Smallest Gaming Laptop Ever: the Alienware m11x

One of the weirdest and most positively surprising gadgets to come out of CES this year just has to be the world’s first 11-inch gaming laptop, the Alienware m11x.

Update: Check ou the latest M11x deal here. So far we’ve been used to full-size desktop replacements, usually in the 17-inch category or larger, only occasionally dipping into 15-inch territory. Even a 15-inch gaming laptop is often a compromise meaning that you need to let go of some performance in exchange for a more portable package. The m11x goes not one but several steps further to bring genuine laptop gaming to the netbook form factor. But this is certainly no netbook!

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Dell has managed to cram in an Nvidia GeForce GT335M into this svelte 11-inch frame. The GT335 is one of Nvidia’s latest 40nm models, thus bringing heat dissipation and power consumption down to a minimum compared to its performance yield.

There are no benchmarks available yet but here’s some speculation. With its 72 unified shaders the 335M won’t be able to compete with the fastest mobile GPUs, but it will undoubtedly provide more than enough juice for all the latest games even at slightly higher detail settings. To put it simply: putting a graphics card of this magnitude into an 11-inch laptop was completely unthinkable only a year ago.

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To get an acceptable battery life on this thing, Dell has opted for a switchable hybrid solution. When on battery you can run it on integrated Intel graphics and then switch to the dedicated GPU when it’s gaming time. To save even more power it runs on a Core 2 Duo ULV processor – the popular and cost-effective 1.3GHz U7300. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for some real-world performance numbers on this one.

Site founder and gaming hardware enthusiast.

2 Comments
  1. Thanks for your thoughts Peter. I agree for the most part. Apparently the m11x is also quite heavy for what you’d expect from an 11-inch laptop. Of course, an Alienware is an Alienware, and also it’s affordable (in relative terms). I have a laptop with the C2D U7300, and that one can be overclocked substantially without losing stability. But all things considered the Sony is definitely the more powerful machine, but over here it’s also a lot more expensive so it’s I suppose you have to compromise. Anyway, gaming capability in these small ones is a long awaited feature 🙂

  2. Again, after looking at the Sony Vaio Z-Series… this Alienware m11x is looking less and less impressive when compare to the Vaio Z-series… which pack a Core i5 or i7 (depending on the version) and a DVD drive… and also a decreed graphics Nvidia GT 330M… and a 13 inches wide screen… but at a foot print (ie: area on the table) that is less than this Alienware computer. The Sony Vaio Z-series, is 2.8cm wider but 2cm narrow… all this translate to about 5% smaller footprint on the table. What this means is that, there is a much smaller bezel around the screen of the Sony (actually the screen on the sony almost goes from edge to edge)… So I think I personally will go for the Sony Vaio Z-series over this Alienware m11x, although, it does cost more (in most country, in China and Hong Kong, the Sony Vaio is actually cheaper than the Alienware m11x due to Dell pricing their Alienware product 60% more expensive in those countries)… Just my two cents.

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