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Thin is in for Alienware's gaming laptops: CES 2022 brings super-slim 14-inch x14

Smaller and thinner comes to Alienware's gaming laptop flagship line.

Richard Peterson/CNET

This story is part of CES, where CNET covers the latest news on the most incredible tech coming soon.

Because 14 inches is the new 15 inches, the highlight of Alienware's thin-is-in X-series gaming laptops for 2022 is the brand-new x14, seen at CES 2022. There are also refreshed versions of the bigger models, the x15 R2 and X17 R2; all incorporate up to 12th-gen Intel i9-12900HK CPUs and new Nvidia 30 Ti-series GPUs (though the options depend on the laptop size). They also feature a new stain-resistant finish on the cover, which is good, because white.

The series is slated to ship within the next month or so. The x14 starts at $1,799, the x15 R2 at $2,199 and the X17 R2 $2,299 in the US ($1,799 is about £1,330 or AU$2,485).

Now playing: Watch this: First look at the Alienware x14
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Note that I don't say it's light: One of my issues with the X series is that they're deceptively heavy. Even the x14 weighs 4 pounds (1.89 kg), despite its 14-inch, 0.6-inch (14.5 mm) size. It's in part due to the cooling required to fit the discrete GPU into that chassis, but to me weight is more important than an extra millimeter of thickness. It doesn't sacrifice ports, though, and even includes a microSD card slot.

The x14 specifically maxes out at the RTX 3060 and the Core i7-12900H, but it supports Nvidia's Advanced Optimus (which has better juggling of whether the display is using the integrated graphics or the discrete GPU than plain-old Optimus) and an FHD 144Hz display that's G-Sync Compatible.

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This 14-inch gaming laptop is 14.5mm thick. 

Richard Peterson/CNET

You also get dual-channel LPDDR5 memory and support for Dolby Atmos surround sound.

But I think my favorite change for the line is the new, far less heavy and bulky power brick. It's the same svelte, reasonably light design of the XPS line and for the X14, at least, charges the laptop via USB-C.