Many gamers choose to build their desktop themselves – that way, exactly components they want will be chosen. But then there are people who want a plug’n’play solution – such as this SkyTech Shadow AMD-730. The good thing is, it’s darn affordable (cheaper than your self-assembled one), but does it really have sufficient performance or not?
For this price you can’t indeed expect wonders. The graphics card is GeForce GT 730 with 2GB GDDR3 video memory. It can not be praised for its gaming performance. For example, GTA 5 on 720p resolution and normal/high settings will yield around 35 frames per second. Battlefield 4 should give similar results. Upgrading the card is a possibility, for example GeForce GTX 750Ti fits inside.
What else can I do with it?
SkyTech Shadow AMD-730 has a processor called AMD FX-4300. It comes with two cores, 3.8GHz clock speed and 4.0GHz turbo. Comparing to better known processors, it’s similar to Intel Core i3s of the 4th generation (bear in mind this AMD is from 2013). Anyway, there is nothing stopping you from using it for Photoshop or other software that demands a lot from the system. The solid 8GB 1866MHz DDR3 memory also helps, and you can upgrade it to 32GB thanks to 4 slots on the mainboard.
Hard drive is 1TB 7200RPM HDD, bound to offer enough space for all your games. Of course the flipside is performance, you won’t get SSD speeds with this unit. But the good thing is, you should be able to install one inside at least with the help of an adapter. Anyway, for most people interested in budget gaming I think the default hard drive is a decent choice.
What ports and connections are included?
SkyTech Shadow AMD-730 has many USB ports, seven, but unfortunately all are version 2.0 (no USB 3.0 here). The video outputs are VGA, DVI and HDMI, so up to three monitors can be used simultaneously with the desktop.
RJ-45 connector is found in the back, and there’s also USB WiFi adapter bundled with the package. Indeed, it’s an external one, you need to connect that to USB port to make wireless networking work.
The desktop has a DVD burner, it’s located behind the black front panel which opens.
Other interesting things
As usually, keyboard and mouse are included with this computer, but monitor is not.
The power supply is rated at 430W, so even if you upgrade the graphics card it might be the PSU is still sufficient.
SkyTech Shadow AMD-730 is a lightweight gaming computer. The GeForce GT730 is far from a good gaming card, so proceed with that in mind. You need to be careful with in-game settings and resolution to get decent frame rates with many titles. However, for other types of use, such as heavyweight software, this rig suffices. If you want it to work for serious gaming, get the SkyTech and replace the graphics card – it’s very doable with this setup!