Alienware wants to resurrect external graphics cards

Alienware caught everyone off guard when it unveiled Polaris, an eGPU solution that seems to push the concept to new heights.

Alienware clearly knew how to play its card to the full during this somewhat special CES 2022, and offered us some very exciting products. But there was one left, the Concept Polaris, which remained particularly mysterious; we were therefore impatiently awaiting news. It is now done, and the least we can say is that it is a real surprise!

Polaris is a product that uses the visual codes of the Aurora range. We are therefore dealing with a white box with a futuristic design and stuffed with RGB LEDs; no doubt, we are at Alienware. But beyond this obvious lineage, it is a very different product from the rest of its catalog; it is notably much smaller than the towers of the range which clearly inspired its design. Everything is now explained since it is not a full-fledged PC, but an eGPU solution!

The devices shown are concepts and are not available for sale. © Alienware

Integrated liquid cooling and foolproof connectors

For those who are not familiar with the concept, the principle is simple: it is an interface that allows you to connect a standard graphics card to another device, even if it is absolutely not designed to accommodate a such GPU. In practice, this makes it possible, for example, to play recent games or to perform demanding tasks on machines that do not have the necessary processing power at all, such as ultrabooks.

To make sure, the alien brand played it safe with a fairly large case. This is able to accommodate the most impressive cards on the market; it will easily accommodate the future RTX 3090 Ti with colossal measurements. But not all the space will be occupied by the card. Alienware has also found a way to integrate two (!) AC adapters of 330W or 425W each. Even better: the brand has also added a 240mm CryoTech liquid cooling system! Enough to keep the beast cool to benefit from formidable performance.

Polaris will then communicate with the desired machine via a Thunderbold 3 or 4 cable, or USB 4. But what is more surprising is that Alienware also suggests that it will also be possible to connect the set via Ethernet. 2.5 Gb, USB-C and even USB-A! It will be interesting to see if these latter options have any restrictions.

The devices shown are concepts and are not available for sale. © Alienware

This time, is it the right one?

The concept has long seemed extremely promising, but has ultimately never succeeded in democratizing on a large scale until then. But as data transfer technologies continue to advance and laptops have increasingly higher performance CPUs, Alienware’s parent company seems confident that eGPUs will finally take off.

At the moment, we do not have a release date or price for this product which is still a concept. But this one seems to be firmly in place already, and Alienaware’s enthusiasm strongly suggests that it could end up on the market in the not-so-distant future. Will the firm finally succeed in getting this niche market off the ground? The answer within a few months!

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