updated 01:55 pm EDT, Mon March 24, 2008
Alienware Area-51 3.2GHz
Quickly following on the heels of its GeForce 9800 GX2 update, Alienware on Monday afternoon refreshed the Area-51 gaming tower to add Intel's 3.2GHz Core 2 Extreme QX9770 as its best processor option. The new speed eclipses the 3GHz limit set by the older system and also brings with it a faster 1.6GHz system bus; the extra bandwidth helps keep traffic going to all four cores and also more properly feeds the DDR3 memory.
The option will launch as a higher-tier option alongside the earlier 3GHz processor and boosts the price of the system by $1,650 to $3,749 while keeping the 2GB of RAM, GeForce 9600 GT video, and 250GB hard drive of the base system. Alienware estimates shipping systems configured with the new chip by mid-April.