Eclipse Vogue i685n88GT review

Price when reviewed

It isn’t hard to see where a large chunk of the Eclipse’s budget has gone this month – the Vogue i685n88GT manages to squeeze the wonderful GeForce 8800 GT into its £599 price (well, almost), lifting it far above the competition in gaming terms. It’s an overclocked XFX model, too, so it’s as close as you can get to top-end performance without spending a fortune on a GTX.

Eclipse Vogue i685n88GT review

As expected, it stomped all over our highest Call of Duty 2 test, and we were delighted to find that we could comfortably play Crysis at the monitor’s native 1,440 x 900 resolution with High settings turned on. Performance in 2D was impressive, too, with the 3GHz Core 2 Duo E6850 strolling to 1.35 in our benchmarks.

The Eclipse is all about power, but a side-effect of this is that it lacks some of the luxury that other systems offer this month. The 19in widescreen TFT looks odd, and not in a good way. It’s an acquired taste, but the picture qualityis perfectly acceptable.

For audio, you’ll have to make do with the reasonable built-in 1.2W speakers, as the Eclipse doesn’t come bundled with an external set. The Microsoft keyboard and mouse are cordless and comfortable, and the Gigabyte iSolo case is cavernous. It keeps the noise level to a remarkably low 32dBA when idle, too. None of the space has been filled with add-in cards, though, and there’s also no card reader on the front, but with plenty of leeway in the 600W power supply – not to mention the numerous empty drive bays and PCI slots – there’s scope to add all this later.

What you will find is a decent 320GB hard disk and a DVD writer that burns discs at 20x, plus Vista Home Premium as standard. The single year of return-to-base cover is a little disappointing, but that pretty much sums up the Eclipse Vogue i685n88GT once you move away from its outright speed.

It’s great for gaming and we love the quiet running, but we’re not convinced of the luxuriousness of the monitor or the rest of the package.

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