I am a gamer myself researching on what to buy as my VERY 1st laptop
This is what I ahve found out so far.
The Alienware M51-5500 is nothing more than a rebranded Uniwill P71EN.
Alot of Boutique gaming rigs usually just buy their systems from the ODM manufacturers and put their touch to it.Boutique gaming rigs and their respective ODMs
You can view various resellers ratings via the Resellerratings.com site.
Here is what I have seen so far:
Company Name: 6mth Rating/Lifetime RatingAlienware
Ratings via Reselleratings.com as of 04/04/06
---- 9.89/9.98Falcon Northwest
Alienware, VoodooPC, FalconNW and various other boutique shops makes some "Pretty" rigs but at a very high cost.
I would rather just buy the exact same rig in a reputable reseller for a much lower cost such as PCTorque, Discountlaptops, Powernotebooks and ISTNC.(Of course the ONLY thing missing is the custom paintjob offered by the other shops)
If you want you rig to be sexy looking, then you can just go to some specialized custom paintjob like: http://smoothcreations.com
So pretty much teh question is:
(and if you MUST have a painjob, you can still get it for a less cost than the other boutique shops at SmoothCreations.)
Do you want to spend the extra cash for a custom paint job Alienware or other boutique shops?
Or would you rather buy the exact same item for less in a more highly rated company?
With that said, I am still awaiting the release of the Clevo M570U (aka 32bit Dual Core version of the Sager 5720)
You can view this system at its configurable format at Rockdirect.com as the XtremeCTX
Also can view the Specs at Eurocom.ca as the M570U Divine
From the various Reps I have contacted, the Clevo M570U is due to be released in the US around May-June time frame.
Considering this is just the Dual Core version of the Clevo M570A and having the option of having either the ATI X1800XT or Nvidia go7800GTX vid card, it will be a great 17" 8-9lb laptop for gaming
If you are still NOT sure.
I highly suggest making a post at http://notebookreview.com
They have a forum section called:What Notebook Should I Buy?
Just fill out the FAQ they have in there and I am sure someone can fill you in with what laptop is perfect for you.