Alienware Area-51m review | PC Gamer

Despite making some of the best gaming laptops of the last few years, Alienware still has a bad rap. To reconcile with its former audience, the Dell subsidiary has devised the Area-51m, a thick, albeit powerful and supremely upgradeable “musclebook” computer. From the CPU to its graphics counterpart, you can service the Alienware Area-51m almost to the extent of a desktop PC. Well, sort of. While it uses a normal S-series Coffee Lake R processor, Dell doesn’t offer the replacement GPUs just yet, and it’s not clear when it ever will.

That makes the Alienware Area-51m tough to recommend in its current state, especially given its overly ambitious pricing. Though it’s currently on sale for $3,959.99 directly from the Dell site, the model I was sent for review costs a debt-inducing $4,499.99. Ouch. Granted, it does house a desktop-class Intel Core i9-9900K, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080, 32GB of RAM, 1TB of SSD storage and another terabyte of spinning hard drive space. Plus, an 8GB solid state hybrid drive for, you know, reasons. 

Specs

Price: $4,499.99
Processor: Intel Core i9-9900K
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 8GB
Memory: 32GB DDR4-2,400MHz
Display: 17.3-inch IPS 144Hz
Resolution: 1920×1080
Storage: 1TB RAID 0 (2x512GB) SSD, 1TB SSHD
Battery: 90Wh
Connectivity: 1 x Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C), 3 x USB Type-A 3.0, Mini DisplayPort 1.4, HDMI 2.0, 1 x 3.5mm mic/headphone combo jack, 1 x Alienware Graphics Amplifier port, Ethernet
OS: Windows 10 Home 64-bit
Dimensions: 1.7 x 15.85 x 12.57 inches
Weight: 8.54 pounds
Warranty: One year

As I noted in my CES preview earlier this year, truly upgradeable gaming laptops aren’t a new concept, and this one in particular treads familiar territory. Also remembered for its swappable GPU tech, the original Alienware Area-51m was introduced almost two decades ago. The new model is less bulky, measuring 1.7 inches at its thickest point in closed clamshell. On the front end, it’s even slimmer, at 1.09 inches thin. For a performance focused beast,…

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