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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Chillblast Fusion Commando review: a great choice for a family PC

The Fusion Commando from Chillblast, is one of the first PCs we've reviewed to feature Intel's latest 4th-generation Core processors, codenamed Haswell. The Core i5-4570 processor used here runs at a base clock speed of 3.2 GHz and can turbo up to 3.6 GHz when pushed. This places it slightly below the popular Core i5-3570 in headline clock speed. But gains in efficiency compensate for this – and deliver a little bit extra besides. Take a look at Group test: What's the best family PC?

Also installed is an Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro processor cooler to keep temperatures, and noise, down.

The new processor requires a new motherboard chipset to run, and this has been provided on an Asus B85M-G motherboard, featuring the B85 Express Chipset. This board supports USB 3.0 with UASP support for even greater performance as well as optimisation for Windows 8 boot times.

A Zotac nVidia GeForce GTX 650 Ti graphics card is included, which enables the PC to run most games at decent framerates without sacrificing so much on quality. Computer Planet's F2000 Family PC delivered superior gaming performance, but at a much higher price.

Unlike several of its competitors, the Fusion Commando provides 802.11n via a simple plug-in USB adaptor. This is less tidy than an internal solution, but easier to unplug and use on a different PC if you wish. No memory card reader has been installed in this model.

A Blu-ray/DVD±RW combo drive provides for HD movie playback on the 23.6in Iiyama X2377 IPS monitor. This is a basic-looking display, lacking the contemporary design touches of models such as the AOC i2369Vm supplied by Dino PC, but offering great image quality and a large screen area. You also get a pair of stereo speakers with a separate subwoofer.

Overall performance of the Fusion Commando is very good. PCMark 7 recorded an excellent overall score of 6177 points and the system felt snappy and responsive, thanks to the inclusion of a 120GB Samsung 840 series SSD complementing the 1TB Seagate hard drive.

It's housed in the popular Cooler Master CM Force 500 system case, featuring front-facing USB ports and internal cable management.

View the original article here

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