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Alienware's Aurora gaming desktop is now Legend

The compact midtower got a makeover and has a new little buddy from Dell made for tight budgets and tighter spaces.


Alienware's Legend industrial design makeover is now complete with the Aurora R9 desktop.

Sarah Tew/CNET

All the way back at CES 2019 in January, Alienware rolled out what the company said was the world's most powerful gaming laptop, the Area-51m. The result of several years of design and engineering work, the new laptop overhauled the outside as much as the inside with a new industrial design named Legend. And what started with that laptop is now being finished with the Alienware Aurora R9 midtower desktop as well as accessories including a 55-inch OLED display.

Like its latest laptops, the Legend ID allowed Alienware to make the Aurora more compact but not at the cost of performance. The 460- or 850-watt power supply is on a hinge inside the body, swinging out to give you full access to your components. Your options are expansive as you might expect.

  • Seven ninth-gen Intel processors up to the eight-core Core i9-9900K
  • 14 graphics card choices up to dual Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080
  • Up to 64GB of HyperX's new Fury 3200MHz memory that can also be combined with Intel Optane
  • Single and dual storage storage arrays up to 2TB NVMe M.2 PCIe SSD plus 2TB 7200rpm HDD

The design is toolless, too, so adding or upgrading is simplified and despite the more compact build, Alienware says airflow has been maximized to keep it as cool as possible while gaming. The Alienware Aurora R9 is available on Aug. 20 starting at $970 in either white or matte black (called Lunar Light or Dark Side of the Moon).


The G5 desktop 5090 from Dell.

Sarah Tew/CNET

If you want something even more compact, though, or maybe your gaming desktop budget is smaller, Dell's added a new G5 gaming tower to its lineup. The G5 desktop 5090 has seven processor options like the Aurora including the eight-core Core i9-9900K, but GPUs stop at a single RTX 2080. Memory goes up to 64GB at 2666MHz and storage is up to 1TB M.2 PCIe SSD plus 2TB 7200rpm HDD.

The tower has blue LED lighting and an optional clear window side panel and the Dell says the airflow design allows it to stay cool with a single 80 millimeter fan. If you're after a 1440p gaming experience, this should do the trick and is available today starting at $629.

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