Alienware 17: AMD's R9 M290X Goes Mobile

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SiSoft Sandra and Cinebench 11.5

We continued our testing with SiSoftware's SANDRA, the System ANalyzer, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant.

Preliminary Testing with SiSoft SANDRA
Synthetic Benchmarks

Performance in Sandra is very similar, which isn't a huge surprise -- the two chips are only slightly different from each other. Quad-core Haswell processors are more than powerful enough for any computing task you're liable to tackle on a laptop; the slightly better battery life of the Alienware 17 speaks to the tradeoff you make in terms of power vs. performance.

Cinebench R11.5 64-bit
Content Creation Performance
Maxon's Cinebench R11.5 benchmark is based on Maxon's Cinema 4D software used for 3D content creation chores and tests both the CPU and GPU in separate benchmark runs. On the CPU side, Cinebench renders a photorealistic 3D scene by tapping into up to 64 processing threads (CPU) to process more than 300,000 total polygons, while the GPU benchmark measures graphics performance by manipulating nearly 1 million polygons and huge amounts of textures.

The Alienware 17, 18, and M18X are fairly well matched, but the Alienware 17 actually sweeps our OpenGL benchmark. Even the older Core i7-2630M is fairly quick in the CPU rendering, but Haswell does shine here as compared to the older Sandy Bridge processor.

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