The CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX made PC Advisor history last month, by being the first Top Five machine to jump from last to first place in a single go. Its secret weapon was a rather generous price cut that saw it soar up the value ratings. And due to the sudden disappearance of the Mesh PC that sits at the top of the charts in the December print edition of PC Advisor, the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX remains the best overall deal in spite of its age.

Of course, part of the point of the £1,001+ PCs category is that there's no price ceiling, so what do you lose by choosing a PC so, well, cheap? The processing power drops slightly, and you obviously don’t get futuristic quad-core capabilities, although since this PC still houses an Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX is still a fairly fast machine. 2GB of DDR RAM may seem a slight compromise, although Vista does actually run pretty smoothly with this amount of memory – strictly speaking, 4GB is very much a move for the future.

The CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX's 500GB storage space ensures you have a decent amount of room in which to store all of your files. Truthfully, you’re unlikely to need even 500GB, let alone the 1TB offered by the Cube247 Electra ST10. And at this price, we’re not complaining. It’s also nice that you get two 250GB rather than one large drive, and this’ll make it easier to organise your files. Alternatively, you can use one as the main drive and leave the other for backups.

And there are plenty of areas in which the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX continues to excel. The 22in ViewSonic screen is a very smooth model, while the 768MB 8800 GTX remains the best graphics chip in the chart – even if it is now used by all but one of the other Top £1,001+ PCs. The sound system is nice, with the capable Creative card working wonders with the Inspire T6100 speakers. Add a fast DVD writer and a lengthy three-year warranty, and this amounts to a fantastically well-specified PC for the money.

Chart ranking: £1,001+ power desktop PCs, December 07 issue


  1. Mesh Elite Quad Storm PCA (This PC is no longer in the chart. Click here for more information)
  2. CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX - last month 1
  3. Cube247 Electra ST10
  4. Arbico QC6700 Pro
  5. PC Specialist Apollo R600-X3

Our first look: August 07

When Windows Vista came out at the beginning of the year, all the talk was about whether 1GB of memory would suffice for a Vista system or whether we'd need to go up to 2GB. PC makers favoured the latter answer, as shown by a glut of 2GB machines.

Now, however, we're faced with a new dilemma: stick with 2GB or raise our sights higher and grab 4GB. While three of our £1,001+ PCs have gone down the latter route, CyberPower has opted for just 2GB with the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX.

Armed with an E6750 - slower than the E6850s and lacking the quad-core facilities of the Q6600 - the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX manages a WorldBench 6 speed score of 111. This is obviously still a fairly fast system, but it doesn't measure up to the 4GB giants bestriding the top of the chart. In other respects, however, the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX is quite an impressive PC. After all, the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX's GeForce 8800 GTX is one of the best graphics card in existence, while the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX's 22in ViewSonic screen is a very smooth operator. The CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX's hard drive space is ample for most needs (if half that of the Cube247 Nova ST3) and the sound system is wonderful.

Chart ranking: power PCs October 07 issue


  1. Cube247 Nova ST3
  2. Zoostorm 5-6514 Edge PC
  3. Arbico 888 Extreme
  4. Mesh Elite Q6600 R600 PCA
  5. CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX

Buying advice: power PCs as of August 07

Processor: They might soon face some serious competition from AMD's quad-core processors but, for now, Intel's Core 2 chips reign supreme. The E6750 and E6850 have made quite a splash in our power PC chart. For the best performance on today's software, look to the E6850.

Alternatively, you could opt for a quad-core chip such as the Quad Q6600. This potentially offers around 50 to 100 percent extra performance, but only in applications and games that are programmed to take advantage of the extra cores included within each chip. Don't expect multicore applications to flood in, but we could see a dramatic shift in the software landscape over the next couple of years. The higher the number of cores, the more impressive future performance is likely to be.

Memory: No sooner had we welcomed the age of the 2GB PC than 4GB machines started appearing in our charts. Three of the models in the power PC chart now include this much memory.

If you want your PC to cope easily with programs in 2008 and beyond, 4GB is the key - but 2GB remains a decent option if you want to save money. For the best performance, buy from a high-quality memory maker such as Corsair.

Storage: Unbelievably, anything less than 500GB is now considered a small amount of storage - most power PCs come with 500GB to 600GB of hardware space. A few machines offer more than this but, unless you specialise in a particularly gigabyte-hungry pastime such as video, 500GB should be more than enough. Make sure you get serial ATA cabling for rapid transfer rates.

Cover backup with a multi-format DVD writer. Dual-layer capabilities (allowing you to store 8.5GB rather than 4.7GB on a disc) are a must, and you should make sure the drive supports DVD+R DL at eight-speed or more. Eight-speed DVD-R DL is nice but not essential, and look for good eight-speed DVD+RW facilities. Other optional formats include DVD-RAM.

Display: You might think that any flat-panel bundled with a power PC would be of superior quality - but you'd be mistaken. These power PCs come with 22in displays, but you should be careful when choosing screens of this size. Some 22in flat-panels produce poor colours and fuzzy images, which might cause more than a few problems for those with sensitive eyes. If in doubt, 20in screens are safer bets, but you'll have to accept inferior resolution support.

Graphics cards: You should be able to get something rather startling in a power PC. The GeForce 8800 Ultra is undoubtedly the most prized acquisition. Its support for DirectX 10.0 means Vista adopters can look forward to some impressive games titles in the future.
The Ultra also has bags of performance and sizzling features. The 8800 GTX is nearly as good and, as stocks dwindle, could be available at a juicy price.

However, you shouldn't overlook their slightly less exciting sibling, the 8800 GTS, nor the brand-new ATI HD 2900 XT. The latter can't keep up with the Ultra and GTX, but it will eclipse even the 640MB version of the 8800 GTS.

Sound card and speakers: Onboard or integrated sound has come on in leaps and bounds, with support for 7.1 channel sound - but it's still no match for a decent sound card. Hunt around and you should be able to get a PC with a Creative Audigy card or, better still, one from the excellent X-Fi range. If you only want 2.1-channel speakers, make sure they're high-quality. Most manufacturers are bundling 5.1-channel speakers. Strangely, 7.1 speakers are becoming less common but, if you want audio excellence, you'd be best off holding out for a set of these.

CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX: Specs

  • 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo E6750
  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • 2GB DDR RAM
  • 2 x 250GB serial ATA
  • Asus P5N32-E SLI motherboard
  • 6/1 x USB ports
  • 22in ViewSonic VX2235wm (0.282mm, 1,680x1,050)
  • 768MB PCI Express Sparkle nVidia GeForce 8800 GTX
  • Creative SB X-Fi XtremeAudio
  • 5 x Creative Inspire T6100 speakers
  • subwoofer
  • DVD speeds: 16x/18x/18x/8x/8x/6x/8x/12x (DVD-ROM/-R/+R/-R DL/+R DL/+RW/-RW/-RAM)
  • WorldBench 6 score: 111 points
  • 3-year limited warranty
  • bundles InterVideo WinDVD Suite
  • 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo E6750
  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • 2GB DDR RAM
  • 2 x 250GB serial ATA
  • Asus P5N32-E SLI motherboard
  • 6/1 x USB ports
  • 22in ViewSonic VX2235wm (0.282mm, 1,680x1,050)
  • 768MB PCI Express Sparkle nVidia GeForce 8800 GTX
  • Creative SB X-Fi XtremeAudio
  • 5 x Creative Inspire T6100 speakers
  • subwoofer
  • DVD speeds: 16x/18x/18x/8x/8x/6x/8x/12x (DVD-ROM/-R/+R/-R DL/+R DL/+RW/-RW/-RAM)
  • WorldBench 6 score: 111 points
  • 3-year limited warranty
  • bundles InterVideo WinDVD Suite

OUR VERDICT

The Mesh's sudden disappearance from the PC Advisor chart means the CyberPower Gamer Infinity SLI GTX is still the best deal for your money, in spite of its age.

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