Alienware prides itself on having some of the meanest gaming laptops in the business, always aiming to deliver ever great amounts of portable power and designs that are as striking as they are outlandish. Gaming laptops always encounter the same problems, though: their inflated prices could be put to better use buying a desktop PC that’s half the price for the same performance. Alienware’s latest, the M17x, is looking to redress that balance.
The first thing that struck us about the M17x wasn’t its hardware configuration or benchmark credentials, instead we were taken by its design. This is a completely revised chassis from anything Alienware has made to date, and a far cry from the outdated M17 and the cheap and plasticy Area-51 M15x. The aluminium exterior, for instance, looks fantastic and feels cold to the touch, and the M17x boasts a dramatic façade that’s all angles, lights and grilles.
The M17x is one of the sleekest gaming laptops we've seen yet
Open the lid and the M17x continues on its quest to make an impact. The keyboard, touch-sensitive media buttons, trackpad and logo are all kitted out with blue backlighting. We even liked the way that the eyes of the alien’s head on the lid actually act as the machine’s hard disk access light, despite being of little practical use.
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Neither the 17in screen nor the expansive wrist-rest flexed when pulled and pushed in anger, which reinforces our belief that this is a reliable piece of kit to travel with. However, the 45mm thickness and 5.5kg weight mean that the M17x would be better confined to the back seat of a car rather than an aching shoulder.