Feeds
60%

Alienware Area 51 ALX CrossFireX gaming PC

How much does it cost..?!

The essential guide to IT transformation

The likeliest explanation is that CrossFireX is new and Alienware's still getting to grips with it. That suggests a driver update is in order, but it seemed appropriate to update the BIOS first. The Asus motherboard had version 0601 installed while the latest on offer was 1109. The update went smoothly, the system rebooted and... the RAID array vanished.

Alienware Area 51ALX CFX

Despite the fearsome price this PC doesn’t come with a display or speakers

Integrated RAID controllers are fickle things and you mess with the BIOS at your peril, but the fact is that graphics performance was none too hot out of the box. It may have been more prudent for us to have updated the graphics drivers before monkeying with the BIOS, but sooner or later anyone who owns a high-end machine with a high-end Asus motherboard will update the BIOS and then... like that, it's gone.

As we mentioned earlier RAID 0 as a bootable drive seems like a poor idea but you have to wonder why Alienware didn’t allocate some cash on a dedicated RAID card that would separate the RAID controller from the motherboard BIOS.

Verdict

On the matter of the cost, the Area 51 ALX CFX would seem to be incredibly expensive. At retail, you’d pay £1100 for the CPU, motherboard and memory, £600 for the pair of X2 graphics cards, £150 for the hard drives, £20 for the DVD writer and £120 for Windows. That’s £2000 in all, and if you add in around £600 for the cooling system, chassis and power supply and some cash for the mouse and keyboard then you're still a long way short of the £3624 Alienware is asking for this baby.

The jury is still out on CrossFireX, and on this early showing you’d have to be very brave to sink such a huge pile of cash on the Area 51, despite its good looks.

Boost IT visibility and business value

60%

Alienware Area 51 ALX CrossFireX gaming PC

Stunning looks aren't enough to cover the performance issues and colossal asking price.

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?