Considering the Alienware m9700 has double the hard drives and double the GPUs of a typical 17′ laptop, our expectations for super long battery life is low but we’re hoping to be surprised.
To test the capabilities of our laptop sample we run three battery benchmarks: Battery Eater Pro, Battery Mark 4.01, and Mobile Mark 2005. Battery Eater Pro is a benchmark that loads the system using graphics, memory, and hard drive activity. Battery Mark is an older benchmark that simulates a typical office productivity by running sessions of MS Word and Excel. Mobile Mark 2005 is a bit different and deserves a separate section below.
Testing is done with all forms of power savings disabled. This is done to give the most consistent and comparable results across multiple laptop platforms. The numbers you see in these tests are the “worst case” scenario, so expect longer battery when you properly enable power savings in Windows.
As we predicted, the Alienware m9700 has the shortest battery life of all the laptops we’ve tested here on PC Perspective, but it’s also the fastest game performer we’ve tested. You definitely won’t be using this laptop much while away from an outlet.
The m9700 is the first and only laptop we’ve tested here on PC Perspective in which the Mobile Mark 2005 Productivity test did not complete successfully. In one case the m9700 demonstrated over 2 hours of battery life which is very unusual, whereas another attempt gave just under 1.5 hours.
In the DVD and Wireless tests, we have the m9700 giving us just over 1 hour of battery life which corroberates with our own in-house battery tests at the top of this page.