The Alienware X51 is a powerful gaming PC wrapped up in a form factor similar in size, but only just a bit bigger than an Xbox 360 or PS3 console. It comes with either an Intel Core i3 or Intel Core i7 processor, and a Blu-ray drive, 1TB of storage, and Nvidia Optimus technology that saves power while playing.
PCs, and in particular gaming PCs can take up a lot of room on the floor, desktop or wherever you store them. The Alienware X51 somehow manages to squeeze all the gaming goodness needed to play high-end PC games into a unit not much bigger than a PS3 or Xbox 360, making it a possible alternative to slot under the television laid on its side or vertically.
HDMI connectivity means you can easily play PC games on your television set, with better graphics than you’d find on a console. Games such as the graphic-intensive Skyrim: Elder Scrolls V perform well and look great.
Six USB ports offer plenty of connectivity options for accessories and peripherals. The array of ports are especially handy for multiplayer gaming. Microphone and headphone jacks also come as standard.
Each version of the Alienware X51 also comes with a Blu-ray drive to watch movies from your collection, so you won’t have to stump up extra for a dedicated player. There’s also 1TB of storage and NVIDIA’s Optimus power-saving technology. And to top it all off, operation is relatively quiet.
The Alienware X51 offers up some decent specs. The basic model comes with an Intel Core i3 3.30GHz processor and an NVIDIA GeForce GT 545 video card, but if you’re already a PC tech head you may be able to customise your own gaming PC with better specs for a similar price. The Alienware X51 starts at £559, but goes up to £849. That said, the Alienware X51 still offers a no-fuss solution in an all-in-one package.
The Alienware X51 may be small but, like the Xbox 360 it still has a colossal power adaptor that could make it awkward for some set ups. However, with twelve feet of power cable there’s plenty of flexibility with where you put it. The X51 could also have done with bundling a gaming controller in the package. You’ll have to fork out for one yourself, adding extra cost.