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Dino PC Matteodon review

Tom Morgan
21 Dec 2010
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
550
inc VAT

A great choice if gaming is a priority, and the big monitor is a plus. Image quality isn't the best, though, and it's slower than overclocked systems.

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Specifications

3.06GHz Intel Core i3-540, 4GB RAM, 25in 1,920x1,080 display, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

The Matteodon 540 is the first system we've reviewed from North London-based Dino PC, so we were interested to see what it considered a well-rounded budget system.

Like a lot of manufacturers, an Intel Core i3 is the processor of choice; the i3-540 used here runs at 3.06GHz, which should provide more than enough pace for most applications. Only multi-threaded programs that use all available processor cores at once will slow it down. The Matteodon produced a score of 105 in our benchmarks, which while impressive, is overshadowed by similarly-priced systems with overclocked components.

While many system builders shy away from including a powerful graphics card in PCs at this price, Dino PC opted for an Nvidia GTS 250. This proved very capable: our Call of Duty 4 test flew along at a respectable 46fps. Even Crysis was playable once we'd tweaked a few settings. Considering Crysis was the game to upgrade your PC for when it launched just a few years ago, and still brings graphics cards to their knees, this is impressive.

Dino PC Matteodon

Full HD screens are fast becoming the standard, even for budget machines, but we were still surprised to find a huge 25in HannsG monitor with the Matteodon. The 1,920x1,080 resolution is great for Full HD movies, but image quality was distinctly average. Colour reproduction was reasonable but some images and text looked blurry. VGA and DVI inputs are useful, but the lack of HDMI will make it harder to connect a games console. The bundled Logitech keyboard and mouse were basic, but fine for everyday use. The keyboard was firm and keys were responsive, and the mouse was comfortable to grip.

The 500GB hard disk isn't the largest you can find at this price, but that's acceptable given the graphics card. The midi-tower case has three empty 5 1/4in and seven 3 1/2in drive bays for adding extra disks or optical drives, but the 500w power supply doesn’t have any spare molex or SATA connectors. Adding extra components will require power splitters, but while these are cheap, it's still a frustration.

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