PC Club Enpower Velocity 05 SLI review: PC Club Enpower Velocity 05 SLI

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The Good Unique case graphics have a certain appeal; strong high-end gaming configuration; plenty of room for expansion.

The Bad Default 600-watt power supply isn't enough to make this system into an SLI box; PC Club's Web site offers little help in selecting a power supply based on your configuration; other online support elements are almost entirely useless.

The Bottom Line PC Club's Enpower Velocity 05 SLI combines powerful hardware, a strong price, and a distinctive design into a compelling gaming PC. The design isn't for everyone, you'll need to do some research to pick the right power supply (hint: go 850 watts or higher), and PC Club's online support is comical, but on balance, this desktop will meet the needs of many gamers.

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7.3 Overall
  • Design 8
  • Features 7
  • Performance 8
  • Support 4

We have to give PC Club credit, its Enpower Velocity 05 SLI gaming desktop comes in a distinctive package. Not everyone will want a blue-and-pink pastel fighting robot decorating their PC, but then not everyone will be able to shell out $3,140, the bare minimum you'll have to pay for the privilege. Our review unit came with a quad-core Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700 chip and a single GeForce 8800 GTX 3D card that bumps the price up to $3,799. With that price and those specs, this desktop competes fairly well against similar gaming PCs. We wish PC Club's online configurator was more helpful, as novices could easily configure a system with an anemic power supply that limits upgrading. But if you know what you're doing and you like robots, the Enpower Velocity 05 SLI offers the polish and performance we expect from a multithousand-dollar gaming desktop.

First, the robot. Like most custom work, some will love it, some will hate it. We like it, and we've certainly seen worse robot motifs on a PC case. PC Club will throw in this paint job for free for one month from the release date. After that, it will expand the design selection to include a few more options, and the company says it will also accept customers' own images, which will cost an unspecified additional amount to paint on. Many desktop vendors offer custom painting, but we like that PC Club isn't even offering a plain old case here. PC Club could have gone even further with the design and found a way to incorporate the front panel drives and drive doors, but that would have also driven up the cost. Perhaps if you contact PC Club with a custom image, the company might be able to take special requests to color those parts, as well.

For many of you, as long as your PCs are fast, the outside could have pink ponies on it (and some of you might even prefer pink ponies). According to its specs, the Enpower Velocity 05 SLI should be a barn burner. It addition to the quad-core chip and the state-of-the-art graphics card, PC Club also sent this box with 2GB of 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM and a single 500GB 7,200rpm hard drive, all connected to an Nforce i680 SLI-based motherboard. PC Club left all of the parts running at their stock speeds, which makes this system nearly identical to the Polywell Poly i680 SLI, the only major difference being the Polywell's pair of faster 10,000rpm hard drives and slightly faster 800MHz memory. Our two review units even have the exact same $3,799 price tag.

With the Polywell unit as our main comparison system, you can see what kind of advantage its faster hardware gets you. On some tests the Polywell was faster than others, but overall, it beat the PC Club on nearly every benchmark. Neither of these systems is a dog, but if we were in the market for a fast gaming PC, we'd opt for performance over a baby-blue robot. PC Club offers the option for a 150GB 10,000rpm hard drive for an $82 premium over the current 500GB 7,200rpm model. You can also add a second hard drive to give the system more storage capacity.

Multitasking test (simultaneous McAfee antivirus scan, DivX video encode, CAB file extraction)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
In seconds  

Multimedia multitasking test (simultaneous QuickTime and iTunes encoding)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
In seconds  

Adobe Photoshop CS2 image-processing test
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
In seconds  

Apple iTunes encoding test
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
In seconds  

CineBench 9.5
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Rendering Multiple CPUs  
Rendering Single CPU  
Gateway FX530XT
Apple Mac Pro
Dell XPS 710

Quake 4 performance (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,600x1,200 (8x AA, 16xAF)  
1,600x1,200 (4x AA, 8xAF)  
1,280x1,024 (4x AA, 8x AF)  
Polywell Poly i680SLI Quad Core
PC Club Enpower Velocity 05 SLI
Dell XPS 710

F.E.A.R. performance (in fps)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
1,600x1,200 (SS on, 8x AF)  
1,280x1,024 (SS on, 8x AF)  

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