The Alienware Area51 is one of the most iconic pre-built gaming PCs on the market. This futuristic-looking desktop has been Alienware’s flagship model for years, known for its unique alien-themed aesthetics and excellent performance. For serious gamers who want a powerful, customizable out-of-the-box gaming rig, the Area51 delivers.
Overview and Specs
The Alienware Area51 features a distinctive, jet-black triangular case with customizable RGB lighting. It offers tool-less entry for easy upgrades and maintenance. Under the hood, the Area51 can be configured with a range of high-end components to match your gaming needs and budget.
Base models start with 10th generation Intel Core i7 processors and NVIDIA RTX 2070 SUPER graphics. But the Area51 can be upgraded all the way up to 10-core Intel Core i9 CPUs and dual NVIDIA RTX 2080 Ti GPUs running in SLI for max performance. Memory options range from 8GB to 64GB of HyperX FURY DDR4 RAM clocked at speeds up to 2933MHz. Storage includes dual drive bays supporting traditional hard drives and speedy M.2 NVMe solid state drives.
The Area51 has plenty of room for expansion and customization. The spacious case includes 9 total fan mounts to keep things cool. There are numerous USB ports on the front and rear I/O panels, along with a Thunderbolt 3 Type-C port. Alienware’s proprietary AGA port allows you to connect an external graphics amplifier to add even more GPU power as an upgrade.
With the right component configuration, the Area51 can deliver truly high-end gaming performance on par with a custom-built system. The maxed-out configs with Core i9 CPU, Dual RTX 2080 Ti GPUs, and 64GB of RAM will easily power 4K gaming or high FPS 1440p gameplay. Even the baseline models with RTX 2070 SUPER graphics and 16GB of RAM can handle the latest AAA games at 1440p resolution and high settings.
The SLI dual RTX 2080 Ti option makes the Area51 ideal for enthusiast VR gaming, capable of driving an HTC Vive or Oculus Rift with smooth, immersive gameplay. The Area51 also excels at multitasking while gaming. With a 10-core i9 CPU you can comfortably livestream, record gameplay footage, chat with friends, and play without lag or stuttering thanks to the abundance of CPU cores and threads.
Benchmarks consistently show the Area51 outperforming other pre-built gaming PCs in terms of average and peak framerates. The beefy cooling system prevents thermal throttling so you get maximum sustained gaming performance without FPS drops during long sessions. And Alienware’s Command Center software lets you customize settings for work and play to get the best experience.
Customization and Upgrades
While the base Area51 configs provide excellent gaming power right out of the box, the system’s upgradability and expansion options help future-proof your investment. All models give you easy access to internal components thanks to the tool-less, swing-out side panels. You can add more RAM, extra hard drives, or new M.2 SSDs. There’s enough internal space for liquid cooling radiators too if you want to push overclocking further.
The flagship feature is the Alienware Graphics Amplifier port. This lets you connect an external enclosure and install a desktop graphics card of your choice, combining it with the Area51’s internal GPU for dramatically boosted performance. Down the road you could add something like an RTX 3080 or AMD Radeon RX 6900 XT for more power.
The Area51 supports CPU upgrades as well. While the newest 10th Gen Intel chips offer great performance already, you could opt to upgrade to an unlocked K-series CPU for easier overclocking. The 1,000W power supply gives you plenty of headroom there. And Alienware’s reliable motherboards can handle fast RAM speeds up to 4600MHz and beyond.
Design and Lighting
Beyond just performance, the Alienware Area51 is designed to look stunning on any gamer’s desk. The angular case with its distinctive “Legend” design language stands out from anything else on the market. You can customize the quad-zone RGB lighting on the front panel, sides, and internal chassis via the Alienware Command Center.
All the customizable lighting syncs with your gameplay thanks to AlienFX integration with popular games and applications. The see-through side panels let you show off the high-end components including RGB-lit graphics cards and RAM. And the clean internal layout keeps cables out of sight for a sleek look through the windows.
Is the Area51 Worth Buying?
The Area51 doesn’t come cheap – base configs start around $2000 and can exceed $5000 fully maxed out. But for gamers who want a powerful, great looking pre-built gaming desktop with Alienware’s quality and customer service, the Area51 is a top choice. Between the excellent baseline performance and myriad upgrade paths, it’s a system built to last and handle anything you throw at it.
The Alienware Area51 may not be the most affordable pre-built gaming PC. But its combination of performance, easy expandability, and uniquely stylish alien design make this a worthy investment for serious gamers who want a complete high-end system they can rely on.