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Friday, January 24, 2014

Wired2Fire Diablo GTX 2013; M review - littlest gaming PC offers good performance in compact chassis

At first glance, the Bitfenix Phenom system case of the Wired2Fire Diablo GTX – M gaming PC looks very similar to the Aerocool DS favoured by Chillblast and Yoyotech. However, this PC is quite noticeably smaller in size and is fitted with a diminutive Asus Z87 M Plus Micro ATX motherboard.

Because of its smaller dimensions, space inside the case is rather tight and access to the components is somewhat restricted. Cooling is helped by a Corsair H80 liquid CPU cooling unit which uses a radiator fitted to the rear of the case.

An additional fan blows upwards from the bottom of the unit, through the three fans of the Palit-branded nVidia GeForce GTX 780 card which exhaust air directly out of the top of the case.

Like many gaming PCs in this price bracket, the Diablo GTX – M is fitted with a 3.4GHz Intel Core i5-4670K processor, overclocked to 4.4GHz. This speed should be easily achievable with such a processor; however our review sample ran into problems when placed under load, often locking up completely.

After a little tinkering, we were able to rectify this problem and maintain the 4.4GHz overclocked speed simply by using the automatic overclocking functions found in the EFI, but we really wouldn't expect the customer to have to do this sort of thing themselves. We want the PC to work as advertised straight out of the box.

Once we had the Wired2Fire Diablo GTX – M running, we recorded a very good PCMark 7 score of 6880 points. Gaming results were also very good thanks to that powerful graphics card. You can play most games smoothly with the best-quality settings at the full resolution of the monitor. In this case, that's a 23in AOC i2369VM with an IPS panel and 1920 by 1080 pixel display.

What really sets this system apart from the rest is the price. It's one of the top performing gaming PCs we've seen, yet at only £1099 you'll save hundreds of pounds choosing the Diablo GTX – M over one of its rivals. (See also Group test: What's the best gaming PC?)

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