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Maingear Torq – Hands On

The Torq is dense. The mini-ITX motherboard sits atop the power supply and hard drives, and is flanked on three sides by the radiator, the liquid-cooling system’s pump, and the GTX Titan Z graphics card. Tubes of coolant snake between these components, and while they look cool, they also block access to the Torq’s innards. 

The basic $1,599 Torq includes an Intel Core i5-4690K processor, which is impressive, but then pairs it with an Nvidia GTX 750 Ti graphics card, which isn’t. Gamers will want to upgrade to at least the Radeon R9 270X. Fortunately, only adds $50 dollars to the price.

Opting for the Torq SS enhances cooling, as already mentioned, and the video card, which automatically upgrades to an Nvidia GTX 780 Ti card. In most other respects, the two configurations are similar, but the price bumps up to $3,299.

That’s a big change in MSRP, and it makes the Torq look less competitive as more and more upgrades are tacked on. An Origin Millennium with similar equipment is much larger, but it’s also less than $3,000, and Maingear itself offers larger, more powerful, and more affordable options like the Maingear Vybe. The novelty of size is costly with the Torq.

Read the full hands on review here.