One of two systems this month to use CoolerMaster’s sleek Centurion case, the Chillblast Fusion Viper certainly looks impressive. This case allows maximum airflow over system components by using a mesh front panel you can see right through if you look closely. The mesh parts are rather fragile, unfortunately, and you won’t want to leave cups of coffee on top.
Fitted with a 3.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo E8500, the Chillblast Fusion Viper delivers a predictably high level of performance, losing out to the Arbico and CyberPower powerhouses in a close WorldBench 6 speed battle.
The Chillblast Fusion Viper's 22in Acer AL2251W delivers high-quality images for an immersive gaming experience. It’s sturdily constructed and has easy-access digital and analogue inputs.
The nVidia GeForce 9800 GTX graphics card brings a minor boost in performance over the 8800 GTS, which should gain you a few frames per second when gaming. The Chillblast Fusion Viper's Creative X-Fi Xtreme and surround speakers produce excellent audio.
It’s more expensive than the other dual-core PCs here, but upgraders and overclockers will love the Chillblast Fusion Viper’s case – and the warranty is an added bonus.
Power desktop PCs chart ranking (July 08 issue)
- CyberPower Infinity Crossfire HD
- Arbico CD9800 PRO
- Mesh Elite HD24
- Chillblast Fusion Viper
- PC Specialist Fusion 9850 X2
See also: Power desktop PCs buying advice