Origin Genesis Review

Origin’s Genesis desktop gaming PC, an overclocked triple-SLI liquid-cooled beast of a machine, not only delivers the frame rates, but also gets all the details right.
Origin’s Genesis desktop gaming PC, an overclocked triple-SLI liquid-cooled beast of a machine, not only delivers the frame rates, but also gets all the details right.
Origin’s Genesis desktop gaming PC, an overclocked triple-SLI liquid-cooled beast of a machine, not only delivers the frame rates, but also gets all the details right.


  • Stable 5GHz overclock
  • Myriad of configuration options
  • Grown-up good looks
  • Quiet performance
  • Reasonably priced considering what’s inside.


  • None

A relative newcomer to the custom PC market, Miami-based Origin PC has a pedigree that belies its newbie status. Founded and staffed by several ex-Alienware execs and techs who jumped ship after Dell’s acquisition, Origin delivers an expertly built and overclocked gaming PC with the Genesis.

Origin is a custom builder in the truest sense of the term. Origin will build you as much PC as you can afford, with whatever parts you wish. They will even build a brand new system in your own chassis, if you so desire.

Origin Genesis case front blue lightsSpecs

The first thing one notices after removing the side panel is the Genesis’ utterly immaculate interior. Every conceivable wire is tied off and tucked away out of sight, giving the chassis interior an ultra-clean appearance and providing ample space for the cooling conduit that snakes through the insides. It’s really quite something to behold.

Since Origin builds the Genesis to order, one at a time, there’s not really a “standard configuration.” Our review system is equipped with an Intel i7 2600K CPU overclocked to a jaw-dropping 5GHz, an Asus Maximus IV Extreme motherboard, 12GB of Kingston HyperX 1600MHz RAM, a 1.5KW Silverstone power supply, three GTX 580 graphics cards in SLI, an EK Waterblock liquid cooling solution, a 12x Bluray burner, two 64GB Crucial C300 SSDs in RAID 0, a 1TB Western Digital 7200prm conventional drive, and Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit.

The Genesis review model came 3D-ready and included two pairs of Nvidia 3D glasses.

The case lighting slowly cycles through red, yellow, green, and blue and can easily be turned off.

The Genesis comes with a 1-year limited warranty plus lifetime phone support and as equipped, lists for $5,499, but systems start at $1337.

The Genesis ships double-boxed in a fits-like-a-glove wooden crate with the Origin logo stenciled on the side, and the chassis itself arrives wrapped in an Origin-branded protective cloth cover.

Each Origin system undergoes a thorough burn-in period and rigorous benchmarking before shipping, and the tech performing each task records the results on your invoice and signs off on each stage. This type of thorough documentation allows Origin’s techs to know who exactly built and tested your machine, should any problems arise in the future.

Origin Genesis rear portsI/O

The Genesis (with its Maximus IV motherboard) has enough USB 3.0 ports to choke the proverbial horse. Out of the nine USB ports on board, only one is 2.0 only. You also get two eSATA ports, optical S/PDIF output, Bluetooth, ROG Connect, a PS/2 port, Ethernet, and six-channel analog audio outs—all on the rear of the chassis. Up front, I/O consists of a Rosewill multi-format card reader, which also has that lone USB 2.0 port.

The front of the chassis also sports a four-knob fan control that adjusts the speed of the fans that cool the liquid-cooling system’s radiators.

Video editors will appreciate the Genesis’ four, hot-swappable hard drive bays, also on the chassis front, although they will miss having a FireWire connection.


That the Genesis killed in gaming performance should come as no surprise. Three GTX 580s will do that. Combine that with a CPU overclocked to 5GHz and the Genesis can handle pretty much anything you can throw at it. Batman: Arkham Asylum, Crysis 2 multiplayer, Far Cry 2, Battlefield: Bad Company 2 — the Genesis had no trouble keeping frame rates above 50 even at 1920×1080 with as much anti-aliasing and complex textures as the titles would allow. In short, for the current generation of games, there’s nothing the Genesis can’t handle.

Our review system shipped with a 3D-enabled ViewSonic 1080p projector, and gaming in 3D with a large projected image provided a level of immersion you’d be hard pressed to replicate with a conventional monitor. We even hooked up two more projectors for some ultra-widescreen gaming. After fiddling with settings and the physical configuration of the projectors, we found that three images projected side-by-side against a single surface worked better than our attempt at “surround” gaming, in which we tried projecting three images at three surfaces at right angles to one another.

Running all three projectors required taking the settings down a few notches in just about every title to ensure smooth frame rates, but this was to be expected when you consider how much more power three 580s in SLI driving a single projector have than three individual 580s driving three separate projectors. Although we had a good time playing around with the multi-projector configuration, 3D gaming actually felt better when only using one screen, as the sides of the ultra-wide image extended beyond the field of vision offered by the Nvidia glasses.

Running 3DMark Vantage in “performance” mode, the Genesis scored P58,497 (a new Digital Trends record): 54,354 for the GPU, and a 75,869 for the CPU. In 3DMark 11, it racked up a score of P14,616, although we haven’t run 3DMark 11 on very many other machines and therefore don’t have much to compare it to.

Origin Genesis inside cooling systemThe dual SSD drives in RAID0 plus the ultra-overclocked CPU make general computing a very pleasant experience. Program windows open almost instantaneously, and there’s zero lag from when you click on the Windows Start button and when the menu appears. The OS feels light and responsive, an experience confirmed by a PCMark7 score of 6,166 (which is another high score to-date).

Boot time took a scant 43 seconds, thanks no doubt to the super-speedy HDD array.


As one would hope from a liquid-cooled system, the Genesis operates very quietly. Though audible, it’s nowhere near noise level we experienced with the also-liquid-cooled iBuyPower Erebus.

Along with 3D gaming, the Genesis does a great job with 3D movies too. We watched a few scenes from the Blu-ray of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and were extremely impressed with the 3D imaging. Origin includes a copy of PowerDVD 11, which supports 3D Blu-ray playback, with our Genesis sample.

We also had a very pleasant experience with Origin’s tech support. We experienced some graphical corruption when first running 3DMark and some of the game titles, and were just about to the point of pulling cards to diagnose the issue when we spoke to very helpful and knowledgeable Alvaro at Origin. After remoting in to check our software configuration and driver versions, he walked us through the process of testing each card individually by disabling them one at a time with small toggle switches on the motherboard (a great feature of the Maximus IV), only to figure out that the issue was caused by the SLI bridge having come partially loose during shipping. Our pleasant experience with Orign’s tech support bolstered our confidence in the value of the lifetime tech-support Origin includes with the Genesis.

Other than that initial snafu, the system was completely stable throughout testing—no crashes, hangs or other anomalies.


In a world where just about anybody can stitch together a robust system from the best parts on the market, it’s the details that separate the garage-based DIY enthusiast from the truly boutique integrators. With its sleek packaging, artful integration, and expert overclocking (an art form unto itself), Origin falls squarely in the latter category with its Genesis gaming PC.

Pricey though it may be, Origin adds a good deal of value to the equation by offering lifetime (and high-quality) tech support in addition to the one-year hardware warranty as well as the confidence in knowing that your system was built correctly in the first place.

Gamers looking for a top-end gaming rig would do well to consider the Origin Genesis, not only for the screaming performance, but also for the peace of mind that comes with knowing it’s backed by a company that “gets it” when it comes to the boutique PC business.


  • Stable 5GHz overclock
  • Myriad of configuration options
  • Grown-up good looks
  • Quiet performance
  • Reasonably priced considering what’s inside.


  • None
Emerging Tech

How emotion-tracking A.I. will change computing as we know it

Affectiva is just one of the startups working to create emotion-tracking A.I. that can work out how you're feeling. Here's why this could change the face of computing as we know it.

Carry your computer in your pocket with the best stick PCs

Stick PCs are a new trend in computing. They offer a full desktop experience within a small package, and can be plugged directly into your television's HDMI port. Here are some of the best options available on the market right now.
Product Review

You should definitely buy a MateBook X Pro, just not this one

Huawei has a new version of the MateBook X Pro in 2019, building off the success of its first iteration last year. What’s new? Well, the graphics card, the processor, and the pricing. Not all of these are in its favor.

Among hundreds of choices, these are the 25 best SNES games of all time

The Super Nintendo Entertainment System just might be the greatest game console ever made, but which are the best titles for the system? Here are our picks for the best SNES games.

Feeling nostalgic? Here are the 25 best Sega Genesis games

Although the company has since fallen into obscurity, Sega was an indisputable titan throughout the '90s. That said, here are 25 best Sega Genesis games that helped define its fabled decade.

Amazon strikes $100 off the price of Microsoft Surface Go tablets

If you've been eyeing Microsoft's Surface Go for its compact size and portability, now may be a great time to buy the tablet. Amazon has a $100 discount on the Surface Go, bringing the price of this slate down to just under $400.

Sweet 16: Wacom’s Cintiq 16 pen display makes retouching photos a breeze

Wacom’s Cintiq pen displays are usually reserved for the pros (or wealthy enthusiasts), but the new Cintiq 16 brings screen and stylus editing to an approachable price. Does it cut too much to get there?

Mueller report releases on CD, forces Congress to find PCs with disc drives

The Mueller report was released this week to Congress via CDs and congressional members had to find PCs with working disc drives to access the 400-page document. The redacted report was also released to the public on a website.

Kick off your streaming career with our complete guide to Twitch broadcasting

Streaming games on Twitch for the first time can be daunting to say the least, but with a few simple steps, it's remarkably easy to do. Here's how to do so using a PC, Mac, Xbox One, or PlayStation 4 console.

Google Chrome will get a Reader Mode for distraction-free desktop browsing

If Google's testing of Reader Mode on the Chrome Canary desktop browser is successful, soon all Chrome users will gain access to this feature. Reader Mode strips away irrelevant content on a webpage for distraction-free browsing.

Former student uses USB Killer device to fry $58,000 worth of college’s PCs

A former student used a USB Killer device to short circuit more than $58,000 of computers at a private New York college earlier this year. The student pled guilty to the charges and sentencing is scheduled to begin in August.

AMD Ryzen CPU prices get slashed ahead of Ryzen 3000 release

AMD's Ryzen CPUs have had their prices slashed as we edge towards the release of their third generation. Whether you're a gamer or someone who needs multi-threaded performance, there's a deal for everyone with some heavy discounts to take…

The number pad on HP’s Chromebook 15 makes spreadsheet work a breeze

HP's Chromebook 15 comes with a 15.6-inch display, a metal keyboard deck with full-size keys, and a dedicated number pad, making it the second Chromebook model, following Acer's Chromebook 715, to be suited for spreadsheet work.

Worried about your online privacy? We tested the best VPN services

Browsing the web can be less secure than most users would hope. If that concerns you, a virtual private network — aka a VPN — is a decent solution. Check out a few of the best VPN services on the market.