Performance Per Dollar
We expect to pay a premium for Intel’s six-core platform, so we can't get too upset to find the Erazer X700 with a Core i7-3930K processor breaking well past $2000. In fact, at $2300, it’s still cheaper than our top System Builder Marathon effort sporting the same CPU. The big difference, of course, is that machine also sports a complex graphics configuration to boost gaming performance. No doubt, this will become an interesting value debate.
Our own overclocked machine barely edges out the value score of Lenovo’s Erazer X700, and the situation is even close to par at stock settings. But our system also didn't include an operating system, keyboard, mouse, or tech support. Heck, we didn’t even include the cost of shipping. With Windows 8 OEM priced at $90 and any kind of tech support worth at least $100, Lenovo’s Erazer X700 is actually a better overall value than our high-end DIY build.
One of the problems associated with evaluating a complete system based on overall performance is that many of our benchmarks don't benefit from the Erazer X700’s six-core CPU. And the system’s enthusiast-oriented graphics card doesn't win it much love in games, particularly compared to multi-GPU arrays. Lots of GPU horsepower allowed our $1300 PC to beat the X700 in overall performance, and no set of added features can offset a 77.7% value difference.
Coming to a positive conclusion about either one of the $2000+ machines' value propositions would require us to limit ourselves to looking at applications optimized for more than four cores.