Alienware updated their laptop lineup at E3 today and its the first major redesign that the company’s Alienware lineup has ever undergone. It still retains the extraneous use of LEDs for lighting effects and they still look like they weigh a brick, but hey – it’s still the premium gaming brand after all these years. The new family updates itself with Intel’s Haswell processors and Nvidia’s Geforce 700 graphics card family and makes a few changes to the internals as well. Details and pictures from are inside.
The new models now have a very angular design and some sharper edges. The Alienware logo on the screen’s bezel as well as the lid lights up and there are now lighting accents running around the base of the laptop as well as on the lid’s curves. It looks damn sexy and probably makes it weigh a ton, too. I particularly like the idea of a backlit trackpad, but I seriously doubt anyone will have that running for more than five minutes. Dell ships gaming mice with these laptops anyway, so there’s little point other than it being a cool gimmick. Additionally, Dell says over 60% of the outer shell is made of various metals.
The design update applies to the M14, M17 and M18 families and not only does the outside chassis change, but the inside has some updates as well. The keyboard is now supported by a *proper* metal backplate, preventing it from sagging after years of hammering it when playing Call of Duty. The M14 now supports up to three “storage” drives while the M17 and the M18 both support up to four. Dell’s still supplying DVD drives with the design, so I’m pretty sure that “storage” drives means up to two mSATA drives in RAID 1 or 0 and extra 2.5-inch drives to house larger files like media and so on. Still, it’s a good update from what the lineup previously had. In addition, the M14 now has a matte LCD panel and additionally can be fitted with a 1080p matte panel.
The M17 and M18 share the same design but can additionally be fitted with a 3D panel in the case of the M17 and the M18 can be ordered with 1080p PLS panel made by Samsung. All three laptops ship with quad-core Intel Haswell processors ranging from speeds of 2.4GHz to 2.8GHz, boosting that up to 4.3GHz in the case of the M18 if you order it with the Core i7-4930MX. In addition, the M18 now ships with SLI configurations by default, starting with two GTX765M graphics cards.