The PC Customiser Venom VR Review

January 27, 2017 // 2:57 p.m.

Tags: #ddr4 #gtx-1070 #kaby-lake #pascal

Companies: #gigabyte #the-pc-customiser

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review

Manufacturer: The PC Customiser
UK price (as reviewed):
£1,537.00 (inc VAT)
US price (as reviewed): N/A

Our third Z270-based system in for review comes from the folks over at The PC Customiser, a company from whom we've not had a system before. At a little over £1,500, the Venom VR is fairly pricey, but it does cost less than the other two Z270 systems we've seen so far: the Overclockers UK Titan Osprey and the DinoPC C3 Mod Gaming PC. The system rocks Gigabyte hardware and, with its GTX 1070 GPU, is suitable for VR gameplay.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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The Thermaltake Core V51 Green Riing Edition is a case with bold aesthetics, to say the least. The bright green front and roof mesh coupled with the large, green-tinted window makes for a case that's likely to be divisive but certainly makes an impact. We haven't reviewed this chassis, but it seems decent enough, coming with easy-access side panels, ample space for cables via an extruded panel, and full dust filter protection. It also seems to be a case geared towards performance, as the porous roof and front indicate. There's airflow aplenty too, with The PC Customiser having added three 140mm Thermaltake Riing fans in the roof to complement the two existing ones in the front and the single rear exhaust. The circular, green LEDs in the fans fit the aesthetic well.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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The Core i5-7600K is the new default choice for mid-range and even high-end gaming systems thanks to its four unlocked Kaby Lake cores. 16GB (2 x 8GB) of Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 is also an unsurprising choice, although the 2,400MHz speed is lower than we were expecting: 3,000MHz tends to be the norm, since the price difference is so minimal, but the likelihood of it mattering much anywhere is slim.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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The Gigabyte Z270X-Ultra Gaming is the motherboard of choice. With support for Nvidia SLI in PCI-E slots that are suitably spaced, there's an obvious future upgrade path. You also get USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A and Type-C ports at the rear as well as U.2 support, although there's no secondary M.2 slot. Heading into the EFI reveals a correctly set XMP profile for the memory, although the 4.8GHz CPU overclock is achieved using the board's automatic CPU Upgrade setting instead of manually, which is a lazier and less precise means than we'd like. The 1.4V vcore is also higher than is optimal for a 24/7 overclock, although the automatic overclock seems to override this, with CPU-Z reporting a voltage of 1.32-1.35V when under load, which is healthier. The PC Customiser also hasn't saved the EFI settings to a profile; it could do with paying a bit more attention to this part of the build, although the CPU overclock does work fine.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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Cooling the CPU is a Thermaltake Riing Silent 12 Pro. It's not often you see systems in this price range without all-in-one water-cooling, but honestly AIO coolers can still be noisy. The cooler is usually only available in red or blue, but The PC Customiser fits the cooler with a green Thermaltake Riing 12 fan for free to match the rest of the system.

The CPU fan is connected to the correct header and utilises PWM control via Gigabyte's Smart Fan 5 feature. The six system fans, however, do not have any automatic speed control. The front and rear fans are connected to motherboard fan headers but are simply set to full speed in Smart Fan 5 (though they do appear to be using low-noise adaptor cables). Meanwhile, the three roof ones are hooked up to a Molex adaptor and thus also operate at a fixed speed.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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The Gigabyte GTX 1070 G1 Gaming handles games, and runs in its preset OC Mode: 1,621MHz base, 1,811MHz boost, and 8Gbps memory. It's a shame not to see an additional manual overclock applied, but this is rarely done. The card features semi-passive fans, so it's totally silent when idle.

The 256GB Samsung SM961 M.2 drive is used as an ultra-fast boot/system drive and is backed up by a 2TB hard drive – our sample uses a WD Red model, though The PC Customiser is moving to Seagate BarraCudas now. It's a decent combination of drives, though the 256GB may begin to feel squeezed after two or three modern games are installed. We'd normally complain about the SSD's green PCB, but it's hidden by the CPU cooler here and isn't an issue given how green everything else is.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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The Corsair RX750M PSU is way overpowered for this system, although it's still not a bad choice as it gives you breathing room for an SLI future. It is fully modular, and for our system The PC Customiser has used a fully braided cable kit in luminous green. However, this is, for now, for show purposes only, at least until the company secures enough stock to offer it as an option for customers. As such, the cable braiding is not included in the price, and anyone buying this PC would receive the standard set of black PSU cables instead.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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Further boosting aesthetics beyond the fan LEDs, The PC Customiser utilises Gigabyte's RGB LED-equipped hardware for yet more green. Both the motherboard and the graphics card are set to a green breathing effect, which suits the system nicely. You also get a pair of 30cm green LED strips – one along the bottom window edge and one at the front, again next to the window. All this lighting would be worthless if the interior wasn't deserving of a look, so it's thankful that cables have been neatly dealt with; even behind the motherboard, ample use of Velcro cable ties ensures a tidy finish.

The PC Customiser Venom VR Review The PC Customiser Venom VR Review
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The system comes with the standard motherboard accessories and a free small mouse pad. The only software installed is a pair of Gigabyte apps that handle the system lighting and GPU overclock – The PC Customiser is thankfully not in the bloatware game.

It's worth noting that as well as free UK delivery, the Venom VR comes with excellent warranty terms that closely resemble those we saw with OcUK's Titan Osprey system. Namely, it's a three-year deal, but this includes carriage, parts, and labour for the entire time instead of just a limited period for carriage and parts, which is what we're used to. There is considerable value in this – it is definitely not something you would get building the system yourself.

Specifications (as reviewed)

  • CPU Intel Core i5-7600K (overclocked to 4.8GHz with 1.4V)
  • CPU cores/threads Four/four
  • Memory 16GB (2 x 8GB) Corsair Vengeance LPX 2,400MHz DDR4
  • Graphics Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1070 G1 Gaming (3 x DisplayPort, 1 x DL-DVI-D, 1 x HDMI)
  • Motherboard Gigabyte GA-Z270X-Ultra Gaming
  • Storage 1 x 256GB Samsung SM961 M.2 SSD, 1 x 2TB WD Red HDD
  • Case Thermaltake Core V51 Riing Edition, 2 x 30cm green LED strip
  • Dimensions (mm) 236 x 560 x 540 (W x D x H)
  • Cooling Thermaltake Riing Silent Pro 12, 3 x Thermaltake Riing 14 140mm Green extra case fans
  • PSU Corsair RM750x 750W (80 Plus Gold, modular)
  • Networking 1 x Gigabit LAN
  • Audio 7.1-channel Realtek ALC1220 (onboard)
  • Operating system Windows 10 64-bit
  • Audio and USB ports Rear: 1 x USB 3.1 Type-A, 1 x USB 3.1 Type-C, 4 x USB 3.0, 2 x USB 2.0, 5 x audio jacks, S/PDIF out; Front: 2 x USB 3.0, headphone, microphone
  • Warranty Three years (three years collect and return, three years parts, three years labour)

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