PCSpecialist Topaz Elite System Review
Published: 11th December 2020 | Source: PCSpecialist | Price: £1399 |
I've been reviewing PCSpecialist systems for years now, and the thing that never fails to astound is the consistency of the build quality. Whether it's a system costing thousands and thousands, or one with a triple digit price tag, the packaging and effort that goes in to the cable management is the same and that's something that deserves applause. We know many companies would be tempted to put their effort into the high ticket items but PCS put the effort into them all. Look at this, nothing like an expensive PC, and yet the cables are beautifully placed and tied off. Should you worry that they don't give each system plenty of care and attention then it's worth bearing in mind that our system was configured with the RTX 3070 and the power cables were so carefully managed that it was quite a mission to get the Radeon installed. Getting supplied with the cables, manuals and screws etc is just icing on the cake.
The ability to customise the system from basically the ground up is something we've yet to do, perhaps one day in the future I'll be let free with their configurator, but it's also worth bearing in mind how carefully they choose their components. Looking at this Topaz Elite you've got a good case with plenty of airflow that keeps everything cool and even a glass side panel. The ASUS Strix X570 motherboard is a fantastic platform - no B550 compromise here - with lots of connectivity and room for expansion in the future. The processor is a really wise choice too. The Topaz Elite is a gaming system first and foremost and using the six core Ryzen 5 5600X keeps the budget down whilst not really compromising performance. We know not long ago that you might have had a dual core or slow quad core in a build around this price, but then saying that the AMD Ryzen CPUs are fabulous value for money isn't exactly surprising news. We love them. Using the X570 platform enables the use of the Seagate FireCuda 520 Gen 4 with all the blazing transfer speeds of which it is capable, and that only adds to the responsiveness of the Topaz Elite.
Finally, the GPU is right in the sweet spot between power and pricing. If you're needing more power you'll have to have a 4K monitor and if you've got one of them then you understand that you need to spend a bit more. The RTX 3070 and RX 6800 are perfect 1440 and 1080 cards that can do 4K with careful setting selection. We know we're only really testing one of the alternatives PCSpecialist provide but it shows that you can do it easily with their configurator, and that the results bear out your choice. Both cards were close in our testing with the Radeon slightly ahead on average, but if you've got a specific DLSS game in mind then the results on the RTX show that there are benefits to be had there too. Either option is a great choice. Again, not news.
The only area I'd probably change things up is the air cooler for an AIO. Sure the temperatures were good but there was a price to pay in noise that I personally couldn't tolerate long term. It's not noisy as such, I just prefer my rigs to be quiet unless under heavy loading and even then not relentless. Your mileage may vary. Secondly, and lastly, I'd have liked a case with a Type-C port around the front instead of fumbling around the back for phones and the like. It's an easy enough adjustment to make on their website if you agree, and if you don't the Mastercase is a splendid choice.
Like all the other systems in the PCSpecialist range the Topaz Elite is well built, with carefully chosen components and the freedom to tailor it to your own preferences. It's a gaming powerhouse and if that's your main use case you'll be delighted with it.