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Eclipse Eco a705N221 review

Eclipse Eco a705N221
Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : 400
inc VAT

A decent budget PC that's capable of light gaming, but the Eco's tri-core processor isn't as quick as the chips in its competitor's computers. There are better deals to be had at this price.

Specifications

2.5GHz AMD Phenom II X3 705e, 2.000000 RAM, N/A display, Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit

Eclipse Computers

Eclipse’s Eco comes with a triple-core processor instead of the dual- and quad-core chips we’re used to seeing. It wasn’t as fast as a quad-core PC in our multicore-optimised video-encoding test, but it held its own in our image-editing test and performed surprisingly well in our multitasking benchmark, even though it’s equipped with only 2GB of RAM.

The Eco’s 3D graphics performance was reasonable thanks to its GeForce GT220 graphics chip. It managed 14.3fps in our Call of Duty 4 test. Dropping the detail settings and resolution will help boost frame rates to playable levels.

There’s plenty of room inside the case for adding more peripherals. The PCI Express x1 slot is blocked by the double-slot graphics card, but there are three PCI slots for adding devices such as TV tuners and wireless adaptors.

If the 500GB hard disk isn’t big enough, there’s space for five more disks as well as three optical drives. Only the most demanding users are likely to need all these bays, though, so the existing five SATA ports should be enough for most. Note that the power supply has only a single free Molex connector, so you’ll need to upgrade it if you add more components.

We were disappointed with the cheap, flimsy-feeling case. We were also surprised by how quiet the Eco is, until we discovered the reason for its lack of noise – it has no case fans. If you plan on upgrading the Eco, especially using power-hungry and hot components such as a faster graphics card, you’ll need to add case fans to avoid overheating. The included Microsoft USB keyboard and mouse look unassuming, but they’re both comfortable to use. The keyboard feels responsive enough for typing long documents.

Eclipse’s Eco is a decent-enough PC, but it’s overshadowed by the competition.

Basic Specifications

Rating ***
Processor AMD Phenom II X3 705e
Processor external bus 200MHz (2GHz HyperTransport)
Processor multiplier x12.5
Processor clock speed 2.5GHz
Processor socket AM3
Level 1 cache 3x 64KB
Level 2 cache 3x 512KB
Memory 2.000000
Memory type PC2-6400
Maximum memory 8GB
Motherboard MSI K9A2 Neo2
Motherboard chipset AMD 770
Power consumption standby 6W
Power consumption idle 80W
Power consumption active 120W

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear) 2/6
Firewire ports (front/rear) 0/0
eSATA ports (front/rear) 0/0
Wired network ports 1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support none
Other ports none

Internal Expansion

Case midi tower
PCI-E x1 slots (free) 1 (1)
PCI-E x16 slots (free) 1 (0)
Free Serial ATA ports 5
Free memory slots 3
Free 3.5in drive bays 5

Hard Disk

Hard disk model(s) Maxtor DiamondMax 23 500GB
Interface SATA 300
Total storage capacity 500GB
Spindle speed 7,200rpm

Graphics

Graphics card(s) 1GB Nvidia GeForce GT220
Graphics/video ports HDMI, DVI, VGA

Sound

Sound Realtek ALC888
Sound outputs 7.1 line out
Speakers none

Removable Drives

3.5in floppy drive no
Supported memory cards none
Optical drive model Sony NEC Optiarc AD-5240S
Optical drive type(s) DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Display

Screen model N/A
Native resolution N/A
Response time N/A
Screen inputs N/A

Other Hardware

Modem No
Keyboard Microsoft Wired Keyboard 400 v1.0
Mouse Microsoft Basic Optical Mouse v2.1

Software

Software included none
Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit
Operating system restore option Windows disc

Buying Information

Warranty one year RTB
Price £400
Details www.eclipsecomputers.com

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