The Titan Dark Zone is currently available from Overclockers UK for £1549.99 plus shipping. As always with system reviews, it’s only possible to judge value by comparing a self-build using identical components and the cost for this pre-configured PC. Then, we can accurately determine the savings involved or premium for a system integrator’s technical expertise. Here is the pricing analysis in full:
- Case: Phanteks Enthoo Evolv ATX – £139.99
- CPU: Intel Core i7-6700K – £294.98
- CPU Cooler: Alpenfohn Broken 2 – £37.42
- Motherboard: MSI Z170A-SLI Plus – £109.58
- RAM: Team Group Elite 16GB (8x2GB) 2400MHz CL16 RAM – £59.99
- Boot Drive: Samsung 250GB 850 Evo SSD – £67.96
- Secondary Drive: Seagate 2TB 7200RPM HDD – £54.98
- Graphics Card: MSI GeForce GTX 980ti Armor X2 6GB – £547.18
- Power Supply: XFX TS 750W 80 Plus Gold – £81.70
- Operating System: Windows 10 Home 64 Bit OEM – £74.99
- Cables: Bitfenix Alchemy Braided Cables – Orange – £16.99*
- Lighting: Bitfenix Alchemy LED Strips – Orange – £14.99*
Prices marked with * were based on a rough estimation as the items were not in stock at the time of review. The Alchemy braided cables usually come in a set but Overclockers haven’t used a 8-pin EPS extension. As a result, I deduced this from the bundle value to create a predicted price. On a similar note, I made an educated guess on the LED strip cost based on its length and use of adhesive instead of magnets. Once totalled up a self-build would cost you £1500.75 which comes to a saving of £49.24. Even though the pre-configured system costs more, it’s not by a huge margin and great value for beginners who struggle with cable management. Furthermore, there’s additional peace-of-mind via Overclockers UK’s excellent warranty service with quick turnarounds on defective components.
Overclockers UK’s design team have cultivated a really special system with the Titan Dark Zone which evokes a premium feel while offering incredible performance. The orange theme is quite rare as the majority of components revolve around a red and black colour scheme. This makes the build process quite tricky when attempting uphold a certain level of colour coordination. To rectify these issues, Overclockers UK decided to opt for a predominately black components with orange highlights in a gun-metal chassis. This combines in a beautiful way and I’m overjoyed by the final result. It’s a fitting tribute to The Division and worthy of being based around one of the most successful game launches in history. The system’s construction revolves around a simplistic design philosophy which prioritizes subtle styling over ostentatious lighting effects.
In terms of performance, the GTX 980Ti is capable of delivering a superb gaming experience with extreme presets on high-resolution monitors. It’s perfectly feasible to crank up the image quality while having a frame-rate above 120 in many modern titles. Of course, this greatly depends on the game’s optimization and graphical complexity. In my view, the system is designed to be paired with a 2560×1440 or 21:9 3440×1440 monitor for high-end consumers. This allows you to maintain a steady high frame-rate without noticeable drops. In theory, you could use a 4K panel, but I wouldn’t recommend it given the current limitations of graphical hardware.
By default, the Intel i7-6700K has a turbo frequency of 4.2GHz and features impressive synthetic performance at stock values. It’s incredibly easy to overclock this processor using a minor voltage and multiplier increase. However, many people feel uneasy when overclocking and fear they might cause irreversible damage which isn’t covered by a generous warranty. In reality, unless you’ve severely overvolted the CPU, fail-safes will prevent any damage from occurring. Saying that, finding the maximum potential of your CPU can take some time and you have to adopt a patient approach. If this seems a little overwhelming, Overclockers UK will manually overclock the CPU to 4.5GHz and create a profile in the BIOS just in case any settings are lost during a CMOS reset. Personally, I feel this is a bit conservative and 4.7GHz was probably achievable without any problems.
On the other hand, a lot depends on the silicon lottery, and poor overclockers might need additional voltage to obtain a frequency beyond 4.5GHz. From a business point of view, it makes sense for Overclockers UK to find a sensible base point which allows for great performance without the probability of overheating in the worst case scenarios. Speaking of temperatures, the system’s CPU cooler did a marvellous job and maintained cool running throughout our rigorous stress tests. This was achieved while remaining extremely quiet and showcases the benefits of air cooling solutions. As expected, the GTX 980Ti didn’t exceed 80C and has some headroom for additional overclocking.
The system’s boot SSD is a superb choice and offers impressive read and write speeds. Additionally, the 250GB capacity is large enough to house the operating system and commonly used applications like Photoshop CS6. The secondary 2TB hard drive can accommodate a large quantity of modern games which often have file sizes around the 50GB mark. Annoyingly, the mechanical drive wasn’t available in Windows Explorer and this was down to the lack of proper partitioning. To rectify this problem, I had to navigate to Windows’ Disk Management utility and create a partition for the secondary drive. Novices users without experience of boot flags or partitioning would immediately believe the hard drive wasn’t functioning or a cable had become dislodged. That’s why it’s imperative to double-check and make sure each hard drive is accessible.
In terms of cable management, Overclockers UK’s engineers did a good job given the complications which arise from a non-modular power supply. This restricts your ability to freely move cables around and disregard extra power cables which you don’t need. Additionally, the team didn’t simply rely on the chassis’ integrated Velcro straps and opted for a multitude of tight zip-ties. Everything was coupled together rather well which makes closing the side panel quite easy. On another note, the PSU lends itself to upgrades in the future and you could add a second graphics card to leverage more performance.
- Approachable and friendly customer service team
- Enthoo Evolv ATX is absolutely breathtaking
- Exceptional packaging
- Extremely quiet
- Fantastic temperatures
- Gorgeous orange colour scheme pays homage to The Division
- Good cable management considering PSU’s non-modular design
- Lots of headroom to install a second graphics card in the future
- Incredible gaming performance even at demanding resolutions
- Perfectly suited for VR
- Premium components which offer a balanced price to performance ratio
- Mechanical hard drive wasn’t properly partitioned and could cause panic to novice users
“The Overclockers UK Titan Dark Zone adopts a really sophisticated and unusual aesthetic design which makes it stand out from the competition. Not only that, its remarkable build quality and exceptional performance provides a VR ready gaming experience without any compromises.“
Overclockers UK Titan Dark Zone Gaming PC Review
Thank you Overlockers UK for providing us with this sample.