Alienware


A lawsuit has been filed and is seeking class action status against the computer company alleging notebook computers overheat, resulting in complete failure. The lawsuit was filed in Miami Dade Circuit Court and claims Alienware has refused to acknowledge the problem. Alienware was acquired by computer maker Dell for an undisclosed price in July of 2006. The lawsuit alleges a design defect is responsible for Alienware overheating and that the computer's heat-removal system, called a heatsink, doesn't adequately remove heat produced by the processor, battery and other components.

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Reader Comments

Posted by
Florida
on
I purchased a $2,100 laptop from Alienware that is completely inoperable due to it overheating. I am a student and don't have money for another laptop.

Posted by
Colorado
on
I spent several thousand dollars on this computer and have devoted over one hundred hours of my own time trying to get it fixed to no avail. The most recent attempt to get it fixed resulted in a notice from Alienware saying that they cannot duplicate the problem (it is VERY easy to duplicate), and my computer won't even boot up now.

Posted by
Tennessee
on
Laptop was purchased to play games but has never been able to do that. Always slow but tech support always gave canned answers and said its all they could do. Paid $3300.00 for this and all I could do is surf the net. Now its dead and its less than 2.5 yrs old.

Posted by
Utah
on
The first year, while the laptop was under warranty I had to ship it back to their facility twice for issues. It has been about 3 years now since I purchased it. I have had to buy one motherboard from a third party vender and recently fried another motherboard all due to overheating. Computer sits now in my closet completely useless because it is too hard to find replacement motherboards.

Posted by
Arkansas
on
I bought my Alienware laptop (AREA 51-m 766) to take with me while I was deployed to Iraq in 2005. It worked fine at first, but began shutting down, after a few months use. By the time I got back from Iraq the video card was inoperable due to heat damage. I replaced the video card and found that other parts of the laptop had been damaged. Alienware will not respond to my emails and when I call they say that they can not help me.

Posted by
Texas
on
The video card no longer fuctions to the point where I am able to use the computer for what it was offered as 'ultimate gaming machine.' I was given no help when I tried to call to replace the 'upgradeable' card or replace the unit itself.

Posted by
Alabama
on
Most heat comes from the graphics card; that is when I run games or graphics intensive videos the area underneath gets EXTREMELY hot, even to point where touching it is quite painful.

If I multitask, say, run music at the same time as a game, the system often shuts down within 10 minutes. I assume this is an automatic response by the hardware to unbearable heat, however it could just be an unnatural shut down.

The games which I play (WoW, Halflife 2) are not among the most intensive on the market. My machine is nearly 3 years old now, but because these games were not demanding back then it stands to reason that a system marketed as a gaming machine should be able to handle them.

By the way, I've had this problem for over a year and a half now.

Posted by
Maryland
on
I purchased the laptop, buying into the hype of superior system design and support In November 2005. I have never been so wrong with shopping in my life. The laptop heated up so much that eventually the paint on the front left corner had faded off. After a time I only used it in rooms that were so cold I had to wear extra clothing and it burned my hands to touch the area where the paint wore off. Even in spring, there was no opening the windows to enjoy the season. The laptop was impossible to keep cool. The laptop eventually started to malfunction in October of 2006 and I was told that I missed the renewal date on my warranty... Simply by missing the warranty renewal by a matter of days, they wouldn't even charge me to fix the laptop. I expected to pay for their service at this point and they still wouldn't take my money to fix the machine. Obviously they knew that the machine had only about a years worth of life in it before it died.

Much later now, the laptop still isn't fixed because you can't get the parts anywhere and I'm never doing business with alienware ever again.

Posted by
Ontario
on
Purchased the AREA-51M 7700, have had a slew of issues all tried to resolve with Alienware (saved documentation) but they refused to help or admit to any design flaws. My laptop cost $4000 US, and it has been out of commission for the majority of its life. Now its finally dead.

Here are some of the major issues :
1) Overheating which lead to the motherboard dying.
2) Battery died within 3 months
3) Power adapter doesn't seat anymore and sparks
4) Hard drive failed
5) Software was incorrectly supplied (restore disk for the wrong system)
6) The on-board audio did not work as advertised despite multiple attempts to fix it
7) The upgrade path for the video card that was used to sell this machine to me was false advertising.

I now reside in Canada (I'm an American citizen), But I purchased this in Vermont and paid using an American credit card.

Posted by
California
on
Despite using a stand to aid in airflow, my Alienware Laptop overheats and shuts down randomly. This has caused loss of work, missed deadlines and bad client relations as well as general frustration of coordinated work.

This happens two to six times a day at random. We have to backup our work every 10 minutes which is tedious and seriously disrupts productivity.

Posted by
Massachusetts
on
Alienware Area 51m 7700 notebook computer (purchased Oct 5, 2005; $2470.00).

June 2006: Computer randomly shut off, would not start up. Video card overheated, notebook inoperable.
Contacted Alienware technical support, they could not resolve problem, so I sent in my notebook to their facility. I was charged $311.58 for a new video card replacement (refurbished), and I spent 2 months without a computer.

August, 2006: Computer received back from AW facility. Computer operational for about 1 month. Then, same problem persisted; computer inoperable. Called AW Tech Support and used support forums; problem claimed 'unknown'. Every response was indirect and roundabout, things that wasted time and did not solve the problem. Spent weeks trying their solutions, computer worked once, then inoperable for weeks at a time. They claimed they could take it back to their facility, but were not sure when it would be returned or how it would be fixed.

October, 2006: My warranty approached its deadline on October 5, 2006 after months of wasted time and an inoperable computer. When I chose not to renew the wasted warranty, I contacted AW again asking where I could purchase a replacement video card or what they could offer. They pointed me in an endless search from one company to another, who claimed they didn't know who could sell video cards. Alienware also refused to even acknowledge the problem that I had for the last 4 months+. I spent another month calling, searching for video card replacements, only to be left in the dark once again. Alienware could not guarantee that if I sent my computer to them for a fee that they would be able to fix it or when.

November, 2006: I had to have a replacement notebook ($2500) shipped to me for $80 shipping.

TODAY: My alienware notebook remains inoperable, as it has for almost a year now. I have not found any help on the support forums, where numerous AW customers are experiencing the same problem and not receiving direct feedback to fix it. AW continues to deny this issue exists. I have wasted a year of my time and I did not have computer access to perform any of my work for a long span. I have been severely frustrated in AW's efforts to resolve these known issues. In all, I have spent approximately $5361.58 in 2 years to have a computer operational for roughly 1 year.

Posted by
Ontario
on
I purchased my laptop from Alienware, and received it at the end of August, 2005. During the life of the laptop it had serious problems with heat (to the point where there are heat marks where my hands rest while typing). Approximately 13 months after purchase the unit overheated and would not turn back on. I had the unit serviced locally, repairing several burnt circuits on the motherboard. Approximately 2 months later the same thing happened, this time I was told that the problem could not be fixed and I would have to contact Alienware to have the motherboard replaced. They informed me that it would cost $300 MINIMUM for them to look at the unit, that does not include labour or materials for the actual repair. I did some research online and discovered this problem to be VERY prevalant with this unit, with many customers reporting repair times of 3-6 months, and instances where it came back in non-working order, and the company would not take it back free of charge.

I should mention I am Canadian. I am not certain the firm to which this will be forwarded, or if filed in the US whether I will be eligible for inclusion in the class if action should be taken, but I would like to be.

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