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Gateway E-6500D review: Gateway E-6500D

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The E-6500D's case features dual FireWire ports on the front, along with a total of seven USB 2.0 ports, an S/PDIF connector, and surround-sound audio ports around back. There's plenty of room inside for expansion, including two free PCI slots, three free internal drive bays, and two free DIMM slots.

Gateway offers business users a wide variety of sometimes confusing service options. The E-6500D is backed by the default three-year Desktop Value plan, which includes next-business-day onsite service and toll-free technical support. You can upgrade to five years of this kind of protection for $199 or choose the even more airtight Total Protection Plan ($348 for five years), which adds priority support, allowing you to skip those annoying toll-free phone menus.

Accidental damage protection, onsite system installation, personalized help desk (for third-party application support), and various online training and learning packages are available. The "Keep your hard drive" program, at $10 per year, allows companies to retain a faulty hard drive rather than send it back to Gateway for replacement and is particularly good for companies with sensitive data. Also important to business buyers is Gateway's dedication to what the company calls Professional Managed Desktops, guaranteeing 12-to-18-month life cycles for platforms and adherence to Intel's Stable Image Platform, which dictates standardized hardware configurations designed to keep the IT department happy.

Application performance
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
BAPCo SysMark 2004 rating  
SysMark 2004 Internet-content-creation rating  
SysMark 2004 office-productivity rating  

Half-Life 2 custom demo (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Half-Life 2 1,024x768 4xAA 8xAF  
Half-Life 2 1,600x1,200 4xAA 8xAF  
*Unable to complete our Half-Life 2 test.

Multimedia performance tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Sorenson Squeeze 4.0 video-encoding test (in seconds)  
Adobe Photoshop CS test (in seconds)  
Apple iTunes 4.7.1.30 MP3-encoding test (in seconds)  

Find out more about how we test desktop systems.

System configurations:
Apple Power Mac G5 dual 2.7GHz
Macintosh OS 10.4; dual PowerPC G5 2.7GHz; 4,096MB DDR SDRAM 400MHz; 256MB Nvidia GeForce 6800 Ultra (AGP); 250GB Maxtor Serial ATA hard drive

Dell Dimension 5100C
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 SP2; 3.0GHz Intel Pentium D 830, 512MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; Intel 945G chipset; 224MB (shared) integrated Intel 950G; Maxtor 6L160M0 160GB 7,200rpm Serial ATA

Dell OptiPlex GX620
Windows XP Professional SP2; 3.6GHz Intel P4 660; Intel 945G chipset; 512MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; 128MB ATI Radeon X600 SE (PCIe); Seagate ST380013AS 80GB 7,200rpm Serial ATA

Gateway E-6500D
Windows XP Professional SP2; 3.0GHz Intel Pentium D 830, 1,024MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; Intel 945G chipset; 128MB Nvidia GeForce 6600 (PCIe); WDC WD2000JD-22HBB0 200GB 7,200rpm, Serial ATA

Gateway FX400XL
Windows XP Professional SP2; 3.0GHz Intel Pentium D 830, 1,024MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; Intel 945GP chip set; 256MB Nvidia GeForce 6800 (PCIe); Hitachi HDS722525VLSA80 250GB 7,200rpm Serial ATA (two separate drives, no RAID)

Sony VAIO VGC-RA842G
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 SP2; 3.0GHz Intel Pentium D 830; Intel 945G chipset; 1,024MB DDR2 SDRAM 533MHz; 256MB Nvidia GeForce 6600 (PCIe); two WDC WD2500JD-98HBC0 250GB 7,200rpm Serial ATA; integrated Intel 8201/GR/GH SATA RAID controller

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