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Alienware Area 51 Review: Powerful Gaming PC

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We are eager to share with you our impressions of the Alienware Area 51 gaming PC review.

Alienware, a brand of the American corporation Dell, which produces computers and laptops for gamers. Alienware computers are the ultimate dream of many gamers in the USA, and the company has deserved such an image for years.

First of all, in the Alienware lineup, there are no ordinary computers, office or budget ones – these are exclusively professional tools for breaking frags and conquering virtual worlds, they are very expensive and therefore almost exclusive.

 

Alienware Area 51 Gaming PC Review

In the new high-performance gaming computer Area 51, components of the highest class – the dream of many gamers. How good is it? Learn from my short Alienware Area 51 gaming PC review.

 

The Same Triangular Alienware Area 51 Enclosure

Despite the number of cores, the design of Alienware Area 51 gaming PC remained the same – the triangular design makes it unique among all gaming desktop computers.

The unusual design allows air to enter through the bottom and exit from above, effectively cooling the components of the computer.

It is more convenient to connect a headset or controller to the front panel, which is tilted towards the user. Even carrying Area 51 is easier than most computer cases.

The new Area 51 doesn’t look too defiant. Smooth gray side panels are less impressive than toughened glass in competitive PCs. On both sides are 3 illuminated AlienFX bands.

There are several stripes along with the front panel. The software allows you to coordinate PC backlighting with Alienware peripherals.

Alienware Area 51

Alienware Area 51 Gaming PC Hardware

Alienware Area 51 comes with an AMD Threadripper or Intel Core X processor. In the model with Intel Core X, processors are available only up to the 10-core i9-7900X.

In most such systems, a coin-sized water cooling unit, but with Area 51, this setting is more like a hockey puck. The processor is so large that it is visible even through a bulky water block.

In Area 51 options, up to two Nvidia GTX graphics cards are available in SLI mode or up to three AMD Radeon (but not Vega) in CrossFire. The use of 4 cards at the same time is not provided.

Typically, these components occupy a significant part of the internal space of the PC, but here, the case door closes easily, and most components are accessible without removing the others. Cables are conveniently located, they will not interfere with any modernization.

 

Alienware Area 51 Graphics

The graphic part is entrusted to three AMD R9 290X graphics cards. As a reminder, these cards have a Hawaiian GPU with 2816 units of calculation and 64 units of rendering.

The texture units are 176 in number while the memory bus is 512 bits. The amount of graphics memory is 4 GB in GDDR5 at a frequency of 1250 MHz.

These cards are AMD’s high-end, except for the very special Radeon R9 295X. For our test, we put the graphics cards.

This mode increases the fans of cards to 55% but allows to maintain higher frequencies (1 GHz most of the time with drops around 960 MHz).

This triple CrossFire performed very well and we did not notice any problems in the games.
The results in practice are up to our expectations, whether in Full HD or 4K. Titles such as Metro Last Light, Hitman Absolution, Tomb Raider rotate in 4K with all graphic details to a maximum of more than 60 fps.

Crysis 3 and FarCry 4 content themselves with 40 fps. For Assassins Creed Unity, it is necessary to revise the graphical claims downward by setting the parameters to “high” to reach 27 fps.

In Full HD, all the titles of our panel turn to more than 70 fps without exception, with all the graphic details to the maximum. The promise to play in 4K is therefore held, and hands down.

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Alienware Area 51 Audio

The headphone jack of the Alienware Area 51 gaming PC is of very good quality, without noise, with a good dynamic and a convincing specialization. The power is also satisfactory.

The idle power consumption is 0.3W at shutdown and rises to 92W on the Windows desktop. In-game, hang in there, it goes to 450 W on average, with spikes at 950 W!

The temperatures recorded in full benchmark are far from being volcanic. We measured a peak at 49.6° C at the air extractions.

Inside, again, everything is fairly contained, with a maximum of 57.4° C.

At full load, the machine generates a noise of 54 dB (A) by letting the software manage the fans alone.

Manually, if you push the cooling system to its maximum, it can reach 62 dB (A). A difference that, in the ear, gives the impression that the noise level has doubled. Wearing the helmet mandatory!

 

Alienware Area 51 Features

  • Format – ATX
  • Processor – Core i7 920/975/975 EE.
  • CPU water cooling
  • Up to 12 GB DDR 1067/1333/1667 memory
  • 3 DIMM DDR3 slots
  • Chipset – Intel X58
  • Video Cards – 1 or 2 Nvidia GTX 260/285/295 or ATI Radeon 5870/5970
  • Forced cooling of the video card compartment
  • Disk subsystem – up to 6 HDDs with SATA 300 interface, SSD support
  • Intel RAID Matrix Storage Software
  • ESATA port
  • Sound Card – Integrated 7.1 Channel or Optional Soundblaster X-Fi Titanium
  • 1 or 2 optical Blu-ray, DVD-RW
  • Communications:
    • Built-in Bluetooth 2.1+ Enhanced
    • 1-gigabit network interface
    • Internal IEEE 802.1b / g / n controller (optional)
  • Ports
    • 2 x IEEE-1394a
    • 8 x USB 2.0
    • 2 x eSATA
    • S / PDIF
  • Ability to connect a monitor via DVI / HDMI / DisplayPort
  • Expandable in the current configuration – 1 PCI slot
  • Power supply – 1000 or 1100 W
  • Case:
    • Case material – metal, plastic
    • Motorized front curtain
    • Active Venting Cooling System with Motorized Gills
    • AlienFX backlight system – 4 custom zones, 20 colors, 64 million color combinations of the backlight.
    • Auxiliary illumination of the CD / DVD compartments
    • Backlight connectors
    • Interior lighting even when the power is off
  • Software Features
    • Windows 7 Ultimate
    • Machine Diagnostic Utility Before OS Boot
    • Alienware Command Center for backlighting and power saving

Alienware Area 51

Alienware Area 51 Body

A lot of characteristics that fall under the bar “optional”. Yes, and the manufacturer can change them over time, but before buying Alienware Area 51 gaming PC, make sure that you have where to install this monster – not every table can withstand 35 kilograms, and the case is huge.

But if you already ordered yourself such a computer, then make sure that it will be delivered to you directly in the room, and not forced to drag from the street. But even if there will be heavy rain – it’s okay, the package on the computer is serious – a huge black cardboard box, in comparison with which sheet A4 (in the photo) seems like a postcard.

 

In the box according to the principle of “nested dolls,” there is a large box with accessories (it can be a keyboard, mouse, joysticks, T-shirt or cap with an alien physiognomy) and another box with the computer itself.

Immediately, the Alienware Area 51 gaming PC accessories are high-quality gaming mice and keyboards manufactured by Logitech, which, possibly, will last you the entire computer.

Well, a baseball cap, a 500-page leather-bound manual, a mouse pad – only emphasize the exclusivity of the product. We unpack the second box, remove the fabric cover – and something appears before us!

 

Alienware Area 51  Design

The computer is huge and very heavy – these are exactly the impressions it causes. We move away to evaluate the car from the side and plunge into thought. It seemed to me that a super-gaming computer, which is the Alienware Area 51 gaming PC, should be assembled in a less plastic case.

 

  • The front panel is completely closed, and only the familiar alien face supplements the harmony of this artifact from other worlds.
  • When the computer is turned on, pressing the “alien ”’s head activates the front panel, which, with the help of an electric motor, slides down, giving access to the 5-inch compartments.
  • At this moment, a bright white backlight turns on, illuminating the compartments of the optical drives. Press again and it goes out, and the door closes. There is no Reset button, at the top of the front panel there is a switch, under which is a hidden HDD indicator.
  • The upper part of the case resembles the back of a dinosaur, several panels with the help of an electric motor open for better ventilation when the computer overheats.
  • When closed, they do not fit snugly, but given our experience in testing Alienware Area 51, they will always be open when the computer is turned on.
  • The front panel does not open, but vice versa – it is recessed, providing access to the front ports eSATA and USB – a very original solution.

Alienware Area 51

Alienware Area 51 Back Design

Let’s look at the case from the back – here it is worth paying attention to the lower installation of the power supply, secured by a large lever.

Not a single system fan is visible on the rear wall, and a large ventilation mesh serves the other way around – to take air into the case where it will cool the VRM modules and the radiator of the Area 51 water cooling system.

By pressing a small button we turn on the niche illumination with computer ports, a convenient and original solution. The backlight will turn off after a while, and it works even when the power cable is disconnected, which, in general, is logical.

Two Radeon 5970 graphics cards in CrossFireX mode were installed in our system. The manufacturer kindly put stubs on the DVI connectors of the second video card.

You may find it useful to use the DisplayPort port, which is also present here and connect the TV via HDMI via an adapter.

About a quarter of the sidewall of the body is occupied by a backlight panel with a brilliant border. Please note that there are no handles for opening on the side walls.

To gain access to the inside of the case, you need to pull the very rear panel of the ridge of the case. The massive plastic Door opens, the LED backlight lights up – and in all its glory the contents of the very same “zone 51” appear.

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Final Words

Alienware Area 51 gaming PC is not just one of the most popular gaming PCs. Its massive body of an unusual shape has practical advantages, and the internal layout is convenient for interacting with computer components.

The new Area 51 can accommodate up to 16 cores and is ready to surpass all competitors in power and performance. What else is needed for good gameplay?

Benefits

  • Unique design
  • Lighting syncs with Alienware gadgets
  • Affordable and spacious interior
  • Modern components

Disadvantages

  • Massiveness
  • Not all Core X models are available.

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