Alienware is honored among gamers because of its super-designed desktops. In fact, it is rivaled only by handful competitors. However, this review is not about any desktop by this tech firm; it is on its newfound niche, gaming monitors.
Honestly, Alienware has been doing so well in the desktop sector that we never expected it cross over to this end. This is precisely why this review of the brand’s flagship monitor, Alienware 25, is worth reading.
The Alienware brand offers two version of its Alienware 25 gaming monitor. The AW2518HF version comes with AMD’s FreeSync support while the AW2518H comes with NVidia’s G-sync functionality. It is the most significant difference between the two versions, and, of course, the price. The G-Sync enabled version costs over a hundred dollars more. The AW2518H is the burden of this review as it carries the most premium features of the two Alienware 25 models.
The monitor captures attention as soon as it is out of the box. It has the universal black silver design of Alienware products. The back of the monitor is illuminated with three lines of LEDs and an Alienware’s logo. You can use AlienFX technology to customize the LEDs so that they display a range of colors that fit your playing environment.
Even though such design features might not be of much interest to professional gamers, it scores with those who desire some flair on their gaming rigs. It is still not overly pimped. The balance between flair and functional design is impressive.
The design of the monitor’s bezel sets it apart from most of the expensive monitors in the market. It is very thin at the top and the sides, which leaves the entire front of the monitor as the display. The advantage of such a design is that you can enjoy a multiple-monitor view without the interruptions of thick side bezels.
There are six menus buttons on the right bottom part of the screen. While this is a problem with some monitors, it is not with the AW2518H. There is an on-screen menu that makes navigation easier.
The bottom of the screen houses nine ports, though they are not as crammed as it sounds. They are neatly covered with a removable plastic section. The ports are:
- A power connector
- Display Port 1.2
- Four USB 3.0 ports
- Lineout audio port
- USB pass-through port
- HDMI 1.4 port
- 3.5 Headphone jack
The notable peripherals are the four USB ports. That is more than most monitors offer. Alienware scores a point with the design of this monitor. It looks great on the workbench and lacks the gaudy looks common in some gaming monitors.
You do not need a tool or a manual to set up this monitor. There are no large brackets or stands to screw. The first thing you will notice is its unexciting TN panel with a resolution of 1080 pixel. However, a fast-forward into the gaming mode, and the AW2518H quiets all critics with excellent image quality.
It has a high contrast ratio of 1000:1 that offers impressive image details. The colors too remain accurate, until you try viewing them from different or sharp angles. Well, this has nothing to with Alienware’s technology but its choice of a panel. TN panel offers excellent color impression only and only if viewed head-on, not from perspectives.
The most talked about features of the high-end Alienware 25 monitor are its 240Hz refresh rates and the G-sync functionality. It is true that the rare 240 Hz leads to a fluid gaming experience in fast-paced games. The G-sync coupled with a 1ms response time rate is just more than a gamer interested in smooth flowing gaming needs.
The Alienware monitor might not impress professional gamers who are not willing to sacrifice image fidelity in exchange for higher refresh rates. High-resolution buffs will find the 1080p unacceptable. It also affects the response time. It is here that Alienware lost it to other not so great monitor models.