Posts Tagged ‘M14x’
Sure, they may look the same, but Alienware’s decided to give what’s going on inside its glowing gaming laptops a thorough refresh. Starting with graphics support, the 2012 update of the M14x, M17x and M18x will all be able to handle NVIDIA’s 600 series graphics with GDRR5 memory, bolstered by support for the new PCI Express 3.0 — which Alienware reckons will give double the bandwidth seen on version 2.0. Memory has been given a kick with 1600MHz dual channel memory now the base standard on all three customizable machines, starting at 6GB, up from 4GB in the older models. Capacity for the smaller M14x is locked down at 16GB of RAM, while the large M17x and M18x will be able to utilize up to 32GB. Additionally, these freshened-up models will pack Intel Core i7 processors — but it’s the Sandy Bridge kind. While an Ivy Bridge version is logically the next step, it looks like we’ll have to wait for Intel to let its new hardware out to play before we see it in these gaming laptops.
On the storage side, Alienware’s keen to trumpet new support for mSATA technology, with the new storage medium capable of acting as either a boot drive to optimize Windows or as a caching drive for improved gaming performance — we reckon the latter sounds like more fun. In fact, with the options of standard SSD, mSATA and more pedestrian storage drives, there’s up to 23 different HDD options on the M18x alone. Customization-wise, the M14x also gets the new option of a built-in Blu-ray drive. Audio hasn’t been ignored either, with Creative’s new Sound Blaster Recon3Di High-Definition hardware folded into each of the laptops, with the same built-in speakers that got the Klipsch seal of approval last time around. Overall, it looks like there should be plenty to chew over in benchmark comparisons between the 2012 update and the models it replaces. Still, we can’t shake the feeling that Alienware must be at least planning to upgrade its laptops elsewhere — perhaps its worth waiting a little bit longer.
Know what happens when you split the difference between an M18x and an M11x? The M14x, of course! We managed a bit of hands-on time with Alienware’s middleman back in April, and now the web at large has had a chance to spit their opinions on it. By and large, critics were overwhelmingly pleased with performance, and hardly anyone could find too many griping points. Hot Hardware dished out an Editor’s Choice badge, noting that the 14-incher exhibited a near-perfect blend of portability and power — it’s not often that a machine capable of running today’s latest 3D titles can also get four hours of battery life. Having Optimus onboard is certainly a boon, but just about everyone also suggested springing for an SSD to really round things out. Folks also seemed to love the apparent lack of bloatware, and while the $ 2,000+ price tag was certainly steep, the top-tier numbers it delivered definitely helped soften the blow. The long and short of it? Folks looking for a nice balance of mobility and raw horsepower need look no further, but you can humor yourself anyway by digging into the links below.
And this, friends, is how you make the leap into the mainstream. Bigfoot Networks has been toiling away in an effort to get its gaming-optimized networking guts into just about everything — there’s also a VisionTek GPU with Killer innards, and a trifecta of mainboard makers announced that they too would be joining the bustling integration party earlier in the year. Now, however, the outfit’s really got something to hang its hat on: a handshake with Dell’s Alienware unit. The Killer Wireless-N 1103 networking adapter will now be listed as an option for the Alienware M18x, M17x, M14x and M11x, promising data rates as high as 450Mbps as well as its Advanced Stream Detect to intelligently classify and prioritize network traffic. Mum’s the word on how much the upgrade will be, but based on prior reviews, we’d say the premium will be well worth it for the hardcore among us.
Continue reading Alienware adds jitter-killing Killer Wireless-N technology to M18x, M17x, M14x and M11x
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Just yesterday Dell’s leaky website poured out details about the upcoming Alienware M11x R3 gaming notebook, and it didn’t take long for its larger brother to follow suit — today, we’ve got the full user and factory service manuals for Alienware’s M14x, confirming a number of juicy rumors. Unfortunately, there’s no mention of a Full HD 1080p LCD screen for the 14-inch visitor from another planet, but there will apparently be both 1366 x 768 and 1600 x 900 options on tap, both driven by NVIDIA’s GeForce GT555M switchable Optimus graphics with up to 3GB of dedicated memory. Of course, you’ll also find Intel’s latest Core i5 and i7 Sandy Bridge CPUs and up to 8GB of RAM, Gigabit Ethernet, SATA 6Gbps and optional 3G / 4G connectivity, optional WirelessHD, a two megapixel webcam, and even a 8-cell, 63Whr battery to make portable gaming vaguely possible. Hit up our source link to see how Dell put this machine together — and how you can tear it apart — while we wait for the company to finally make the smokin’ hot notebook official, and let us know how just badly our wallets will feel after it rips their innards out.
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