Gaming System Review: Überclok's Ion


The best part about owning a new system is reveling in its performance. But not everyone wants to pay full price for the best parts when a little elbow grease can unlock so much performance from more mainstream components—and that’s why many of us overclock. Yet, there are always gamers who don’t have the time (or skill, let’s face it) to assemble a computer in the first place, let alone tune it up. After all, isn’t reliability more important than raw speed ?

Überclok knows a few things about building reliable, overclocked systems. Rather than attempt to set records for the ultimate in speed, Überclok designs its systems to last many years. So sure is the company of its technical prowess that it backs each system for three years, even going so far as to pay to have the system shipped back to its lab in case of needed repairs. And just in case you weren’t satisfied with the performance of your new Ion PC, Überclok will even let you return it within thirty days of purchase.

Here’s a quick look at the configuration Überclok sent us :

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ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo E8400, 3.0GHz, FSB-1333, 6MB Cache
Custom Overclocked to 4.0 GHz, FSB-1780
MotherboardGigabyte EP35, BIOS F5 (07/16/2008)
RAMCorsair TWIN2X4096-6400C4DHX, 2x 2.0 GB CAS 4-4-4-12
Custom Overclocked to DDR2-1066 CAS 5-7-7-25 (2T)
Hard DriveSeagate Barracuda 7200.11 ST3500320AS
500 GB, 7200 RPM, 32 MB Cache, SATA 300
NetworkingIntegrated Realtek Gigabit Networking, PCIe
AudioIntegrated Realtek High-Definition Audio (7.1-channels)
Graphics CardsSAPPHIRE TOXIC HD 4850 512MB
675 MHz GPU, GDDR3-2200
Power SupplyCorsair CMPSU-550VX (550W, ATX12V V2.2)
System Software & Drivers
OSWindows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Build 6001 (SP1)
DirectX VersionDirectX 10.0
Graphics DriverATI Catalyst Version 8.7
KeyboardLogitech Internet 350 USB
MouseMicrosoft Wheel Mouse Optical
Warranty and Support
Warranty30-Day Money Back, 3-Years Free Replacement
SupportToll-Free Telephone Support
RepairsFree Shipping to and from Repair Center
Thomas Soderstrom
Thomas Soderstrom is a Senior Staff Editor at Tom's Hardware US. He tests and reviews cases, cooling, memory and motherboards.
  • kitsilencer
    Sensible, still-under-warranty overclocking. Those words don't belong together.

    Overclocking should be about using liquid nitrogen, pushing pash 5.5GHz, and shortening the lifespan of the chip to 3 hours. Not years.

    But still, I'd buy this PC.
  • ap90033
    Uh why worry about Three Year Warranty? WHat you do is build it then sell it after a year or two and put that $600 you would have had to use on the Above system and you have a brand new latest and greatest system.

    I do this every year or two and end up paying out of pocket $300 or so and for around 8 years now I always have a very current system in warranty...
  • ap90033
    Oh and kit, overclocking is so much more accepted and used. A lot of people overclock a little for say a 10% gain but keep it safe...

    Why would you only want your chip to last three hours anyway? Thats STUPID! Goof...
  • randomizer
    ap90033Why would you only want your chip to last three hours anyway?E-peen of course!
  • kitsilencer
    Of course E-peen. Plus I'd get featured as an article.
  • kittle
    kitsilencerOf course E-peen. Plus I'd get featured as an article.15min of fame for a chip with a 3hr lifespan?

    each to their own....
  • ThePatriot
    Entertaining a niche market...... clever move.
  • guyladouche
    kitsilencerSensible, still-under-warranty overclocking. Those words don't belong together.Overclocking should be about using liquid nitrogen, pushing pash 5.5GHz, and shortening the lifespan of the chip to 3 hours. Not years.But still, I'd buy this PC.
    It's warrantied by Uberclock, not by the component manufacturers--hence the addition of $600 to the price tag for the insurance (aka warranty). So if something like the CPU dies, getting it replaced (for free apparently) has nothing to do with the manufacturer.
  • guyladouche
    It's a nice idea, but I don't see this going anywhere because of the terrible problems they could likely encounter with need for support/returns. One simple BSOD loop would require the entire rig to be shipped back for analysis (if the user isn't computer-savvy, which is likely the demographic they're aiming at). I wonder if the $600 overhead (in addition to whatever profits they make on the system as a whole) will recoup it? I remember "back in the day" when monarch computers would custom-build systems (no overclocking) and they went belly-up with all the returns and warranty-service (granted, if things are built carefully, there are rarely any needs for services after sale).
  • skalagon
    $600 security for $1100 components is retarded. This is only usefull if the entire pc dies. However its likely that only maybe 2 parts will die completely within the 3 year warranty time and even that is a long shot. So lets say two parts die,the cpu and the hardrive and Uberclock replace them. That means youve paid $600 for two parts worth about $270 together.
    Granted the stock parts would not be overclocked but with the spare $600 you can buy a quadcore, a better gpu, a larger hardrive and better ram, so it will probly be faster. There is no point buying this pc except if you plan on spilling a pint of water onto it. (or i suppose just so you can say "it's overclocked man!")