- Review Price: £2231.00
The Athlon 64 FX-53 processor has been available for a few weeks now, but not being a mainstream product means that the uptake has been somewhat slow. Evesham is one of a handful of UK system vendors that ships machines based on the FX-53. The Axis 64 FX53 is priced at well over £2,000 which puts it out of the reach of just about everyone that’s not willing to spend a small fortune on a PC.
But as always with computers, the more you spend, the higher the performance, well maybe not always but in this case it’s holding true. Apart from the Athlon 64 FX-53 processor Evesham has pulled out all the stops and fitted 1GB of registered ECC PC3200 DDR SDRAM which, on its own adds quite a hefty price tag to any system.
The Asus SK8V motherboard adds onboard Gigabit LAN; six USB 2.0 ports, with two of them front mounted and a single rear mounted FireWire port. The motherboard also supports up to four S-ATA devices and six IDE devices. The only problem is that the case won’t be able to cater for that many drives, but there shouldn’t be any reason to upgrade the Axis 64 FX53 for some time.
The graphics card of choice is a Radeon 9800XT, which is currently the fastest graphics card you can buy. Again this adds quite a bit to the price tag of the system. Sound comes courtesy of a SoundBlaster Audigy 2 ZS sound card with an accompanying front mounted breakout box. A set of Creative Labs 7.1-channel speakers are also supplied to complete the package. This is pretty much as good as it gets with PC sound systems without delving into semi-professional kit.
But it doesn’t stop there as Evesham has included two 160GB Maxtor S-ATA hard drives in a RAID-0 configuration, which means that there is a whopping 320GB of storage running at optimal speed. To backup important data Evesham has fitted an Sony DVD writer which can burn both DVD+R and –R media at eight-speed, as well as DVD+RW and –RW at four-speed. There is of course a DVD-ROM drive as well which can read discs at up to 16-speed.
Finally a 19in ViewSonic TFT display puts the icing on the cake. This is a superb screen with excellent image quality. The ViewSonic also has dual D-SUB inputs as well as a single DVI, so it can be used with multiple PCs if necessary. Even the stand is first rate, with dampened vertical movement, panning and tilt functionality.
There is one minor drawback and that is the CPU fan, which is by far the noisiest part of the whole system. If Evesham had found something a little quieter the noise from the Axis 64 FX53 would have been negligible. The noise level isn’t helped by the air duct on the side of the case, but this does ensure that the CPU cooler will get plenty of fresh air from outside the case.
Personally, I quite like the current Evesham case, which is supplied by Chenbro – it’s well built and feature rich. There is space for another couple of 3.5in drives as well as one more 5.25in drive. Evesham has fitted a blue LED fan to the front of the case that cools the two hard drives. There is also space for a rear mounted 120mm fan if you feel the need to add extra cooling. The 300W PSU feels a bit underpowered, although there shouldn’t be any issues in the current configuration; but adding more hardware would probably mean that a new power supply is needed as well. It is however a very quiet PSU due mainly to the 120mm fan.
The Axis 64 FX53 is neat and tidy inside with no obstructions to the airflow and all the cables have been neatly tied in place, just the way you would expect a professionally built PC to look.
Rounding things off is a set of Microsoft wireless input peripherals. You get a multimedia keyboard and mouse, both of which use RF wireless, so there are no line of sight issues and you should get a decent range too.
High-end components doesn’t necessarily make a great PC, but the Axis 64 FX53 is incredibly fast with a SYSmark 2004 score of 202 making this one of the fastest PCs that we have tested at TrustedReviews. It also managed a very impressive 21107 points in 3DMark 2001SE and 6687 is 3DMark03.
As I mentioned at the beginning of the review, the asking price is very steep and at £2,231.33 inc VAT I think most of us will find it way beyond our reach. That said, I didn’t expect Evesham to be giving it away and looking at the features, the price is justified for those with deep enough pockets. The previous fastest system to arrive at TrustedReviews was also from Evesham, in the shape of the Evesham Evolution 3.4. This machine is based on a 3.4GHz Pentium 4 Northwood chip and although it’s over £400 cheaper, it’s not quite as fast.
The Evesham Axis 64 FX53 is a very impressive computer with cutting edge features and incredible speed, the only drawback is the high price. You do get a lot for your money, but how much can you afford to spend on a PC?
To compare these results to the Evesham Evolution 3.4 click here
”’PCMark failed to recognise the FX-53 processer causing the CPU test to fail.”’
Score in detail
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