Dell put some special additions into its XPS 8900 Special Edition Gaming PC. Sometimes I’m lame, but that’s okay, don’t judge me. This upgradable design has been suited for strong gaming, plus the wonderful world of the virtual reality realm. When we see gaming PCs, we’re used to the CyberPower, Falcon Northwest, Asus, Acer, and many others’, extreme, bulked-out, odd-angled machines. They are designed to look like alien vessels because it’s part of their hardcore appeal. Although Dell has gone that route before with its Alienware Area-51 Gaming Desktop from 2014, its latest tower “has the unassuming looks of a productivity PC but strong-enough guts for high-end gaming”, says Tom’s Guide.
The PC is a simple black box with a nice upward curve at the top, a glossy front panel with a silver border, vent at the bottom, but unlike most gaming towers, does not have that show-off transparent side-panel. The case measures 16.01 x 7.30 x 17.49 inches, a compact set of dimensions for what’s going on inside this thing. Oh, it weighs 30.4 pounds, which is hilarious and also kind of sneaky if you were to look at it and think “Oh, look how short and slim this is, it must not weigh much”.
Inside, you’ll find a fantastic set of hardware. Handling crazy high settings will be possible thanks to the Nvidia GTX 970 GPU with 4GB of VRAM. That means beautiful gaming at 60 frames per second, “even with the graphics set to high at 2048 x 1536”, reported Tom’s Guide. CPU-wise, the XPS 8900 Special Edition packs an Intel Core i5-6400 processor with 8GB of RAM, plus a 1TB hard drive. Luckily, this means multitasking is at its best; smooth and efficient, when performing regular non-gaming PC tasks. There’s also a DVD burner, Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, an included wired keyboard and mouse, HDMI port, DisplayPort, and 4 USB 2.0 and 6 USB 3.0 ports without opening up the hood. Now that’s a lot of peripherals without even lifting a screwdriver (PC Mag).
Of course we’d never forget this thing is also VR-ready to the max, effective with Oculus Rift Compatibility Tool, which basically determines a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer to whether your machine can handle the CPU, GPU, RAM, and ports that any VR requires. At the exact same time, any customer who wants VR headsets needs to invest in a desktop PC that can handle it. A laptop with those kind of components isn’t easily feasible. The XPS 8900 is a win-win for all types of desktop users- business or non-gaming, serious gaming, and now VR-ready fun.
As far as price, remember, besides the price of the tower, which starts at $999, there’s that $600-$700 range you’ll have spent on your headset (if you already have one, then great). By the way, yes, I did say $999 for the Special Edition Gaming PC previously described, which is not very expensive for a VR-ready gaming PC. Other VR capable desktops with high-end core i7 CPUs, and Nvidia 980s range around $2000. Of course you can pick your own configuration sweet spot, including the non-VR capable $699 tower. Basically, you’ve got everything you need here for power and functionality in all directions, with the exception of a monitor.
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