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Alienware Alpha

Alienware Alpha
alaScore 92

33 reviews

Dec, 2018

alaTest has collected and analyzed 33 reviews of Alienware Alpha. The average rating for this product is 3.6/5, compared to an average rating of 4.2/5 for other Desktops for all reviews. Reviewers are impressed by the reliability and design. The size and price also get good feedback.

usability, price, size, design, reliability

We analyzed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Desktops the Alienware Alpha is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 92/100 = Excellent quality.

Review analysis

(Based on 33 reviews)

Expert Reviews  

User Reviews  

Showing 25 review(s)

Expert Reviews User Reviews

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Showing 1 - 10 of 25 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (8)

Expert review by (engadget.com)

Alienware Alpha review: almost the Steam Machine you're looking for

 

If you absolutely have to have a Steam Machineright now, you're not going to do better than the Alienware Alpha. Still, it's a mere stepping stone towards bigger, better and more complete PC game consoles.

Alpha UI creates a solid console illusion ; Custom gamepad drivers solve most mouse and keyboard problems ; Makes it easy to play PC games on a TV

Painfully long load times ; Overprotective console mode blocks some games from running ; Driver issues can cause trouble with some titles

The Alpha does a lot of things right. It's a small, compact gaming PC that fits into your entertainment center. It uses a combination of custom launchers and mouse-emulation to give users an experience analogous to that of a traditional game console...

Dec, 2014

Expert review by (cnet.com)

Alienware Alpha Desktop

 

The premise, as first pitched nearly two years ago, is promising: What if you could buy a new type of gaming console that had the guts of a PC, a pre-established library of 1,000 games, a tried-and-true interface already beloved by hard-core gamers and...

The Alienware Steam Machine brings Valve's Steam OS concept to life at an affordable price. It has a larger launch library than any living room console and it includes the unique new Steam Controller.

Steam OS is locked out of a vast majority of the Steam game library, including nearly every hot new PC game. The controller has a deep learning curve, and will never be the best choice for some games. The more capable Windows version of this hardware...

There are many ways to put PC games on a living room TV, and the Alienware Steam Machine is one of the most ambitious. Like all new console launches, there are rocky patches, but the biggest hurdle may be proving why Steam OS is a better choice than...

Nov, 2015

Expert review by : Joel Santo Domingo (pcmag.com)

Alienware Alpha

 

Although it's a good budget-price gaming rig, the Alienware Alpha isn't the Steam Machine you've been waiting for.

Solid gaming performance. Good connectivity. 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. Includes wireless Xbox 360 controller. Compact chassis.

Loading games is more difficult than on a gaming console. GPU can't be upgraded. Lacks DVI and VGA ports. No keyboard or mouse included.

Overall, the Alienware Alpha gaming PC shows some promise. Its performance is top notch for the price, and whenever Steam finally releases the Steam Machine/Steam OS, you'll be in a good position to install it. However, as an overall gaming system,...

Dec, 2014

Expert review by : Dan Ackerman (cnet.com)

The Alienware Alpha is a PC that thinks like a game console

 

This small living-room gaming PC is packed with great ideas but really feels like an alpha-level product.

The compact Alienware Alpha plays a huge library of PC games in a living-room-friendly format, and it works with a standard Xbox 360 controller.

It's built around the Steam gaming platform, so it's harder to use for PC games purchased elsewhere. The custom UI is slow and clunky, and the base configuration is underpowered for long-term use.

The bold Alienware Alpha makes good on many parts of its promise to meld the gaming PC and living room game console, but there are still too many rough edges to make this a true console killer.

Dec, 2014

Expert review by (cnet.com)

Alienware Alpha DKCWA02

 

That PC-alternative platform was going to be the big PC gaming story of the year, with a large lineup of living-room-friendly devices that ran Steam OS, a simplified operating system for running the Steam game store and app, and a unique controller...

The compact Alienware Alpha plays a huge library of PC games in a living-room-friendly format, and it works with a standard Xbox 360 controller.

It's built around the Steam gaming platform, so it's harder to use for PC games purchased elsewhere. The custom UI is slow and clunky, and the base configuration is underpowered for long-term use.

The bold Alienware Alpha makes good on many parts of its promise to meld the gaming PC and living room game console, but there are still too many rough edges to make this a true console killer.

Dec, 2014

Expert review by : Tim Schiesser (techspot)

Alienware Alpha Review

 

The Alienware Alpha is a compact living room gaming PC that suits the gamer wanting better graphics, frame rates, and resolutions on a more consistent basis. On top of this, you get the advantages of gaming on a PC, such as a massive game library,...

Decent performance provides consistent 1080p gaming in a great form factor. It's a PC running Steam, so you get a massive game library. Entry-level model is good value.

5,400RPM hard drive is a big performance bottleneck. Doesn't handle non-Steam games elegantly. Upgrades aren't as great value.

The Alienware Alpha is a good first attempt at the perfect living room gaming PC. The form factor is ideal for this sort of system: compact with a good selection of ports, adjustable RGB LED lighting, and decent cooling with a touch of upgradeability....

Dec, 2014

Expert review by : Matt Safford (computershopper.com)

Alienware Alpha Review and Ratings

 

If you're looking for a compact, budget-friendly gaming PC, or something to get your Steam games running on your TV, Alienware's Alpha is packed with potential. But at least until a future software update, you'll have to bust out a mouse to install and...

Good performance for price ; Compact shell also allows easy access for (some) upgrades

No solid-state storage makes for slow startup and load times ; Graphics aren't upgradable ; Limited support for non-native Steam games ; No 3.5mm audio jack

The Alpha is no match for the fastest desktop gaming rigs, and its custom, couch-friendly user interface still feels a few updates away from console-like simplicity and versatility—especially if you play games that don't come directly from Steam. But...

Dec, 2014

Expert review by : Sherri L. Smith (tomsguide.com)

Alienware Alpha Review

 

If you like the idea of a PC that provides a gaming-console-like UI and you don't need the highest level of performance, get the Alienware Alpha. If you just want a traditional gaming desktop, consider more expensive options such as the Alienware X51.

Small, portable design ; Runs quiet when gaming ; Growing game library has more than 3,500 titles ; Solid graphics performance

More expensive than traditional game consoles ; Entering text in console mode is tedious ; Slow hard drive ; Takes too long to boot Alpha UI

Combining the UI of a gaming console with the power of a PC, the Alienware Alpha is a force to be reckoned with.

Nov, 2014

Expert review by : Sean Hollister (gizmodo.com)

Alienware Alpha Review: Close, But No Game Console

 

The Alienware Alpha sounds awesome. It's smaller and more powerful than the PS4 and Xbox One. It doubles as an actual Windows PC! But be warned: it's not as easy to use as a game console, not as foolproof. It's not nearly the slam dunk I was hoping it...

Nov, 2014

Expert review by : Mike Jennings (trustedreviews.com)

Alienware Alpha

 

Valve created headlines when it previewed a wave of Steam-powered PCs to take on consoles, but the scheme was postponed, with hardware manufacturers left in the lurch. That hasn't stopped Alienware launching its latest desktop. The Alpha was announced...

Smaller, lighter and as smart as the consoles ; Matches the consoles for gaming power ; Xbox 360 controller included ; Dedicated Alienware UI

Can’t upgrade GPU ; More expensive than consoles ; Entry-level CPU and RAM limits performance

Feb, 2015

Product Specifications

Design

Cable lock slot: No
Chassis type:2.5L sized PC / Desktop / Small Desktop
Color of product:Black
Placement supported:Horizontal
Water cooling system:N

Energy Management

Power supply:130
Power supply input frequency:50 - 60 / 50-60
Power supply input voltage:1 / 100 - 240

Graphics

CUDA: Yes
Discrete graphics adapter memory:2 / 2048
Discrete graphics adapter model:NVIDIA GeForce GTX 860M / NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU
Discrete graphics memory type:GDDR5
Graphics adapter Open GL support: Yes
Maximum on-board graphics adapter memory:1.024 / 1.7 / 1.74 / 16
Number of discrete graphics adapters:1
Number of displays supported (on-board graphics):3
On-board graphics adapter:Y / Yes
On-board graphics adapter base frequency:200 / 350
On-board graphics adapter DirectX version:11.1
On-board graphics adapter dynamic frequency (max):1150 / 1200
On-board graphics adapter family:Intel® HD Graphics
On-board graphics adapter ID:0x412 / 0x41E
On-board graphics adapter model:Intel HD Graphics 4400 / Intel HD Graphics 4600 / Intel® HD Graphics 4400 / Intel® HD Graphics 4600
On-board graphics adapter OpenGL version:4.0

Memory

ECC: No
Internal memory:4 / 8
Internal memory type:DDR3-SDRAM / DDR3L / DDR3L-SDRAM
Maximum internal memory:16
Memory clock speed:1600
Memory layout:1 x 4 / 2 x 4
Memory layout (slots x size):1 x 4 / 2 x 4
Memory slots:2x DIMM / 2x SO-DIMM
Non-ECC: Yes

Networking

Bluetooth: Yes
Bluetooth version:4.0
Cabling technology:10/100/1000Base-T(X)
Ethernet LAN:Y
Ethernet LAN connection: Yes
Ethernet LAN data rates:10,100,1000 / 10,1000,100
Wi-Fi: Yes
Wi-Fi standards:802.11a, 802.11ac, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n / 802.11a, 802.11ac, 802.11g, 802.11n / 802.11a, 802.11g, 802.11ac, 802.11n / 802.11ac / IEEE 802.11a, IEEE 802.11g, IEEE 802.11ac, IEEE 802.11n / IEEE 802.11ac

Operational Conditions

Non-operating altitude:-598.4 - 420000 / -598.4 - 420787.4 / -600 - 420000
Operating altitude:-598.4 - 120000 / -600 - 120000
Operating relative humidity (H-H):10 - 90
Operating relative humidity range:10 - 90
Operating temperature (T-T):5 - 35
Operating temperature range (T-T):5 - 35
Storage relative humidity (H-H):0 - 90 / 0 - 95
Storage relative humidity range:0 - 90 / 0 - 95
Storage temperature (T-T):-40 - 65
Storage temperature range (T-T):-40 - 65

Optical Drive

Optical Drive Type: No

Other Features

Intel Virtualization Technology:VT-d, VT-x / VT-x / VT-x, VT-d
Intel® Virtualization Technology (Intel® VT):VT-d,VT-x / VT-x / VT-x,VT-d

Packaging Content

AC adapter bundled: Yes
AC adapter included:Y
Cables included:AC
Display included: No
Drivers included: Yes
Keyboard supplied:No / Yes
Manual: Yes
Mouse included:N / No / Yes

Performance

Audio system:HD / Intel HD Audio
Chipset:Intel H81
Compatible processor series:Core i3, Core i5, Core i7
Motherboard chipset:Intel H81
Password protection:Y
Product type:Mini PC

Ports & interfaces

Combo headphone/mic port: No
DC-in jack: Yes
DVI port: No
Ethernet LAN (RJ-45) ports:1
Ethernet LAN (RJ-45) ports quantity:1
HDMI ports quantity:2
HDMI version:1.4a
Microphone in: No
S/PDIF out port: Yes
SmartCard slot: No
USB 2.0 ports quantity:2 / 3
USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A ports quantity:2
USB 3.0 ports quantity:2

Power

Power supply:130
Power supply input frequency:50 - 60 / 50-60
Power supply input voltage:1 / 100 - 240

Processor

Bus type:DMI / DMI2 / QPI
Conflict Free processor:Y
ECC supported by processor:N / Y
FSB Parity: No
Maximum internal memory supported by processor:32
Maximum number of PCI Express lanes:16
Memory bandwidth supported by processor (max):25.6
Memory channels supported by processor:2 / Dual
Memory clock speeds supported by processor:1333,1600
Memory types supported by processor:DDR3-SDRAM / DDR3-SDRAM,DDR3L-SDRAM
Memory voltage supported by processor:1.5
Number of processors installed:1
Number of QPI links:1
PCI Express configurations:1x16, 2x8, 1x8+2x4 / 1x8+2x4, 1x16, 2x8 / 2x8
PCI Express slots version:3.0
Processor:i3-4130T / i3-4170T / i5-4590T / i7-4765T / i7-4785T
Processor boost frequency:3 / 3.2
Processor cache:3 / 6 / 8
Processor cache type:L3 / Smart Cache
Processor codename:Haswell
Processor cores:2 / 4
Processor family:4th gen Intel® Core™ i3 / 4th gen Intel® Core™ i5 / 4th gen Intel® Core™ i7 / Intel Core i3-4xxx / Intel Core i5-4xxx / Intel Core i7-4xxx
Processor frequency:2 / 2.2 / 2.9 / 3.2
Processor lithography:22
Processor model:i3-4130T / i3-4170T / i5-4590T / i7-4765T / i7-4785T
Processor operating modes:32-bit, 64-bit / 64-bit
Processor series:Intel Core i3-4100 Desktop series / Intel Core i5-4500 Desktop series / Intel Core i7-4700 Desktop series
Processor socket:Socket H3 (LGA 1150)
Processor threads:4 / 8
Stepping:C0
System bus data transfer rate:5
System bus rate:5
Tcase:66.35 / 66.4 / 72
Thermal Design Power (TDP):35

Processor special features

CPU configuration (max):1
Embedded options available:No / Yes
Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology: Yes
Execute Disable Bit: Yes
Graphics & IMC lithography:22
Idle States: Yes
Intel 64:Y
Intel Active Management Technology: No
Intel AES New Instructions: Yes
Intel Anti-Theft Technology:No / Yes
Intel Clear Video HD Technology: Yes
Intel Clear Video Technology:N
Intel Clear Video Technology for MID: No
Intel Demand Based Switching: No
Intel Dual Display Capable Technology:No / Yes
Intel Enhanced Halt State: Yes
Intel Fast Memory Access: No
Intel FDI Technology:No / Yes
Intel Flex Memory Access: No
Intel HD Audio Technology: No
Intel HD Graphics:N / Y
Intel Hyper-Threading Technology:No / Yes
Intel Identity Protection Technology:No / Yes
Intel Identity Protection Technology version:1.00
Intel Insider:No / Yes
Intel InTru 3D Technology: Yes
Intel Matrix Storage Technology: No
Intel My WiFi Technology:No / Yes
Intel Quick Sync Video Technology: Yes
Intel Rapid Start Technology: No
Intel Rapid Storage Technology: No
Intel Secure Key Technology version:1.00
Intel Small Business Advantage (SBA) version:1.00
Intel Smart Cache:No / Yes
Intel Smart Connect Technology: No
Intel Smart Response Technology: No
Intel Stable Image Platform Program (SIPP):N / Y
Intel Stable Image Platform Program (SIPP) version:0.00 / 1.00
Intel Standard Manageability:N
Intel Trusted Execution Technology:No / Yes
Intel TSX-NI:N / Y
Intel TSX-NI version:0.00
Intel Turbo Boost Technology:2.0 / No
Intel Virtualization Technology:VT-d, VT-x / VT-x / VT-x, VT-d
Intel Virtualization Technology (VT-x):Y
Intel Virtualization Technology for Directed I/O (VT-d):N / Y
Intel vPro Technology:No / Yes
Intel VT-x with Extended Page Tables (EPT): Yes
Intel Wireless Display (WiDi) Technology: Yes
Intel® Active Management Technology (Intel® AMT):N
Intel® AES New Instructions (Intel® AES-NI):Y
Intel® Anti-Theft Technology (Intel® AT):N / Y
Intel® Built-in Visuals Technology: Yes
Intel® Clear Video HD Technology (Intel® CVT HD):Y
Intel® Clear Video Technology for Mobile Internet Devices (Intel CVT for MID):N
Intel® High Definition Audio (Intel® HD Audio):N
Intel® Hyper Threading Technology (Intel® HT Technology):N / Y
Intel® Identity Protection Technology (Intel® IPT):N / Y
Intel® Insider™:No / Yes
Intel® InTru™ 3D Technology:Y / Yes
Intel® Iris™ Pro Graphics: No
Intel® Matrix Storage Technology (Intel® MST):N
Intel® My WiFi Technology (Intel® MWT):N / Y
Intel® OS Guard:N / Y
Intel® Quick Sync Video Technology: Yes
Intel® Rapid Start Technology: No
Intel® Secure Key:Y
Intel® Small Business Advantage (Intel® SBA):N / Y
Intel® Smart Cache:Y
Intel® Smart Response Technology: No
Intel® Turbo Boost Technology:2.0 / No
Intel® vPro™ Technology:N / Y
Intel® Wireless Display (Intel® WiDi):Y
Intel® Wireless-AC Technology: Yes
InTru™ 3D Technology: Yes
Processor ARK ID:75121 / 77481 / 78928 / 80814 / 81209
Processor code:SR14Q / SR1QU / SR1S6 / SR1TC
Processor package size:37.5
Scalability:1S
Supported instruction sets:AVX 2.0 / AVX 2.0, SSE4.1, SSE4.2
Thermal Monitoring Technologies: Yes
Thermal solution specification:PCG 2013A

Software

Operating system architecture:64-bit
Operating system installed:Steam OS / Windows 10 Home / Windows 8.1
Operating system language:Dutch / English
Trial software:Microsoft Office

Storage

Card reader integrated: No
Hard disk rotational speed:5400 / 7200
Hard Drive Capacity:1000 / 2000 / 500
Hard Drive Interface:Serial ATA / Serial ATA III
Hard Drive Size:2.5
Hard drive speed:5400 / 7200
Host interface:SATA / Serial ATA III
Number of hard drives installed:1
Number of storage drives installed:1
Storage media:HDD
Total Storage Capacity:1000 / 2000 / 500

Weight & Dimensions

Depth:7.87
Height:2.17
Weight:3.99
Width:7.87