March 28, 2023

Alienware’s new gaming laptop powers up when you look at it

Alienware is refreshing its line of gaming notebooks today with desktop-class graphics chips, just weeks after Nvidia announced its plans to bring the GTX 1080, GTX 1070, and GTX 1060 to laptops. Alienware is taking all of Nvidia’s graphics chips and putting each one inside an appropriately sized notebook. The new Alienware 13 will get the GTX 1060, while the Alienware 15 takes the GTX 1070, and the larger Alienware 17 has the top of the line GTX 1080.

All three are designed to be “VR ready,” a phrase that should be applied lightly on the low-end Alienware 13, as VR titles are going to, obviously, be a lot more capable on the Alienware 17 with the GTX 1080. Regardless, Alienware is one of only a few manufacturers who are actually changing and slimming down their gaming PCs, instead of fitting Nvidia’s new chips into old models.


While Alienware stresses its never been about thin and light for gaming notebooks, the company is making each model at least 20 percent slimmer. The 15.6-inch model shrinks to 22mm thin (down from 34mm last year), and the Alienware 13 is 22mm thin (down from 28mm last year). The Alienware 17 is 30mm thin, with the GTX 1080 inside. Alienware is also adding G-sync capable 120Hz displays on the 15.6-inch and 17.3-inch versions.


The interesting additions here are the presence of Windows Hello cameras (for logging into Windows 10 with your face) across all three models, and Tobii eye tracking as an option on the Alienware 17. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Tobii’s eye tracking on a laptop, but it’s definitely the first time we’ve seen it implemented so thoroughly. Alienware is using the eye tracking camera to disable the keyboard backlight when you’re not looking at the screen, and let you replay how you were playing a game and where you were looking to learn from any mistakes.


You’ll even be able to look at the Alienware logo on the laptop and it will power up, all thanks to Tobii’s impressive eye tracking technology. Alienware is the second company, after MSI, to add this technology into laptops. It still feels mostly gimmicky for now, but we’re starting to see more games and companies support Tobii. Recently released titles like Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, some Assassin’s Creed games, and The Division all support Tobii, but we’re waiting to see how well this will take off in gaming. Acer also announced new monitors with Tobii eye tracking earlier this week.

Alienware isn’t detailing the exact specs for the new 13-inch model just yet, but both the Alienware 15 and Alienware 17 will ship with up to Intel’s Core i7 6820HK (SkyLake) processor overclocked to 4.1Ghz. You can customize both models with up to 32GB of RAM and 1TB of storage. The Alienware 13 is arriving in November alongside the GTX 1080 in the Alienware 17, and variants of the Alienware 15 and 17 will be available later this month, but no pricing has been announced yet.

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