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Alienware X Series x15, x17 super-slim gaming laptops available now, starting at $1,999

You can thank a crazy cooling system for making it possible to have the thinnest Alienware gaming laptops ever.

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The new Alienware X-series laptops come in 15- and 17-inch sizes. 

Alienware

Alienware's new X-series gaming laptops, first teased in May, are here now. Based on the price and spec info, they sound amazing if you're after great performance in the thinnest body possible. The Alienware x17 is its thinnest 17.3-inch laptop ever, while the 15.6-inch x15 is Alienware's overall thinnest laptop ever. The company also claims the x16 is the world's most powerful sub-16mm gaming laptop.  

The Alienware x15 starts at $2,000 and the x17 at $2,100. Pricing for the UK and Australia weren't immediately available but those prices convert to roughly £1,410 and £1,480 and AU$2,585 and AU$2,715. Alienware says all configurations will be available in the US on June 15, but limited configurations and quantity are available right now through Dell's website, as well as Best Buy, both online and in select retail locations. 

With the x17 being slightly larger, you get more configuration options, including the new Cherry MX ultralow-profile mechanical keyboard. Other specs include:

  • Intel Core i7-11800H or i9-11900HX processors
  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 (6GB), 3070 (8GB) or 3080 (16GB)
  • 16 GB or 32GB DDR4 3200MHz; 32GB or 64GB DDR4 XMP 3466MHz memory
  • Up to 2TB single NVMe SSD; up to 4TB dual PCIe SSD
  • 17.3-inch FHD 165Hz or 360Hz (Nvidia G-Sync); UHD 120Hz with 100% AdobeRGB color gamut
  • Killer Wi-Fi 6E, Killer E3100 2.5Gbps Ethernet
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The x17 has a Mini DisplayPort 1.4 and Killer E3100 2.5G Ethernet port you don't get on the x15.

Alienware

In the slimmer, smaller x15 you'll find similar components -- but the performance is definitely dialed down a notch or two in favor of mobility. The x15 offers:

  • Intel Core i7-11800H or i9-11900H processors
  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 (6GB), 3070 (8GB) or 3080 (8GB)
  • 16 GB or 32GB DDR4 3200MHz memory
  • Up to 2TB single NVMe SSD; up to 4TB (total) dual PCIe SSD
  • 15.6-inch FHD 165Hz or 360Hz (Nvidia G-Sync); UHD 240Hz with 99% DCI-P3 color gamut
  • Killer Wi-Fi 6E, 2.5Gbps Ethernet (via dongle)
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The x15 (pictured) and x17 include an AlienFX backlit touchpad on models with RTX 3080 graphics.

Alienware

Regardless of the model, that's a lot of high-performance components to stuff into laptops that are just 15.9mm for the x15 and 20.9mm for the x17. To avoid throttling and overheating, the company developed special cooling systems for these models using "an exclusive thermal interface material (TIM) concocted from an encapsulated gallium-silicone liquid metal compound." 

Add to that a quad-fan design with sensors to deliver the right amount of fan speed and graphics voltage regulation -- eight-phase on the 15x and 12-phase for the x17 -- that Alienware says will allow for extended performance while you play for hours. There are vents all over these, too, to increase airflow.

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Here's how the air flows through the X-series laptops. 

Alienware

Other extras includ a specially designed magnesium-alloy frame with CNC-machined aluminum parts; an improved AlienFX lighting experience using miro-LEDs; and high-endurance clear-coat paint to reduce stains. The x15 maxes out at a weight of 2.4 kilograms (5.2 pounds) while the x17 tops out at 3.2 kilograms (7.1 pounds). 

For Alienware, the X-series gaming laptops represent the cutting-edge of design and technology. But keep in mind that if performance and price is more important for you than portability, you'll want to stick with the company's more mainstream M-series laptops, which also offer AMD options missing here. 

We have yet to see the X-Series in person, but once we get test systems, we'll benchmark them and report the results in an upcoming review.