“The Falcon NW Talon is a mid-sized tower worthy of AMD’s ultra-powerful new silicon.”

Helps a full ATX motherboard

Rock-solid construct high quality

Impeccable cable administration

Wonderful 4K gaming

Countless configuration choices

Too costly

Nvidia graphics are a greater worth

In some sense, it doesn’t matter how briskly AMD’s Ryzen 9 5950X and Radeon RX 6900 XT are. You’ll be able to’t purchase both proper now, and you could not have the ability to for a while.

That’s until you purchase it in a blinged-out, premade system just like the Falcon Northwest Talon. This PC will value you a lot 1000’s of dollars — my unit prices $5,593 — however let’s not neglect that the GPU alone prices $1,000 alone.

But when you may get your arms on one thing like this, I can say with out hesitation that you just gained’t be dissatisfied.

Design

The goodness begins with the Talon case, which is the 20th anniversary version. Falcon Northwest takes a refined strategy to the aesthetic with a plain, matte black exterior that includes easy strains and edges. It’s not gluttonous in its use of lighting, both. The tasteful lighting primarily comes from the parts inside, such because the glowing G.Ability TridentZ RAM sticks and ARGB lighted followers.

However as Falcon Northwest would say, the case itself is a mere “clean canvas.” You will get it decked out in a customized paint job like we did, with every little thing from a easy brand on the glass to full-color art work or designs sprawled throughout the highest and facet panels. The customizations you may make to a boutique gaming PC is what helps manufacturers like Falcon Northwest stand out from the opposite premade system builders on the market.

Past the customized art work, you possibly can go for the brand to glow in several colours, change out the aluminum facet panels for tinted glass, add totally different case followers, and so forth.

No matter what you select by way of the finer particulars, what you get is a supremely well-built and properly configured gaming PC. The case makes use of a 4mm layer of aluminum, making certain there isn’t a touch of flex.

For comfort, the Talon contains some accessible ports on the highest panel, together with a headphone jack, two USB-A three.zero, and one USB-C three.1, in addition to a glowing energy button. It’s a most popular location if you happen to plan to maintain your tower on the ground beneath your desk. Within the again, the Talon gives a typical array of inputs and outputs offered by the motherboard and graphics card.

For a midsized tower like this, you’ll be impressed by every little thing Falcon Northwest is ready to squeeze in with out the setup ever feeling cramped inside. It’s simply 17 inches by 9 inches, which is able to really feel compact if you happen to’re coming from a full-sized tower. That does make it a bit bigger than the Origin Neuron, for instance, which is simply 16.three inches by 6.eight inches. The Neuron is without doubt one of the solely different system builders that presently assist these new AMD processors and GPUs.

However not like the Neuron, Falcon Northwest’s Talon is a little more full-featured and future-proofed. It makes use of the Asus ROG Crosshair VII Darkish Hero motherboard, which supplies six SATA ports, two M.2 slots, onboard Wi-Fi 6, and two PCIe four.zero enlargement slots, every with 16 lanes. Becoming a full ATX motherboard right into a midsized tower can get tough, however Falcon Northwest pulls it off gloriously. The Origin Neuron, alternatively, solely offers micro-ATX choices, which have fewer PCIe lanes and fewer overclocking potential. It’s an analogous story with the Alienware Aurora R11.

That’s not as large of a deal as you would possibly assume — particularly for the reason that Neuron additionally helps as much as 128GB of RAM. The benefit of its Micro-ATX board is each a smaller case and a bit extra room inside for cooling and tooling round.

Falcon Northwest makes its tight setup work superbly, although, because of some immaculate cable administration that simplifies upgrading down the street. The one caveat is the graphics card, which requires a separate bracket to carry it in place. You’ll must take away quite a lot of screws to pop it off, and it’s a little bit of a trouble.

However actually, if you happen to’re laying down severe money for a desktop like this, you need to be sure you’re pumping it up with the newest componentry from the get-go. And that’s precisely what you are able to do with the Talon.

Efficiency

It’d be simple to have a look at the Falcon Northwest Talon as nothing greater than a automobile for the newest AMD components. That’s truthful, contemplating how rapidly these processors and graphics playing cards have bought out. You’ll be able to, in fact, additionally construct the Talon round Intel components with the Z490 chipset. However let’s be actual — these AMD parts are the new, new parts everyone seems to be speaking about.

You have got your selection of the high-end Ryzen 5000 chips, together with Ryzen 7 5800X, Ryzen 9 5900X, and Ryzen 9 5950X. If all you’re doing is gaming, the Ryzen 7 will swimsuit you simply effective and prevent as a lot as $520. However hey, all of us need to know what a 16-core Zen three processor can do, in order that’s what we loaded up in our configuration.

Ideally, I’d need to examine the Talon towards comparable configurations of the Origin Neuron and Alienware Aurora R11, each of which could be equally configured with the Ryzen 9 5950X. The way in which these totally different programs construct and funky their parts will impression efficiency, although you shouldn’t anticipate an enormous variation in body charges or rendering instances.

Falcon Northwest pairs the CPU with an all-in-one liquid cooling system from Asetek that features fairly a big radiator with a pair of 140mm followers mounted to it. In all my testing, neither the GPU or CPU ever rose above 73 levels Celsius, and the system stayed surprisingly quiet too.

As you would possibly anticipate, the Ryzen 9 5950X completely dominates in benchmarks. It scored an insane 23,539 in multi-core and 1,537 in single-core. Intel’s measly 10-core chips get stomped in multi-core efficiency, and the upcoming transfer to eight cores in its 11th-gen Rocket Lake-S chips gained’t enhance the state of affairs.

Once more, I haven’t examined this chip in different programs, however as the one 16-core mainstream CPU you should buy, don’t anticipate one other chip to beat it in multi-core scores.

Now, having this a lot efficiency gained’t have an enormous impact in your day-to-day actions. It’s solely marginally sooner in duties like phrase processing, internet shopping, and videoconferencing than the newest laptops you should buy.

Content material creation is the place these 16 cores and 32 threads begin to present their potential. It may well full duties like video encoding lightning quick in purposes reminiscent of Adobe Premiere Professional and Handbrake, particularly if you happen to’re upgrading from an older quad-core or six-core processor. It encoded a 4K film trailer to H.265 in simply 49 seconds — a brand new report among the many programs we’ve examined. To place issues in perspective, it additionally performs 60% higher in Premiere than the M1 Mac Mini.

As quick as it’s in Premiere, the Radeon RX 5900 XT holds again efficiency from being the very best. Examined in PugetBench, the Nvidia RTX 3080 really outperforms by 10% the Radeon RX 5900 XT, which was additionally examined within the Falcon Northwest Talon. That’s not look, particularly given the $300 value distinction between the 2.

I additionally examined the GPU-based rendering of the RX 5900 XT towards the RTX 3080 within the Blender benchmark. Right here, the 2 GPUs commerce blows on the totally different checks. It’s not the outright win for AMD it must be for the value, however don’t rely the Radeon RX 5900 XT out simply but. Gaming is the most important check for a graphics card, and that’s the place the RX 5900 XT doesn’t disappoint.

Gaming

Let’s start with 3DMark, which begins issues out sturdy for the gaming potential of the AMD-powered Talon. It surpasses the RTX 3080 — once more, examined in the identical precise rig. However it’s not by a lot. It’s solely 2% sooner within the DX12 check, known as Time Spy, and 6% sooner within the older DX11 check, Hearth Strike.

I didn’t have entry to the RTX 3090 to check within the system, however a fast have a look at the benchmarks on the market present that the $1,399 card has a wholesome lead over the RX 6900 XT. In precise video games, although, the RX 6900 XT handles 1440p and 4K resolutions fairly effectively. Simply be sure you have a monitor that may deal with body charges this excessive.

In Fortnite at Epic settings, it averaged 99 fps (body per second) in 4K and 202 fps in 1440p. That’s 14% sooner than the RTX 3080 in 4K and 16% sooner in 1440p. In fact, with an Nvidia GPU, you possibly can activate the sport’s spectacular ray tracing and DLSS results, although there’s a trade-off in body fee.

Murderer’s Creed Valhalla is a more recent title that may actually check the uncooked graphics efficiency of a system, and it proved to be a worthy problem for the Talon. The RX 6900 XT was actually spectacular right here, averaging 69 fps in 4K Extremely Excessive. However in 1440p, the sport actually shined, hitting 116 fps with graphics high quality maxed. It’s not a sport you want twitchy body charges for, however being over 60 fps whatever the decision is an achievement.

Civilization VI was the one sport I examined the place the RTX 3080 beat the RX 6900 XT. In 1080p Medium and 1440p Medium, the RTX 3080 was as a lot as 7% forward. However for a sport that gentle, it’s under no circumstances noticeable in these decrease resolutions. The sport nonetheless averaged 184 fps at 4K on Extremely settings. The spectacular gaming outcomes spell good issues for AMD. Up to now, programs with Intel and Nvidia had been stronger gaming PCs, however AMD has lastly caught up on this regard.

Now, that doesn’t imply I’d essentially advocate this specific configuration for everybody. Strictly for gaming, the RX 5900 XT clearly outperforms the RTX 3080 — and by a wholesome quantity in some video games. It’s not fairly as quick in content material creation as Nvidia’s cheaper providing, although. Nor does it supply hardware-accelerated ray tracing capabilities. That may not be a deal breaker now, however in a number of years, it may simply change into vital characteristic. That’s very true since there’s a slight markup on the AMD half, which prices $381 greater than the RTX 3080 (reasonably than $300).

For those who’re already spending over $5,000 on a gaming PC, which is the place my configuration landed, the additional value may not part you. Extra energy to you! However for my cash, the RTX 3080 gives a greater total worth. That’s additionally true of each the Alienware Aurora R11 and Origin Neuron, each of which could be equally configured for upwards of $1,000 much less. That’s numerous money. The step up in high quality and additional options make it value your cash, although, particularly if you happen to plan to utilize the additional enlargement slots.

Our take

If you need a chunk of the AMD motion, the Falcon Northwest Talon is a good way to dive in. It’s one of many few programs that assist these powerful new parts, and does it in a extremely customizable manner. There are cheaper choices on the market, however the Talon’s immaculate construct and tidy setup make it a winner.

Are there any alternate options?

A lot of my favourite gaming desktops haven’t but introduced assist for AMD’s Ryzen 5000 platform, such because the HP Omen 30L Desktop.

The Origin Neuron is the closest competitor to the Falcon Northwest Talon. I haven’t but examined its efficiency, however Origin gives an analogous configuration in a smaller and cheaper construct. The opposite model that provides the Ryzen 9 5950X in a gaming PC is Alienware with its Aurora R11. It’s additionally cheaper, however solely gives Nvidia graphics choices.

Falcon Northwest additionally sells its smaller Tiki desktop with as much as the Ryzen 9 5950X, although the configuration choices are fairly restricted in the intervening time.

How lengthy will it final?

The Falcon Northwest Talon ought to final a minimum of 5 years with its present parts, and for much longer if you happen to’re prepared to improve it your self. That’s the fantastic thing about desktop PCs. The Talon additionally bundles in an in depth three-year guarantee, which covers each components and labor.

Do you have to purchase it?

Sure. It’s the proper automobile for the quantity of energy behind these new AMD parts.

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