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Origin Genesis Variable Mounting review: An ultraluxury gaming machine in an innovative enclosure

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal | March 25, 2014
Maximum cooling or maximum coolness factor? This boutique gaming PC lets you orient the motherboard to suit your preference. And for this price, it'd better.

The system is powered by the same Intel Core i7-4770K processor used in the previous-generation Genesis I reviewed in August 2013. As it did then, Origin overclocks the CPU from a stock 3.5GHz all the way to 4.7GHz. And it has Nvidia GeForce GTX 780Ti cards--not Titans or Titan Blacks--but four of them running in SLI. Strips of LEDs mounted around the inside edge of the case illuminate the interior, and you can configure them to emit 16 different colors.

The video cards and the CPU are liquid-cooled, so the motherboard is inverted to show off the water blocks attached to these components. White-tinted coolant flows through clear plastic tubing, providing sharp visual contrast to the all-black interior. The system has two massive radiators with three cooling fans each. One is mounted at the top of the case to service the GPUs, and the other at the bottom to service the CPU. A reservoir mounted in one of its 5.25-inch drive bays has a window so you can monitor the level of coolant. A Blu-ray burner occupies another bay, and there's a memory-card reader in another, leaving two open for expansion.

The Genesis' front-panel ports are oriented backward. This is smart, because they're invisible from the front, even when you plug in a thumb drive, and slack cables can be routed over the top of the machine, so they don't hang down in front and get in the way when you open and close the door. Front-panel ports include four USB 3.0, mic, and headphone, plus a button to control the fan mode (you can choose between fixed maximum airflow, or a limited range of manual control to balance between performance and noise). There's an annoyingly small knob to make those fan-speed adjustments.

I've already mentioned the Genesis' outstanding performance with BioShock Infinite. You can expect similar performance from other games. It delivered Battlefield 4 at 2560-by-1600 resolution at more than 125 frames per second, and Grid 2 at a resolution of 1920 by 1080 at more than 178 frames per second. And it's no slouch at productivity and content creation, either, earning a WorldBench score of 133. That means it's 33 percent faster than our Lab-built reference system, which is powered by Intel's six-core Ivy Bridge-E Core i74960X and a single Nvidia GeForce GTX 770 video card.

I applaud Origin's innovative case design, although the tower is just a little oversized for my taste. But I have no complaints about the components the company has stuffed inside of it, nor the performance that the system as a whole delivers. If you're a hard-core gamer with deep pockets and a craving for out-of-this-world performance, have Origin build a Genesis for you.

 

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