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Wired2Fire Velocity Ultima review

Richard Easton
2 Aug 2014
Wired2Fire Velocity Ultima
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
499
inc VAT

A great screen and solid gaming performance but the processor is showing its age

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Specifications

Processor: Quad-core 4.4GHz AMD Athlon X4 750K (overclocked), RAM: 8GB, Front USB ports : 2x USB2, Rear USB ports: 2x USB3, 2x USB2, Total storage: 1TB Seagate Barracuda hard disk, Display: 24in AOC E2470Sw, Operating system: Windows 8.1

Upon removing the side panel of the Wired2Fire Velocity Ultima you’re immediately greeted with the gargantuan size of the Rajintek Themis CPU cooler, something you don’t often expect to see in a budget PC. It’s responsible for cooling an AMD Athlon X4 750K quad-core processor running at an overclocked 4.4GHz. This processor is getting a bit long in the tooth so we were a bit surprised to see it.

We put the PC through our usual image editing, video transcoding and multitasking tests and it managed to score 57 overall. This is comparatively slow compare with other budget computers, particularly considering how much the CPU has been overclocked. It should still be adequate for most of your home computing needs for now, but we expect better at this price.

The processor’s integrated graphics also leave a lot to be desired, so Wired2Fire has installed a Sapphire 1GB Radeon R7 240 dedicated graphics card. In our Dirt Showdown tests running at 1,280x720 resolution, 4xAA and High graphics it managed to produce 49.9fps, which is among the best we've seen for a PC at this price.

Dirt Showdown wasn’t playable at 1,920x1,080, 4xAA and Ultra graphics, running at only 20fps, but dropping the quality down to High managed to produce 34.3fps, which is smooth enough to be considered playable. If you reduce it further to Medium you’ll get 46fps. This graphics card and CPU pairing performed similarly to one of AMD’s newer Kaveri processors using just integrated graphics.

The Velocity Ultima uses an ASUS A88XM-A motherboard, which is reasonably versatile. It has four slots for DDR3 memory, two of which are occupied by two sticks of 4GB DDR3 1,600MHz RAM (8GB total) and there’s support for a maximum of 64GB, although this would be massive overkill for a home PC.

There's also a PCI-E x16 slot, which is used for the dedicated graphics card, a PCI-E x1 slot and a PCI slot. You also have six full-speed SATA3 ports, two of which are already used for the Seagate Barracuda 1TB HDD and DVD-RW drive. This leaves you with plenty of spare SATA3 ports if you want to install an SSD at a later date.

On the rear of the system there are two USB3 and two USB2 ports, PS/2 connections for an older keyboard and mouse, Gigabit Ethernet and 3.5mm audio connections that can be configured for up to 7.1 channel audio. The dedicated graphics card supports VGA, DVI and HDMI so you shouldn’t be short of options to connect to a display. On the front there’s a headphone and microphone jack as well as two additional USB2 connections. If you need more USB3 ports there’s an unused header on the motherboard.

The system comes in a Vortex V1 case, which is well finished and easy on the eye. Inside you’ll find two external 5¼in bays, one of which is used for the DVD-RW drive; one external and two internal 3½in bays, with one used for the HDD. You also get 300mm in length to work with if you want to install a better graphics card and the 500W FSP PSU means you have scope to look at pretty much every card. There are no fans fitted in the case but there’s mount for fans at the back, front and side if you need the additional airflow.

The display supplied with the Velocity Ultima is a smart 24in AOC E2470Sw with a resolution of 1,920x1,080. We’re always happy to see a 24in display included with a budget system and this one was a solid performer. Our calibrator measured the display’s contrast at an excellent 973:1. Black levels were measured at 0.23cd/m2, which is about average for a display at this budget.

We also ran our colour tests, which showed that the display could produce 84.9 per cent of the sRGB colour gamut, which is also not too bad. This does mean that it’s not the best display if you have colour accurate work in mind like photo editing. Viewing angles were also reasonably good and the tilt adjustable stand meant it was comfortable to use. The monitor has VGA inputs as well as a generous two HDMI connections meaning you could easily connect a second games console or set-top box and not have to worry about swapping cables.

We weren’t big fans of the included keyboard, which comes as part of an Octigen keyboard and mouse set. Its keys were overly spongy, without much travel, and it featured a smaller than usual backspace key which took some getting used to. The mouse was comfortable enough to use if not rather basic.

The Wired2Fire Velocity Ultima showed itself to be a capable enough performer. However, its processor is dated and you can find better gaming performance elsewhere. It does come with a versatile and good-looking 24in monitor, and the motherboard offers decent upgrade potential, but you are better off looking at the Eclipse Matrix A10 R7-250 which offers better performance across the board.

Core specs
ProcessorQuad-core 4.4GHz AMD Athlon X4 750K (overclocked)
Processor socketFM2
RAM8GB
Memory typePC3-12800
Maximum memory64GB
MotherboardASUS A88XM-A
Motherboard chipsetAMD A88X
Ports and expansion
Front USB ports2x USB2
Rear USB ports2x USB3, 2x USB2
Other portsPS/2
Networking1x 10/100/1000Mbit/s
Case typeMidi tower
Case size HxWxD180x420x420mm
PCI (free)1 (1)
PCIe x1 (free)1 (1)
PCIe x16 (free)1 (0)
Serial ATA (free)6 (4)
Memory slots (free)4 (2)
Drive bays 2 1/2" (free)0
Drive bays 3 1/2" (free)3 (2)
Drive bays 5 1/4" (free)2 (1)
Storage
Total storage1TB Seagate Barracuda hard disk
Memory card readerNone
Optical drive typeDVD+/-RW +/-DL
Graphics
Graphics card1GB AMD Radeon R7 240
Graphics/video portsVGA, DVI, HDMI
Sound
Sound cardRealtek ALC887
Sound card outputsStereo line out, stereo line in, mic in
SpeakersNone
Display
Display24in AOC E2470Sw
Native resolution1,920x1,080
Inputs2x HDMI, VGA
Other hardware
KeyboardOctigen JK-745
MouseOctigen JM-889
ExtrasRaijintek Themis CPU cooler
Software
Operating systemWindows 8.1
Operating system restore optionWindows disc
Buying information
WarrantyTwo-year RTB
Price including delivery (inc VAT)£499
Price excluding monitor (inc VAT and delivery)£399
Supplierwww.wired2fire.co.uk
Detailswww.wired2fire.co.uk
Part CodeWired2Fire Velocity Ultima 

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