This desktop-replacement-of-a-gaming-notebook might look familiar to you if you’ve read our January 2014 issue. It does, after all, use the same 16.2x11.7x1.9-inch chassis as the older Alienware 17 we reviewed back then, and this version also weighs over 11 pounds. But while it may look the same as its predecessor, it has been updated with some very key components that make it stand out.
The Core i7-4940MX, which boasts a base frequency of 3.10GHz and a Turbo Boost speed of 4.10GHz, may currently be Intel’s most powerful mobile offering, but apparently even that isn’t quite enough for engineers over at Dell’s Alienware division. Taking matters into their own hands, they have managed to overclock the chip to 4.4GHz and made the souped-up Core i7-4940MX available for purchase as part of their Alienware 17 and 18 gaming notebooks.
Technically, there’s no real definition for a “gaming laptop.” While it’s generally considered a notebook with a discrete graphics card, sometimes it can feel like the GPU was slapped in as an afterthought. The Alienware 17, however, feels like it was meticulously crafted to be a true gaming machine from top to bottom.
Note: This review was originally featured in the January 2014 issue of the magazine.