The Alienware area 51 threadripper Edition is a ridiculously powerful gaming desktop PC. It features a top-of-the-line AMD Threadripper 1950X CPU, which has four more cores than the company’s previous flagship, and also comes with the new AMD X399 chipset. It’s a beast of a desktop, and it’s a huge upgrade over the alienware area51 threadripper from 2014. The system also features 32GB of DDR4 memory, quad-channel configuration, and a 1TB SSD. But is it worth the hefty $2,999 price tag? That’s what we set out to find in this review.
The Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition
The Area-51 Threadripper Edition is as much a personal computer as it is a gaming PC. Although it isn’t designed as an all-out gaming rig, it can handle games like the Witcher 3 at a high framerate. And because you can get it with 16GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD, the system has a ton of room for even more games. And that’s the big thing about this system. You can get something even better. The GeForce GTX 1080 is cheaper than the AMD Radeon RX Vega 56, which is about the only card powerful enough to play the latest games at the highest settings. There’s also a brand new Nvidia GTX 2080 on the way, and it’s likely that card will be a lot more expensive than the $599 RX 2080. But until then, you can get this excellent setup for under $2,000.
Alienware area51 Threadripper (AMD) 1950X
A 32-core chip from AMD may seem excessive on paper. According to AMD, the CPU has a theoretical number of 64 threads. While that’s still not enough to feed most existing single-core desktop workstation computers, it’s more than enough for an Intel Xeon workstation. The Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition definitely isn’t a high-performance gaming PC. It also isn’t a home theater PC. It’s more of an ultra-premium workstation for video content creation. Its quad-core Intel Xeon processor is more than powerful enough for such a machine, and its DDR4 memory and massive amount of storage allow users to work with a lot of video files. The 1950X does have a single caveat: It’s super pricey. At $1,799, it’s more than twice as much as the closest Intel equivalent, the Intel Core i7-7820X.
Alienware area51 Threadripper (AMD) X399 Chipset
AMD’s new X399 chipset is the company’s newest and most powerful offering. It’s packed with features that can make this a very unique and powerful gaming platform. For one thing, it comes with improved power delivery, so the new CPU should benefit from its more powerful power supply. In addition, you can overclock the CPU, and it can support 32 lanes of PCIe. That makes the Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition much more future proof, at least in the short term. On the motherboard side, the X399 platform features a few interesting features. For instance, you get a central mounting location for a 250W liquid cooler, as well as a means of refreshing memory. This is a solid feature that will certainly come in handy if you want to install some extra cooling on the Threadripper processor.
32GB DDR4 Memory
Many PC gamers opt for high-end RAM for an advantage over their competition, and the Threadripper CPU certainly puts it within reach. The standard 16GB of 16-gigabyte DDR4 RAM that comes with the Threadripper 1950X only comes in single-channel configurations, and we need double-channel configuration in order to hit the 4GHz clock speed that the system requires for an acceptable FPS. We also wanted to utilize more RAM to keep the system running smoothly. Purchasing 32GB of DDR4 RAM will set you back $319. However, buying two 32GB DIMMs will drop the price of the memory down to $250. Both the AIO Area-51 with Intel and AMD Threadripper CPUs ship with four DIMMs.
With a huge amount of memory and storage, the Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition has the specs needed for serious gaming and file-sharing. It comes with 64GB of DDR4 RAM and 1TB of NVMe storage. Those specs compare to the previous model, which had a maximum of 64GB of DDR4 RAM and 512GB of NVMe storage. This is a huge upgrade over the old model. For instance, the old model only had a single 64GB PCIe M.2 SSD and a single 1TB SATA drive. The new one has two PCIe M.2 drives for both storage and memory and a 1TB drive for storage. Power and Speed The top-of-the-line AMD Threadripper 1920X is one of the fastest processors available for gaming at the moment. It’s a 16-core monster that features 32MB of cache and eight threads, and the Threadripper 1950X is no slouch either.
The Alienware Area-51 comes standard with a 500GB hard drive, and that’s it. It’s all about storage, as this system is all about storage. That’s a lot of storage to fill, and the best way to do that is to have a large SSD. When I’ve tested storage systems with 500GB drives in them, I’ve had a terrible time using them for more than a few months because of performance issues. It just doesn’t make sense to run a system this large with a slow hard drive, so it’s refreshing to see a system with a 1TB SSD. The difference is noticeable, and it’s a small but important point. Everything is just a little faster and more responsive, and everything just takes a bit more time to load. This is especially true for games, which always require your system to have the most room possible to load everything.
Is the Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition Worth the Price?
There are definitely performance improvements between the latest model of the Area-51 and the older version that launched in 2014. The CPU, RAM, and storage are all upgraded, but even if you stick to the original specifications, you’ll notice a difference. On the gaming side, the Area-51 Threadripper Edition is an incredible performer, capable of processing 6.5 TFLOPS of FP32 performance. That’s far faster than the original Area-51 and ahead of even Intel’s new Intel Core i9-7900X. But the real reason why you might want to consider this system is for the cooling it provides. The Area-51 Threadripper Edition employs liquid-cooling and an extensive array of pipes that bring cool air into the chassis and keep the CPU temperatures down.
On paper, the Alienware area51 threadripper Edition has a lot going for it. But can it perform at full potential? That’s what we tested in this review. The Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition is a monster of a computer. It features a quad-core Ryzen Threadripper 1950X CPU, the new X399 chipset that delivers high-performance with a low power draw, 16GB of high-speed DDR4 memory, a 16GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q graphics card, two 10K 140mm radiators, and the cooling solution that goes with it. It’s a lot of performance for $2,999, but it also has some caveats. The Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition requires at least one 8-pin PCIe power connector, and it isn’t well suited for overclocking or overclocking at all.