Gaming Desktop Round-Up: Puget vs. Maingear vs. Acer

By on August 26, 2010, 5:45 AM
Most hardcore enthusiasts will tell you it's better to build your own gaming system rather than getting one pre-built. If not for the enjoyment of putting all the components together yourself, then simply to ensure you're getting high quality parts at the best possible price.

Going the homebrewed route is not always an option however. Whether for a lack of hardware knowledge, or shortage of time to research and build their own system, many people opt to go the manufactured route. Pre-built systems from companies like HP, Dell, Gateway, and others seem to offer a good blend of components at an attractive price. At the same time, we are seeing an increasing number of custom PC boutiques that cater to enthusiasts who value customer service and customization over an off-the-shelf PC and may be willing to pay a few extra bucks for this level of service.


Today we will be looking at three different gaming systems from the likes of Puget Systems, Maingear and Acer. All three vary quite a bit in core components, cooling options and appearance, but maintain the same sub-$2,000 price tag per our request.

Read the complete review.




User Comments: 14

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TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Nice write-up. Thanks!

And good to see local boys (Puget System) do well.

Burty117 Burty117, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Man that Acer case is horrid! I've seen it at my local PC world (I know i shouldn't be there) and it truly makes you want to puke! lol

LinkedKube LinkedKube, TechSpot Project Baby, said:

I've never purchased a Puget pre-built, but I've heard great things about their systems.

Guest said:

That Puget machine looks best imho, the Acer one is just plain fugly but it depends on personal taste, I bet that younger audience would love it

drbooth said:

Been using a Puget built system for a few years now and I am still using it as I type. It ran about $2k at the time but it was exactly what I wanted. As I was picking out the upgrades I desired as opposed to the basics offered, I was advised whenever there might be a compatibility problem with a particular selection being connected to the system. This is the type of experience needed to eliminate future problems and this organization did it with a flair. Building one by yourself would most likely be educational as well as ending up with a bit of satisfaction but having incompatibility issues crop up late in the building process could be a real pain. I am not trying to take away anthing from the other two companies in this forum-just submitting my experience (for what it is worth).

Good Grief.................it has been a while since I have been logged into this site. I have been looking for info on it but not logging it. Shame on me.

tonylukac said:

Great article, since it isn't exactly easy for the inexperienced to waltz in, go full throttle, and build a system, while it encourages more of these people to read Techspot. I spent only $800 on my midrange system at the time, buying all the parts for essentially half price using newspaper ads. The feeble minded would not have survived it if they went thru what I went thru; i.e. the Seagate firmware fiasco. My friend bought such a custom built rig, but not from these people.

Guest said:

Bought a MAINGEAR SHIFT when it came out - you can't buy anything like it on the market. I like how they designed their own chassis. I wanted something you couldn't just buy off the shelf. The salesguy at Maingear was great, and wasn't on commission so I didn't feel pressured into anything. And boy they know their stuff. All my questions were answered, and when I had a minor problem around Christmas they were able to get me back up and running quickly. It was nice to speak to the same person who built my system...

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

Bought a MAINGEAR SHIFT when it came out - you can't buy anything like it on the market. I like how they designed their own chassis. I wanted something you couldn't just buy off the shelf. The salesguy at Maingear was great, and wasn't on commission so I didn't feel pressured into anything. And boy they know their stuff. All my questions were answered, and when I had a minor problem around Christmas they were able to get me back up and running quickly. It was nice to speak to the same person who built my system...

.....but how is your benefits package over at Maingear?

Guest said:

??? I got the three year warranty, figure it was worth the extra coin...

Guest said:

He was implying that you were an employee.

It's called "trolling", a common tactic of the unimportant trying to discount any opinion that is not theirs.

I'm glad you've had a good experience with Maingear. I'm sure it's easier to find horror stories.

I wonder if the reviewer ever managed to put the Acer back together...

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

He was implying that you were an employee.

It's called "trolling", a common tactic of the unimportant trying to discount any opinion that is not theirs.

I'm glad you've had a good experience with Maingear. I'm sure it's easier to find horror stories.

I wonder if the reviewer ever managed to put the Acer back together...

It was his that was trolling, and only not an option as I would not own one of those prepackaged things.

Guest said:

acer as a gaming machine............. LOL!!!

I'm sorry, It's just I've never seen acer for anything except the poor mans choice.

LinkedKube LinkedKube, TechSpot Project Baby, said:

acer as a gaming machine............. LOL!!!

I'm sorry, It's just I've never seen acer for anything except the poor mans choice.

If you would have invested in them years ago, or if you had the money to, the word "poor," wouldn't be anywhere near acer or your pockets for that matter.

Guest said:

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

I happen to like the "Alienware"-like design of the Acer. Furhermore, over here, the Predator comes with the GTX 480. Cool! Hope to see the GTX 580 in their 2011 revision. :)

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