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CyberPower Ultra Athena review

CyberPower Ultra Athena
Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : 399
inc VAT

CyberPower's Ultra Athena is stunningly quick in games and a decent performer in Windows. Its three-year warranty is brilliant at this price.

Specifications

2.6GHz AMD Athlon II X4 620, 4.000000 RAM, N/A display, Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit

CyberPower

We don’t usually expect lightning-fast games performance from budget computers. We were therefore pleasantly surprised by CyberPower’s Ultra Athena. This PC has a 512MB ATI Radeon 4850 graphics card, which managed a staggering 54.5fps in our Call of Duty 4 test. That means you should be able to play any game smoothly on this computer.

At this price games performance has to come at a cost, and it’s the processor that’s been compromised. Instead of using a Core 2 Quad or Phenom X4, CyberPower has used the budget 2.6GHz Athlon II X4 620. Like its competitors it has four cores, but it has less L2 cache than Intel’s Core 2 Quad processors and it doesn’t have any L3 cache. It therefore fell behind in most of our Windows benchmarks, although its overall score of 83 is still good.

The Athena is quieter than other quad-core PCs we’ve seen thanks to its foam-lined case. This helps reduce noise by absorbing vibrations from moving, rattling components.

Internally, there are six 3?in drive bays and three 5?in bays, but only a single SATA port. You can therefore connect only one more internal storage device to the motherboard before having to add a SATA PCI card. Considering the PSU has only one spare Molex connector, adding any extra peripherals will probably require a new power supply, too.

Strangely, there’s no Gigabit Ethernet port, just 10/100Mbit/s networking. This isn’t a major problem if you’re not running a Gigabit Ethernet network, but we’d expect to see this feature on all modern PCs.

We weren’t expecting budget PCs at this price to have warranties longer than a year, but the Ultra Athena has a surprisingly lengthy three-year warranty, although it is return-to-base so you’ll have to pay shipping costs.

CyberPower’s Ultra Athena is a great-value budget gaming PC. Its restrictive motherboard and budget processor are slight drawbacks. However, it still wins a Best Buy award.

Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Processor AMD Athlon II X4 620
Processor external bus 200MHz (1GHz HyperTransport)
Processor multiplier x13
Processor clock speed 2.6GHz
Processor socket AM3
Level 1 cache 4x 64KB
Level 2 cache 4x 512KB
Memory 4.000000
Memory type PC2-6400
Maximum memory 4GB
Motherboard Asus M2N68-AM SE2
Motherboard chipset Nvidia nForce 630a
Power consumption standby 4W
Power consumption idle 102W
Power consumption active 218W

Ports

USB2 ports (front/rear) 2/4
Firewire ports (front/rear) 0/0
eSATA ports (front/rear) 0/0
Wired network ports 1x 10/100
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 1
Free memory slots 0
Free 3.5in drive bays 6

Hard Disk

Hard disk model(s) Samsung SpinPoint F3 HD502HJ
Interface SATA 300
Total storage capacity 500GB
Spindle speed 7,200rpm

Graphics

Graphics card(s) 512MB ATI Radeon 4850
Graphics/video ports HDMI, DVI, VGA

Sound

Sound Realtek ALC662
Sound outputs 5.1 line out
Speakers none

Removable Drives

3.5in floppy drive no
Supported memory cards none
Optical drive model LG GH22NP20
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 none
Mouse none

Software

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

Buying Information

Warranty three years RTB
Price £399
Details www.cyberpowersystem.co.uk

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