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Syber Vapor I review

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Syber Vapor I
  • Syber Vapor I
  • Syber Vapor I
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  • Syber Vapor I
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  • Syber Vapor I
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  • Syber Vapor I
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Summary

Our Score:

7

Pros

  • Full HD gaming ability
  • Futuristic, sturdy design
  • Fully upgradeable interior
  • Access to PC games library
  • Cheaper than Alienware X51

Cons

  • Alienware remains faster
  • Consoles are smaller, lighter and cheaper
  • Consumes more power than consoles

Key Features

  • 3.6GHz Intel Core i3-4160 processor
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 750 Ti graphics
  • 8GB RAM
  • 1TB hard disk
  • Windows 8.1 64-bit
  • 2yr RTB warranty
  • Manufacturer: CyberPower
  • Review Price: £599.00

What is the Syber Vapor I?

The gap between consoles and PCs has blurred thanks to efficient components and smaller, sleeker designs, and it’s now viable to opt for a desktop in the living room – they’re able to access a larger library of games and, unlike consoles, they’re fully upgradable.

CyberPower has long made high-end gaming desktops, but its new Syber division represents its first big play into the living room: a move that sees this underdog step up against the Playstation 4 and Xbox One as well as established systems like the Alienware X51.

SEE ALSO: Xbox One vs PS4

Syber Vapor I – Design & Build Quality

The Vapor is more distinctive than the consoles it hopes to replace. Its body is a mix of white and black plastic, and it has the kind of dramatic styling that seems mandatory in gaming hardware. The sides are covered in angles and vents, and the middle section is slatted.

The front is distinctive, with two bands of light either side of the futuristic Syber logo. Our sample is white with black trim and blue lights, but the machine is available in pure black, and black with copper trim. The lights can be altered, with illumination available in purple, yellow, green and red.

The Vapor has one big advantage over the consoles: it’s fully upgradeable. Syber encourages owners to get stuck in, which means obsolete components can be replaced – something that adds more cost, but an option that could also give this machine a longer lifespan than any console.

Getting inside is simple: remove one screw, and the side panel slides away. Once the Vapor is opened, the processor, Wi-Fi card and memory sticks are all easy to access, and the hard disk can be unscrewed from a metal caddy that spans the width of the system.

The graphics card is beneath the hard disk caddy and is attached to the motherboard with a PCI riser, and it’s easy to remove. There’s room for larger cards than the GTX 750 Ti used here – as long as the card is 280mm or less in length, it’ll fit.

The Vapor looks like a console, but it’ll occupy more room beneath a TV. The Syber is 358mm wide and 344mm from front to back, and it weighs 5.5kg – about the same size as the Alienware X51. Compare that to the consoles: the PS4 weighs just 2.8kg and is 275mm wide, while the Xbox One tips the scales at 3.2kg and it’s 333mm wide.

It’s bulkier than consoles, but there’s no denying the Syber’s strength. It’s a sturdy box with few real build quality problems – the side panels have a little wobble, but that’s not a problem when the system is sat beneath the TV.

SEE ALSO: Best Xbox One Games of 2014

Syber Vapor I – Connectivity and Software

The front panel has two USB 3.0 ports, a USB 2.0 connector and a pair of audio jacks, and the rear has two more USB 3.0 connections, four USB 2.0 ports, and a PS/2 plug. There are three more audio jacks, but one feature – an optical drive – is absent.

SEE ALSO: Best TVs Round-up

On the inside, there’s Gigabit Ethernet and 802.11n wireless, but no 802.11ac connectivity, despite what Syber’s website says.

The lack of an optical drive could grate if you want to play legacy games, but that’s not how Syber sees its system being used. The Vapor boots into Steam’s Big Picture mode, which optimises the UI of Valve’s PC gaming software for sofa use – the app’s icons are bigger and its navigation is reworked for controllers. It’s a tempting proposition, as it means the PC’s mighty software library can be more easily accessed from the living room.

Syber Vapor I

Syber pairs this lounge-friendly software with a couple of peripherals. The first, Logitech’s F710 wireless controller, is good: a comfortable and sturdy facsimile of the pads supplied with the major consoles. The second peripheral is a tiny keyboard with a small touchpad. It’s useful, but it lacks quality: the keys are small and spongy, while the trackpad is minute and lacks responsiveness. It’s just about acceptable for navigating Steam or Windows 8.1, but one of Logitech’s larger living room keyboards would be much better.

MattMe

December 8, 2014, 12:16 pm

Althoguht these 'only' play games at 1080p, really, for teh next few years you won't benefit playing at a higher resolution as they're designed to be used in your living room with your TV. 1080p is fine for now, isn't it?

These living room machines, and 'steam machines' will benefit from the Broadwell architecture when it comes out early next year. It'll allow manufacturers to create smaller machines cheaper and easier. The PC will soon, finally, be a viable living room device.

Alex Walsh

December 8, 2014, 3:13 pm

I spec'd up a mini ITX system earlier with a quadcore i5 and a GTX 970. It came in at a little over £800, which is a third as much again as this but much more convincing as a gaming machine than this. (it had windows 8.1 and a 240GB SSD as well as room for a further 3 HDD/SSDs)

vectorious

December 8, 2014, 8:14 pm

Where from at that price?

(I am interested myself at that price!)

icurafu

December 9, 2014, 3:19 am

I guess if you had a 4K TV, which are getting reasonable, you'd want to be able to play some games at the resolution. But, going with a console-alternative, you'll probably be ok with 1080p.

Alex Walsh

December 10, 2014, 10:23 am

PCSpecialist. Under their mini PC->gaming PC configurator.

Bogdan Caramalac

January 11, 2015, 11:56 am

Definitely interesting. Not quite what I wanted, but hey, looks pretty good. I was looking for Razer Christine. However Razer didn't say a word about Christine at CES 2015, so it's definitely a flop. And their quest for VR, now when everyone wants Oculus Rift, it's certainly too late. But, returning to the pc. My problem is that my desktop at home is 8-year old, 5-year old graphics. Can't run new games. The 3 TB WD harddrives are full, and reaching the limit of their lifetime. What I wanted was a transportable desktop PC, that I could take with me abroad easily, while being deathly quiet (noise goes up to above 60db when playing now). Project Christine fit the bill. Modular, so easy to transport, and liquid cooled, so quiet, while being easy to upgrade. So everything that a gaming laptop offers, without going to get ruined in 3 years. This Syber Vapor looks attractive: it's transportable, upgradeable. But it's dry. And that means noise will go up. I'm really puzzled about this problem. Also looked at Cyber Fang. It looks pretty big, and aside the design, I didn't read anywhere that there 3 parts could be split up. However I will do the upgrade when Oculus Rift is out. Pointless to get anything before that. At the same time, I'm not interested in 4K, so I won't be needing the latest video board to have VR working smoothly. So, what do you guys advice me to do ?

Some Guy In A Waistcoat

March 18, 2015, 9:49 am

Not sure if snark...
If it is not, then I'd have to say that SSD prices scale so poorly after the 250GB point that it's always more feasible to run a 3.5 1TB drive for data and buy a cheap SSD for booting than it is to try and run an SSD only rig.
You can build an entire machine for the average price of a 1TB SSD at current prices.

Dr. MKhalil

July 10, 2015, 12:51 pm

when i bought syper vapor xtreme ,,, in store black & white with black
but not orange with black ,,, help 😀

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