Zoostorm Gaming Desktop PC review

A great 1080p performer that won't break the bank

Zoostorm Gaming Desktop PC

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The Zoostorm Gaming Desktop PC's specs have been carefully picked to provide as much gaming performance as possible for the least amount of money. The CPU, an Intel Core i5-4460, is a quad-core chip which runs at 3.2GHz, and is absolutely sufficient for just about all games.

The graphics card, a 2GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 960, is firmly a mid-range card, usually retailing for about £150 (Newegg USA has it for $190, which translates to AUS$264 down under).

It lacks a lot of the hardware that you get with more powerful GPUs and is really only aimed at delivering solid performance at 1080p resolution, at most.

Spec sheet

  • CPU: 3.2GHz Intel Core i5-4460 (quad-core, 6MB cache, up to 3.4GHz with Turbo Boost)
  • Graphics: Nvidia GTX 960 (2GB GDDR5 VRAM)
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3 (2,133MHz, 4 x 4GB)
  • Screen: 17.3-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 IPS Matte Display with G-SYNC
  • Storage: 256GB Samsung 950 Pro SSD (PCIe, m.2 SATA); 1TB Seagate Solid State Hybrid Drive (7,200 rpm)
  • Ports: 5 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 3.1 Type-C, HDMI, 2 x mini DisplayPort, SD card reader, 2 x Ethernet, headphone jack, microphone jack, Line-in jack,
  • Connectivity: Killer Wireless AC 1535 Dual Band +BT (Killer Doubleshot Pro enabled)
  • Camera: Built-in 2.0MP video camera
  • Weight: 10.5 pounds
  • Size: 16.8 x 12 x 1.8 inches (W x D x H)

Zoostorm Gaming Desktop PC

There's a single HDMI port at the back of the GTX 960, along with three DisplayPort outputs for a multi-monitor setup, and DVI for older displays. Zoostorm has used a MicroATX motherboard, which has a fairly limited number of ports. There are only two USB 3 ports, with a pair of USB 2 ports at the back and another two at the front.

Having 8GB of DDR3 memory, Zoostorm has chosen what is just about the bare minimum for a consistently smooth experience in most games. A few of the more demanding recent titles are recommending 16GB for high performance, but the vast majority of games will run fine with 8GB, so it's not an issue.

Zoostorm Gaming Desktop PC

Storage too is the general minimum required, with a simple 1TB hard disk. That's not a massive capacity these days, but it's still enough for a large number of games.

In an ideal world, I'd have an SSD in there too. Even with a fairly modest specification, an SSD would make Windows really fly, and a small 128GB model is fairly cheap these days. But it's not essential, and is therefore an extra that has been cut to keep that price tag as low as possible.

I poked about inside the Gaming Desktop PC. Zoostorm is using a PSU from FSP, a well-known brand, and there's a single free memory slot to add another 8GB of memory. The cooler is a fairly bog standard Intel model, and there are two rear mounted fans in the case, with one more at front.

There's also a DVD writer. No real effort has gone into cable management or a neat and tidy build, but it's not something that's necessary, but is yet again, one of those niceties you get when spending more on a gaming PC.

Zoostorm Gaming Desktop PC


The Zoostorm just about manages gaming at 1080p resolution, but it very much depends on the game in question and it might mean turning the detail settings down in more modern titles.


  • 3DMark: Cloud Gate: 14,999; Sky Diver: 16,466; Fire Strike: 5,918
  • Cinebench CPU: 485b points; Graphics: 109.17 fps,
  • GeekBench: 3,139 (single-core); 10,049 (multi-core)
  • PCMark 8 (Home Test): 4,109 points

With a PC this affordable, you can't expect superb 4K performance, or even at 1440p resolution, with all the detail settings turned on in the very latest games. But the results are still commendable.

We tested it with Tomb Raider at Ultimate detail at 1080p resolution, and it hit an average frame rate of 53.9 fps, with an minimum of 29.1 fps. Drop the detail down a notch to "Ultra" and that minimum frame rate hits 64 fps, a result that should guarantee not even a tiny blip in performance, even in detailed scenes.

Shadow Of Mordor is a more taxing though, and at 1080p at the highest detail setting, I only recorded a frame rate of 17.36 fps, with an average of exactly 30 fps. That's not really playable, but again, with the detail turned down to just "High" the figures are much improved, with a playable minimum of 35 fps, and an average of 48 fps.

GTA V suffers from the 2GB of video memory on the GTX 960. By default, the game sets the options to offer a playable frame rate, and by default, the game is set to consume 1486MB of video memory, with quite a few settings disabled, but at this detail setting at 1080p, I get a consistent 35 fps minimum, with an average of 60 fps.

Crucially, the game still looks really good, even though the detail has been turned down. Bump the settings up though and the game does start to crawl, with an average frame rate of 14 fps in high detail, with some of the more taxing settings enabled, such as long shadows.