Alienware Aurora R5 vs. Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF
Comparison and Differences
Differences between Alienware Aurora R5 and Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF
If you are looking for the smaller form factor the Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF is the right one for you. It is smaller than the Alienware Aurora R5 and will fit more easily under your desk.
Usually the newer the generation of the CPU, the better the performance and efficiency is. If your budget allows it, you should go with the Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF as it is running a newer generation CPU. This is not to say that Alienware Aurora R5 is bad - it can still run some powerful CPUs, albeit being an older generation.
Both models have have equal amount of ram slots (4 RAM). Usually two RAM slots are more than enough for most cases. However, the count should be taken into account when planning how much and what combination of RAM you are going to need for your system.
The Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF is using the faster 3200 MT/s RAM. The Alienware Aurora R5 is slower by supporting RAM speeds of up to 2400 MT/s. Additionally, if you will be needing a lot of RAM, better go for the Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF as it has the ability to run 128 GB of RAM. The Alienware Aurora R5 can do a bit less at max 64 GB. Most of the times, this should be sufficient for the majority of users.
In total the Alienware Aurora R5 has 13 USB ports. The Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF is inferior in this regard and packs 10 USB ports. In any case, if you miss USB ports, you can always purchase a USB hub. It's great that both of the models have USB 3.1 ports which will allow you to exchange data with your peripherals at up to 10Gb/s. But if you need maximum connectivity, go with the Alienware Aurora R5 as it has 2 USB3.1 ports (the Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF has 1).
Unfortunately, only the Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF has a DisplayPort. The Alienware Aurora R5 does not have one? Don't worry though, nowadays video adapters are cheap and you can get almost any combination of conversion types.
None of the models has an HDMI port. If your monitor supports only the HDMI interface, you will need to buy an adapter. Such adapters are cheap so nothing to worry about.
SATA slots are located on the motherboard and it is where SSD, HDD and Optical Disk Drives are connected. Each of the two models being compared have 4 SATA slot(s). Keep in mind that having too few SATA slots might limit your options for connecting additional memory drives.
When your goal is to have the fastest SSD transfer speeds, an M.2 interface is crucial. Thus, it is good that both models have M.2 SSD slots. Today M.2 SSDs are not much more expensive than the average SATA drives, so it really does not make sense to invest in SATA drives anymore.
Make sure that the available M.2 slot supports the PCIe (also called NVMe) interface. This is important as there are M.2 slots which support only the inferior SATA III interface. For comparison, the SATA III interface has max speeds of 6Gb/s, while the PCIe 3.0 x4 will support speeds up to 32Gb/s!
Having a Power Supply Unit with high power rating is important, if you are going to use components which require extra power. The Dell OptiPlex 5090 SFF comes with a decent 300 Watt PSU, but the Alienware Aurora R5 has a more powerful one rated at 850 Watts. Choosing either one depends on your specific requirements and use case. Also don't forget that some models might have more than one PSU option - try to always get the most powerful one, especially if you plan to upgrade to a powerful GPU.