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Budget PCs Reviews
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Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 review

£499 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Palicomp

Our Rating: We rate this 4.5 out of 5

Palicomp's great value Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC will make an excellent choice for non-gamers who want a powerful, upgradable machine.

Palicomp's great value Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC will make an excellent choice for non-gamers who want a powerful, upgradable machine.

Palicomp's Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC uses an Intel Core i3-540 processor running at 3.06GHz. This is a popular CPU at this price, with its integrated graphics letting you build a competent PC without splashing out on a discrete graphics card.

However, Palicomp has supplemented the Core i3’s graphics capabilities with an HD 5450. This doesn’t improve things much on the gaming front – CyberPower’s integrated setup is able to match the Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC’s 19fps in our Fear test – but adds multiple outputs and support for DirectX 11.0.

Inside, an ASRock motherboard allows one of the Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC’s 15 USB ports to run at the high-speed USB 3.0 specification. This port will be ideal for a compatible external hard drive, although a terabyte (1TB) of storage is generously provided as standard.

The motherboard is more open to upgrades than the models we usually see in this category. As such, the Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC will house two graphics cards, four sticks of RAM and a handful of add-on cards.

Housed in a Cooler Master Elite 331 case that’s often used with PCs costing two or three times this amount, the Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC is smart and tidy-looking. The well-made case offers plenty of space and doesn’t have the flimsy feel of other budget units.

Palicomp supplies a stylish 21.5in AOC monitor with the Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC, while a set of stereo speakers complement this full-HD display.

Budget PCs chart ranking

  1. Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3
  2. Chillblast Fusion Assassin
  3. Eclipse Solar i54r567
  4. Arbico i3-5445 XL
  5. CyberPower Infinity i3 Apollo XT

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Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 Expert Verdict »

3.06GHz Intel Core i3-540
Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit (choose Windows 7 32bit at no extra cost)
4GB DDR3 RAM
1TB SATA
14 x USB 2.0
1 x USB 3.0
ASRock P55PRO/USB3 motherboard
650W PowerCool PSU
21.5in AOC F22+ (0.25mm pixel pitch
1920x1080)
512MB Powercolor ATI Radeon HD 5450 (games scores: Fear [1024x768] = 19fps)
onboard sound
2 x Logitech S220 speakers and subwoofer
max DVD speeds: 24x/24x/12x/16x/6x/8x/12x/16x (DVD-R/+R/-R DL/+R DL/-RW/+RW/-RAM/-ROM)
two-year return-to-base warranty
WorldBench 6 score: 126
  • Overall: We give this item 9 of 10 overall

Combining a generous amount of storage with USB 3.0 technology, a discrete graphics card, a full-HD monitor and stereo speakers, the Palicomp Core i3 Blast 540-22 USB3 budget desktop PC offers great value for non-gamers who want a powerful, upgradable PC.

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