Chillblast Fusion Vantage review
This brilliant PC hits the sweet spot between power, top-notch components and gaming performance
Review Date: 20 Aug 2012
Price when reviewed: £999
Reviewed By: Kat Orphanides
We expect chillblast to press every last bit of power into its PCs, and The Fusion Vantage has an i5-3570K processor that’s been overclocked to 4.8GHz, producing an overall score of 155 in our benchmark tests. That’s higher than the scores we’ve seen from some overclocked Ivy Bridge Core i7 systems.
It also has a powerful GPU, the AMD Radeon HD 7950 with 3GB of memory. It’s responsible for the PC’s phenomenal gaming performance, which gave us frame rates of 88fps in Dirt3 and 37fps in Crysis 2, both at the games’ highest quality settings. You won’t need to upgrade for a very long time indeed. It’s worth noting, though, that the graphics card makes an audible and somewhat annoying whine when you’re gaming.
The motherboard is an Asus P8Z77-V LX, and it has a reasonable selection of expansion slots, although it’s slightly imbalanced. It has three PCI slots, all of which are vacant, but only two PCI-E x1 slots, and one of those is blocked by the graphics card. There’s also a second PCI-E x16 slot, but it actually runs at x4. The PC also comes with a 700W power supply. It’s Chillblast’s own-brand PSU rather than a more prestigious name, but it should pack enough power to fuel any upgrades you desire. Also impressive are the four 4GB memory modules that provide 16GB of 1,600MHz RAM, more than enough for video- or photo-editing.
The motherboard has six SATA ports, two of which are SATA3 and are connected to the hard disks. The PC’s main system drive is a 120GB OCZ Agility 3 SSD, which provides blistering boot speeds and plenty of room for applications. For data storage and less critical applications, there’s also a massive 2TB HDD. It also has two free 31/2in bays and three free 51/4in bays, so you can add plenty of extra storage.
Sadly, we’re not great fans of the case. It’s solidly constructed without being inconveniently heavy and has a well finished interior, but it doesn’t have adequate soundproofing, which makes it one of the noisier PCs we’ve seen from Chillblast. Even so, the PC isn’t distactingly loud when it’s running (annoying noises from the GPU fan notwithstanding), largely thanks to some fairly quiet case fans and a discrete Akasa CPU cooler. The wide vent grilles in the side panel and at the bottom of the case mean there’s little to stop fluff and dust getting in.
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