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Alienware 17, fast and functional if not terribly photogenic

It's a great gaming laptop and supports Tobii Eye Tracking if you're so inclined, but it has an old-school design.

Lori Grunin
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Lori Grunin
Alienware 17
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Tobii Eye Tracking

I tried using the eye tracking when I plated Deus Ex: Mankind Divided but didn't find it useful. The optional circle indicates where I'm looking, but it also showed me how my gaze drifts. So I guess it might be useful as a tool to improve your aim. It also works with power management to wake from sleep when you gaze at it.

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Tobii Eye Tracking

It's that red light.

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Low key

When the Alienware 17 is unilluminated, it's not terribly exciting to look at.

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Typical

On the inside, it's a typical gaming laptop, without any visual bells or whistles.

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Keyboard

The keyboard has a nice feel, even just for typing, and it's reinforced with steel.

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Sidelighting

You can program each of the lights independently.

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Left-side ports

There's a USB-C (not Thunderbolt) and USB Type-A port on the left side, plus audio inputs and outputs.

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Back ports

The video connections are in the back -- mini DisplayPort (for G-Sync), USB-C/Thunderbolt and HDMI -- plus Ethernet and a dedicated connector for the Alienware Graphics Amplifier external GPU.

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Illuminated touchpad

You can't see it here very well, but the entire touchpad illuminates as part of the color programming.

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Right side

A single USB Type-A sits on the right. There's also vents on both sides.

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Macro keys

The same as you'll see on a lot of gaming laptops.

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Alienware command center

It wastes a lot of screen space and doesn't provide a lot of controls for performance tweaking. It's pretty good for programming the lighting zones, though.

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