Evesham's Voyager C720DC (£1499 inc. VAT) uses a chassis we've seen on plenty of gaming machines over the past few years. However, thanks to the use of high-end components, it's still capable of offering a decent gaming experience.

The 17-inch display features a Super-TFT coating, resulting in vivid images. We found colours to be even, although it's not as bright as some screens. It is very sharp, however, offering crisp images ideal for gaming and high-definition playback.

High-end card

The Evesham uses a single graphics card - Nvidia's GeForce Go 7950GTX. Although it's not compatible with DirectX 10 and won't let you get the best out of future DX10 games, it's a high-end card and there's decent performance on offer. We found it ran S.T.A.L.K.E.R. at playable frame rates, although it lagged a long way behind SLI cards.

When playing games, we found the Evesham to be a comfortable machine. The boxy styling helps to create plenty of room for spacious controls, including a full-sized keyboard and numeric keypad.

Like its rivals, all of the buttons are firmly attached. However, although responsive, we found the large touchpad was located too near to the palm rests, making it easy to move and accidentally delete text while writing. Build quality is reasonable, and the chassis feels sturdy to the touch. However, the screen lacks the toughness seen on some rivals, and the palm rests also heat up more after long periods.

The Evesham features a high-end Intel Core 2 Duo processor. With 2048MB of memory holding data ready for the processor, we were expecting this machine to be quick in everyday use and we weren't disappointed.

Applications opened rapidly and the system ran smoothly, even when using several applications. Storage comes in the form of a 160GB hard drive, offering enough space for your games and media files. However, if you plan on downloading HD (High Definition) content, it may be a bit limiting.

A webcam is built into the top of the screen surround. You'll also find a microphone, making this machine ideal for video chats, or for talking to people during games. The Evesham also makes a useful multimedia machine, offering loud and clear speakers, and a bank of multimedia buttons on the front of the chassis.

While the Evesham can't compete on style, and 3D performance suffers from the addition of Windows Vista, it offers a good proposition for those on a budget as everyday performance is good.