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Hands On: Maingear R1 | Razer Custom Gaming PC

Though it’s basically all we think about around here, we understand that not everyone wants to build their own computer. For those of you who don’t want to spend the time or effort to craft your perfect rig, there is a whole world of custom PCs that can be shipped straight to you.

Maingear has been scratching that itch since 2002, building high-level custom builds in a variety of cases. A lot of these pre-built PCs are really easy on the eyes, and this one is no exception.

Meet the Maingear R1, a gaming PC built with Razer’s go to colors – green and black. Maingear went with that signature look for the R1, using a NZXT H440 mid chassis case actually co-designed by Razer.

You can pick up this R1 pre-built PC for $1,999 here.

The Green Machine Scene

The all-metal case is green and fancy, with Razer’s three-snake logo burning through the black, and green LEDs on the front of the case. There’s also an emerald green light flooding the bottom of the case, giving it a futuristic, spaceship-like look. Or maybe I’ve just been playing too much Alien: Isolation.

There’s a window on the side panel so you can see inside your sci-fi beast, which is especially awesome if you want to do some liquid cooling with some green coolant chilling your processor.

This case is rocking a hexagonal mesh on the left side that provides a nice textured look and airflow, and an all-in-one CPU cooler sporting the Maingear Logo. No custom cooling loops here, but if that’s what you’re into (and who isn’t?) there’s plenty of room in the case for you to install some.

The H440 definitely looks awesome, and like it should cost more than it does.

So how about what’s inside?

Game On

The R1 is a gaming machine first and foremost, so let’s see what we’re playing with here.

The CPU is seventh gen, an i5-7600K @ 3.80GHz to be precise, so you get that Kaby Lake upgrade. The processor is living in a MSI Z270 PC Mate board, meaning dual M.2 support, and support for Optane when Intel gets around to releasing this new storage/RAM hybrid.

For RAM, we have 16 GBs of DDR4 Hyper X, but feel free to push it to the max of 64. As for storage, we’re looking at a 250GB SSD and a 2TB Seagate HDD spinning at 7200RPM.

The power supply is a 500-watt EVGA, which certainly gets the job done. If we were using SLI, that might be a different story, but it’s plenty of juice for these parts.

We focus a lot of our time on cable management around here, and that’s one way in which this case excels. Because of the PSU shroud, there’s nary a cable to be seen, with the exception of the video card and motherboard power, and the USB 3.0 cable to the board. It’s nice and clean, and that means good airflow.

VR Trooper

We’ve been using this rig for a while now as our primary VR computer, and we’ve put it through its paces. This isn’t a top-of-the-line gaming build by any means, you need dual GPUs for that, but the R1 handled everything we threw at it and looked great while doing it.

We ran some quick benchmarks, and got more or less the result we expected. It ranked in at 5,525, meaning it’s a high performance desktop. Not the highest, obviously, but for 1080p gaming and VR it won’t break a sweat.

This is just the sort of mid-level gaming PC that bridges the gap between premade stuff from Lenovo, Acer, and Dell, and the super high-end custom PCs you can find from companies like Maingear. It’s more than capable as a gaming machine, while still being in a moderate price range.

And damn, does it look cool.

Pre-made builds are perfect for someone who doesn’t have the time or inclination to create one from scratch. The nice thing about small shops like Maingear is that they do the heavy lifting for you, provide a warranty, and you get the awesome results. No risk, all reward.

You can check out this Maingear R1 build here.