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Gladiator Intel Pronto Pro review

Richard Easton
3 Jul 2014
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
499
inc VAT

Excellent gaming performance thanks to the dedicated graphics, but application performance was poor

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Specifications

Processor: Dual-core 3.2GHz Intel Pentium G3420, RAM: 8GB, Front USB ports : 2x USB2, Rear USB ports: 2x USB3, 2x USB2, Total storage: 1TB Seagate Barracuda SSHD (8GB SSD cache), Display: 22in Benq DL2215, Operating system: Windows 8.1

Building a budget PC is all about getting the balance right on the components, and putting one high-end component in can adversely affect the rest of the system. The Gladiator Intel Pronto Pro is a good case in point, as to make way for the graphics card, an Intel Pentium G3240 processor has been used.

This dual-core model doesn't have Hyper-threading like the Core i3 models it's based on. Despite a fast clock speed of 3.2GHz, it only managed an overall score of 45, particularly struggling in our multitasking test with a score of 32. While this CPU is fine for day-to-day tasks, running lots of applications or processor-intensive ones, such as video editing, could be a little slow.

On the flip side, graphics performance is very good thanks to the Nvidia GTX 750. This is one of Nvidia's first GPUS based on its new Maxwell architecture, designed to bring gaming performance with lower power requirements.

It smashed our Dirt Showdown tests, providing a blistering 91.2fps at 1,280x720, 4xAA and High settings. At 1,920x1,080, 4xAA and High settings it still provided 81.9fps and at Ultra settings managed 43fps, which is amazing for a PC at this price.

We fired up Crysis 3 to tax the GPU further, using 1,920x,1,080 resolution, 1xAA and Low settings we got a very respectable 44.1fps, although this dropped to as low as 26fps during really intense scenes. This is still far above the gaming results we’ve seen in other test systems at this price.

Gladiator Intel Pronto Pro interior

The Intel Pronto Pro uses a Gigabyte H81M-S2PV motherboard, which has one PCI-E x16 slot, occupied by the GTX 750, one PCI slot and two PCI-E x1 slots, although one of these is obstructed by the GPU so cannot be used. There are two memory slots, both of which are used for two 4GB DDR3 1,600MHz sticks, for a total of 8GB.

The motherboard also has two SATA3 connections and two SATA2. Both SATA3 ports came occupied by the 1TB SSHD and DVD-RW drives. We would move the optical  drive to a SATA2 port if you want to install an SSD using SATA3 in the future to benefit from the faster speeds. The installed 1TB SSHD hybrid drive combines the high-capacity, low-cost storage of a traditional HDD with 8GB of SSD cache, which helps speed up booting Windows and improves overall responsiveness. We timed the system from powering on to arriving at the desktop at just 17 seconds.

On the rear you’ll find two PS/2 connections, two USB3, two USB2, gigabit Ethernet and a serial port. You also have three 3.5mm audio connections for line in, line out and a microphone. The dedicated graphics card will also allow you to connect up to four displays simultaneously, providing one DVI-I, one DVI-D and two HDMI outputs. On the front of the case you’ll find two more USB2 ports and headphone and microphone jacks.

Gladiator Intel Pronto Pro rear

The system comes in a Cooler Master Elite 342 case, which has thumbscrews to remove the side panel. The edges of the case are also nicely rounded off which makes working inside a scratch-free affair. The front of the case has a 120mm fan installed but there’s no rear exhaust fan. You have to option to install an 80mm or 90mm fan on the back and an 80mm fan on the side if you decide you need the added ventilation, however.

The case has two 5¼in external bays, one of which is used for the DVD-RW drive. There are also five 3½in internal bays and one 3½in external bay which mean there’s lots of flexibility to add in extra drives. You also have space for a graphics card as long as 350mm if you decided to swap out the excellent GTX 750.

The supplied display is a quite basic 22in BenQ DL2215 with a matt display and DVI-D and VGA inputs. Using our colour calibrator, we measured its contrast ratio as a quite poor 345:1 and black levels of only 0.47cd/m2. Its colour reproduction fared better at 88.8 per cent coverage of the colour gamut, which is on a par with other budget monitors we have tested.

Gladiator Intel Pronto Pro front

A decent Gigabyte KM6150 keyboard and mouse set ships with the PC. The keyboard has a slim and attractive design, with media and application shortcut keys at the top. The keys were responsive with plenty of travel, making it quick and comfortable to type on the keyboard. The mouse was a bit too glossy for our tastes and didn’t match the matt design of the keyboard but was otherwise perfectly serviceable.

The Gladiator Intel Pronto Pro was a mixed bag in terms of performance. Its application benchmarks around were comparatively poor due to the choice of processor, but gaming performance was very good. Ultimately, we'd prefer a PC with better all-round performance, so the Palicomp AMD Kaveri Evolution is the better choice.

Core specs
ProcessorDual-core 3.2GHz Intel Pentium G3420
Processor socketLGA1150
RAM8GB
Memory typePC3-12800
Maximum memory16GB
MotherboardGigabyte H81M-S2PV
Motherboard chipsetIntel H81 Express
Ports and expansion
Front USB ports2x USB2
Rear USB ports2x USB3, 2x USB2
Other portsPS/2
Networking1x 10/100/1000Mbit Ethernet
Case typeMidi tower
Case size HxWxD180x352x440mm
PCI (free)1 (1)
PCIe x1 (free)2 (1)
PCIe x16 (free)1 (0)
Serial ATA (free)2x SATA3 (0), 2x SATA2 (2)
Memory slots (free)2 (0)
Drive bays 2 1/2" (free)0
Drive bays 3 1/2" (free)6 (5)
Drive bays 5 1/4" (free)2 (1)
Storage
Total storage1TB Seagate Barracuda SSHD (8GB SSD cache)
Memory card readerNone
Optical drive typeDVD+/-RW +/-DL
Graphics
Graphics card1GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 750
Graphics/video ports2x DVI, 2x HDMI
Sound
Sound cardRealtek ALC887
Sound card outputsStereo line out, stereo line in, mic in
SpeakersNone
Display
Display22in Benq DL2215
Native resolution1,920x1,080
InputsVGA, DVI
Other hardware
KeyboardGigabyte KM6150
MouseGigabyte KM6150
ExtrasNone
Software
Operating systemWindows 8.1
Operating system restore optionWindows disc
Buying information
WarrantyFour years RTB (1 year parts, four years labour)
Price including delivery (inc VAT)£499
Price excluding monitor (inc VAT and delivery)£399
Supplierwww.gladiatorcomputers.com
Detailswww.gladiatorcomputers.com
Part CodeGladiator Intel Pronto Pro

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