Alienware 13 With OLED: Hands-On The Future Of Laptop Displays

Update: 6/25/16 - Check out our full review and deep dive of the Alienware 13 OLED right here.

Dell's Alienware 13 gaming notebook has been a favorite among gamers on the go and power users that want a little more horsepower in a light, 13-inch machine. However, over the past couple of years, the Alienware team hasn't changed-up the design much, until today that is. The company is officially making the OLED display powered Alienware 13, that we saw back in January at CES, available today in conjunction with the E3 show out in LA. Our initial impressions in the short time we've had the system in-house are similar to our first impressions at CES; hell yes, that OLED display sure is gorgeous. 
Alienware 13 With OLED display shows it vibrant color reproduction prowess.
Alienware 13 with OLED display shows its vibrant color reproduction prowess.

Although, the new Alienware 13 - OLED is also representative of a full revamp (except for the skins), from its 6th generation Intel Skylake Core series processor to its NVMe Solid State Drive that's on board as well. 

As one might surmise, coupled with its platform refresh and that QHD (2560X1440) OLED display driving its imagery, the result is a deluxe mobile computing and gaming experience the likes of which is some of the best we've laid eyes and hands on to date. As such, we thought we'd share a little video review tease, ahead of our full review that is on tap in the coming week or so... 

High level system specs for the Alienware 13 OLED that we're testing now are as follows: 
  • 2560X1400 QHD OLED  Touch Display With 300 Nits Brightness, 104% Color Gamut
  • Intel Core i7-6500U Dual-Core Processor With Boost To 3.1GHz
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 965M With 4GB GDDR5
  • 8GB LPDDR3-1600MHz RAM
  • 512GB Samsung PM951 NVMe PCI Express Solid State Drive
  • Killer Networking Gigabit Ethernet And 802.11ac 2x2 WiFi
  • Thunderbolt 3 USB Type C Port
  • Alienware Graphics AMP Port
  • 62 wHr Battery
  • 4.537 Lbs.
  • Starting At $899 - $1949 As Tested
Alienware 13 Running Unigine

Alienware 13 back lid

The Alienware 13's OLED display offers amazing saturation, contrast and pop with an extremely crisp 1ms pixel response time that delivers beautiful image quality, whether working with content creation apps, or especially in fast moving action while gaming. Viewing angles with the display are also pretty much the best and widest we've seen in a notebook to date.

In terms of the benchmarks, our initial tests show relatively strong results for the machine, with playable frame rates from 1080p to 1440p (native res) at high image quality settings with some games. Battery life testing is still in the works but Skylake's power efficiency coupled with the efficiency of the 13.3-inch OLED panel, seems to be paying off with respectable untethered up-time in light duty everyday computing workloads (think 5+ hours or so). Though obviously when you light up that NVIDIA GPU for gaming, this compact little beast certainly gulps a lot more juice. 
Alienware 13 with power adapter
Regardless, we liked the machine so much thus far that we're tipping our hand with an early Editor's Choice award, but we'll be getting back to putting the Alienware 13 OLED through its paces shortly, so we can complete our full review and analysis. Make sure you stayed tuned in the week ahead for all the nitty-gritty and be sure to check out our coverage of Alienware's other releases going down at E3 this week for their 20th anniversary as well. Until then, we're going to get our OLED on but good.

To be continued...