The Velocity Micro Raptor Z90 is the first production rig we’ve tested that boasts Intel’s new Core i7 microarchitecture—and it really cooks. Velocity cranked the 3.2GHz clock speed on Intel’s quad-core Hyper-Threaded Core i7-965 Extreme Edition to 3.6GHz with nary a hiccup, and cooled the dang thing with air. The machine also features 6GB of DDR3/1600 and dual 512MB Radeon HD 4870s.
HP’s TouchSmart line of all-in-one desktop computers has undergone quite a transformation since we examined the very first model, the IQ770, nearly two years ago. Not only is every change for the better, but HP has managed to slash prices by several hundred dollars.
Its official name is Core 2 CrossFire DDR3 Gaming System, but you can just call it the Quad Meister or Quaderino, if you’re into the brevity thing. What else could you possibly call a PC equipped with two ATI Radeon 4870 X2 cards (quad GPU cores), four Velociraptors (quad hard drives) and an overclocked Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9770 (uhh, quad cores)? Maybe we’re stretching here, but our nickname is certainly sexier than the PC’s official moniker.
You want power? You got it. The beastly Benchmark Crusher from Digital Storm provides stellar performance and a workout all in one package. A few bench presses with this machine will whip you into tip-top shape in no time. Inside this hefty package are enough high-end performance parts to make any hardcore gamer wet his pants.
IBuypower’s Gamer Paladin 990 is a strange beast. After we completed our testing, we were left wondering just what iBuypower was trying to accomplish with its half exotic, half midrange rig.
Take, for example, the videocard situation. The machine sports a pair of Nvidia’s newest GPUs, but not the company’s top-end offering, the GeForce GTX 280. Instead, iBuypower uses a pair of EVGA GeForce GTX 260s. If these GeForce cards weren’t midrange when they were first released, they certainly are now, as Nvidia has taken a blowtorch to prices to keep the GTX 260 competitive with ATI’s Radeon HD 4870.
There’s a civil war brewing within the PC: Intel says the CPU is the head honcho while Nvidia argues that the GPU is boss. With its Deluge-i A2, Puget shows whose side it’s taking in this debate. This budget gaming box spends big on the videocard but skimps on the processor.
Did they side with the right team? Find out after the jump
For all those readers who have added up the price of the parts in an OEM box and screamed into the night air: “Hell, I can build it cheaper than that!” CyberPower has a retort: Beat this one, sucker! While you might think you’re up to the challenge, we suspect the price-to-performance ratio of the CyberPower Gamer Ultimate SLI Quad is impossible to match—unless you’re using boosted parts. In fact, we’re not sure how CyberPower is making a profit off this stacked and packed rig.
Can you get Ferrari performance for the price of a Camaro? That’s the
question we asked when we uncrated Falcon Northwest’s small formfactor
FragBox II. Falcon, the recognized father of the modern gaming PC's,
normally throws us lustworthy $9,000 gaming rigs. At $1,500, the
FragBox II is no such home wrecker.
January 2004. DirectX 9 had just shipped. SCO had begun its ultimately
futile crusade against IBM. And Hypersonic’s brightly colored Sonic
Boom, featuring Intel’s newest processor, was smacking our benchmarks
Our first thought upon opening AVADirect’s new Core 2 Duo SLI Gaming
System was, “Wow, this is heavy.” Our second, “Oooh, but it’s pretty!”
was followed shortly by a third, “It’s bleeding!” A cursory
inspection revealed that the system was shipped without one of its two
CPU-cooler hose clamps, and was indeed leaking AVA’s “bloody red”
coolant into the machine. Disconcerting, to say the least. We notified
AVADirect of the problem, and they dispatched a tech to fix it.
Thereafter, despite some red residue on one of the 8800’s DVI ports,
the rig worked perfectly.