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AVADirect Battle Box Ultimate Desktop Review: A Custom-Shop Ryzen Powerhouse

Price Analysis & Conclusion

The AVADirect Battle Box Ultimate is a simple build with high-end components at a reasonable price, especially compared to the DIY approach, which has become less of a value play in 2018 due to the high costs for (and shortages of) powerful discrete graphics cards.

The chassis is plain (the same one is available at retail) compared to some other custom-shop builds we’ve reviewed, but its sleek design, red accents, and easy accessibility make it an ideal case for first-time buyers. The PSU shroud gives the interior a clean look, and aesthetic add-ons including remote-controlled lighting and individually braided PSU power cables give the Battle Box just the right amount of bling for those who want some eye-catching components but don’t need their new PC to light up like a Christmas tree.

The AMD Ryzen 7 1700X processor excels in multi-threaded workloads, and AVADirect’s overclocked Battle Box nets higher average frame rates (sometimes trivially so, sometimes substantial) against our stock-clocked test rig with the same CPU and GPU. The 240mm Corsair liquid CPU cooler easily keeps temperatures in check, and the overclocking service is included when you add the component in the company’s online configurator. The cooling add-on is priced almost identically to what it would cost from a retail outlet, so the overclock doesn’t cost any more money than if you built the PC yourself. This is especially appealing to first-time gaming-PC buyers, who may not have the patience or knowledge to build one themselves.

The Battle Box easily delivers well over 60 FPS in every game we tested with the highest settings at 1080p. You may have to turn down a few details to get playable frame rates at 4K, but the GTX 1080 Ti inside the Battle Box is at the top of the heap when it comes to single-card gaming performance. The 750W EVGA Supernova G3 power supply can easily accommodate the power-hungry components inside, with enough headroom to overclock the GPU if you want to get some more performance by tweaking the core and memory clocks on your own.

Our sample Battle Box tester unit came equipped with a modest total drive capacity of just over a terabyte (the 250GB Samsung SSD, and a 1TB Seagate HDD). The memory capacity is the standard 16GB a gamer looks for, but the memory speed is pedestrian, at 2,400MHz. AVADirect offers other storage and memory options if you want more capacity or speed, so you can opt to get better RAM or a larger SSD if memory performance and storage space is important for your workloads. However, gaming performance isn’t affected by either of these components, and if that’s the primary goal, this particular configuration of the Battle Box offers a great starting point for both.

The AVADirect Battle Box Ultimate lives up to the promise of ultimate gaming performance for a reasonable price: in this case, $2,642 in our test configuration. The DIY approach is slowly taking back its value proposition, as system prices rise to match recommended component MSRPs (the Battle Box went up in price in the middle of our review), especially if you can find a sweet deal on a high-end GPU. However, we find that AVADirect’s easy-to-use configurator, free overclocking (with the purchase of the liquid CPU cooler we got), and high-quality components make it a compelling choice for new gamers and hardware novices who just want a dependable and powerful gaming computer.

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