Build Quality

You'll either love or hate the way the iBuyPower Revolt looks, but at least it's incredibly distinctive. While the Alienware X51's design securely fits into their lineup, iBuyPower is essentially fashioning a particular look with the Revolt. It's a functional design, though, and a step up from the somewhat chaotic one that DigitalStorm uses on their Bolt. Opening the Revolt involves removing two screws and then sliding off the side panel; when you do so you're greeted with this:

Everything is held into place with Phillips head screws, but the stacking order is pretty clean. The radiator for the CPU sits under the optical drive; the power supply sits above the right-angled PCIe x16 slot. I'm loathe to see how a stock CPU cooler would fare in this enclosure, though, which was clearly designed with the radiator in mind. All of the side ventilation on the case is very specifically positioned to keep the components cool.

What's worth mentioning, though, is that the Revolt is definitely bigger than the Alienware X51 and more similar in size to DigitalStorm's Bolt. This can't really be helped; the X51 moved the power supply out of the chassis and uses an external PSU, which in turn places a hard limit on the GPU at 150W and precludes overclocking the CPU.

Noise and Heat

The best way I can describe the noise character of the iBuyPower Revolt is this: Xbox 360. The aesthetic of the Revolt does remind me of the first generation white Xbox 360s, and the system sounds basically identical to the 360 under heavy load. That means it's audible, but not aggravatingly so. What the Revolt doesn't have in common with the poorly engineered first generation 360 is this:

While the 360 was busy cooking its chips off, the Revolt was able to keep fairly cool. CPU thermals are appreciably low (though admittedly running at stock clocks), although the GTX 670 does run just a hair on the warm side. That's worth bringing up because Kepler's boost clocks are actually thermally controlled. It shouldn't be a huge issue, but I wouldn't expect to get a whole lot of extra oomph out of the 670 in the Revolt.

Power Consumption

The combination of Ivy Bridge and Kepler in the iBuyPower Revolt should yield precious few surprises, and sure enough that's exactly what you'll get. In addition to looking and sounding like Microsoft's first generation game console, the Revolt draws about as much power under load.

Idle Power Consumption

Load Power Consumption

It's hard for thermals to be spectacularly poor when the system is among the most frugal with power that I've ever tested. Like I said, Ivy Bridge and Kepler are a pretty unbeatable combination, and that's proven again here.

Gaming Performance Conclusion: An Important Release, But With Caveats
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  • rRansom - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - link

    Say what?
  • danjw - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - link

    I just went did a configure on their website. If I go with Windows 7, they insist on installing Microsoft Office on it. I say no to spamware! Just plain old no! I thought they were a boutique, there is no place for spamware from a boutique!
  • damianrobertjones - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - link

    Is your post a joke? MS Office isn't spamware and if you don't like it then un-install it?
  • Netscorer - Sunday, February 17, 2013 - link

    At least they allow you to configure this PC with no OS. If you have a Windows license that can be recycled from previous built (like most self-respecting people would have in drones), you can have your wish of spam-free install and save some money too.
  • bah12 - Tuesday, February 19, 2013 - link

    Really most self-respecting people have a full retail copy of Windows? I find it odd that very many people would shell out $199 for the full retail copy.

    Technically speaking Microsoft only has 1 version that you can install on your own "naked" box. That is the full retail. OEM is not legal for personal use, though everyone does it (as do I).
  • freedom4556 - Tuesday, February 19, 2013 - link

    Hogwash, OEM is perfectly OK for personal use, you simply give up Windows support from Microsoft. You're taking on the role of OEM yourself when you build your own machine, which makes you resposible for your own support. Just how Dell supports Windows on Dell machines, you support Windows on machines you build from scratch if you use the OEM version. Full retail gets you direct phone/chat/email support from Microsoft, which is why the added cost.
  • kyuu - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - link

    I like the case design and the fact that a boutique is actually approaching being price-competitive with building your own rig.

    I'm not going to buy one when they don't give the option of anything but Intel for CPU (not that I'd use anything but Intel for a desktop CPU at the moment, admittedly) and, more importantly, don't offer any AMD graphics solutions whatsoever.
  • da_cm - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - link

    I guess the reason for Intel only CPUs is the custom motherboard. They would have had to design an other version for AMD CPUs to fit.
    That said, personally, I would love to see a configuration with an FX-6300 and a 7850/7870 with a reasonable price tag as it's better CPU-GPU balance than a 3570k and a GTX660 or 650.
  • tim851 - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - link

    So you want them to offer an AMD CPU although you wouldn't buy one... yeah, they'll really want you as their customer. What other options you would't consider should they offer?
  • karasaj - Sunday, February 17, 2013 - link

    I'd rather have something like an i3-3220 (or the updated version with slightly better clock?) instead of an FX-6300. Similar price (if not less expensive), but enormously higher single threaded performance = better for most and competitive for all games.

    Note: There is an i3-3240 with an extra 100mhz on the clock compared to the 3220. So that would be a tiny performance boost to what you see here. The 3220 slots in 10-20$ less than an FX-6300, but the 3240 is 10$ more. BUT the 6300 also consumes more than twice as much power, which would almost definitely make up that 10$ in a year.

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