If you're a fan of PC gaming and glowing alien heads, then you're more than likely familiar with Alienware’s range of luminescent gaming behemoths.
Recently the company has recently unveiled its latest range of portable gaming laptops. They're big. They're expensive. And they're powerful enough to blow your mind no matter where you are*.
Here's what you've got to look forward to:
* Well, as long as there's a power socket handy.
1) All the power
Remember Nvidia’s insanely powerful new GTX 10-series mobile graphics cards?
They promise the power of the company’s full-sized desktop cards - like the incredible GTX 1080 - in a smaller form factor, and Alienware’s new laptops will be packing this new generation of mobile gaming grunt beneath their angular bodies.
These new cards promise to match the performance of their desktop equivalents within 10%, which is quite an incredible feat, given the compromises mobile graphics cards have had to make in the past.
The 15in version of the new laptop - fittingly called the Alienware 15 - features an Nvidia GTX 1070 card, while the Alienware 17 bumps this up to the mighty force of the GTX 1080.
Aside from blistering performance in regular gaming, all that extra power brings with it one very exciting possibility:
2) Portable VR
That’s right folks - if you’re lucky enough to be rocking the likes of the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift, then these new laptops - or indeed, any laptop running Nvidia’s new hardware - can offer enough power to serve up VR gaming, wherever you are.
Until now, you’ve have to lug around a full-sized desktop PC if you wanted to take your VR experiences with you, but those days are now officially gone.
It’s worth noting that you’ll want to be plugged into a power supply still, given the demands that VR headsets place on on hardware, but carrying around a laptop still beats breaking your back/bag with a full grown PC.
Who needs to get sand everywhere when you can enjoy other planets from the comfort of your air-conditioned hotel room?
3) 4K, baby
Yep - 4K screens, on a laptop. Granted, these aren’t the first laptops to run at QHD resolutions, but with their all-new GPU power sources, you’ll be able to play games at ridiculous resolutions without worrying about murdering your laptop’s insides or ruining on-screen performance. And hooking up to a 4K monitor for a big-screen experience is as easy as, well, hooking up something to a monitor.
4) Eye see you
Raw power isn’t the only thing Alienware’s new laptops offer. The Alienware 17 model also has the option for Tobii eye-tracking technology.
A small infrared-emitting strip beneath the screen, coupled with a camera and a pinch of software, enables the laptop to recognise your eye movements.
Game developers have to actively slot this feature into their titles, but having briefly tried it ourselves, we think it has the potential to add an extra level of immersion - as long as it’s not crammed in as a gimmick.
5) Built to last
There are no two ways around it - these laptops are Big. Despite being a little thinner than lat year’s models, you’re still not going to want to cart them around on your shoulders all day. Still, their chassis’ have been reinforced with metal, making them incredibly touch and solid.
While they’re built like tanks, Alienware’s still thrown in its traditional flair, with plenty of customisable shining light strips, a backlit keyboard and trackpad, to keep fans of pretty flashing lights occupied.