CNET First Look
Alienware M17x Gaming Laptop ComputerAlienware's new version of the M17x makes some welcome design tweaks and offers the best laptop gaming hardware you can get. Just be warned: it ain't cheap.
[ Music ] ^m00:00:03 >> Hi I'm Dan Ackerman and we are taking a look at the Alienware M17x gaming laptop, now has a 12 pound, I guess lap buster, I'm not sure I would even call this a proper notebook computer. It's more like a portable semi portable big gaming rig, but if anyone knows how to build these it's the guy that Alienware, who've been churning out high end gaming desktops and laptops for years. Now we've kind of gotten down on Alienware in the past, so that kind of dorm room chic design, and I'm pleased to say that with every successive generation recently, they seem to be getting a little bit better pulling things back, in a little bit of a kind of minimalist modernist direction on this new version of the M17x. You see that they've got etched glass over the display here, that makes for a nice clean look. They've gotten rid of some of the detailing on the keyboard tray, left it a little bit plainer and that's a nicer look. And they've also got this kind of angled grill on the front now. It's kind of an automotive inspired grill that adds a little bit of angularity to it, helps it not just look like a big black slab. Now our M17x was configured at about 48, 4,900 dollars. You can get it starting at maybe 1,799 but come on, why bother? If you're going to get a super high end gaming laptop you want to pack it with all the latest and greatest parts, like a extreme level Quadcore Intel Processor, not 1 but 2 NVIDIA GeForce M2 80 GPU's, a terabyte of hard drive space, even a Blu-Ray drive, but obviously that's going to drive the price way up. Some other things that we like about the latest version of the M17 is the touchpad. It's still flush with the rest of the keyboard tray, but has a little bit of texture on it now; so you can tell when your finger's on it, and when it's off it so you don't always have to look down and see if you're still mousing or not. The keyboard itself you'll notice that it's kind of a tapered style keyboard instead of kind of those wide, flat keys a lot of guys are using now. Alienware tells us that's because for gamers, who they hope are the primary audience for this machine, when you use those W, A, S, D keys to kind of move around as first person shooters, people like having a little bit more space between the faces of the keys - that makes it a little bit easier to play. Now if there's 1 part of Alienware laptops we kind of have a love/hate relationship with, it's that Alienware controll center that besides doing power management and stuff, also let's you control all the crazy lights in the system. In order to launch that, you just click this little touch button right here, and now from this screen you can take any part of the laptop - the keyboard, the outliner on the touchpad, the logo, and change the color for it. In fact on this new model, the keyboard itself has 4 color zones on it so you can set up some sort of crazy garish rainbow, like we did right here, or you can just set it all to 1 color. A fully tricked out Alienware and the 17x is about as high end as you're going to find in a portal computer these days. You're not going to miss out on anything from Blu-Ray to both HDMI and display port video outputs, but obviously you're going to pay a lot for the privilege. I'm Dan Ackerman and that's the Alienware M17x. ^m00:02:53 [ Music ]