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Eclipse EcoPC e505n94GT review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : 630
inc VAT and delivery

Specifications

2.6GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 5050e, 4.000000 RAM, 19in 1,440×900 display, Windows Vista Home Premium

http://www.eclipsecomputers.com

Although it’s smaller than an average desktop PC, Eclipse’s EcoPC e505n94GT looks more like a normal PCs than the other systems here. The 213x267x400mm case will take up a fair bit of space on or under your desk.

Unlike most of the PCs here, it comes with a separate monitor: a 19in widescreen Hannspree XM-S New York LCD screen. This has a native resolution of 1,440×900 pixels and produces rich, vibrant colours, although it suffers from a pinkish cast that has a slight but visible effect on pale shades.

The case houses an XFX micro-ATX motherboard with two PCI slots, a PCI Express x1 slot and a PCI Express x16 slot that’s home to a 512MB Nvidia GeForce 9400 GT graphics card. The processor is a 2.6GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 5050e and there’s a massive 4GB of RAM and a generous 640GB hard disk. As it uses standard components, it’s easier to upgrade than PCs that use laptop components. You can install up to 8GB of RAM, and the AM2 motherboard accepts any recent AMD processor, including the latest Phenoms.

We were seriously disappointed by the EcoPC’s power consumption, though. It had the highest active power consumption, at 94W, and drew 50W when idle, which was exceeded only by Sony’s Vaio JS1E/S. A standby power drain of 6W is the same as you’d find on almost any normal PC and high enough to make it worth switching the PC off when not in use. RL Supplies’ Modula Mini was slightly less efficient on standby, but is also a lot cheaper.

Unfortunately, despite its surprisingly high price and its name, the EcoPC is neither very compact nor particularly power-efficient. It performed well by the standards of the group, easily browsing the web and playing movies, but its hardware specification is significantly inferior to that of the £500 Eclipse Solar i85n96GSO system, which won our Best Buy award in Shopper 249.

The e505n94GT tries to be many things, but seems overpriced and failed to impress with its size and power consumption.

Basic Specifications

Rating **
Processor AMD Athlon 64 X2 5050e
Processor external bus 200MHz (1GHz HyperTransport)
Processor multiplier x13
Processor clock speed 2.6GHz
Processor socket AM2
Level 1 cache 2x 64KB
Level 2 cache 2x 512KB
Memory 4.000000
Memory type DDR2
Maximum memory 8GB
Motherboard XFX MI-A78S-8209
Motherboard chipset Nvidia GeForce 8200
Power consumption standby 6W
Power consumption idle 50W
Power consumption active 94W

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear) 4/4
Firewire ports (front/rear) 0/1
eSATA ports (front/rear) 1/0
Wired network ports 1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support none
Other ports HDMI, DVI, D-Sub

Internal Expansion

Case mini PC
PCI-E x1 slots (free) 1 (1)
PCI-E x16 slots (free) 1 (0)
Free Serial ATA ports 4
Free memory slots 2
Free 3.5in drive bays 0

Hard Disk

Hard disk model(s) Western Digital GreenPower (WD6400AACS)
Interface SATA 300
Total storage capacity 640GB
Spindle speed 7,200rpm

Graphics

Graphics card(s) 512MB Nvidia GeForce 9400 GT
Graphics/video ports VGA, DVI, TV out

Sound

Sound Realtek High Definition Audio
Sound outputs 7.1 line out, stereo line out, 2x mic in, line in
Speakers none

Removable Drives

3.5in floppy drive no
Supported memory cards none
Optical drive model Optiarc DVD RW AD-7200S
Optical drive type(s) DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Display

Viewable size 19 in
Screen model Hannspree XM-S New York
Native resolution 1,440×900
Response time 5ms
Screen inputs DVI, VGA, line in

Other Hardware

Modem No
Keyboard Microsoft Basic Keyboard 1.0A
Mouse Microsoft Basic Optical Mouse 1.0A

Software

Software included none
Operating system Windows Vista Home Premium
Operating system restore option none

Buying Information

Warranty one year RTB
Price £630
Supplier http://www.eclipsecomputers.com
Details www.eclipsecomputers.com

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