The CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra GUA880 (GUA880WIN10) is the latest 2015 upgrade of last year’s Windows 8.1 CyberpowerPC Gamer GUA880 that we reviewed here. This gaming rig sticks to the entry-level price tag, the same design but comes with a few tweaks in the name of Windows10 pre-installed among other nice things. While this system shouts to be a favorite for heavy gamers, it is still a decent choice for those that want to do things quickly and smoothly thanks to its multi-functional capability). For the ‘new-eggs’ in gaming, the Gamer Ultra GUA880 is a better bet than making a purchase from one of the top five computer manufacturers and slapping a gaming card into it.


Design

The GUA880 also looks nice and classy with its sleek black and blue mid tower gaming chassis. It weighs 32 lbs and has the dimensions of 19.6 x 7.5 x 16.8 inches, a gaming keyboard and mouse are included in the package. The smilodon chassis provides enough estate for more expansion, including at least three or four more hard drives, two more memory DIMMs, two more PCIe x1 cards (depending on the spacing of the graphics cards), and two more PCI cards. The case is easy to get along with, with easy to open latches.

However, you’ll need to be a bit careful with the lead wire from the case door fan. This is why mid-tower cases are popular for: future expansion. The case down sides are small case fans on the side and back of the system. They are quite loud, and though they don’t sound like jet engines, they do pump a lot of white noise into the room. To be comfortable, you’ll probably want to turn the built-in speakers up, or wear headphones while playing.


Inputs and Storage

On the 2015 iteration you have a good variety of connectivity options, such as 7 x USB 2.0 ports (4 at the back and 3 at the front), 24x DVD±RW Dual-Layer Super-Multi Drive to read and burn DVDs and CDs, a gaming keyboard and mouse to ensure you’ll be able to play at your absolute best (1 x PS/2 keyboard port, 1 x PS/2 mouse port), Integrated 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet with RJ-45 port, 3 x audio jacks (Line In/Line Out/Microphone), DVI port, HDMI port, VGA port, Integrated – 10/100/1000 Ethernet.

The features a massive 1TB at 7200rpm spindle speed SATA III 6.0 GB/s interface hard drive and 64-bit version of the latest Windows 10, but you can downgrade to Windows 8/7 as you deem necessary. The processing power of AMD FX-4300 is quite suitable for all the system intensive heavy tasks. And it is accompanied by NVIDIA GEFORCE GT 610 1GB – PCI Express x 16 discreet graphics card for the superior graphics performance when you’re watching movies, playing games or editing photos.


Performance

With an AMD FX-4300 3.80GHZ Quad-Core CPU, made to be overclocked beyond the set threshold up to 4.0GHz, and paired with 8 GB of high-performance DDR3 SDRAM, the Ultra GUA880 is built for performance, and it delivered. In our Benchmark tests, the CyberpowerPC GUA880  scored 4, 710 points, several hundreds of points ahead of most competitors, and pulling ahead of the category-leading CybertronPC Patriot GM1293D (4,618 points) by a narrow margin.

In gaming performance on newer titles, it lands towards the front of the pack, but it comes behind the overclocked Lenovo X315 and the powerful Alienware AX51R2-9310BK Gaming Desktop. Performance is also superb in multimedia tests, where the Ultra GUA880 completed Handbrake in 28 seconds (tying the Alienware AX51R2-9310BK), and nearly offered the fastest time in Photoshop, completing the test in 2 minutes 48 seconds.

But where the latest CyberpowerPC Gamer GUA880 really trounced trounces similarly-priced competitors must be in graphics and gaming performance, thanks to NVIDIA GeForce GT720 1GB Video Card. It allows the gaming rig to nab top scores in gaming tests, arguably the best gaming performance so far in the midrange category. When tried in Alien vs. Predator, the Gamer GUA880 produced 217 frames per second (fps) at 1,355-by-768 resolution and moderate detail settings, and 78fps at 1,920-by-1,080 resolution and high detail.


Summary

With awesome test scores and a collection of parts made to be pushed to the limit, the Windows 10-based CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra GUA880 uses every inch of its mi-tower size to provide the best gaming and multitasking experience possible. With the presence of room for upgrades, PC tinkerers out there will definitely find the system irresistible, the performance speaks for itself, launching it ahead of comparable midrange gaming rigs. With all that power selling for such a reasonable price, the Gamer Ultra GUA880 is the near pint-sized PC to beat, replacing the CybertronPC Patriot GM1293D as our Editors’ Choice for the mid-range gaming desktops.