Alienware's Area-51m modular CPU and GPU upgrades.

Alienware's Area-51m modular CPU and GPU upgrades can add up to a $ 4,000 notebook.

Photo by Vjeran Pavic 

But as you might expect, the most premium parts won't come cheap. The Alienware Configurator Page now shows that a fully-equipped Area-51m, with a desktop processor Intel Core i9-9900K bona fide 8-core , Nvidia RTX 2080 mobile graphics and a 144Hz screen, it will cost $ 4,000 today. That's too rich for me.

Yes, one of the best things about an easily upgradable laptop is that you can start with a lower $ 2,549 configuration and add more powerful parts later. But Alienware's configurator shows that it is currently charging $ 450 just for upgrading from an RTX 2070 to an RTX 2080, suggesting that you may be paying north when Alienware finally sells that graphics card separately.

And since Dell is using its own in-house DGFF (Dell Graphics Form Factor) cards for GPU upgrades, it's unlikely you can buy that upgrade elsewhere. Still, the Alienware desktop processor socket can take any CPU compatible with Intel's Z370 chipset, and RAM, SSD and HDD slots are standard.

Dell's modular graphics cards.
 Photo by Vjeran Pavic / The Verge

On the other hand, if you're a gamer (or content creator, or ...) with a serious bank account, Alienware will let you take this machine up to $ 4,844 and swap it out if you opt to stick with a pair of 1TB PCIe. SSDs in an incredibly fast RAID 0 array and keep a 1TB hybrid magnetic hybrid drive along for the ride.

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