Gaming fans on the hunt for their next dedicated desktop will want to take a closer look at the Edge Z40 from Velocity Micro. It not only offers sufficient performance for gaming, but can also serve as an everyday desktop for users as well. The Edge Z40 is highly customizable and is priced at $949 for its base configuration. Velocity Micro pairs the desktop with a one-year warranty on parts and labor.
For this review, we will be looking at a configuration that's upgraded in terms of the processor, graphics card, Wi-Fi, and Blu-ray drive, which pushes the price up to $1,199. The hyperclocked 4.0GHz Intel Core i-5-2500K processor is part of Intel's second generation of core processors. It provides the desktop with plenty of performance through its four cores, and it also offers improved efficiency in terms of power consumption when compared with chips from the previous generation. Gaming is obviously processed without hiccups, and so are other everyday computing tasks. Besides the four cores, there's additional multitasking help via 4GB of DDR3 RAM.
The upgraded graphics card in this configuration of the Z40 a Nvidia GeForce GTX 560 Ti. It adds an extra $120 to the base price, and is well worth it for handling modern games. You get a sizable 1B hard drive out of the box for all of your storage needs, and Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Edition 64-bit is the operating system of choice.
The additional features of the Edge Z40 are highlighted by a Blu-ray drive, which costs an extra $70. When you need to transfer data from other digital devices, you can use the integrated 8-in-1 media reader. 802.11n Wi-Fi does not come integrated with the base model, but you can add it for a mere $10.
Although you can configure the Edge Z40 to your liking through Velocity Micro's site, there are options for expansion that you can handle on your own once the desktop is in your hands. There's room for four additional hard drives, as well as two more memory sticks. You also get some vacant PCI slots if you decide you want to change your graphics card setup, among other things.
The Z40 has an attractive, industrial design that differs from most desktop towers on the market. It has a silver aluminum case that gives the tower a very clean look. Add in a side window, and you have yourself a machine that's powerful and aesthetically pleasing at the same time. The design is not particularly fancy, as there are no recessed trays or other tweaks, but it should suffice for most users. The front panel features the media reader, and the rest of the connectivity resides on the back panel. You get an Ethernet port, connectors for a keyboard and mouse, optical and analog audio jacks, a mini HDMI port, two DVI ports, FireWire and eSATA ports, as well as a mix of USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports.
When it comes to gaming, the Velocity Micro Edge Z40 desktop is hard to beat. When you combine its performance, design, features, and price, the Z40 should earn serious consideration from any gamer looking to get the most out of their hard earned cash.
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