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Dell XPS for Gaming: Could it be as Good as Alienware?

March 24, 2013 by Meryll divider image

When it comes to Dell gaming laptops what usually comes into the minds of most people is the Alienware which is Dell’s very popular line for gaming. Although there is indeed no doubt that the Alienware laptops are able to give hardcore gamers very satisfying performance, not everyone would always prefer it because of its also extremely expensive selling price. Primarily designed for hardcore gaming and equipped with the most advanced gaming laptop technologies Alienware laptops are inevitably among the most expensive laptops in the market. Its price ranges from $1400 to $5000 depending on the user’s custom choice.

To also cater to laptop users who are also casual gamers but cannot afford the price of a gaming laptop, Dell has come up with the XPS line of ultrabook or top performing laptops. XPS laptops do not really have the sci-fi gaming look of an Alienware but the specifications are definitely comparable.

XPS or Extreme Performance System is Dell’s line of extreme performance laptops that have been designed for graphics-demanding computer tasks like web design, AutoCAD, photo and video editing, 3D design, etc.

An Alienware M14x that features 3rd Generation Intel Core processors, extreme graphic performance and a long battery life has these technical specifications:

  • CPU: 3rd Gen Intel Core i5-3230M (3MB Cache w/ Turbo Boost 2.0 up to 3.2GHz)
  • RAM: 6GB² Dual Channel DDR3 SDRAM running at 1600MHz
  • GPU: 1GB GDDR5 NVIDIA GeForce GT650M
  • Storage: 500GB 7200 RPM
  • Display: 14-inch HD w/ WLED backlight

With these specifications, this Alienware laptop is being sold at $999. Hardcore gamers also have the option to have better specifications and pay a more expensive price. Its XPS equivalent which is the Dell XPS 14 Ultrabook is being sold at $100 lesser, but let us look into its technical specifications:

  • CPU: 3rd Generation Intel Core i5-3317U (3M Cache, boost up to 2.6GHz)
  • RAM: 4GB DDR3 SDRAM at 1600MHz
  • GPU: Intel HD Graphics 4000
  • Storage: 500GB 5400RPM w/32GB mSATA
  • Display: 14 inches HD with Truelife Infinity Display

Looking at these specifications, the Alienware laptop seems slightly better than the XPS especially to those who do not really know what these specifications mean. Let us now see how they really differ.

xpsThe GPU or Graphics Processing Unit is one of the most important buying decision factors to gaming laptops users. Sometimes also called the Visual Processing Unit, the GPU is responsible for speeding up the manipulation of images and making laptops capable of processing more detailed images and 3D graphics. GPUs are primarily designed to improve laptop users’ viewing experience.

The Alienware uses an NVIDIA GeForce GT650M GPU which supports DirectX11, Optimus, PhysX, OpenCL, 3D Vision, CUDA, and DirectCompute. These are also the same technologies or their equivalent that XPS’ Intel HD 4000 also supports. Both make use of 3rd Generation Intel Core i5 processors that have boost technology. In terms of other specifications, they are almost the same. The only slight differences they have are the speed. But then again, the Dell XPS has been made for those casual gamers who cannot afford to spend as much as hardcore gamers would be willing to spend for an Alienware. Dell XPS is definitely more than adequate for laptop gaming.


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