  • ...And here we see an example native advertising, ladies and gentlemen. You'll notice marketing hype-style language being employed in the text, as well as the overly-repeated use of the "Alienware" brand name. To some readers, this might seem to be a legitimate news article. It sits among other articles, formatted in the same way, with very little to tell them apart at first glance. Alas, this is not a piece of journalism. Slashdot too appears to have succumbed to the native advertising bandwagon. Too few p

  • Enquiring minds want to know

    • I've been doing a bit of GL coding lately, and actually something like this would be nice.

      This seems not too big, but (presumably) has enough power for both running a lot of recent extensions as well enough CPU/RAM coupled with an SSD to make quick work of compile jobs. If I were doing the dev as my main job (and not as a side-hobby) then I'd probably be shopping for something with a GPU that supports Vulkan etc, as my existing "big" laptop does decent with GL but the GPU is a bit old for Vulkan. Having a g

  • Are the Radeon RX 470 and RX460 cards actually relevant in any way? Are they somehow going to be offered as an aftermarket option for the laptops or something? I don't see any other reason they'd be tacked on like they were.
  • That looks like a cheapo acer.

  • about 20 years ago that sold for >$10k.

    This is MUCH better!

  • ...to replace the IPS LCD in my current machine. Given the availability of both larger (TV) and smaller (phone) displays it should be technically possible to deliver a 15" screen and even with a premium price there should be a group of users willing to pay.

    Don't get me wrong - better LCD panels can be reasonably low power with good color reproduction and wide viewing angles. But OLED enables very good colors* in combination with very wide viewing angles and a superb non-glare surface. With some good color s

  • Who cares what 13'' display is like, it is too small and you won't even be able to see anything at max resolution.
    • OK gramps. Get some thicker glasses. J/K

      Seriously though folks said the same about 720p phones and we've since moved on to 1080p, 1440p, and even higher resolutions in small form factors and at age 44 I appreciate the improvement in resolution. I don't need glasses yet (nor do I intend to - when the next-gen artificial lenses become available if I need glasses by then I'll go for 3x better than 20/20 vision and extended bandwidth vision; near IR through near UV). :)

      • by sinij ( 911942 )
        I remember gaming when 13'' CRT would be considered a luxury, the screen size wasn't the main point. The point I was making is that 2560X1440 on a 13'' would look about the same as 1920x1080 - the screen is too small to differentiate. So why bother?
  • But that's one chunky monkey of a 13" laptop. If I want something that small it's because I want a small laptop. If I get a 17" laptop, it can be as chunky as it wants but a 13" model needs to be slim and light.

  • Way back when the original Mac Portable came out. Oh, wait, that was 9.8".

  • OLED screens HATE heat - something Alienware is notorious for.

    Unless they're venting the heat well away from the screen, expect your screens to have degraded colors in short order.

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