Alienware M11x "gaming netbook" ready for pre-order at $799

Alienware M11x "gaming netbook" ready for pre-order at $799

Summary: Dell's gaming arm is introducing some heft into the pipsqueak world of netbooks with its M11x system, which was introduced at CES a couple of weeks ago. Alienware won't call the laptop the "n" word, but it's clearly marketing it to those who find the usual Atom-based portable lacking in the ability to play games more visually complicated than Solitaire.


Dell's gaming arm is introducing some heft into the pipsqueak world of netbooks with its M11x system, which was introduced at CES a couple of weeks ago. Alienware won't call the laptop the "n" word, but it's clearly marketing it to those who find the usual Atom-based portable lacking in the ability to play games more visually complicated than Solitaire.

Though the M11x won't be available until March 1, Dell has decided to let folks pre-order the machine on its site. The base config is priced at $799, which includes an Intel Pentium SU4100 1.3GHz processor, 2GB of DDR3 RAM, a 160GB hard drive, and Windows 7 Home Premium. Most notable is the new nVidia GeForce GT 335M graphics card with 1GB of graphics memory, which will power the 11.6-inch LED-backlit display. Dell claims that the M11x will deliver "the graphics power of a 15-inch laptop in an 11-inch form factor."

Upgrades include a beefier Core 2 Duo SU7300 CPU for $100 more, 2GB more RAM for an extra $50 (or 8GB total for a whopping $350 extra), and larger hard drives (250GB, 320GB, or 500GB) or a 256GB solid-state drive for a staggering $570 more. Color choices include black or silver, and as is Alienware's way, you can choose different color options for the system's LED lighting.

Will it play Crysis? Supposedly to the tune of 50 frames per second at high settings. Until it's benchmarked by third-party reviewers we can't be sure about that claim, but you have to give Alienware a little credit for rethinking the Windows-based low-cost laptop. Does that mean you'll buy one at a price at which you can get a 14-inch or 15-inch notebook for the same price? Let us know in the TalkBack section.

Topics: Laptops, Dell, Hardware, Mobility

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  • RE: Alienware M11x

    Im really disappointed that the su7300 that we have been seeing in the demo is a $100.00 upgrade. Adding a 250gb 7200rpm hard drive, 4gb ram, and blutooth for another $120.00. And BAMMM, a $1000??? I just changed my mind about getting this baby alien!! I was expecting to at least see all that I mentioned for $799. Sounds like Marketing Hype to me. Not cool.

    I think the i5-520UM should have been an option.. Good luck with this one...3 stars!!

    Btw, Go Colts!!
    • Completely agree...

      I was definitely having this as a strong contender for my entry into doing a little more PC gaming; but like you after doing the preliminary mock-up up of the total--AFTER having to ADD all the 'key' features--I was completely turned off. It ended up going well over $1000! What??

      Plus, I have to say I'm a little further confused as to why they didn't include any of the Intel 'i' series processors. For something that's supposed to be geared at gaming I would have expected a much later model. I mean, it's fine and dandy to have the latest graphic card--but what good is that w/ a processor that not even of the newest standards?

      Frankly, I seriously thing I'll look elsewhere--at least if the screen is 13-14". I think Dell/Alienware are shooting themselves in foot w/ such misleading marketing...I wouldn't be surprised if more people like you and I will do the same thing.
      • m11x

        The m11x is a pretty good computer, I want a
        laptop that will play games that isn't heavy. I
        have to lug it around, and the m11x seems really
        good. It has a 1.3 ghz processor, but clock speeds
        aren't everything. the graphics are what you need,
        so the only thing I would upgrade on this is to 4
        gb of RAM, and I might get a bigger HDD later,
        because alienware charges a bundle for them.
  • RE: Alienware M11x

    Kinda defeats the purpose...
  • This one I don't get

    Sounds like somebody did not do their market research.
    Michael Kelly
  • RE: Alienware M11x

    The M11x is the most powerful 11 inch laptop in the world. It's perfect for hard core and casual gamers and for those who want the power and portability to put it in their backpacks. To call it a netbook is a mistake. Check out Engadget's post late last week.
    bob kaufman
  • Master Joe Says...

    I owned an Alienware PC (Area 51M) for about a year. Arrived with a video card, was told I had to wait to have one of their technicians come replace the video card because I didn't have the "tools" (which means thermal cooling liquid by the way) only to find out they never SCHEDULED the technician to come out, and had to wait a MONTH to get that straightened out, then had the DVD drive die a few months later, and had the motehrboard crash 8 months later, which they made me send it back to the factory for, only to get it back STILL defective and they had to replace the RAM, in the process where one of the hard drives crashed, and I sold it. Then, I almost got screwed out of the money I sold it for (bought for $5000+ sold for $2000 on eBay by the way) because the OTHER hard drive died a month after the seller got it. So, in short, Alienware will NEVER get my business, my recommendation, my credit, or anything else from me. If they cured cancer, colonized the moon, and made Obama admit he was a lousy President, I'd give them credit for those miracles, but would not stop holding that experience against them. I owned a Gateway laptop for three yaers before buying that Alienware, and only had the battery go on me for that whole time. After, I bought a MacBook Pro, which I had no major issues with for the two years I owned it, and then custom built my own desktop PC after that, and have only had one HD die on me after 18 months. Alienware gaming netbook? No thanks.

    --Master Joe
  • RE: Alienware M11x

    I find all of this very amusing. Why own such a
    machine when it lacks a premium CPU to go with such a
    nice thing as the new nVidia N230 graphics card? I
    just don't know how or why Dull would design such a
    machine without an i5/i7 baffles me

    There's no sense in the "extras" either. Sure, it's
    easy to replace the HD with something fast, or a small
    SSD (the preferred setup) like an 80GB Intel XM25
    (whatever they are called), but 2GB RAM just doesn't
    "get with the program". You're instantly higher than
    $1000 with this thing no matter which way you turn,
    and a PC notebook with GAMING as its primary focus,
    its very reason for being that only has an 11" LCD
    display and gets *that expensive that quickly* is
    difficult to comprehend or justify.

    The bottom line? Without a premium CPU to make things
    happen and a bare bones "$799" starting price that
    demands upgrades left and right , this thing has
    little hope of being the success story it could have
    been. Frankly I'm dismissing it straight away, as it
    has no redeeming qualities save for the video card,
    and everything good has to be pell-mell added on, one
    thing after another from CPU to HD to RAM... so as we
    say in SoCalifornia, "Pasadena Baby!"