CNET First Look
Alienware 17 and 15, combat-ready gaming laptopsWhen you want a laptop that's fast and feels like it could survive a skirmish.
Alienware's fifteen and seventeen inch laptops are built like tanks, offer well designed lighting scheme and controls and you can get a reasonably fast configuration for the money. They're not necessarily for folks who like to endlessly fiddle to eek out the last drop of performance, though. No software tools to monitor, just CPU settings. For example, Alienware doesn;t make it convenient... One of the [UNKNOWN] 17 only options is the [UNKNOWN] tracking system. Tobi system currently works with about 90 games, not a huge number given the breadth and variety of games that exist. It consists of two sensors below the screen and software controls. In theory, it should feel more natural than other forms of game navigation. But I find my eyes wander too much as I discovered when I enabled the gaze trace feature. The system also works in conjunction with power management to, for instance, wake when you gaze at the alien head. The two series of basically the same designs, pretty basic boring brown, but they have nice lighting design and the software to program both the chassis and the keyboard works well. And speaking of the keyboard, it's steel reinforced with a decent feel. Not mechanical, but not wholly membraney, that unlike a lot of gaming laptops is also comfortable for typing. The display options include a 120 hertz G sync, better than cheap TN monitor, which is fast, and it's decent for games with it's 90 to 93% SRGB gamut Both have the same set of connections including Alienware's dedicated connector for its external GPU. A handful of USB ports, mini display ports to support g sync out. The 17 inch has room for a lot more USB connections which would come in handy for VR and the fans are loud on both and they seem like they are always on.