Alienware X51 review: A proper, affordable gaming slim tower

We review the new Alienware X51 gaming slim tower, and come away impressed.

Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET

I expect Alienware will sell a lot of these.

There's very little about the new Alienware X51 gaming slim tower a mainstream buyer won't appreciate. You can buy a reasonably fast configuration, like our review unit, for less than $1,000. It's on an aesthetic par with an Xbox 360 or a PlayStation 3. You can even put it on its side and slide it into your media rack.

It's still a PC, of course, with all the content benefits and interface and software hang-ups implied therein. And in spite of Alienware's clever work cramming in a full-size 3D card, the X51 will make a finicky upgrade platform. You get no other expansion card slots, there's room for only one hard drive, and the 330-watt power supply (an upgrade over the 230-watt default) limits you to mainstream graphics cards.


Still, the bumped-up GeForce GTX 555 card in our review config can run Battlefield 3, Skyrim, or pretty much any other game at 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution with smooth frame rates and respectable quality settings. That's all many gamers will ask for, particularly those shopping for a PC like this one.

Read the full review of the Alienware X51.

About the author

Rich Brown is an executive editor for CNET Reviews. He has worked as a technology journalist since 1994.


Join the discussion

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Show Comments Hide Comments
Latest Galleries from CNET
The breathtaking art and science of light
SkyBell's Video Doorbell chimes in (pictures)
Here's looking at you, Cloud LED (pictures)
Take a peek at Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel for Android tablets (pictures)
Twitter's iOS app gets cool new features (pictures)
An iPhone 6 case designed for Moment lenses (pictures)