Best Alienware gaming PC 2024: Out of this world Aurora builds

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(Image credit: Dell)

1. Best overall
2. Best budget
3. Best premium

The best Alienware gaming PC builds pair out of this world specs with a sci-fi aesthetic, and Dell knows it stuff when it comes to pre-built rigs. Admittedly, systems bearing the zeta head logo can be pricey, but you'll ultimately end up with a powerhouse machine that'll make short work of the latest Steam games. Whether you're looking for something that can crunch 4K or boost fps at lower resolutions for less, we're here to help you find the right Alienware PC that'll suit both your budget and needs.

If you've ever went on the hunt for the best gaming PC, the name Alienware has no doubt cropped up, and there's a good reason. Aurora rigs come armed with powerhouse GPUs and the latest CPUs, meaning you'll be able to boost fps further than ever using the brand's compact machines. Not to mention the premium parts come housed in an eye catching PC case, one that's going to stand out both in your game room and LAN events.

To help you get in on the Aurora action, we've whipped up a list of the best Alienware gaming PCs available now. Our list covers shiny new RTX 4090 builds, older models, and everything in between, so there's something for all players below. That said, it's worth keeping in mind that Dell likes to discontinue previous versions of Alienware rigs once the latest version is out. To combat this, we've rounded up the best specs and builds to aim for at other third party retailers while stock is still around.

Note to UK players: Unfortunately, Dell is a lot quicker when it comes to discontinuing older models at its UK store. As a result, it's hard to find stock of anything older than the current Aurora R16 model, and anything that does pop up tends to have an inflated price tag. We'll continue to look out for deals and available stock, but for now, you're best sticking with the company's current generation machine.

The best Alienware gaming PC

Alienware Aurora R15 PC sitting on desk

(Image credit: Future / Phil Hayton)
The best Alienware gaming PC (for now)

Specifications

CPU: Up to Intel Core i9
GPU: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090
RAM: Up to 64GB
Storage: Up to 4TB SSD + 2TB HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Incredible RTX 4090 performance
+
Effective RGB lighting
+
Plenty of ports List

Reasons to avoid

-
Not so upgradable
-
Questionable case choices
-
Makes strange sounds
Alienware Aurora R15From $1,199.99 at Dell

Alienware Aurora R15 | From $1,199.99 at Dell

Dell is in the process of discontinuing the Aurora R15, and it's the perfect opportunity to grab the RTX 4070 Ti version. While the RTX 4090 model featured in our main review naturally packs more a punch, this build currently strikes more of a balance between specs and price.

The Alienware Aurora R15 is a powerhouse pre-build that'll make short work of your Steam library, even at 4K with ultra ray tracing enabled. The rig's lofty specs and curious case design embody the brand's out-of-this-world vibe more so than even the newer Aurora R16, but there are a few caveats to consider when it comes to upgradability.

The Alienware Aurora R15 is a ferocious RTX 4090 gaming PC with exceptional performance capabilities

Alienware Aurora R15 review

We've put the Aurora R15 through our usual benchmarking tests, and it's clear that the rig has awesome capabilities. Supporting up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090, Intel Core i9-13600K CPU, and 32GB DDR5 RAM, we're talking about specs that could rival any machine in the market. The result? Well, the setup can run Cyberpunk 2077 at 147fps at 4K with ultra ray tracing settings enabled, albeit with a helping hand from DLSS 3 AI upscaling. 

While there's nothing stopping you cracking open Dell's capsule PC and tinkering inside, you might find there's little you can actually change. The proprietary motherboard inside only features two DIMM slots, meaning your options are limited when it comes to upgrading RAM. There's also not much space unoccupied within the case, so trying to squeeze different parts inside could be something of a difficult voyage.

The Aurora R15 also isn't the quietest system around, but not because it's overly noisy. Its plastic case seems to create strange acoustics that produce an eerie sound, which is perhaps appropriate given its extra territorial design. It also tends to creak a little as internal temperatures rise and fall, which sort of sounds like it's going to transform and take off.

Still, the Aurora R15 is the best Alienware gaming PC we've tried to date, and it's got plenty to offer on the performance front. That fact alone might maybe up for its upgradeability pitfalls, as you probably won't need to even think about switching out its core parts for many years to come.

The best budget Alienware gaming PC

The best Alienware gaming PC for most players

Specifications

CPU: Up to Intel Core i9-12900KF
GPU: Up to RTX 3090
RAM: Up to 128GB DDR5
Storage: 2TB NVMe Gen 4 + 2TB HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Effectively futureproofed 
+
Support for PCIe 5.0 
+
Powerful hardware for 4K

Reasons to avoid

-
Gets both hot and loud under stress
-
Love it or hate it design
Alienware Aurora R13$1,399 at Amazon

Specs:

Alienware Aurora R13 | $1,399 at Amazon

Specs: Intel Core i9-11900K CPU | Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Ti | 16GB DDR5 RAM | 512GB SSD

Typically, you'll pay around $1,400 for the RTX 3060 Ti version of the Aurora R13, and while there are versions out there with an RTX 3070 and above, sticking with this version offers better value for money. That's largely due to the fact the Alienware Aurora R15 is known to pop up with better specs for less than other options, so this is the most we'd recommend paying for an R13 rig in 2024.

The Alienware Aurora R13 isn't the newest Alienware rig, but we still hold it in high regard. Not only did it set the stage for the R14 and R15 in terms of case design and approach, its innards will still make short work of your Steam library without compromise.

Gaming on the Alienware Aurora R13 was a very pleasant experience

Alienware Aurora R13 review

Regardless of how you configure your device, one constant is the design of the Alienware Aurora R13 itself, with its new see-through window panel revealing more of the brand's impressive lighting and AIO cooler. Transparency is always appreciated in our book, as you get to physically see the components at work, making it easier to swap things out when needed, too, so it's a welcome addition. 

The main weakness of the Alienware Aurora R13 is the same issue that's plagued many of the systems in our roundup, and that's cooling. Dell has opted for a 120mm AIO water cooler in this machine this time around, and while a marginal improvement given the hardware here, the small-size radiator/pump combo does struggle to cool the demanding components sometimes. It's loud, too. Still, the performance on display certainly speaks for itself, still holding up even in 2024.

The best premium Alienware gaming PC

Alienware Aurora R16 on desk with orange LEDs and person on left playing Lords of the Fallen

(Image credit: Dell)

3. Alienware Aurora R16

The best premium Alienware gaming PC

Specifications

CPU: Up to Intel Core i9
GPU: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080
RAM: Up to 64GB
Storage: Up to 4TB SSD + 2TB HDD

Reasons to buy

+
Cooler and quieter
+
New case design
+
i9-13900F CPU

Reasons to avoid

-
No RTX 4090 model
-
Eye watering price
Alienware Aurora R16 | From $1,149.99 at Dell

Alienware Aurora R16 | From $1,149.99 at Dell

The newest version of Alienware's rig features a simplified design, but the top end model also comes armed with an RTX 4090 GPU and one of the best Intel CPUs around. You'll pay a pretty penny for that build, but it's also available in various lower spec flavours that'll suit a variety of budgets.

Alienware Aurora R16 | From £1,279 at Dell

Alienware Aurora R16 | From £1,279 at Dell

Unlike other Alienware builds featured above, the Aurora R16 is widely available in the UK. There are fewer models available, and the highest spec option listed is the RTX 4080 version. However, sticking with one of these systems direct from Dell is the best way to go, as even older, inflated options at other sites are drying up.

The Aurora R16 is the newest Alienware gaming PC you can buy, and it features a rather down to earth design that's both more subtle and provides better cooling. Dell has removed a lot of the redundant materials from its boutique build in the name of optimisation, but the innards of this system are still unmistakeably Alienware.

Dell claims the Aurora R16 runs 7% cooler than its R15 predecessor, and it's 20% quieter to boot. That's going to appeal to anyone worried about high spec gaming thermals, as the new design allows the build's AIO cooler to perform efficiently. Arguably, it also looks better than previous models, featuring a case that looks conventional. That said, if you're an Alienware fan, you're likely not looking for a down to earth system in the first place.

As for specs, the newest Aurora supports up to an RTX 4090, 13th gen Intel i9 CPU, and 32GB DDR5 RAM. Technically, that means it's not really offering anything over and above the previous R15 model, but Dell's pitch this time around focusses on the system's overall redesign and extra efficiency. If you're not really into conventional looks, that's not going to appeal to you. Otherwise, this is arguably the definitive Alienware rig.

Best Alienware gaming PCs - Frequently asked questions

Does Alienware still exist?

Yes, Alienware PCs still exist, and they rank among the best pre-built gaming PC options out there. While you potentially last rocked an Alienware rig back in the early 2000s, Dell's premium range has kept up with the times, and builds bearing the Alien head emblem wield high-spec GPUs and CPUs.

How much does an Alienware gaming PC cost?

Alienware gaming PCs generally start from around the $1,100 mark depending on what hardware you opt for in your machine. It's entirely possible to find Alienware gaming PC deals all year round, but you can also find deep discounts often, too, with frequent special events. 

Is Alienware good for gaming?

Alienware is one of the best gaming PC brands with hardware and software geared specifically around gaming. Programmes such as Alienware Command Centre gives users good control over how their system operates in everything from the fan speeds to the RGB colors, too. In our testing, we've found Alienware machines to work incredibly well depending on their overall configuration. 

Is Alienware just Dell?

Sort of! Alienware is a subsidiary of Dell, which means they're a company that is directly owned, and will be influenced by Dell, but they aren't Dell directly. Alienware focuses directly on the gaming PC and gaming laptop market, and a lot of their products tend to take on a lot more flashy design work that isn't typically found in Dell's product ranges.

Is Alienware worth it?

We think that Alienware is worth the price of investment despite the premium price tag these machines usually carry. All Alienware machines that we've had our hands on have been very well built and able to be pushed to their limits. One thing we can tell you, though, is that Alienware PCs do get quite loud and warm under stress, but that's ultimately par the course depending on how high-end you go for. 

Why is Alienware so expensive?

Alienware gaming PCs are high end builds, and the parts dwelling within Dell's rigs aren't cheap. You can customise some components if you're on a budget, but you're ultimately going to end up with system armed with the latest Nvidia or AMD graphics card paired with a shiny new CPU. 

Best Alienware gaming PC 2024: Minimum specs to look for

When looking for the best Alienware gaming PC, you want the most bang for your buck as possible, especially when Alienware products aren't the cheapest you'll find. You want to make sure that your gaming PC is futureproofed with solid specs, but what are these? We've supplied our minimum spec recommendations for in 2024 down below.

In particular, we'd look to secure an NVMe, Gen 4 M.2 SSD, as we consider these the best SSDs for gaming. As for capacity, don't get your wallet out for anything less than 500GB. Yes, there are some exceptions. If a prebuilt PC comes with a hybrid storage system, so 250GB of SSD combined with 2TB of HDD, maybe it's alright. But ideally, you don't want an SSD in your machine that's less than 500GB.

Elsewhere, look for a 13th Gen Intel Core i9, or AMD Ryzen 5 or 7 processor, as these are often the best CPUs for gaming. 11th Gen, or 5000 series AMD CPUs are the absolute minimum we'd shoot for in the year of our lord 2024. These processors will perform just fine, but they won't be futureproofed going forward. Also worth keeping in mind, is that DDR5 RAM is only compatible with certain motherboards, and by proxy, will only reach its top speeds with a newer generation CPU.

The choice that will impact price the most, is whether or not you get one of the best graphics cards. At this point in time, we'd recommend an RTX 4060 and above, since these are now readily available and much more affordable. If you've got the budget, you'll perhaps want to pick up a build with a shiny new RTX 4090 inside, as that way you'll be able to smash through system requirements for new releases with no compromise. That said, the new Aurora R16 actually caps out at the RTX 4080, so keep that in mind if you're looking for the absolute best Aurora rig in terms of performance.

In terms of memory, we'd look for 16GB of DDR4 as a minimum. If you can get DDR5, then even better, just make sure your motherboard supports it.

How we test Alienware gaming PCs at GamesRadar+

Why you can trust GamesRadar+ Our experts review games, movies and tech over countless hours, so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about our reviews policy.

Our expert team spends countless hours putting gaming PCs through their paces, and Alienware rigs are no exception. While performance capabilities are at the forefront of our testing, we also closest consider specs, design, features, and price to determine whether a system should make our recommended list. 

In a way, gaming PCs are multiple products in one, and our tests involve benchmarking each system's graphics card and CPU in addition to the entire rig. To maintain consistency, we use a set collection of games to collect data on frame rates, temperatures, and general performance, which can be then used to compare against alternatives. 

Our a full rundown, check out how we test gaming PCs for more information on our benchmark procedures. Alternatively, take a peek at our hardware policy guide for insight into how we conduct all of our reviews.


You'll also find guides to the best gaming mouse, best gaming keyboard, and best gaming monitor if you're refreshing your whole setup as well. 

Phil Hayton
Hardware Editor

I’ve been messing around with PCs, video game consoles, and tech since before I could speak. Don’t get me wrong, I kickstarted my relationship with technology by jamming a Hot Wheels double-decker bus into my parent’s VCR, but we all have to start somewhere. I even somehow managed to become a walking, talking buyer’s guide at my teenage supermarket job, which helped me accept my career fate. So, rather than try to realise my musician dreams, or see out my University degree, I started running my own retro pop culture site and writing about video games and tech for the likes of TechRadar, The Daily Star, and the BBC before eventually ending up with a job covering graphics card shenanigans at PCGamesN. Now, I’m your friendly neighbourhood Hardware Editor at GamesRadar, and it’s my job to make sure you can kick butt in all your favourite games using the best gaming hardware, whether you’re a sucker for handhelds like the Steam Deck and Nintendo Switch or a hardcore gaming PC enthusiast.