A high-powered PC with a low-level price
We recently looked at Cyberpower's Gamer Infinity Yang, a £549 computer that provided enough power for even hardcore games players. The Gamer Infinity Yin, as you might expect from the name, is very similar to the Yang but also has a few differences.
Largely, what that means is that while the Yang used an Intel processor, the Yin uses one from AMD. People who have used PCs for a while will remember that in the past there was huge competition between AMD and Intel to produce the best processors and sell more of them.
Intel is still by far the bigger name, but AMD still makes lots of microchips for computers such as this one. If you remember those old days of computing you'll recall that, such was the pace of innovation, sometimes software wouldn't work properly on either AMD or Intel processors, leaving consumers with problems. Fortunately that has changed and 99 per cent of programs will work fine with either kind of processor.
Some gamers will prefer one or the other because they respond better for a particular kind of game (or even one particular title) but for most of us the difference is academic and largely comes down to cost, with AMD processors usually being a bit cheaper than their Intel counterparts.
The AMD Phenom II X3 710 processor in this computer is perhaps a touch slower than the Intel Q8200 processor in the Cyberpower Yang, but it's still very capable, and the other side of the trade-off is that the graphics card in this computer is a touch more powerful than the one in the Yang (both computers have 4GB of memory).
It's an ATI Radeon HD 4830 with 512MB of its own memory, and most non-gaming users will not notice the difference – both will make mincemeat of office and internet tasks as well as more demanding tasks such as editing of photos and videos.
But in our lab tests the better graphics card in the Gamer Infinity Yin led to results that were around 10 per cent better than those of the Yang, which we said were very impressive.
The fact is that that 10 per cent will make little difference to most games players, but for a few, and for the future, it's very good. It comes with a 500GB hard disk, Logitech keyboard and mouse, the Vista Home Basic operating system and a 19in flat-panel screen.
The computer itself is contained within a nondescript tower case, although it's not a very big one (around 40cm tall), and there's a red light inside the case that shines out through the front and side grilles and won't be to everyone's tastes. There are two USB ports and sound connections on the front, plus on the back six more USB ports, Firewire, eSata, standard and optical surround sound outputs and two DVI ports for connecting monitors.
There's also an HDMI socket for connecting a flat panel television. Inside the case there's plenty of room for expansion with all the cables neatly tidied away: there are two spare memory slots as well as PCI Express expansion sockets and spare drive bays both for internal hard disks and external drives such as a Blu-ray device – the existing CD/DVD drive can read and write all formats but Blu-ray.
With more expansion ports, including Firewire, and slightly better games performance, the Cyberpower Gamer Infinity Yin is a computer we can heartily recommend, and at £549 even those who are not gamers will find here a computer that represents very good value.
Read more reviews
A great computer for gamers and, in fact, almost anyone else who wants a desktop computer Good points Very powerful; great for games; includes 19in monitor; lots of sockets for connections Bad points Only comes with Vista Home Basic operating system
Updating your subscription status