Clocking in at a full £100 less than the Arbico Elite 4850, Chillblast’s Fusion Sledgehammer is another excellent, good-value performer.

Raw power isn’t a problem. With a WorldBench 6 real-world speed score of 123, the Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer is right up there with the best of what’s available in this price range.

The Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer may come with a smaller hard drive and a less impressive monitor than the Best Buy, but 500GB will be ample for most users, and we don’t all demand luxury when it comes to PC monitors.

Fitted with a 512MB nVidia GeForce 9800 GTX, the Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer delivers some highly impressive gaming scores, coming in fastest overall in our Crysis test by 12 frames per second (fps).

The Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer's gaming power is complemented by a Creative SoundBlaster X-Fi Xtreme HD sound card and 5.1-channel Creative Inspire T6100 speakers. This is the best-sounding PC in the category.

As mentioned previously, the Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer's 22in Digimate display isn’t as impressive as some 22in models we’ve seen, but it does a good job. And the resolution is a good match for the capabilities of the graphics card.

As for DVD burning duties, the Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer's Samsung SH-S223F writer is capable of class-leading 22-speed operation. But unlike the Arbico Elite 4850, it lacks Blu-ray and HD DVD support.

The Antec Three Hundred case is stylish, spacious and well-cooled, while Asus’s P5K motherboard has a spare 16x PCI-Express slot. Unfortunately, this is for Crossfire support rather than scaleable link interface (SLI), which would benefit the nVidia card installed in the Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer. If you’re thinking of upgrading to a dual-card system, consider Eclipse's Matrix SLI i85n98GTX.

Power desktop PCs chart ranking (September issue)

  1. Arbico Elite 4850
  2. Chillblast Fusion Sledgehammer
  3. Eclipse Matrix SLI i85n98GTX
  4. CyberPower Infinity Crossfire HD
  5. Arbico CD9800 PRO