Walmart’s Overpowered Gaming Desktop DTW3 Review: Budget for a Reason

Gaming is an expensive hobby, thanks not only to regular purchases of new titles but also because of the price of powerful hardware. But Walmart, known for its bargain-bin pricing, and Esports Arena have teamed up to produce the Overpowered Gaming Desktop DTW3 ($1,699, no availability in the UK), a slightly underpriced gaming desktop that had to cut some corners to save some money. Sure, you can save a few bucks and get a solidly specked GTX 1080 desktop, but we’d rather spend a little more money for a product from an established brand with quality components inside.

Design

The Overpowered DTW3 is a big, gaudy tempered glass box. And not only is it ugly, but it’s not great for airflow.

Well, I think that it’s ugly. The box has three fans in the front, all of which have very visible LED lights around the rims to provide an RGB-style experience (a fourth fan, in the back, is the same way). The box is a very dark tempered glass, which emphasizes the effect. This could potentially be cool if there were more RGB parts inside the case, but it just makes it hard to see any parts that aren’t the fans.

The Overpowered branding is impossible to miss. There’s a badge with the full name on the front above the fans and a massive “OP” decal on the left side. The “O” features the Esports Arena logo (that’s an organization with a few Esports training facilities, mostly in the western United States), which looks a lot like two people preparing for a romantic embrace.

The right side panel, however, is solid metal that covers the cable management.

Outside of controlling the LEDs with software, there is an LED button on the top of the case to cycle through effects. Additionally, the desktop comes with a remote control for different colors, speeds and patterns.

And while I think that the design is over-the-top, many in my office who were attracted to our testing lab by the flashing lights thought it looked cool. Most of them are people who shop at big-box stores and would never build a gaming desktop, so it’s possible that while I’m snobbish about it, Walmart is doing something right with its aesthetics. If you want your attention grabbed, this light show will do it.

My big issue with the design from a functional perspective is that there’s not much room for airflow in the front. The glass leaves almost no space for air to come in through the intake fans, and there’s also no dust filter to keep the whole thing clean (there are two dust filters on the bottom of the machine). In the long run, that can lead to some high temperatures.

At 18 x 16.2 x 7 inches (457.2 x 411.5 x 177.8 mm), it takes up quite a bit of room on top of  a desk, but it’s not much bigger than competing mid-towers like the Asus ROG Strix GL12 (18 x 15.7 x 7 inches).

Specifications

Processor
Intel Core i7-8700
MotherboardGigabyte H370M DS3H ATX
Memory32GB DDR4 2400MHz (2x 16GB)
GraphicsGigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Gaming OC 11G
StorageToshiba DT01ACA200 2TB 7,200 RPM, 3.5-inch
ADATA ISSS316 512GB SATA SSD
Optical Drive
NetworkingEthernet port
PortsFront: (2) USB 3.0, (1) USB 2.0, headphone, microphone, LED button, power button
Rear: PS/2, (2) USB 2.0, DVI, VGA, HDMI, DisplayPort, USB Type-C, (3) USB 3.1, Ethernet, audio ports
Video OutputHDMI, DisplayPort, DVI, VGA
Power SupplyGreat Wall GW-ATX650BL 650W
CaseTempered-glass
Cooling4x Case fans
1x CPU fan
Operating SystemWindows 10 Home
ExtrasRGB remote, LED controller
Dimensions 18 x 16.2 x 7 inches (457.2 x 411.5 x 177.8 mm)
Price As Configured$1,699

Ports and Upgradeability

The port situation on the DTW3 is pretty standard. On the top, there’s the LED button alongside the microphone and headphone jacks, a pair of USB 3.0 ports and a single USB 2.0 port.

The back includes three USB 3.1 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, HDMI, DisplayPort, USB Type-C 3.1 and a variety of audio jacks. The GPU has its own HDMI, DisplayPort and DVI port.

Most of the DTW3’s innards are accessible by removing the glass panel on the left side. That comes off with four thumb screws. If you want to take out the GPU, you’ll need a Phillips head screwdriver to remove the support bracket.

To get to the power supply and storage, you’ll need to remove the right metal panel, which is held into the back by two more thumb screws. Our configuration had a SATA SSD and a hard drive in the drive bay, and the mess of cables from the PSU were all hidden beneath a PSU shroud.

In general, the cable management isn’t horrendous. It’s handled decently in the back, though there are definitely a handful of cables connecting to the motherboard that should have been re-routed for a cleaner look. At least all of the parts are standardized, so you can replace them.

We know other reviewers have seen glue on certain Overpowered Gaming Desktop models. But we detached all of the cables on our DTW3 and found no adhesive at all. We only tested this model, though, so we can’t speak for its presence on the DTW1 or DTW2.

Gaming, Graphics and VR

With a GTX 1080 Ti packing 11GB of VRAM,  it should be no surprise that the Overpowered DTW3 was able to run our gaming benchmarks with aplomb. When I played Seraph’s skirmish mission in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 at 4K and the highest settings, it ran between 59 and 64 frames per second (fps). When I dropped it down to 1920x1080, it reached a smoother range of 166 to 197 fps.

On Hitman (FHD, ultra settings), it ran the game at 142 fps, easily surpassing the 93-fps average (which includes systems with lesser graphics cards). When I ratcheted the benchmark up to 4K, it dropped to a still-playable 68 fps.

On Rise of the Tomb Raider (FHD, very high) it ran at 93 fps, again surpassing the average of 71 fps. But it dropped to a flat 30 fps at 4K, making it just playable.

The DTW3 played Grand Theft Auto V (FHD, very high) at 114 fps but dropped to 38 fps at 4K. The FHD average is 78 fps.

It earned a perfect score of 11 of the SteamVR performance test, surpassing the average of 9.6.

I also ran a stress test on the DTW3, which involved running our Metro: Last Light benchmark 10 times in a row on very high settings at 1920x1080, simulating roughly half an hour of gaming. The Walmart PC played the game at an average of 95.5 fps, running between 94 and 97 fps in each run. The CPU ran at an average of 3.6 GHz and an average temperature of 54.6 degrees Celsius (130.3 degrees Fahrenheit).

Performance

The Overpowered DTW3’s Intel Core i7-8700 CPU, 32GB of DDR4-2400 RAM, 2TB, 7,200-rpm HDD and 256GB SATA SSD should be enough for most users to get through their workflows without issues. I did experience a surprising amount of slowdown on occasion while just using the file manager and opening and closing programs. But when it was running smoothly, I could get my usual 25 or so tabs in Google Chrome, as well as an FHD Twitch stream without any problems.

On the Geekbench 4 overall performance test, the DTW3 earned a score of 23,722, surpassing the gaming desktop average of 20,153.

The DTW3 took 29 seconds to copy 4.97GB of files, which equates to a sluggish 175.5MBps. The average is 359.2MBps.

It took the DTW3 33 seconds to pair 65,000 names and addresses in our Excel macro test, and the average is 0:34.

And on Handbrake, it took the DTW3 8 minutes and 15 seconds to transcode our 4K video to 1080p, which is behind the average of 6:59.

Software and Warranty

Besides the usual junk included in Windows 10, like Netflix, Candy Crush Friends Saga, Fitbit Coach and Drawboard PDF, the DTW3 doesn’t have any extra bloatware on it. None.

Walmart sells the Overpowered Gaming Desktop DTW3 with a two-year warranty.

Odd Part Choices

Besides the Gigabyte-branded motherboard and GPU and Intel’s CPU, there are a lot of cheap parts in this rig. The SSD is a SATA drive from Adata, which isn’t bad, and the hard drive is from Toshiba (oddly, it was partitioned into four equal parts).

But it gets scarier when you get to the CPU cooler, with a fan from Coonong, and the power supply from Great Wall. If you haven’t heard of these companies, well, I don’t blame you. They certainly don’t have any well-known reputation to go by (and I doubt that PSU has any sort of 80 Plus efficiency rating), so you’re definitely getting at least a few less-than-stellar parts even though you're paying $1,699.

Configurations

The DTW3 is the most expensive Overpowered desktop at $1,699 for an Intel Core i7-8700, Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Gaming OC 11G, 512GB SSD, 2TB HDD and 32GB of RAM.

The cheaper DTW1 ($999) has the same CPU but bumps the GPU down to a GTX 1070 and has a smaller 256GB SSD and 16GB of RAM.

For those who want something in-between, the $1,499 DTW2 has a GTX 1080 but is otherwise identical specs to the DTW3.

Is This a Deal?

Walmart is known for its bargain prices, but the Overpowered Gaming Desktop DTW3 isn’t exactly cutting any prices.

If you’re looking to get a pre-built machine, there are other sellers with better reputations who may give you better parts for a similar price.

For instance, on Alienware’s website, I put together an Alienware Aurora with the same CPU, a GTX 1080 Ti, 16GB of RAM (rather than the 32GB on the DTW3), a 256GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD (instead of a slower, larger 512GB SATA SSD) and a 2TB HDD for just $110 more. Additionally, the Aurora is a better looking system.

Building an HP Omen Obelisk, I went just over $1,800 for a system with a GTX 1080, but at least I know I’m getting HyperX memory and a 500-watt power supply with an 80 Plus bronze efficiency rating.

Granted, every other pre-built PC at other builders, like Falcon Northwest, is expensive (its Talon and Tiki start at $2,200). 

But here’s the thing: I couldn’t get it cheaper. Those no-name components do cut costs. And some people really just want the cheapest thing, not the best thing, though I wouldn’t recommend that.

Bottom Line

Immediately upon launch, the internet decided to love to hate the Overpowered Gaming Desktop DTW3. Esports Arena could maybe do a gaming PC, but Walmart? Well, there’s a lot going wrong here, but the hate is somewhat misplaced. For someone who is truly looking for a bargain above all else and has no interest in building their own, it’s hard to beat the price, and the GTX 1080 Ti still offers solid performance.

No, the cooling situation isn’t great. No, there’s not great RGB control. No, the cable management is far from perfect. What I suggest is that, if you can afford it, you go to either a local computer store or a vendor with a solid reputation and spend $100 to $200 more for a machine with better air flow and higher-quality parts.

Yes, it’s cheap, but if you’re going to buy a PC, you want it to last years and run well. I appreciate Walmart’s freshman attempt, but there are too many little mistakes and curious part choices to wholeheartedly recommend it. If price is everything, consider this. Otherwise, look elsewhere.

MORE: Best Gaming Desktops

MORE: How To Build A PC

MORE: All PC Builds Content

Photo Credit: Tom's Hardware

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  • SR-71 Blackbird
    Walmart needs to step back from Gaming Setups , those PC's are atrocious.
  • Gillerer
    A mysterious "category average" listed instead of actual competitors or DIY alternatives, and no temperatures? Hmm... another Just Buy It™, I guess?
  • WildCard999
    Who picked the colors for that 24-pin motherboard connecter? Absolutely fugly as sin.
  • Olle P
    There seems to be quite a bit of upgrades done to the design compared to the first batch(es) shipped:
    * Different (newer) motherboard with more and better I/O connectors.
    * Front I/O is now 2x USB3 plus 1x USB2 instead of just 2x USB2.
    * More USB3 at the back, and no plug-in card with USB-c.

    Apart from the abyssmal cooling solution the I/O is (was?) the main target for all complaints.
  • redgarl
    Gamernexus went over this already. The motherboard, the case, the HSF and the power supply are cheap as best.

    The worst is that you can build it yourself for less with better quality components.
  • cknobman
    Anyone dumb enough to buy products like these from Walmart deserves what they get.
  • envy14tpe
    just delete this.
  • wdnemesis
    Most pre-builts I seen have questionable parts. The Air flow is something companies should understand by now. The Air flow on that case is extremely bad because they did not leave adequate space. This is fixable by the way and you can always replace that crappy Mobo. The PSU was tested by GamersNexus and he said the PSU was fine for what it was and had the protection a good PSU should have. That CPU cooler is fine as long as you can replace that fan which might be terrible. The GPU and HD look to be the only acceptable components I would want anyone to own. The CPU even sucks because you can't overclock it and with the crappy case cooling well it would most definitely cause hardware failer if you don't increase case air flow with risers in the front.
  • 80-watt Hamster
    Anonymous said:
    A mysterious "category average" listed instead of actual competitors or DIY alternatives, and no temperatures? Hmm... another Just Buy It™, I guess?


    I dunno about that. To me, the article stopped just short of saying Don't Buy It.

    As an aside, both this and the OP laptop article have been weirdly hard on the aesthetics. I'm as down on Wal-Mart as anyone, but these, while not necessarily attractive, are downright understated compared to much of PC design over the past 15 years.
  • DXRick
    What's with the ridiculous graphs? You make the Handbrake and Excel Macro tests look much bigger than they are.

    And, even though I wouldn't buy it, I don't see the price as that bad, given that a GTX 2080 Ti 11G still sells for $1,250+ leaving $450 for everything else. We (Build-our-own types) can't beat the price with better components. My year old Newegg wishlist is $1611 and similarly spec'ed except it has two SSDs but only a GTX 1060.
  • shrapnel_indie
    Quote:
    Walmart is known for its bargain prices, but the Overpowered Gaming Desktop DTW3 isn’t exactly cutting any prices.


    Walmart is also known for getting companies to supply their products as cheaply as possible while giving mediocre discounts where they're not forced to go lower due to competition. (It's why everything shifted to "made in china." It's Why Etch-a-Sketch is nothing like what they used to be.)
  • average joe
    Its not that bad. Gigabyte parts mainly. Don't tell me you think HP has great PSU's or RAM.
  • wdnemesis
    Yeah but everyone is scared of a PSU that has everyone panicked that it is going to crap out the system early. I thought the same but this hardware has been tested and have answers. I have seen an updated video by Linus on pre-builts and to me the ram and PSU look questionable on most the systems. I do think some companies have ok air flow for what they are selling. Most of them have ugly dimms without heat sinks, upgradability on some if very poor in my opinion. Walmarts PC is still looking like a bad option. Air flow is crap on it and I hate to say it but the RGB looks ugly as well. Alienware is overpriced garbage In my opinion. iBuyPower PC looks like one of the most decent pre builts.
  • bloodroses
    Surprisingly, according to this review, the power supply they used really isn't that bad:

    https://www.gamersnexus.net/hwreviews/3413-walmart-great-wall-power-supply-benchmark-review

    I still wouldn't trust it over other, better, brands; especially to power a 1080ti.

    As with the case, I'm sure kids love the gaudy look of it. It would make sense since any self respecting older gamer would never go with a walmart brand and would more than likely build their own.
  • jdLordHelmet
    Apparently the new hipster thing is to hate on Walmart's PC.

    "For instance, on Alienware’s website, I put together an Alienware Aurora with the same CPU, a GTX 1080 Ti, 16GB of RAM (rather than the 32GB on the DTW3), a 256GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD (instead of a slower, larger 512GB SATA SSD) and a 2TB HDD for just $110 more. Additionally, the Aurora is a better looking system."

    In other words, a worse machine (half the ram, half the SSD storage with an unnoticeable speed difference) for more money, got it.

    "Building an HP Omen Obelisk, I went just over $1,800 for a system with a GTX 1080, but at least I know I’m getting HyperX memory and a 500-watt power supply with an 80 Plus bronze efficiency rating."

    Again, a much worse PC for more money. A 1080 is slower and cheaper than a 1080ti. But that RAM branding makes a difference? Get over yourself.

    These aren't amazing, but they are not nearly as bad as everyone is making them out to be. Gamersnexus just loves to act superior to everyone else and gets clicks by being nitpicky and negative. There was never a universe where they gave a Walmart PC a good review regardless of its performance, because they feed off of negativity. That sentiment seems to be everywhere because of it.

    "The worst is that you can build it yourself for less with better quality components."

    I just priced out a build on pcpartpicker, using the cheapest options available for each part while still meeting the specs in this build. The end price was about $150 (about 10%) cheaper than the DTW3. Is $150 worth it for the convenience and warranty of a pre-built computer? Not for me, but I'm not the target for this product. For a lot of people, this is an option that could be considered. I have not seen many pre-built computer brands that match the value of the Walmart line, outside of the Powerspec computers on sale when you physically go in to Microcenter (those are insane value that will be cheaper than you can build them). PCMR elitism is its own greatest enemy once again.
  • Gillerer
    Anonymous said:
    Gamernexus went over this already. The motherboard, the case, the HSF and the power supply are cheap as best.


    Sure, that's the way Gamers Nexus assessed the PSU initially without actually testing it, but in the later special review of just the PSU, they found it's "fine" (and safe), if not exceptional. Great Wall is one of the biggest PSU OEMs; they design and manufacture some know brand units as well, like some Corsair models.

    Anonymous said:
    These aren't amazing, but they are not nearly as bad as everyone is making them out to be. Gamersnexus just loves to act superior to everyone else and gets clicks by being nitpicky and negative. There was never a universe where they gave a Walmart PC a good review regardless of its performance, because they feed off of negativity. That sentiment seems to be everywhere because of it.


    The cooling problems really break these gaming systems, and Gamers Nexus were fair to slam it for them. Not only is there poor airflow in at the sides of the front panel, there is no intake filters! (Obviously with the current chassis you couldn't add a filter - even if there was space for it - or it would hinder the airflow even further.) In a system that will typically be used by a non-enthusiast, who may never open up the case unless the system fails, just imagine the dust buildup for years.

    I also don't like that the motherboard only has 2 DIMM slots, making Walmart opt for only single channel memory (1 x 16 GB) on at least the lowest SKU.

    Otherwise if the calculations earlier in this thread of a $150 (or 10%) markup are correct, it's not too bad for a pre-built. I rather like the system visually.
  • SR-71 Blackbird
    The boards in these so-called Gaming PC's are very poor.
  • BulkZerker
    "The CPU ran at an average of 3.6 GHz and an average temperature of 54.6 degrees Celsius (130.3 degrees Fahrenheit)."

    We're these temps taken with the front glass panel removed? Or has Walmart revised the case so there is more than one 5mm clearance between the fans and that panel?

    I ran coretemp on one at a Walmart and saw temps of over 100*c. The only reason I did this was because I felt the heat from the istle behind the exhaust fan.
  • wilharris
    Graphs without X:Y axis markings are entirely useless; careless if you're publishing them
  • Olle P
    Anonymous said:
    Gamernexus went over this already. ...
    And found a totally different motherboard than Tom's.
    The PSU is also found to be decent when properly tested. (PSUs that are okay don't cost more than crappy ones nowadays.)

    To me it's now only the whole cooling solution that's bad with this computer.
    Everything else seems better balanced than the vast majority of pre-builds. (Normally you'll have to pay a hefty premium on something you don't want/need to reach your minimum requirements on everything else.)