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Eclipse Andromeda AP92n98GTX review

Alan Lu
18 Mar 2009
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
650
inc VAT

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Specifications

2.8GHz AMD Phenom II X4 920, 4.000000 RAM, 19in 1,440x900 display, Windows Vista Home Premium

AMD's new Phenom II X4 920 processor impressed us in last month's components Labs, and we were surprised to see such a powerful processor in a PC that costs just £650.

Eclipse's Andromeda AP92n98GTX was easily the fastest £650 PC here and was near the top of the table in all our benchmarks, speeding past many of the £800 PCs.

This was aided by the Nvidia GeForce 9800 GTX+ graphics card. It sailed through our Call of Duty 4 test with more than 50fps. Although 23.4fps in our Crysis benchmark isn't amazing, our demanding graphics settings are mainly responsible. Turn off anti-aliasing and the game becomes playable.

There's plenty of room in the case for extra storage and peripherals, with six empty 3?in hard disk bays and three spare 5?in optical drive bays. The two PCI Express x1 slots are blocked by the graphics card, but the four PCI slots make up for their inaccessibility.

Annoyingly, the cables and connectors are glued in place to prevent them becoming dislodged in transit. Although well-intentioned, this makes upgrading tricky as you have to scrape off the glue before you can remove and add components. The first component you'll want to upgrade is the rear case fan, which makes an annoying high-pitched sound. Without it, the system would be quiet.

A more significant problem is the monitor. Hannspree's 19in XM-S New York is smaller than most monitors in this category, and has a lower resolution of 1,440x900 compared with the 1,680x1,050 pixels of the 20in and 22in monitors here. Its industrial black and silver design is distinctive, and its image quality isn't bad. Images look very bright, but this makes photos look oversaturated.

If you can live with the monitor and you don't mind replacing a fan, the Andromeda AP92n98GTX is a great PC for games. Otherwise, Mesh's Matrix II 920 Nero is a better choice thanks to its superior monitor.

Basic Specifications

Rating*****
ProcessorAMD Phenom II X4 920
Processor external bus200MHz (1.8GHz HyperTransport)
Processor multiplierx14
Processor clock speed2.8GHz
Processor socketAM2+
Level 1 cache4x 64KB
Level 2 cache4x 512KB
Memory4.000000
Memory typePC2-6400
Maximum memory8GB
MotherboardAsus M2N68
Motherboard chipsetNvidia Nforce 630a
Power consumption standby3W
Power consumption idle90W
Power consumption active145W

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear)2/4
Firewire ports (front/rear)0/0
eSATA ports (front/rear)0/0
Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking supportnone
Other portsnone

Internal Expansion

Casemidi tower
PCI-E x1 slots (free)2 (0)
PCI-E x16 slots (free)1 (0)
Free Serial ATA ports2
Free memory slots2
Free 3.5in drive bays6

Hard Disk

Hard disk model(s)Samsung SpinPoint F1 HD502IJ
InterfaceSATA 300
Total storage capacity500GB
Spindle speed7,200rpm

Graphics

Graphics card(s)512MB Nvidia GeForce 9800 GTX+
Graphics/video ports2x DVI, TV out

Sound

SoundVIA HD Audio
Sound outputs7.1 line out, optical S/PDIF out
Speakersnone

Removable Drives

3.5in floppy driveno
Supported memory cardsnone
Optical drive modelSamsung SH-S223F
Optical drive type(s)DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Display

Viewable size19 in
Screen modelHannspree XM-S New York
Native resolution1,440x900
Response time5ms
Screen inputsDVI, VGA

Other Hardware

ModemNo
KeyboardMicrosoft Basic Keyboard 1.0A
MouseMicrosoft Basic Optical Mouse 1.0A

Software

Software includednone
Operating systemWindows Vista Home Premium
Operating system restore optionWindows disc

Buying Information

Warrantyone year RTB
Price£650
Detailswww.eclipsecomputers.com

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