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Christmas Gift Guide

Alienware x51 (front)

Alienware x51 (head-on)

Alienware x51 (rear)

Alienware x51 (upper detail, rear)

Alienware x51 (lower detail, rear)

Alienware x51 (left side)

Alienware x51 (front, horizontal)

Alienware x51 (accessories)

Alienware x51 (interior)

Alienware x51 (interior detail)

Alienware ventures away from its high-end, full tower roots with the x51. This slim tower gaming PC starts at just $699. Our review unit, pictured here, goes for $999 with its various upgrades.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The x51 is a new design for Alienware, but it's clear its aesthetic roots come from a cross between Alienware's iconic Area 51 desktops, and current-generation game consoles.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
We've seen slim tower PCs from Lenovo, Gateway, HP, and others, but Alienware's x51 is one of the first with a full-height, dual-slot graphics card.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
We found few surprises among the ports on the back of the X51. HDMI, USB 3.0, and optical audio output are all accounted for. No Thunderbolt ports, at least yet.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The GeForce GTX 555 graphics card is a solid midrange GPU. In this case it offers a pair of DVI outputs, as well as a Mini-HDMI out.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
The x51 is much smaller than Alienware's Area-51 tower PCs, but it retains Alienware's familiar alien head motif.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Always brand-aware, Alienware has made sure you can rotate the alien head insignia on the front of the system if you use it in its horizontal mode.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Alienware rebranded a Logitech gaming mouse and keyboard to include with the x51. The large brick in the upper-left corner is the external power supply.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
Alienware has said that the x51 is completely user upgradable. This is true, but as you can see the inside is far from standard.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
To access the motherboard, you need to remove the graphics card and the optical drive, both of which are attached to the system via metal brackets.
Caption by / Photo by Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
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