The name Alienware is synonymous high-end equipment. So it makes sense that enthusiasts love to hear about new gadgets from them. They have have announced the release of two new performance Centrino-labeled notebooks, the Area-51 m5700 and the Area-51 m5500. The feature set on these is pretty decent. They will feature a 17" 16:9 display and a 15.4" 16:9 display, respectively, and both include DDR2 memory. The previous Area-51 releases have been pretty decent machines, and these don't look like they will be disappointing. Many laptops with a Centrino feature set often make use of the Intel graphics chipset, but that isn't nearly good enough for a gamer - and these will come with the GeForce GO 6800 and 6600, which have set the standard for laptop video performance. But when battery life is key - these machines can switch between the nVidia controller and the Intel controller, improving battery life.

The most impressive thing I see from the m5700 is dual hard drives running in RAID. The hard drive has been the achillies heel of the machine for a long time, being the slowest and most prone to failure. As they get smaller, though, adding two or more to a laptop became a possibility; now we see it here as a standard option which is very good stuff. The full press release is on the forums.