iBuyPower Chimera XLC Desktop PC Review

Sun, Dec 25, 2011

Hardware Reviews

iBuyPower Chimera XLC Desktop PC Review

Overview

The iBuyPower Chimera XLC Desktop PC was the result of the merger of the flagship Chimera line and the famous XLC line. Like its fire-breathing namesake, this powerful and stylish gaming system burns away the competition with its arsenal of extreme components. This gaming system is capable of churning out blazing hot graphics while keeping its cool with liquid cooling technology.

Specifications

The iBuyPower Chimera XLC Desktop PC features the following components:

  • Intel Core i7 2600K processor (overclocked to 4.3 GHz)
  • 4GB of RAM
  • Nvidia GTX590 video card
  • 128 GB solid state drive
  • 2 TB hard drive

Special Features

  • Liquid cooling system with dual radiators. The liquid cooling system is one step forward in computer cooling technology. Compared to a processor fan and heat sink, a liquid cooling system is capable of removing heat from the processor in a much faster rate. In addition, 240 mm dual radiators enhance the liquid cooling system by increasing the air flow to remove heat generated by the processor and other components.
  • Excellent air ventilation system. The system features one (1) 200 mm fan and five (5) 120 mm fans to keep the air circulation going inside the case. This takes part of the load off the liquid cooling system which enhances its efficiency.
  • Innovative gaming chassis. Thanks to the NZXT Phantom Full Tower Gaming Case, there is a lot of room inside for upgrades and additional devices. In addition, cables are carefully routed to a designated area in the casing which improves airflow. Moreover, a fan control panel on top of the casing allows the user to turn individual fans on or off.
  • PowerDrive overclocking. iBuyPower has bundled PowerDrive Level 3 into the system which allows overclocking up to 30%.

Pros

  • The casing design of the NZXT Phantom Full Tower Gaming Case provides a lot of upgrade possibilities. With eight (8) hard drive slots, five (5) 5.25 inch slots, two (2) PCI-e X8 slots, and two (2) PCI-e X16 slots, you’ll never run out of space to put in as much firepower into the system.
  • Connectivity-wise, the iBuyPower Chimera XLC Desktop PC features eight (8) USB ports, SPDIF audio connectors (analog and optical), audio connectors for 7.1 channel sound, gigabit Ethernet jack, two (2) eSATA ports, and two (2) USB 3.0 ports.
  • Game testing results show impressive and consistent output on a broad range of games. This suggests that the system handles hardware intensive game scenarios with ease such as those found in Starcraft II, Dawn of War II, Call of Duty Black Ops, and Witcher 2.

Cons

Independent testing showed that the factory-set overclocking was a bit conservative, which could imply that the system is built to take much more than 30% overclocking. For those who have nerves of steel (and money to burn), taking the overclock beyond 30% could churn up more processing power from the system.

The Verdict

The system definitely has a lot of potential in terms of processing power and upgrades. As far as features and performance is concerned, the iBuyPower Chimera XLC Desktop PC is a sound investment. Made to choose between price and quality, spending a few more bucks will take you a long way in the long run.

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