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Origin PC Omni review

There’s no denying that Origin PC’s Omni custom-build all-in-one is fast, or that with its 34-inch curved display it delivers a great gaming experience. It’s expensive, but doesn’t seem overpriced when compared to similarly equipped systems. And because it’s almost fully upgradable, at least given the present state of components, it’s not a bad investment. And I can see some advantages. For instance, if you want the power of a high-end gaming system but a bit more elegant look than you typically find from a market segment with a design aesthetic that tends more towards letting it all hang out than hiding it away. (I kind of want it to have a transparent back, though.)

But you can’t really consider it a space saver thanks to that 34-inch display, unless you plan to hang it on the wall. Yes, you can.

So… why?

A warm reception

Origin PC takes Loop International‘s LP-3400 AIO chassis and stuffs it to the gills with components you won’t find in most all-in-ones. And it’s not alone: Velocity Micro will do it for you as well.

Here’s the thing: When you cram high-end hardware behind a big display and then max out the processors with complex calculations and memory access (that 3,440×1,440 display requires a lot of pixel pushing), you’re going to generate a lot of heat in a small space. There’s a reason why most all-in-ones tend use notebook parts.

This was not our first rodeo with the Omni. We had a previous system that would simply die in No Man’s Sky. The first time it happened with our second unit was while attempting to take out terrorists in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. Run, jump, fire, die. And not in a I-should-have-used-a-grenade way.

I admit, I crank up the quality settings, at least occasionally, to see how it looks. I dial them back for testing actual play. I’m not positive heat caused the issues on both of our test systems with the settings at max, but at times the fans in it spin up like jet engines and hot air shoots out of the bottom and the back. Death or reboot would occur during this spin fest. As it is, the system uses liquid cooling and has a reservoir you have to refill every 6 to 12 months — I think it would require liquid nitrogen for some configurations.

After some trial and error, I was able to max out all the quality settings for the Nvidia Titan X with vertical sync set to “on” in the Nvidia control panel; that, of course caps the frame rate at the display’s 60Hz refresh, but at some higher frame rates — especially around 90fps — there was some tearing and a lot of not-explosion-related judder in the Metro Last Light benchmark test I was using to diagnose the issues. It looked a lot smoother at roughly 60fps, and the system didn’t even break a sweat or spin a fan. There’s probably a setting that offers a better compromise.

The folks at Origin PC will work tirelessly with you to get a system running smoothly, but I’m not sure that the desire to constantly tinker is in the DNA of someone who wants an AIO.

Origin PC Omni

Our $4,130 test configuration is relatively midrange given the available options. The MSI Intel Z270-chipset-based motherboard in ours takes quad-core seventh-generation Intel Core processors, but for about $500 more you can get it with an Intel X99-based motherboard and 8- or 10-core processors. The most powerful configuration I specced out came to almost $8,000, sans accessories. (And might possibly melt the chassis.) I won’t go into all the options — play “how much can I spend” for yourself. You can also play it in Australia, but the company doesn’t have a UK-specific site.

It’s a TARDIS and a mullet

I’m tempted to call this the TARDIS of all-in-one chassis. It fits as much gear as a standard desktop (though only a single graphics card): a full-size current-generation Nvidia or AMD card, up to 32GB of memory, two drives of either the spinning or solid-state variety, and a sound card. It’s all laid out neatly and easy to get to for swapping hardware. To get inside, you have to unscrew about 9 or 10 screws and the back snaps off. In this respect, it’s pretty nice.

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