1 post • joined 2 Aug 2007
Alienware and Dell are not the same.
Dell is it's own ODM, whereas Alienware used Clevo. You can actually purchase an Alienware laptop under a few different names, one of which is Sager.
I've had kind of a mixed exerience, with one Alienware ( a friend's) and one Sager. While both were good enough at the time of purchase to replace a desktop gaming PC, bot had issues related to the hardware.
And by hardware I don't mean the electronics, I mean the actual cases themselves. Both developed stress crack in the corners of screen casing, eventually breaking and needing to be replaced. This is largely due to too-tight screws, and flimsy material. I read on notebookforums.com (I'm not sure that still exists really) that this was somewhat common. For me it was 2/2.
Also, the Sager (a 4380 from 2004 by the way), had very loud fans. It sounded as though the fan was off-center or loose and occasionally slightly scraping the fan casing or something. Rather than send it in to get fixed (work PC, so that was inconvenient), I basically waited it out, and the fan making the most noise mellowed out, although overall it was still loud.
Heat-wise, the Sager is phenomenally hot, such that the case south of the keyboard is permanently satined with wrist/palm sweat...yeah...
In addition, on hot days, the temperature is such that the CPU needs to ramp down, adversely impacting game FPS quite a bit. I have since mostly solved this with a cooling pad, and another fan focussed on the rear exhaust port, but I'm seriously amazed that the components still work after being exposed to those temperatures regularly over the past 2.5 years.
So basically, in terms of bang for the buck, I did pretty well, since Sagers are a fair amount cheaper than Alienware, without the brand recognition. If you really need a high-end gaming laptop, and are willing to work with it a bit, and don't want a Dell, this is the way to go.
If you don't absolutely need a laptop, obviously a desktop is better and cheaper.