Linus from Linus Tech Tips took Walmart to task in his review of the company's Overpowered gaming desktop (you can check out our own thoughts here), but he wasn't singling the retailer out. Need proof? Check out a new video he posted in which he points out various issues he discovered in several $1,500 gaming PCs.
In his roundup, he takes a look at a Dell Alienware R7, HP Omen, iBuyPower i5 Configurator, Origin PC Chronos, and Maingear Vybe. Each one has their own set of issues, most of which are relatively minor (Linus had a "really hard time finding fault" with Maingear's rig). However, the collective number issues was enough to draw the attention of Swift On Security, which linked to the roundup on Twitter.
LinusTechTips finds Windows/Driver/UEFI issues in a range of $1500 gaming PCs, @Dell’s @Alienware with inexplicably broken Windows performance. https://t.co/bwowkhziXPDecember 26, 2018
"There is virtually no reason to ship an outdated OS or software. It is completely appalling vendors are unable, unwilling, or lack the in-house skills to maintain these systems," Swift On Security stated in a follow-up Tweet. "With a USB 3.0 flash drive and SSD it's faster to reinstall Windows on a new PC than it is to update the OS, drivers, applications, and clear out the bloat. This isn't 2005 anymore."
Shipping with outdated software is just one of several issues noted in the roundup. Interestingly, Linus notes that the Alienware R7 came configured with a SATA solid state drive instead of a faster NVMe SSD, even though the box was marked with the latter (it was listed as a SATA drive on the invoice, however). I've taken a look at various Alienware systems over the years and haven't experienced anything like that before.
What's also interesting is that the Alienware Aurora R7 "dropped a savage number of frames and spit out rendering issues" during an encode test. The problem appears related to the SSD, as swapping it out resolved the issue.
In any event, if you have half an hour to spare, the video is worth a look to see what you might (or might not) be getting with a $1,500 gaming system.
Update: An earlier version of this article stated that the Alienware Aurora R7 was supposed to ship with an NVMe SSD instead of SATA. That was incorrect. While Linus says the box states "NVMe," it's listed as "SATA" on the invoice.