Today Alienware announced some refreshes to its lineup. On the laptop front, the Alienware 13, 15, and 17 notebooks have been updated, and the Alienware 18 notebook has made a comeback. The X51 Desktop is also refreshed, and can now be used with the same Alienware Graphics Amplifier that was available for the notebooks.

Alienware 15 with Graphics Amplifier

Starting with the laptops, the line was refreshed with the graphics amplifier as an option almost a year ago already, and the company says the new models have over 20 updates on tap. This includes USB Type-C ports for USB 3.1 and Thunderbolt 3 capabilities. Each of the laptops offers a different choice of processors, with the smallest of the bunch being outfitted with the 5th generation dual-core Core i5 and i7 U series, and the larger models offering quad-core 4th generation CPUs. On the GPU side, the NVIDIA GTX 960M graces the Alienware 13, the Alienware 15 offers a choice of the NVIDIA GTX 965M, GTX 970M, GTX 980M, or an AMD offering with the R9 M395X. The 17-inch model comes standard with the NVIDIA GTX 970M and can be upgraded to the GTX 980M. Unfortunately all models come standard with a spinning hard drive as the base option, but PCIe SSDs are available in all models. There are quite a few configurations available so it is easiest to reference this table.

Alienware Laptops
  Alienware 13 Alienware 15 Alienware 17
CPU Intel Core i5-5200U (Dual-Core up to 2.7 GHz, 15w TDP)
Intel Core i7-5500U (Dual-Core up to 3.0 GHz, 15w TDP)
Intel Core i5-4210H (Dual-Core up to 3.5 GHz, 47w TDP)
Intel Core i7-4720HQ (Quad-Core up to 3.6 GHz, 47w TDP)
Intel Core i7-4870HQ (Quad-Core up to 3.7 GHz, 47w TDP)
Intel Core i7-4720HQ (Quad-Core up to 3.6 GHz, 47w TDP)
Intel Core i7-4870HQ (Quad-Core up to 3.7 GHz, 47w TDP)
GPU NVIDIA GTX 960M 2GB NVIDIA GTX 965M 2GB
NVIDIA GTX 970M 3GB
NVIDIA GTX 980M 4GB
AMD Radeon R9 M395X 4GB
NVIDIA GTX 970M 3GB
NVIDIA GTX 980M 4GB
Memory 8-16 GB DDR3L-1600 (2 SODIMMs)
Storage 500 GB 5400RPM Hybrid (8GB)
Optional 256 GB - 512 GB PCIe SSD plus 128 GB mSATA
1 TB 7200RPM HDD
Optional 256 GB, 512 GB, 1 TB PCIe SSD boot drive plus 1 TB HDD
Display 13.3" 1366x768 TN matte
Optional 1920x1080 IPS matte
Optional 3200x1800 IGZO IPS w/touch
15.6" 1920x1080 IPS matte 17.3" 1920x1080 IPS matte
Optional 3840x2160 IGZO IPS matte
Ports USB 3.0 x 2
USB Type-C 10 Gbps and Thunderbolt 3 x 1
HDMI 2.0
Alienware Graphics Amplifier Port
Media Card Reader (15 and 17 only)
Headset
Networking Killer 1535 802.11ac WiFi
Bluetooth 4.1
Killer e2400 Gigabit Ethernet
Dimensions H: 1.04-1.098" (26.3-27.9 mm)
W: 12.91" (328 mm)
D: 9.25" (235 mm)
H: 1.34" (34.0 mm)
W: 15.19" (385.8 mm)
D: 10.64" (270.2 mm)
H: 1.35" (34.4 mm)
W: 16.93" (430 mm)
D: 11.49" (291.9 mm)
Weight 4.54 lbs (2.06 kg) 7.07 lbs (3.21 kg) 8.33 lbs (3.78 kg)
Battery 4 Cell 52 Whr, 130w A/C
Optional 4 Cell 62 Whr
8 Cell 92 WHr, 180-240w A/C 8 Cell 92 WHr, 180-240w A/C
Price $999+ $1199+ $1499+

Alienware is also offering dynamic overclocking capabilities for the CPUs which will hopefully take some of the guesswork out of the task for the non-professional overclocker. On the networking side, Alienware has gone with the Killer Wireless-AC and Gigabit Ethernet combination similar to what we have seen from some of the competition.

Alienware 17

The displays should be good, if the Dell XPS 13 is any indication. Similar to that device, the Alienware 13 will also offer a 3200x1800 IGZO display with touch. The 15-inch model has just one display option with a 1080p IPS matte panel, and the 17-inch model starts with a 1080p base offering but will also offer a UHD 3840x2160 IGZO IPS display. The large panel notebooks are one of the few mobile devices which would be capable of running UHD but to this point it has been difficult to get one over 1080p so this should be a nice treat.

All of these laptops can also be connected to the Alienware Graphics Amplifier which would give you access to a desktop class GPU if you need even more compute power.

Alienware 18

Back after a hiatus is the Alienware 18 which we last saw back in 2013 when the dual GPU 18.4-inch monster was reviewed by Dustin Sklavos. There are different offerings, but it will offer dual GTX 970M with 12 GB of GDDR5, or dual GTX 980M graphics with a combined 16 GB of GDDR5 memory. The Intel CPU is going to be socketed, so customers will be able to upgrade it on their own, and it will ship with a factory overclock. The Alienware 18 will be available with up to 32 GB of system memory and four hard drives. The Alienware 18 Special Edition should be plenty capable, but once again the base model ships with a spinning disk, and you have to upgrade to a mSATA SSD boot drive which is a shame for a notebook which starts at $2500.

Alienware Laptops
  Alienware 18
CPU Intel Core i7-4710MQ (Quad-Core, up to 3.5 GHz, 47w TDP)
Intel Core i7-4910MQ (Quad-Core, up to 3.9 GHz, 47w TDP)
Intel Core i7-4940MX Extreme Edition(Quad-Core, up to 4 GHz, 57w TDP, Overclocked up to 4.4 GHz)
GPU NVIDIA GTX 970M 6GB x 2
NVIDIA GTX 980M 8GB x 2
Memory 16-32 GB DDR3L-1600 (4 SODIMMs)
Storage 1 TB 7200RPM HDD
Optional 512 GB mSATA SSD boot drive plus 1 TB HDD
Display 18.4" 1920x1080 TrueLife
Ports USB 3.0 x 4
Mini-DisplayPort
HDMI 1.4 Output / 1.3 Input
Media Card Reader
Headset
Networking 802.11ac WiFi
Bluetooth 4.0
Gigabit Ethernet
Dimensions H: 2.23-2.26" (56.7-57.5 mm)
W: 17.97" (456.5 mm)
D: 12.91" (327.9 mm)
Weight 12.06 lbs (5.47 kg)
Battery 8 Cell 86 Whr
Price $2499+

The extra-large laptop displays have not yet made the leap to high resolution, so the Alienware 18 is only available with 1080p offerings.

Finally, Alienware has refreshed its X51 desktop. The X51 fits in space wise between the small form factor Alpha and the large form factor Area-51. Alienware is targeting active keyboard and mouse gamers with this device, and the refreshed R3 model has moved to Skylake for the higher end models, and keeps a Haswell i3 model as the base. The $700 model comes with the NVIDIA GTX 745 GPU, and upgrades are available to the AMD Radeon R9 370 or NVIDIA GTX 960. There are a couple of interesting additions to this desktop. Alienware is offering a custom liquid cooling setup which should keep the temperatures in check, and will allow Alienware to offer overclocking of the CPU. It also adds support for the Alienware Graphics Amplifier which was first released on the notebook line. This may seem like an odd addition to a desktop, but the separate 460 watt power supply and chassis would allow a much larger GPU than could fit inside the small case of the X51. I think it is a neat addition especially if you have a laptop too, but it might be a hard sell to have someone buy a desktop and then buy something they have to put on the top of their desk.

Alienware Desktops
  Alienware X51
CPU Intel Core i5-6600K (Quad-Core Overlocked up to 3.9 GHz)
Intel Core i7-6700K(Quad-Core, Overclocked up to 4.4 GHz)
Memory 8-16 GB DDR4-2133
GPU NVIDIA GTX 745 4GB
NVIDIA GTX 750Ti 2GB
NVIDIA GTX 960 2GB
AMD Radeon R9 370 4GB
Storage 1 TB 7200RPM HDD
2 TB 7200RPM HDD
Optional 256 GB SATA SSD boot drive plus 1 TB 5400RPM HDD
Front Ports USB 3.0 x 2
Microphone
Headphone
Rear Ports USB 3.0 x 4
USB 2.0 x 2
HDMI 1.4
SPDIF
Speakers
Networking DW 1506 802.11n
Optional Intel Single Band Wireless-AC 3165 w/Bluetooth 4.0
Gigabit Ethernet
Dimensions H: 13.50" (343 mm)
W: 3.74" (95 mm)
D: 12.52" (318 mm)
Weight Starts at 12.1 lbs (5.49 kg)
Price $1100+

Alienware’s new products are all available now at Alienware.com.

Source: Dell

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  • Brett Howse - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    Sorry about that copy and paste error on the table. Reply
  • nmm - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    Yeah, I don't see how this is even slightly competitive. starting at $1100 for an i5, a GTX 745, 8GB DDR4 and a 1TB HDD? Ok so that accounts for $500 of the price tag, so what are the other $600 buying? Seeing as they didn't bother with anything like M.2, USB 3.1, or HDMI 2.0, I'm wondering why they even bothered to refresh it. Reply
  • nmm - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    Ah, I see now in the body text that the base model is $700, which probably means they'll mark it down to $500 to make it look like a good deal most of the time. I guess that's about right. Reply
  • secretmanofagent - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    That the Alienware 13 has by default a 1366x768 TN panel is shameful. Reply
  • BrokenCrayons - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    I'm sort of interested in the 13 inch version and if I were going to buy it, I wouldn't think twice about taking the TN panel over either other option since, at that size, everything would have to be scaled which makes the higher resolutions nothing more than a waste of money. Besides that, there's a penalty in workload for the GPU that rolls into demanding more power and generating additional heat in maintaining additional pixels that the eye won't be able to discern. Also, the GPU is well suited to pushing that lower resolution at otherwise maximum settings in most games whereas native panel resolutions on higher end screens may cause problems now and certainly in the future as games demand faster hardware. Low res panels are an inexpensive way of future-proofing your native resolution gaming experience. Reply
  • SoulShadow - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    Interesting choice to update with Skylake mobile about to launch. But they have the Alpine Ridge controller which is even more strange.

    I like how the 13" offers 3200x1800 and the 17" offers 4k, but the 15 and 18 are stuck at 1080, the world makes no sense sometimes.

    Seems awfully high starting prices for no base SSD..
    Reply
  • SoulShadow - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    Also seems like the R9 nano is perfectly designed for something like the X51. Reply
  • bug77 - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    That was my confusion at first too. But after giving it some thought, maybe mobile Skylake isn't so close. After all intel hasn't committed to a launch date yet and even if it surfaces, it may be as scarce as Broadwell was last year. Reply
  • SoulShadow - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    I hope not, I was really looking forward to a Skylake laptop with TB3. I'm hoping for the holy grail of thin and light with beefy graphics (external DGPU). Reply
  • TheinsanegamerN - Friday, August 28, 2015 - link

    Considering the price of the AW13 didn't really go down at all, the least they could have done was put the i7 5600u in instead of the 5500u. They are the same price after all, and a dual core chip is a bottleneck on some newer games. Reply

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