Puget Systems has been building performance PCs since December 2000. Originally operating out of founder Jon Bach's home, the company has expanded over the years and now occupies a purpose-built 14,000 sqft. facility in Auburn, Washington, USA. Focused not only on building custom spec'd PCs, but also fully supporting them post-sale, Puget has been racking up awards from all sorts of publications.
The company was gracious enough to provide us with an ultra-quiet Serenity gaming PC for this review. While not Puget's flagship gaming box (that would be the Deluge), the Serenity represents a solid upper mid-level system for enthusiasts who also value quiet performance. Also, please note that the Serenity reviewed here has a few upgrades from the base configuration. For information about the Serenity's base config, go here.
Our Serenity test unit sports an Intel Core i7 860 processor running at the stock 2.8GHz clock speed mounted on an ASUS P7P55D-E Pro motherboard. A Gelid Tranquillo CPU cooler keeps the processor thermally happy. Four gigs of Kingston DDR3-1333 occupy two memory slots and a PowerColor Radeon HD 5750 1GB Silent video card provides graphics processing. Our Serenity boasts a dual hard drive configuration consisting of an Intel X25-M 34nm Gen 2 160GB SATA II 2.5inch Solid-State Drive that hosts the Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit OS and a Western Digital Caviar Green 1.5TB for data storage. It also has a Lite-On 8X Blu-ray drive and Cyberlink's PowerDVD 10 Ultra 3D for Blu-ray playback. The system is housed in an Antec P183 case with "Gunmetal" finish and gets its juice from an Antec CP-850 850W power supply.
Externally, we get a host of I/O ports to keep even the most accessory-hungry among us happy; 2xUSB 2.0, eSATA, headphone, and mic jacks on the front. The rear has 6xUSB 2.0, 2xUSB 3.0, 1394, 2x eSATA, Ethernet, 6-channel audio, Coaxial and Optical out, 2xDVI out, HDMI out, legacy PS/2 connections for mouse and keyboard and DisplayPort.
Internally, our Serenity has four free optical bays, a free floppy/media card reader bay and three free hard drive bays, should you desire to add some aftermarket parts. Five whisper-quiet 120mm fans keep air moving through the system.
Puget Systems provides a 1-year parts and lifetime labor warranty on the Serenity.