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RL Supplies Modula 9005I review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : 350
inc VAT

This inexpensive PC has plenty of upgrade potential, but there are better budget PC packages available.

Specifications

2.0GHz Intel Celeron E1400, 2.000000 RAM, 17in 1,440×900 display, Windows Vista Home Premium

RL Supplies

At just £350, the Modula 9005I costs little more than most netbooks and nettops.

Its Intel Celeron E1400 is based on the same architecture as the more expensive Core 2 Duo chip. It runs at a respectable 2GHz, but has only a tiny 512KB L2 cache, compared to the 2MB cache on most Core 2 Duos. The 9005I didn’t score very well in any of our benchmarks, only managing an overall score of 47. This is around three times what most nettops score, but slightly more expensive PCs in this month’s Labs are far faster. This PC is incapable of playing modern games, as it lacks a dedicated graphics card.

The Modula 9005I comes with a full set of peripherals. The 17in widescreen monitor is a bit small by modern standards and doesn’t have great contrast, but there are no major image quality issues. The keyboard, speakers and mouse are all distinctly cut-price. The mouse shouldn’t upset anyone, but touch-typists will need to replace the spongy keyboard, and music fans will hate the tinny speakers.

The chassis has a stylish all-black finish. A flap on the front hides a 7-in-1 memory card reader, and there’s a DVD writer fitted. On the back are four USB ports and a Gigabit Ethernet port. Inside, this PC has a 160GB hard disk, the same as most nettops. It comes with Windows Vista Home Premium installed, and a Windows disc is provided.

The motherboard has plenty of slots for making upgrades. There are free PCI, PCI-E x1 and PCI-E x16 expansion slots for adding extra capabilities or even a dedicated graphics card. One of the two memory slots is filled with a 2GB module, so you could always add another 2GB if required. There are also two free SATA ports and free drive bays of both sizes. This means you can easily add additional hard disks or optical drives.

This desktop PC was never going to match an Atom-based nettop for power efficiency, but it came surprisingly close. It used only 47W while idling, an impressively low figure, as even nettops use around 35W when idle. However, the 9005I’s power supply isn’t quiet. It’s disappointing that such a small PC makes so much noise, even when idle.

The Modula 9005I is a decent little PC. Its peripherals aren’t great, but the whole package is reasonable value. However, it’s outperformed by its excellent AMD-powered sibling, the Modula 9010A, which also has a bigger hard disk. Alternatively, if you’re happy to spend a little more, then for £50 extra you can get the better-equipped Eclipse Eco a50.

Basic Specifications

Rating ***
Processor Intel Celeron E1400
Processor external bus 200MHz (800MHz quad-pumped FSB)
Processor clock speed 2.0GHz
Processor socket LGA775
Memory 2.000000
Memory type DDR2
Maximum memory 4GB
Motherboard ASRock G31M-GS
Motherboard chipset Intel G31 + ICH7
Power consumption standby 4W
Power consumption idle 47W
Power consumption active 69W

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear) 2/4
Firewire ports (front/rear) 0/0
eSATA ports (front/rear) 0/0
Wired network ports 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support none
Other ports VGA

Internal Expansion

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

Hard Disk

Interface SATA/300
Total storage capacity 160GB
Spindle speed 7,200rpm

Graphics

Graphics card(s) Intel GMA 3100
Graphics/video ports VGA

Sound

Sound Realtek ALC662
Sound outputs 5.1 line out
Speakers Trust SP-2370 2.0

Removable Drives

3.5in floppy drive no
Supported memory cards USB, CF, SD, SDHC, MMC, Memory Stick Pro, MicroDrive, xD
Optical drive type(s) DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Display

Viewable size 17 in
Screen model Hanns.G HW173
Native resolution 1,440×900
Screen inputs VGA

Other Hardware

Modem No
Keyboard Trust keyboard
Mouse Trust optical mouse

Software

Software included N/A
Operating system Windows Vista Home Premium
Operating system restore option Windows disc

Buying Information

Warranty two years RTB
Price £350
Details www.rlsupplies.co.uk

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