On a rainy Thursday night, up on the third floor of a pub in Sydney’s CBD, Dell introduced the newest additions to the Alienware range to a few of Australia’s gaming media and bloggers. Previously only seen at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in California, the 14, 17 and 18 inch gaming laptops were playing code from Ubisoft’s upcoming Splinter Cell: Blacklist. We weren’t actually allowed to film or photograph the game but we did get a hands-on with Alienware’s hi-performance gaming laptops.
Here’s the Alienware pitch; three laptops designed for three consumer markets. All three of the laptops boast new designs, anodised aluminium shells, magnesium alloy bodies (over 60% of which are metal) and feature Ethernet technology by Qualcomm’s Killer networks, Klipsch speakers and Dolby Home Theater v4 audio. Inside sit quad-core 4th generation Intel Core i7 processors, DDR3L memory and NVIDIA GeForce 700 series graphics. Though already quite impressive, it’s the difference between the three models that really separate the Alienware laptops from the rest.
The smallest of the three, the Alienware 14, is designed to serve the mobile gamer. It’s lightweight and compact, designed to fit into a backpack or a laptop case for easy travel, and still give the high performance required of a gaming rig. Having been to university as a media student I can vouch that the off-the-shelf laptops with enough grunt to handle graphic and video editing are mighty heavy, but this doesn’t seem as bulky as alternatives on the market.