Alienware Aurora ALX luxury advice

By Cpt_Subtext · 25 replies
Nov 19, 2006
  1. Hi guys... well recentley my pc finally gave up the ghost thanks to a short from my powerpack and is essentially a write off, a loverly £2000 paperweight it is too, so am in the market for a new machine. Im not really considering another build and all the time it takes to get it working just right so am after a pre built machine and this from Alienware is the one im considering despite the hefty price.

    What im concerned about however is with Vista and Direct X10 just around the corner and all the new 3d options available is it worth buying now? Sure its Vista ready but with the major companies already sure to have Direct x 10 graphics cards ready to go is it worth waiting or will the difference largely un noticeble?

    Any suggestions are welcome....
  2. tyler811

    tyler811 TS Rookie Posts: 19

    There is only a hand full of games right now there are DX10 but to get the effect of Vista (Eye Candy) you will need a DX10 card. The only ones I am aware right now are the NVidias 8800 series.

    DX10 is suppossed to bring a whole new visual effect to games

    Differences between DX9c and DX10
  3. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Well Alienwares personaly I think suck because they arnt really well-built and could fall apart within like 2 years ( same as Dell because they are like brothers )

    So just wait till DX10 and Vista become alot cheaper and get it then
  4. tyler811

    tyler811 TS Rookie Posts: 19

    You dont buy DX10 it will be available for download soon. The price of Vista will not go down
  5. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Yes, you are right it's a d/l for DX10, not a card.

    I have an ALX Aurora system from Alienware, the Athlon 64 FX-53 with three SATA Raptors (74.5 Gig)
    two of the raptors are paired as RAID 0, a 400 Gig SATA Hitachi, two burners, a plextor and Lite-On, Sound Blaster Audigy ZS Platinum Pro with a 5.1 Klipsch Pro Media speakers and it's $8,000 of awesome.

    There was a big downside to all of this though, I will try to explain the best I can. This should not happen to you because SP2 has been out already, but you never know.

    When I received the unit Aug 29, 2004 I hooked it up on Sept 11, 2004 due to delays with my new desk.

    When they sent me the unit it never functioned properly, I mean all the BSOD'S and all the versions of software were old and 3/4 of the drivers were so old the system didn't function properly. The reason I knew the drivers were old I ran a scan from Drivers HeadQuarters and printed it out. Another big problem was it had only 6 updates from SP1.

    All this combined caused a lot of major problems, especially when all this hardware was hi-performance.

    The hardware and system needed those updates to function properly that's why it was BSOD'S and driver conflicts, software conflicts, etc.

    Finally it got to the point I needed to reinstall Windows. The Ghost Image they gave me didn't work. So the Tech told me we will have to do it from the Recovery Disk. Well, guess what! All theTechs tried continuously to get Windows installed and it never worked. You have to install the RAID drivers at the F6 prompt when installing Windows and the Promise FastTrack had to be installed manually which could never be done anyway. Each Tech was doing something different, that told me they didn't know what the hell they were doing.

    To install Windows each time it had to be shipped as well as fix all the hardware issues.

    Mean while they tied the system up for 8 months trying to do this and it literally beat the system to death. They put the system through such stress they ended up replacing every single thing in the box except the HD'S and the Sound Card.

    Don't get me wrong there is just a few Techs there that know what they are doing, but it's a matter of hitting the lottery in order to get one.

    During the last try to install Windows I needed to d/l a newer VIA Driver but I didn't have another computer to use so they said they would send it through the mail, I asked how long it would take and I was told 2 days. Guess what, it took two weeks for that floppy to get here. Then on top of it they kept sending the wrong driver, so they had to constantly resend the floppy. Well that went on for two and half months until they got it right.

    Eventually none of this worked anyway and it was shipped. So I started learning imaging software so I could have some kind of back up.

    The last episode I had with them was when the power supply failed and it was shipped on May 19, 2006 they had it for a month. Everytime the system was shipped back and forth it came back with more wrong with it, than when it left.

    Now mind you, the previous time they had it from the last, I pointed out to them that the coolant needed to be filled. When you see any kind of an clear spot on one of the tubes, it needs filled. But when I got it back I never noticed because there were so many things going on with this system I forgot all about it.

    So that's what lead to the power supply failing. Like I said they had it for a month, I got it back and checked "My Computer" first thing to see if all the HD'S were there. Guess what, the other two HD'S were not there. I looked in device manager and the driver was uninstalled. I was pissed. I called them and asked what would a Promise FastTrack driver being uninstalled have to do with a new power supply being installed and they said "nothing" of course. So immediately I packed it back up and sent it back because we could never get that driver installed from my end.

    I get it back after three weeks and fired the box up and still no Promise FastTrack driver and none of my storage HD'S. I was livid. It's like they never touched the system at all and shipped it back to me that way.

    Once again, it went back and this time the driver was installed and the storage HD'S were there, but I guess they needed a burner when my system was there and they yanked mine and put in the one that didn't work back in mine and sent it back to me. I noticed this because they inverted the two different drives. The Plextor was now on the top instead of the bottom slot. So I tested each drive to which was working and the Plextor was the only one that was working. The other was dead.

    I called them and they said to ship it back and I said "NO", you get a tech to come to my house and replace it because I don't trust anything you people do. You make way too many mistakes. They tied up from May 19, 2006 to July 29, 2006 on this last episode.

    Also the door was broke in three different places after I got it back. It wasn't like that when it left. And of course they said ship it back and I said "forget it", you people could fix anything right if you tried.

    I did not build a system at that time because I didn't have enough knowledge so that's why I bought the ALX. Now I do have the knowledge and I will never purchase another computer from a mainstream manufcaturer again.

    I discovered a month a half ago when I had a Tech on the phone we tested both Recovery Disks that I had and neither one would copy the files, so they were useless. Earlier in this process they did work, so your guess is as good as mine why they seized to work. Even the Tech said "he didn't understand this". I asked for a new Recovery Disk and I was told "NO".

    So four weeks ago I had to purchase a new XP Pro OS, thanks to them. It is the best thing I ever done though, because explorer would hang every single time on a restart or shutdown. They had the OS so screwed up it wasn't funny.

    Since I re-installed Windows for the first time from scratch with this system I now realize the mistakes they made and why they couldn't get windows installed. Number one, you can't put the whole folder for the VIA Drivers on a floppy, the file is too big, you have to copy the the one specific driver to the floppy that you need in order to install windows, not the whole folder and that's what they were doing.

    Then after the installation you install the rest.

    Yes, despite that they had the system more than I have had it in the last two years I'm amazed by it.

    They should have never sent the system out without all the updates it needed, they should have updated all the drivers and this would have never happened. They handled the situation very poorly. My system has been shipped 12 times.

    I'm only pointing these things out so you are aware of it.

    Like I said you should not have any of these problems if they load all the critical updates before you get it. The new OS I bought came with SP2 B. So I was able to install the Promise FastTrack after the windows installation with no problem.

    I wish I had known about this place before I ordered from Alienware. I have talked to some folks that has made purchases from them and they said they Tech Support is excellent. If you need anything replaced it's overnighted to you so you don't have to wait a week or two and if you need a tech they will come out.

    Good Luck to you what ever you choose.
  6. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Damn Rilla927 that's the longest post I seen on TS =D

    Instead of spending $8000 on that alienware you bought you could have built.... maybe 4-5 other computers that would kick the s*it out of ALL alienware computers because my build only cost me about $900 and has all the stuff a alienware has plus more and better stuff
  7. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    As I explained, I bought it because I didn't have the knowledge at the time. I wanted the case so when I build my own so I will have lots of room.

    But hey, everyone has to start some where. It's a hell of a learning lesson that's for sure.
  8. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Thankyou guys, Sounds like a nightmare Rilla and thats odd cause Alienware apparantly have amasing customer service which is what attracted me to them in the first place. Ive trolled forums etc looking for reviews and mostly other than yourself and maybe one more have heard nothing but good but its something to think about.

    Im not interested in building my own anymore, mainly due to the fact that when something goes wrong with the hardware if I dont have the money to replace it im stuck thats basically been the issue with my current system over the past 2 years....which has finally gone completley thanks to a power supply from

    The main thing is I am needing to buy a new system on Finance as im broke now but expecting an influx of cash around August.

    I will keep on looking though as im not going to purchase something so expensive without getting all the facts on it.

    If anyone else as Alienware horror stories let me know....

    Either way I think I am going to wait until Vista is released and the machines come with cards geared for direct x 10

    Actually ive just discovered the website and it reads like a horror story concerning Alienware! Think im gonna avoid em like the plague!
  9. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Here ya go

    This will keep you busy.
  10. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    The amount of bad reviews im seeing is really off putting!

    What can you recomend, money really isnt an issue as I can afford to pay out about £3500.00 but I need a high end gaming system, with great customer support and a finance option. of around 9 months that is based or delivers to the uk
  11. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Just built your own like the rest of TS will probably tell you.. All the parts can be bought from at cheap prices ( a mobo is like $30 USD )
  12. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Thanks but newegg really isnt an option for me.... mainly due to the fact that I live in the City of the Beetles, Liverpool UK so any defective components will be a pain to replace etc and also because I need to take advantage of a buy now pay later scheme of 9 months or more due to a substantial sum of money coming in around August/ October 07, id wait but my main PC is a write off and this one is not much good for anything more than word processing and emails.

    Again the problem with building a computer system for me is having the funds to replace a defective part a year down the line when the warranty is expired... and if as has recentley happened to me a Power supply shorts and takes pretty much everything with it id again be up that creek without a paddle in a leaky boat thats sinking fast

    What my needs entail is a computer system that works straight out of the box with extended warranties and excellent customer support.

    Sure manufactured PC's are over priced but unfortunetly I do not have the time to be running around trying to sort out issue's
  13. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    How much are you willing to spend for a system? Also, which sites do u plan to buy the components from?
  14. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152


    check the link in last paragraph I posted for you.

    Tasty Computers offers excellent service all the way around. I wish I would have found them when I was looking to buy.
  15. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Yeah, thanks Rilla I sort of overlooked that link but am going to give them a proper looking at. As silly as it might sound though ive always been led to believe Alienware are the be all and end all of computer gaming so its hard to tear myself away from the idea of owning one... Its a good thing ive still got pleanty of time to make my mind up.

    As for how much im willing to spend on a PC largely depends on Finance options... I can afford upto £4000 but I need a system that offers atleast a 9 month buy now pay later option
  16. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Well, looks like Tasty Computers is out, they only ship to the USA & District of Columbia.

    I'm sure you will able to find a system just as nice as AW, but with out all the headaches.

    Don't get me wrong, my system is awesome! It's the way they handled everything and the lousy tech support. To me it wasn't worth it. I wish I would bought from some where else. No one should ever be treated that way.

    Here is a company that sells high end systems in the UK.
    I don't know if they have financing. I couldn't find anything about it anyway.
  17. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Thanks guys and Rilla especially, you have been most helpfull with your suggestions
  18. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Your welcome!

    I will do some more searching and see if I can come up with something for you.

    When you do get a system, come back to the forum and give us a screen shot okay.

    You take care,
  19. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Yeah most definatley... and dont worry im sure I will still be around on the forums for a while yet as it seems to be a great tool for finding things out. Ive really gotten out of touch with PC technologies and am playing catch up atm but so far this site has proven invaluable to me.
  20. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    That's good, I'm glad to hear that.

    Are you looking to buy an Intel or AMD?

    I have done some research and this is what I come up with:

    Falcon NorthWest ships to the UK but no financing.

    I'm going to toss an idea out, see what you think. Since your looking for financing I would go to a local bank to apply for a loan, because when you get financing for a computer the interest rate is outrageous. You would save a chunk of money. Just an idea.
  21. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Personally id prefer to stick with AMD I dunno why exactly ive just always felt their products are superior to Intel's... Probably due to the fact ive been using them for all my builds since my first PC, screwey little packard bell, died.

    As for taking the loan thats kind of defeating the point, unless a loan allows me not to start repaying for 9 months I cant really do it. Sure I could afford the monthly repayments but the reason I want the buy now pay later option is that ive got a few grand comming in around July or August which would allow me to pay off the debt on Finance in full without having to pay any interest as is the norm with such options.

    I dont know any loans that are get now pay 9 months later...without charging interest
  22. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Great choice!

    Oh okay! For some reason it didn't quite register.

    I had called Velocity Micro to get some info, financing, shipping to UK and the guy told me yes they ship to the UK but it would cost the customer $600.00 U.S and you get no warranty with the machine. I was shocked. They didn't have any financing though. They have excellent support though.

    Well, let us know what happens either way and if I don't tallk to you in the next few days have a Happy Thanksgiving!
  23. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Damn.... That's amazing for the price
  24. Cpt_Subtext

    Cpt_Subtext TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 257

    Yeah time I was looking at that setup with Vadim...... is pretty sweet!
  25. Rilla927

    Rilla927 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Out of all the links I came up with I liked Vadim the best. It made me drool!

    Did you find out if they had financing?
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add your comment to this article

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...