With £500 to spend, it’s hard to beat the Chillblast Fusion Neutron budget desktop PC. Its specification is similar to many of the PCs in this group: it runs Intel’s Core i5-2500K processor, is supplied with AOC’s 21.5in F22+ full-HD monitor, and fitted with Asus’ P8H61-M LE/USB3 motherboard. A few differences mark out the Chillblast as the best deal, however.
The Chillblast Fusion Neutron has 8GB of RAM, which is double that of three of its rivals and enough to make a noticeable difference in our performance tests. The Chillblast topped our WorldBench 6 results table with 161 points, a respectable score.
None of the PCs here can match the graphics power of CyberPower’s AMD CPU for gaming, but the Chillblast Fusion Neutron puts in a good effort. It notched up the fastest framerates among the machines running Intel solutions. This is no gaming PC, but the Chillblast displayed consistent performance and can display smooth HD video.
We were impressed by the Chillblast Fusion Neutron's EZCool A200D system case, which offers better build quality than most budget models at this price. Its design isn’t overtly gamer-bling, but it has red LED-illuminated fans, plus tool-free and perpendicular drive bays.
The motherboard uses Intel’s budget H61 chipset. It isn’t as sophisticated as the Palicomp’s Z68 version, but perfectly adequate at this price. Arguably, the Z68 chipset is wasted on a budget PC that lacks a solid-state drive (SSD) and dedicated graphics card anyhow.
A set of external speakers adds value, while the Chillblast Fusion Neutron's generous two-year collect-and-return warranty is the best in the chart.
Budget PC chart ranking
- 1. Chillblast Fusion Neutron
2. CyberPower Ultra Triton
3. Palicomp Phoenix i5 Sonar Extreme
4. Eclipse Voyager i525H61
5. Arbico eXcel i5-2533LE
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