Eclipse Stealth FX812R795 Extreme & Stealth Flight Pack Review
Published: 20th April 2012 | Source: Eclipse Computers | Price: £1999.96 |
It would be churlish to have a system called the Stealth, that comes with a Flight Pack, and not focus upon flight simulations. To this end we tried Microsoft Flight, the free sequel to Flight Simulator X although it's seriously lacking in content, IL2 - Cliffs Of Dover, the sequel to the truly magnificent IL2 Sturmovik, and DCS: A-10C Warthog which is the ultimate hardcore simulator and neatly ties in to the Thrustmaster stick. Microsoft Flight is, at best, disappointing. With a couple of planes and a single area to fly it's not much fun at all. That isn't a detriment on the Eclipse Computers Stealth though, as it looks gorgeous, plays fairly smoothly and the Thrustmaster Warthog HOTAS makes everything a joy to use.
Firstly all the titles have a lot of physics going on beneath the hood which places a huge strain upon the CPU, and the relatively gutless nature of the AMD FX really shows up here with frame-rates really dropping at times. IL2 COD has never been the most resource friendly title around, but even with a 4.5GHz Bulldozer and Crossfire HD7950s you can't run with everything to the stops if you wish to take advantage of all three screens. And you will, because the biggest benefit is the Eyefinity which makes the need to padlock targets far less of a concern than it is with a single screen. If a multi-monitor setup makes FPS and racing games more enjoyable, they revolutionise flight sims. DCS: A10C, which is as difficult to fly as the real deal, makes maximum use of everything that we have on offer here. With the controls perfectly matching the actual plane thanks to the Thrustmaster stick it's a breeze to lock your Mavericks on with some judicious manipulation of the coolie switch. All in all if you're even remotely interested in flying, then you will be well served with the Stealth Extreme and Stealth Flight Pack combination.
Let's start with the Stealth FX812R795 Extreme. Firstly it's not the most affordable system around, currently retailing for 4 pence shy of £2000. That's a hell of a lot of money. No matter how good the hardware choices are in the system, and they are all items that most of us would choose, it's tough not to query the decision to base it upon the AMD FX8120. Even with the heavy overclock Eclipse Computers provide it still only just matches up to an overclocked 2500K (both score around 7CPU Pts in CineBench with the same overclock), and the memory performance is a lot worse. However besides from that there is a lot to like. The case is a bit of an acquired taste, but it keeps everything cool and has a lot of airflow without producing loads of noise. The XFX PSU is similarly quiet, and even the Seagate Barracuda doesn't vibrate the case to bits. Cable management is well sorted and the whole of the internals are laid out. Perhaps most importantly you get all the documentation and driver discs in a comprehensive package, and the packaging is sturdy enough to keep your pride and joy spick and span until it turns up on your doorstep. Of course graphics are the big selling point and with the two XFX HD7950s you've got some of the best graphics cards around to keep your eye-candy smooth and flowing.
However, we do feel that it's just too expensive for the level of performance you're obtaining. If it was based around a 2700K/Z68 then the performance increase would definitely put this in the must buy category. As it is even the great build quality and choice of other hardware, it's just not good enough value to be worthy of anything other than our OC3D Bronze Award.
As for the optional Eclipse Stealth Flight Pack things are much clearer. All three items are of exceptional quality and value despite the price being £1100. The XFX Eyefinity stand is very easy to put together and perfectly balanced. As well as the obvious capability to give you triple-screen gaming but with a single screen footprint, it's also got connectivity to allow for USB and headset connections in the middle. Built like an absolute tank and with all the adjustments you could ever require, it's a superb piece of kit.
The LG monitors are of equally good quality. The Cinema 3D is more than just a good name to drag the punters in, but rather it provides good 3D depth in a very easy, no fuss manner. Without needing to find a place for the active sensor that controls the glasses, or indeed the need to recharge the glasses, it makes 3D something you can always use without worry. Of course the methodology means that the brightness of the picture is reduced somewhat, but nothing worse than watching 3D at the movies. The only slight mark against them is dependant upon how sensitive your eyes are, in that of the five people we had using them, two could see a slight 'scanline' effect in normal use which made small text a little difficult on the eyes.
Finally the Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog. This is simply stunning. It's built like an absolute tank. All the switches and buttons have a feel of enormous quality to them and the Thrustmaster TARGET software allows up to six layers of control. It's an absolutely staggering HOTAS system and of the very very highest quality.
The combination of the three items work perfectly together and even the pricing is very reasonable, especially when you look at the price of the items if purchased separately. It is unquestionably a Gold Award winning option that we recommend even if you are already happy with your current tower.