Introducing the Alienware X51 - Let Your Hero Out

Subject: Systems | January 18, 2012 - 12:35 PM |
Tagged: X51, dell, alienware

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(edit: the models were corrected)

The base model is $700 and features:

  • 2nd Gen Intel Core i3-2120 3MB 3.3GHz, 4GB DDR 1333Mhz Dual Channel memory
  • 1GB GDDR5 NVIDIA GeForce GT 545 video card with 280W PSU
  • Slot-loading Dual Layer DVD Burner
  • Integrated Wireless LAN card (standard)

The high end model is priced at $1149 and features:

  • 2nd Gen Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB 1333Mhz Dual Channel memory
  • 1GB GDDR5 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 555 video card with 330W PSU
  • Slot-loading Dual Layer DVD burner
  • Integrated Wireless LAN card (standard)

You can go bigger than that with the X51 so if you are looking to buy a boutique PC check out Alienware's X51.

Also, check out Scott's complimentary article to this one.

Source: Alienware
Author:
Subject: Mobile
Manufacturer: Alienware

Introduction and Design

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In the realm of hulking, powerful gaming laptops, Alienware remains king by popular vote. Whatever you think of their laptops (as always, popularity attracts criticism) there is no denying that the Alienware name stands for something among gamers. And to most, they're a dream machine, the laptop equivilent of a Ferrari 458 Italia.

The purpose of a review, of course, is to move past reputation and judge the true capabilities of a product. And in the case of the Alienware M17x, there's a lot to judge. We’ll talk about its bulk later, but I don’t think I’m spoiling anything by saying that this laptop has big bones as well as serious hardware.

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One paper, the stars seem to align. But this market remains competitive, thanks to not only to boutique outfits like Origin and Maingear but also to ASUS, which is still on its gaming laptop war-path, producing affordable rigs that can be had for surprisingly little dough. With competition on all sides, can the Alienware justify its $2500 price of entry? Let’s find out.

Continue reading our review of the Alienware M17x gaming notebook!!

Alienware Lowers Price on GTX 580M and Changes Our Opinion in the Process

Subject: Graphics Cards, Mobile | November 7, 2011 - 01:16 PM |
Tagged: m18x, m17x, hd 6990m, gtx 580m, alienware

If you read our recent mobility GPU comparison using the Alienware M17x, you might have wondered why the price on the GTX 580M was $300 more than that of the Radeon HD 6990M when performance was so close.  Well, I guess you can no longer say we didn't do anything to help the consumers (you wouldn't say that, would you?) because today Alienware has dropped the price of the GTX 580M by $225!!

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It looks like Alienware and NVIDIA have listened to our feedback and decided to drop the price on the GeForce GTX 580M on the M17x, M18x and others - and by quite a bit!  As of this writing you can go to the Alienware.com website and now upgrade from the HD 6990M to the GTX 580M for only $75 - that is a $225 price drop compared to last week.  

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What does this do for our opinions and thoughts on the battle between the HD 6990M and the GTX 580M?  I think it makes the added benefits of the NVIDIA ecosystem (Optimus, 3D, Verde driver updates, PhysX) much more attainable and in my book well worth the additional cost.  With this price change, Alienware has really shifted my view on the mobile GPU of choice.

I am going to update my award from the Gold to the Editor's Choice for NVIDIA's GTX 580M for this specific reason - be sure to read the full review if you haven't already!  Happy gaming!

Author:
Manufacturer: Various

The Alienware M17x Giveth

Mobile graphics cards are really a different beast than the desktop variants.  Despite have similar names and model numbers, the specifications vary greatly as the GTX 580M isn't equivalent to the GTX 580 and the HD 6990M isn't even a dual-GPU product.  Also, getting the capability to do a direct head-to-head is almost always a tougher task thanks to the notebook market's penchant for single-vendor SKUs.  

Over the past week or two, I was lucky enough to get my hands on a pair of Alienware M17x notebooks, one sporting the new AMD Radeon HD 6990M discrete graphics solution and the other with the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580M.  

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AMD Radeon HD 6990M on the left; NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580M on the right

Also unlike the desktop market - the time from announcement of a new mobile GPU product to when you can actually BUY a system including it tends to be pretty long.  Take the two GPUs we are looking at today for example: the HD 6990M launched in July and we are only just now finally seeing machines ship in volume; the GTX 580M in June.

Well, problems be damned, we had the pair in our hands for a few short days and I decided to put them through the ringer in our GPU testing suite and added Battlefield 3 in for good measure as well.  The goal was to determine which GPU was actually the "world's fastest" as both companies claimed to be.

Continue reading our comparison of the GeForce GTX 580M and Radeon HD 6990M mobility GPUs!!

Alienware asks why you shouldn't have CrossFire on a laptop

Subject: Mobile | October 18, 2011 - 02:26 PM |
Tagged: alienware, Alienware M18x, 18.4, crossfire, hd 6990m

Why shouldn't you stick a pair of HD 6990M's in an 18.4" laptop, as long as you don't mind lugging around a 12lb laptop from power outlet to power outlet.  Seeing as just a few years ago 12lbs was not an uncommon weight for a laptop that does represent a great design on Alienware's part.  The comparison that AnandTech was most interested in was between NVIDIA's GTX 580M and AMD's 6990M to see who can hold onto the dual GPU mobile performance crown.  Who shall triumph?  Read on to see.

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"In our first run with the Alienware M18x, we sat down and took a look at the notebook itself along with NVIDIA's current top shelf mobile graphics part, the GeForce GTX 580M. We came away from the experience with mixed impressions of the M18x itself, a notebook that is by all means incredibly powerful but also seems to lose a lot of the balance that made the M17x R3 so desirable. On the other hand, the GeForce GTX 580M wound up being the fastest mobile GPU we'd yet tested, made only more formidable through the SLI configuration the M18x enables."

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Source: AnandTech

If you were to drop $3000 on a laptop ... who would you go with?

Subject: Mobile | October 4, 2011 - 03:47 PM |
Tagged: razer, razer blade, alienware, alienware M17X

While you probably have the same reaction to the question of which $2800 + tax laptop is the best one to chose as hardCOREware, the fact remains some people will buy them.   At that price range, a lot of the price is for show and not for value.  Having a laptop resembling a UFO or Italian racing car might make it look fast but has no effect on the actual performance of the laptop.  With so much focus on the exterior and the reasonable assumption by the manufacturer that anyone willing to pay that price tag has little knowledge of what components make the fastest gaming machine the question stands; if someone has their mind made up to spend this money, which laptop should you recommend.  Read on to see how  the internals of Alienware and Razer's gaming laptops compare.

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"I was recently asked on Twitter what I thought of the Razer Blade, a 17" gaming laptop which will become available later this year for a staggering $2800. My first thought was "LOL" but then I realized that some people really would spend $2800 on a laptop.

The question is, if you were to spend that on a proper gaming laptop and not a hyperbole-inducing showcase piece to get blogs to drool all over your brand, how much better will the specs look?"

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Source: hardCOREware

PCPer Live! Alienware M17x with Radeon HD 6990 Unboxing and Early Test

Subject: Editorial, General Tech, Mobile | September 23, 2011 - 05:07 PM |
Tagged: pcper live, m17x, hd 6990, alienware

UPDATE: Shows over folks!  Thanks to those of you that stopped by and we'll be doing more of these types of things in the very near future.  Feel free to watch the reply hosted on YouTube if you want.

So, here we go.  After weeks of screwing around with a complely new studio setup at the PC Perspective office, we are going to try something new.  Consider this an ultra-alpha-beta if you will.  Come stop by our Live Stream channel below to watch us unbox and play around with the new Alienware M17x gaming laptop complete with Radeon HD 6990 graphics!  You can even use the Justin.tv chat located at http://justin.tv/pcper to talk with us live and ask questions, etc. 

Oh, and we are going to give away some random stuff sitting around the office to those of you that comment in the Justin.tv chat too, so there is that as well.  :)

Just as a side note: this is our first attempt at something like this so it might be perfect but it is more than likely going to be a bit rough arond the edges.  I am most curious though to get some feedback on what you liked, didn't like or would like to see additional or changed in this kind of process.  We aren't going to focus only on "unboxings" and stuff - far from it.  Instead expect to see live demonstrations of hardware, overclocking attempts, multi-display gaming setups and more.  If you can, please leave some feedback in the comments below!!

Note: We should be underway by 5:25pm ET or so!

Source: PCPer

Can Alienware successfully pull off a decent gaming laptop that weighs less than 5lbs?

Subject: Mobile | June 6, 2011 - 01:23 PM |
Tagged: ultraportable, alienware

Alienware's new M11x R3 Ultraportable Gaming Laptop weighs 4.4lbs but still claims to be able to game.  You can choose an i5-2537M or i7-2617M for a CPU, up to 16GB of DDR3, and either a standard HDD or SSD to power the 11.6" display at 1366×768.  Obviously it is SandyBridge's integrated GPU which Alienware is counting on to provide the gaming performance, trading overall power for less weight.  Techware Labs was skeptical at the start of the review but ended up quite impressed with the ultraportable gaming machine, even with the minor flaws they discovered.

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"The uptraportable meets gamer in this mashup laptop that combines killer looks, functionality, and performance. Now you can really take your gaming with you in a sub 5lb package without making huge sacrifices. It can be done and we show you how Alienware did it with our review of the M11x R3."

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