5 stars out of 5
Xi 1200K MTower SP featured 384MB of DDR RAM, filling the three RAM sockets
on the motherboard with 128MB SIMMS of PC2100 266MHz DDR RAM. Using other
SIMMS, you can populate the Gigabyte motherboard with up to 1GB of RAM.
The 1200K MTower SP is housed in Xi's standard compact and sweptback
case, which is easy to open without tools. Other cases, including tower
cases with lots of expansion room, are available. A broad array of other
configuration options covers almost any component area you'd choose to
The Xi 1200K MTower SP incorporates two ATA100 30MB hard disks from IBM
in a RAID arrangement, in this case attached to an Iwill controller.
Filling one of the five PCI expansion slots is a NetGear FA 310TX 10/100
network card. Sound is integrated in the motherboard. A Microsoft
Intellimouse and a Logitech Internet keyboard are standard.
Warranty coverage for the Xi 1200K MTower SP includes three years on
system hardware parts and labor (FOB Xi) and a one-year onsite hardware
service contract by NWC that you can expand to longer time periods.
For the system we tested, Xi Computer chose a SONICblue FireGL 2 graphics
card, which sailed through the CADALYST benchmark tests. Compare the
results of this system with those of the virtually identical Polywell
system—which was supplied with an ELSA Synergy III graphics card—and
you'll see how much difference in performance a fast graphics card can
Performance is on a par with the Pentium 4 systems, though not quite as
fast as the previous Xi 1.2GHz Athlon system we tested. This is likely the
result of new Windows 2000 graphics card drivers rather than Windows NT 4
and variations in the bus speed of individual systems.
The Athlon-based Xi system is somewhat less spendy than its Pentium 4
counterparts, making it an attractive option (check
current price). Though this isn't the least expensive system
this time, it is the least expensive system that offers such top-notch
performance. Highly Recommended. — R.L.