Power and Value
iBuyPower built the Revolt R770 with a Z77 motherboard, Core i7-3770K, GTX 670 and priced it well!
We have seen our fair share of mini-ITX cases and system builds over the last six months, including rigs from Digital Storm and AVADirect. They attempt to offer a balance between performance, power, noise and size and some do it better than others. With the continued development of the mini-ITX form factor more users than ever are realizing you can get nearly top-end performance for gaming in a smaller package.
Today we are taking a look at the iBuyPower Revolt, in particular the Revolt R770, the highest end base offering of the system. Built around a small, but not tiny, PC chassis iBuyPower is able to include some pretty impressive specifications:
- Intel Core i7-3770K processor
- Custom built Z77 mini-ITX motherboard
- NZXT CPU water cooler
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 2GB graphics cards
- 8GB DDR3-1600 memory
- 120 GB Intel 320 Series SSD
- 1TB Western Digital Blue hard drive
You get all of this in a case that is only 16-in x 16-in x 4.5-in built with a glossy black and white color scheme. The company claims that the Revolt was "designed to be a gaming system for any location" including a home theater, a dorm room or in your study. It includes "vents and air channels positioned precisely to deliver cool ambient air exactly where it is needed" and "integrated atmospheric lighting system is customizable in color."
Check out or quick video review below and then follow on to the full post for more photos of the system and a quick check of performance!
The black and white design is nice though it definitely has a very plastic-y feel to it.
The air vents are up top and the triangle design on the bottom houses the LED lighting. The difference in appearance is a bit odd here as well with two very different shades of white.
I do enjoy the all-black appearance on the front plate though but watch out for those fingerprints.
Up top on the Revolt there are some more vents for air movement and a seam for the design.
Looking at the back of the design we see the various connectivity options that the system offers. The custom mini-ITX motherboard has no display outputs, completely negating the idea of using integrated graphics. You do get four USB 3.0 ports and two standard ones with audio output, a clear CMOS button and even a PS2 port!
The GTX 670 is sitting below the motherboard thanks to an included riser card. Our immediate issue with the build, as we have seen with most other mini-ITX custom designs, is the use of a 1U power supply. They have always been annoyingly loud and that didn't change for the Revolt.
The system is built to rest vertically with these feet or on its side.
Removing the top cover to the Revolt only required a couple of screws and reveals the innards. Other than this view though, nothing else is easy to get to. Also, note that under all that white and black plastic the case is simply a black metal square.
The SSD and hard drive sit in a tray for removal.
Once you take out the optical drive and power supply then wiggle out the tray below you can start to see the base components including the GTX 670 (with riser card), CPU cooler, motherboard and memory.
NZXT has a low profile version of their 140mm CPU water cooler that iBuyPower is taking advantage of. In our system they only installed a single 8GB DDR3 module but all shipping units will have 2 x 4GB DIMMs.
Clearly, getting these standard sized components is a pain and cable routing and cleanliness is hard to come by.
While I did play around on the Revolt quite a bit, performance is exactly where you expected it with these components. The Core i7-3770K was running at stock speeds which is still impressive in a small design. The GTX 670 was an overclocked model. The point is that the iBuyPower Revolt is going to be able to do anything you want it do without breaking much of a sweat. Running all of your games at 1920×1080 on a home theater display should be fairly easy with Ivy Bridge and Kepler.
I mentioned the use of the FSP 1U power supply earlier and as I mentioned in the video review, that was the biggest annoyance for the system. There is just no way to get those tiny fans on those power supplies to run at a low enough noise level to please me. It wasn't overpowering but that if someone comes up with an answer for this problem in custom designs, they will have our gratitude! If you go with a standard mini-ITX case design that lets you use full size ATX PSUs you will have more options.
Performance levels were great, but nothing to really write home about, everything was basically running at stock. The biggest advantage that I see for this particular system is in the price – starting at $1399 for our configuration you are getting quite a bit of horsepower with very little markup over building your own. For example, I built a system on PC Part Picker that uses mini-ITX components that match up pretty closely.
The price of this PC Part Picker configuration as of publication was $1423 – more than the cost of the iBuyPower system. Consider than the Revolt comes with a warranty that covers the system "for three years labor and one year parts from the original date of invoice" and you can see there is actually a good reason to NOT build your own.
UPDATE: A reader noted that we had included a 4GB version of the GeForce GTX 670 by accident. If you replace that with a 2GB version you can take another ~$50 off of that price. Sorry!!
Overall, the iBuyPower Revolt system is a solid machine that offers a lot of value for the price. It's not the best looking machine, not the highest performing and not the quietest we have tested but it find a great middle ground in all aspects. If you are looking for a pre-built gaming PC that is small in shape but nothing else, give the Revolt from iBuyPower a look!