In the fiercely competitive sub-£500 price bracket, compromises often have to be made. But Eclipse has somehow managed to stretch the budget with its Eclipse Matrix a55R575 budget desktop PC with one of the fastest processors in the chart.

In the fiercely competitive sub-£500 price bracket, compromises often have to be made. But Eclipse has somehow managed to stretch the budget with its Matrix a55R575 budget desktop PC to combine the fastest graphics card and processor in the chart: there's a 3.1GHz AMD Phenom II X2 550 dual-core CPU and a Radeon HD 5750 under the bonnet.

As a result, the Eclipse Matrix a55R575 budget desktop PC delivers excellent performance across the board. Although it doesn't deliver the fastest WorldBench 6 score here, just three points separate it and the top two performers, Chillblast's Fusion Hades and the CyberPower Ultra Athenna XT.

And the Eclipse Matrix a55R575 budget desktop PC dominates when it comes to gaming. It recorded 20fps in our ‘Very High' Crysis test, beating the competition by 33 percent or more. Whatever game we threw at it, the Matrix excelled.

Only in two areas will you find compromises. First, the fairly stylish 18.5in monitor delivers reasonable image quality, but it's limited to a 1366x768 resolution and you may find screen space a little cramped for office-type work. Second, unlike the Palicomp, the Eclipse Matrix a55R575 budget desktop PC doesn't come with external speakers.

Please note that in the review printed in the July 2010 issue of PC Advisor, this system is incorrectly listed with an ATI Radeon HD 5850 graphics processor. This should read ATI Radeon HD 5750. Since its Best Buy award was on the merit of its measured performance and the overall package, the Eclipse Matrix a55R575 still earns the PC Advisor Best Buy award.

Chart ranking (July 2010 issue)

  1. Eclipse Matrix a55R575
  2. Chillblast Fusion Hades
  3. CyberPower Ultra Athenna XT
  4. Palicomp Excalibur 630-19 System
  5. Arbico Phenom 5467 HD

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