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Thread: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

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    News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    The whole of the EMEA region should have the console available during November.
    Read more.

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Eh... A custom Maxwell chip? Realistically this chip can't be out of this world can it, with the rrp from £429 ? That will be a make or break announcement for anyone interested in this. And since this is available in November you'd imagine we would find out in the next month or so.

    Either way my unbridled excitement for a steam machine is toning down to cautious optimism.
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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    So, it's a PC ?

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Quote Originally Posted by Jowsey View Post
    Eh... A custom Maxwell chip? Realistically this chip can't be out of this world can it, with the rrp from £429 ?
    Maxwell is still a hell of a lot higher end than the APUs in the PS4/XBone

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Pretty decent price considering it's got Windows 8.1 and comes with the controller included... I'm almost tempted!

    Would definitely benefit from a hybrid drive though - given that you generally only have a couple of games on the go at one time, would be VERY helpful to have those in a nice fast Solid-State cache. Would significantly improve the responsiveness of the system overall.
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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    lol... fully upgradeable except for the one part that will likely need updating the most. The gpu will likely need updating before a cpu will in most new machines... good old dell/alienware, got to keep people buying a new machine.

    I think I'd pay a little more and build my own I'm honest.... hell I'm sure most of us have left over parts laying around we could use for a steam machine.

  7. #7
    AlexKitch
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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    I really don't understand who the target demographic is for this kind of thing. It's a PC made to look like a console, yes? If so, why would any gamer serious enough to be playing high end PC games in the first place want to forgo the benefits and purity of a PC and replace it with a system that's fundamentally more Black-boxed and limited?

    Meh. Maybe I'm just missing the point.

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    If the GPU is the same across all the specifications, is the CPU really going to be a big/noticeable bottleneck playing any games on the cheapest version? What'd be wrong with just getting the basic model, adding your own HD and 4GB extra RAM for a good saving?

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Quote Originally Posted by directhex View Post
    Maxwell is still a hell of a lot higher end than the APUs in the PS4/XBone
    I think we need to be careful. No specs of this chip have been revealed. If it's basically a soldered 750 ti then yes, it is better than PS4/Xbone. Would I say it's a hell of a lot higher end ? Probably not.

    And if the chip that actually goes into this is more like a 750 non-ti then you lose 10-20% of your performance and would fall about on par with the PS4.

    Ofcourse, it could go the other way, it could actually be more than a 750-ti. In which case I would be laughing all the way to the dell website with £430 in my hand but at that price, including windows 8.1 I don't know.

    I hope you are right and that it destroys the consoles otherwise we will never be able to definitively say to console gamers

    "That is priced 15% more than a console and performs at double the frame rate at a higher resolution. And it's a computer which you could do other things on"

    Without console gamers responding with sometimes valid points such as "It's huge", "It's loud", "You have to 'know what you're doing'".

    And something I missed in my initial comment ( the joys of posting from a phone ) it's nice to see a good software implementation so you don't have to mess on with a mouse and keyboard before playing some games.

    Also, the xbox 360 controller is a nice idea whilst Valve hum and har over the final design of the Steam Controller. It's familiar to mos people, comfortable (imho) and cheaper to replace/add new ones then current gen controllers. On the topic of controllers, I can't see if it mentions anywhere about a receiver for the wireless controller so it must be built in. I like that little touch. Very nice.

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexKitch View Post
    I really don't understand who the target demographic is for this kind of thing. It's a PC made to look like a console, yes? If so, why would any gamer serious enough to be playing high end PC games in the first place want to forgo the benefits and purity of a PC and replace it with a system that's fundamentally more Black-boxed and limited? Meh. Maybe I'm just missing the point.
    "purity of a PC" - what are you smoking, it's a device, not a religious object!
    Joking aside, £429 - to me at least - puts it up against the XBone and PS4 (the latter less so). So I'd see the target audience being teenagers - something that looks like a console might be an easier "sell" to the parents than a "scary" full blown PC.
    The other thing is where does it say that this is designed for "high end" PC gaming? I would assume that Alienware would not want to drag customers away from their "proper" (high end) gaming PC's.
    Quote Originally Posted by CK_1985 View Post
    Pretty decent price considering it's got Windows 8.1 and comes with the controller included... I'm almost tempted!

    Would definitely benefit from a hybrid drive though - given that you generally only have a couple of games on the go at one time, would be VERY helpful to have those in a nice fast Solid-State cache. Would significantly improve the responsiveness of the system overall.
    Going to agree with this - even on the Windows8.1 aspect (I'm not a fan). I'd definitely agree with the desirability of an SSHD, since that would be a pretty fair compromise between the storage capacity of a conventional HDD and the outright speed of an (expensive?) SSD. I replaced my WD Black "user" drive with an SSHD and have been very impressed with the speed gains I saw.

    Career status: still enjoying my new career in DevOps, but it's keeping me busy...

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    While it's a pity it's not running SteamOS - I can understand why - better to ensure that a SteamBox is more of a success even if it mean using Windows.

    It would seem that Dell have done a good job in customising Windows - if you chose Console Mode - it shut down a number of various Windows services that are not needed, freeing up all resources for gaming.

    I do wonder though if SteamOS can be installed on this and have it work well? And I look forward to benchmarks of the GPU - I've read that it plays Metro: Last Light at 1080 smoothly (at medium details). Pity it doesn't have more vRAM - Watchdog is one game that like lots of vRAM.

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Prior to this I was idly thinking about building my own SteamBox using a Silverstone Sugo SG08 Lite case and the Devil's Canyon Pentium and overclocking it and a NVidia card such as a 760. It would still come out as being more expensive than this Alienware although I would be using a 128GB SSD (which is around £45) and with 8GB.

    The comparable model might be the $699.00 model (with 8GB RAM and 1TB HDD) - which is roughly £420 (meaning it'll more likely be £499 or slightly more in UK).

    The parts I've picked come out at around £550ish not including a controller (I won't be using Windows - SteamOS would be used). The Pentium being extremely overclockable to over 4GHz would give it a legs up over a i3 at 2.9GHz. The SSD, while small in storage, is faster and for me, I don't usually install many games, just what I'm playing and delete once done. The GPU (if a 760) might be or not be faster than the one in the Alpha but in my case I can upgrade the GPU later on and that's a huge bonus over the Alienware.

    Still I can see the appeal of this box and I hope it sell well for Dell.

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Obviously no gamers involved at all in the design process = **** for gamers. They could have added the 'custom-my-ass' card into a cart and been seeing MANY people go for devices like this... but no - something useless instead. They must be really hoping the Alienware badge warrants stupidity en-masse from its fanboybase.

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    Quote Originally Posted by directhex View Post
    Maxwell is still a hell of a lot higher end than the APUs in the PS4/XBone
    Quote Originally Posted by Jowsey View Post
    I think we need to be careful. No specs of this chip have been revealed. If it's basically a soldered 750 ti then yes, it is better than PS4/Xbone. Would I say it's a hell of a lot higher end ? Probably not.

    And if the chip that actually goes into this is more like a 750 non-ti then you lose 10-20% of your performance and would fall about on par with the PS4.
    The PS4 has 1152 GCN shaders it seems running at around 800MHZ to 900MHZ. That puts it in-between an HD7850 and HD7870.



    That makes it comfortably faster than a GTX750TI.

    On top of this the PS4 GPU is modified too.

    Quote Originally Posted by TR
    A 256-bit interface links the console's processor to its shared memory pool. According to Cerny, Sony considered a 128-bit implementation paired with on-chip eDRAM but deemed that solution too complex for developers to exploit. Sony has also taken steps to make it easier for developers to use the graphics component for general-purpose computing tasks. Cerny identifies three custom features dedicated to that mission:

    * An additional bus has been grafted to the GPU, providing a direct link to system memory that bypasses the GPU's caches. This dedicated bus offers "almost 20GB/s" of bandwidth, according to Cerny.
    * The GPU's L2 cache has been enhanced to better support simultaneous use by graphics and compute workloads. Compute-related cache lines are marked as "volatile" and can be written or invalidated selectively.
    * The number of "sources" for GPU compute commands has been increased dramatically. The GCN architecture supports one graphics source and two compute sources, according to Cerny, but the PS4 boosts the number of compute command sources to 64.
    So it has enhanced compute and enhanced caches too.

    Once you take into consideration the games will be better optimised for the GPU being a console,running a different API,and the fact you are running a different OS too(more efficient) I would argue its probably much more capable in actual use than a GTX750TI running under Windows.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 13-08-2014 at 06:40 PM.


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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    My first though was "Wonder how much Microsoft paid them to ditch SteamOS".

    Second thought: "Steam with Bing, that isn't very catchy"

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    Re: News - Alienware Alpha console to cost £429 in UK, available in November

    I'm interested in the case, want to see more pics of it

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