Palicomp’s Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin offers an impressive specification that includes a generous 16GB of RAM and a capacious 2TB Hitachi hard drive. It looks rather grand too, courtesy of a Cooler Master Dominator CM690 Advance II system case.

Application performance is also very good, and the Palicomp Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin scored 180 points in our WorldBench 6 speed test.

The Palicomp Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin's Gigabyte motherboard uses Intel’s Z68 chipset. It allows overclocking and supports SRT, should you wish to add an SSD to boost hard-drive performance. The board has four 6 gigabits per second (Gbps) and four 3Gbps SATA ports, plus support for 18 USB connectors – four of them USB 3.0.
Notably absent is an HDMI connection, however, so the Palicomp Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin won’t be able to use the processor’s integrated graphics.

Fortunately, an ATI Radeon HD 6950 is installed. It will be powerful enough for most users, but is no match for the faster HD 6970 and GTX 570 seen elsewhere in the chart. The Palicomp Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin failed to complete our ‘Very High Quality’ Crysis test, but was able to produce 96fps in Stalker: Call Of Pripyat at its highest settings.

The 23.6in AOC monitor offers very good image quality and LED backlighting. It displays a noticeable improvement over the HKC supplied with the Eclipse, but the Palicomp Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin's display isn’t as strong as Chillblast’s Asus model.

£1,000 PC chart ranking

  1. 1. Chillblast Fusion Volt
    2. Eclipse Cosmos i726n57
    3. Palicomp Phoenix i7 Z68 Assassin
    4. Arbico Elite i7-2697 Pro
    5. Dino PC Ravenous 2600K

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