Medion Akoya P5704 review
Middling performance in a mediocre chassis, and the price just isn’t competitive
Review Date: 11 Aug 2011
Reviewed By: Mike Jennings
Price when reviewed: £707 (£848 inc VAT)
Features & Design
Value for Money
Medion isn’t a name usually associated with high-end gaming machines, but that’s the focus of the Akoya P5704. It’s built inside a good-looking, glossy chassis, and it boasts both an Intel Core i7 processor and an AMD Radeon HD 6750 graphics card.
That sounds like a good foundation, although don’t expect the kind of touches we’re used to from enthusiast PC makers. The Core i7-2600 is left at its stock speed of 3.4GHz, returning a result of 1.01 in our application benchmarks – quick, but nothing out of the ordinary at this price. Palicomp, for example, overclocks the cheaper Core i5-2500K from 3.3GHz to 4.5GHz in its £650 inc VAT Phoenix i5 Destiny, and is rewarded with a better benchmark score of 1.1.
Still, it’s perfectly adequate performance from the Medion, and its Radeon HD 6750 is no slouch, averaging 35fps in our High quality Crysis test 1,920 x 1,080. Again, though, you can spend significantly less for better frame rates: the £599 inc VAT Yoyotech Dragon F-58 averaged 38fps in the same test at the much more demanding Very High settings, thanks to its Radeon HD 5850.
The other main enthusiast feature of the Medion is a 64GB Micron RealSSD, but it’s not a particularly outstanding performer. While a large-file write speed of 191.1MB/sec is slower than the A-Listed Kingston SSDNow 100V’s 274MB/sec, its large-file read speed of 254.9MB/sec far outpaced the Kingston’s 187MB/sec. The Micron was worse in our small-file tests, though, with read and write speeds of 71.4MB/sec and 27.3MB/sec well behind the Kingston.
The SSD is supplemented by a 1TB hard disk, 8GB of RAM, a Blu-ray drive and 802.11n WLAN, all inside a fairly bog-standard chassis. It looks okay, with its slanting façade and glossy finish, but upon closer inspection the squat 380mm case is good for little more than the basics.
The thin, flimsy side panels are indicative of poor build quality throughout, and the interior layout is unusual. The motherboard is upside down and on the other side of the case to normal, with the processor towards the bottom of the board. The PSU is suspended from the top of the chassis, and the two hard disk bays sit at the front.
The stock-speed processor means there’s no need for fancy cooling, and Medion has cut costs by relying on a copy of Intel’s low-profile cooler, made by little-known Taiwanese firm AVC. Air is directed towards the side of the chassis via a plastic funnel and it works well: the processor hit a maximum temperature of 83°C, and the graphics card peaked one degree lower.
The ECS H67H2-EM motherboard, meanwhile, has free pairs of DIMM, SATA and PCI-Express x1 sockets, but there’s no second PCI Express x16 slot or basic PCI. The two traditional hard disk bays and single 5.25in bay are already occupied, but there is one additional bay to add more storage via a hot-swappable 3.5in caddy installed beneath the optical drive.
The bare metal interior doesn’t have a motherboard tray, and Medion hasn’t made much effort to make things tidy. Multicoloured cables are bundled right through the middle of the chassis, with smaller wires running towards the drives and graphics card where needed. It looks a mess and makes working inside the Medion tricky, compounded by its diminutive dimensions.
The port selection on the back-panel is basic, with no sign of eSATA, FireWire or anything else besides eight USB 2 sockets, Gigabit Ethernet, a single PS/2 port and a cluster of audio jacks. The front of the case is better, with two USB 3 ports and a card reader.
That’s little consolation, though, in a system this mediocre. For a little more cash you could buy the Palicomp, which is much faster and comes complete with a set of peripherals; or you could save over £100 and buy the Yoyotech, which is still faster in games and a lot more stylish. Either makes more sense than Medion’s poor attempt at a high-end PC.
Author: Mike Jennings
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