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Aria Gladiator Inferno review

Kat Orphanides
16 Feb 2014
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
1,600
inc VAT

The Gladiator Inferno is built with top-notch components, but it’s expensive

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Specifications

4.7GHz AMD FX-9590, 16GB RAM, N/A display, Windows 8.1

We’ve seen a lot of adventurous PC cases, but the £1,600 Aria Gladiator Inferno looks particularly impressive. The wide, heavily ventilated Corsair Carbide Air 540 case looks like an industrial mini-freezer, an impression aided by its large, clear side panel. There's not much to protect the PC’s innards from dust and fluff, but we were pleased that the Gladiator Inferno runs with just a low, rushing hum when the side panels are on. This is largely thanks to some quiet case fans and a water-cooled processor.

Aria Gladiator Inferno

Unusually, both side panels conceal something useful. The case is split into two bays, with the left-hand bay housing the motherboard and two 3 1/2in drive bays. The right-hand bay of the case contains two externally facing vertical 5 1/4in bays and a bank of four 2 1/2in drive bays, as well as an 850W power supply. On the front panel, alongside the vertically mounted DVD-RW drive, there are two USB3 ports, as well as microphone and headphone jacks.

There's lots more connectivity at the back of the case thanks to the Gladiator Inferno’s Asus Sabretooth 990FX R2.0 motherboard. The board has two eSATA3 ports and four USB3 ports on the backplane, as well as another eight USB2 ports. Conveniently, you can use one of the USB ports to update your BIOS easily from a USB flash drive. There’s also a Gigabit Ethernet port, a PS/2 port, six 3.5mm audio ports for up to 7.1 analogue surround sound and an optical S/PDIF digital audio output.

Aria Gladiator Inferno

The motherboard's internal features are impressive, too. There are four PCI-E x16 slots, three of which change speed depending on how you have them populated. Populate two of the slots, and they'll both run at x16; populate all three slots and the topmost slot will operate at x16 while the other two step down to x8. The fourth x16 slot actually runs at x4. The motherboard also provides a legacy PCI slot for connection port and TV tuner cards, and a PCI-E x1 slot, although the x1 slot’s position means it’ll be obscured by a dual slot graphics card.

Aria Gladiator Inferno

The motherboard provides eight SATA3 ports, of which three are in use, with one used for the 250GB SSD on which Windows is installed, one for a 1TB data disk and the third for the DVD-RW drive. Two of the motherboard’s four memory slots hold 8GB modules of 1,866MHz performance memory, while the processor is an eight-core AMD FX-9590 running at its native 4.7GHz. The PC scored 97 overall in our multimedia benchmarks, and although we've seen faster scores from some of the most powerful Intel processors the extra cores of the AMD FX-9590 are worth having if you run software optimised to use them.

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