Custom PC UK

Custom PC UK June 2020

Custom PC is the UK’s best-selling magazine for PC hardware, overclocking, gaming and modding. Every month, Custom PC is packed with in-depth hardware reviews, step-by-step photo guides and informative features, all with a focus on tinkering with your computer’s insides. Along the way, you’ll also find hard-hitting tech opinion, game reviews and all manner of computer hobbyism goodness, from small Pi projects to extreme PC mods.

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Raspberry Pi


uncompromising specs

It feels very strange to be finishing off an issue of Custom PC in the midst of the chaos surrounding COVID-19, and it hasn’t always been easy, but we’re still immensely pleased with this issue. In particular, the PC in our cover feature (see p76) has an amazing specification for the budget – we’ve never managed to assemble a sub-£1,000 PC with such an uncompromising spec before. It’s not just that there’s a 6-core 3rd-gen Ryzen CPU beating at its heart, but it also has a GeForce RTX 2060 Super GPU, a cracking case, 16GB of very fancy Corsair RGB memory and a 500GB NVMe PCI-E SSD. It even looks good. There isn’t a single part of this PC that made us rub our chins and think, ‘Hmm, well, that’s a bit…

get ready for wi-fi 7

The folks at the IEEE and Wi-Fi Alliance aren’t sitting still. After just launching Wi-Fi 6E, which is Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) extended into the ‘6GHz band’ (5.71–7.13GHz actual), engineers are already knee-deep in 802.11be development, which is likely to adopt the Wi-Fi 7 name. Called‘Extremely High Throughput’ (EHT), it features impressive headline speeds of 30Gbps. However, the better features, in my opinion, are some of the improvements elsewhere. Firstly, though, don’t worry if you’ve just upgraded your home router, as this new standard isn’t expected to launch for a few years yet. Working together, these three technologies will make large mesh networks feel seamless Just as Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) and Wi-Fi 6 borrowed heavily from 4G LTE mobile tech, such as MU-MIMO and OFDMA respectively, Wi-Fi 7 is borrowing from tech that’s now…


Our time is now. All of the hours we’ve spent indoors, in isolation, online and entertaining ourselves, have turned out to be ideal practice for a pandemic quarantine. Of course, by the time this column goes to print things may have changed completely, but at the time of writing, the year ahead in gaming looks like one of physical solitude. So, gaming as usual for us, but goodbye to showcase events. Most people who have been to a games event, or a convention of any sort, will be familiar with ‘con crud’, the cold or mild flu everyone seems to get from being in close proximity to others indoors. The spread of viruses is exacerbated by everyone touching the same stuff – from controllers to VR headsets to door handles –…


AMD CONFIRMS ‘ENTHUSIAST-CLASS’ RAY-TRACING GPUS FOR 2020 AMD has revealed that its next-gen gaming GPUs are scheduled to be released in late 2020. Unlike the company’s first RDNA Navi products, such as the Radeon RX 5700 XT, the new RDNA 2-based GPUs will also support hardware-accelerated ray tracing. AMD unveiled these details about its new GPUs at its Financial Analyst Day on 5 March, while also revealing that RDNA 3 is in development, with products expected before the end of 2022. The company describes its forthcoming RDNA 2 GPUs as ‘enthusiast-class’, with ‘uncompromising 4K gaming’, meaning they could potentially take on Nvidia’s top-end GPUs, rather than competing in the midrange like AMD’s current Navi chips. In addition to hardware-accelerated ray tracing, AMD also promises up to a 50 per cent improvement in performance per…


Refreshing! Any chance you could run a feature test on monitor refresh rates, to find a sweet spot between resolution and refresh rate? 4K is still (to my knowledge) locked to 60Hz, so I’m looking at changing my monitor for a lower resolution but higher refresh rate, and this feature test would be invaluable to me STEWART AYERS Ben: Most 4K monitors are indeed locked at 60Hz – you can get 144Hz from a monitor such as Asus’ brilliant ROG Swift PG27UQ, but it costs the best part of two grand, and even the cheapest models come in at around £800. We’ll look into doing a test on refresh rates in the future, but in the meantime, check out our monitor Labs on p52, which features 2,560 x 1,440 and 1,920 x 1,080…

amd threa dripper 3990x / £3,530 inc vat

Let’s be honest, AMD’s 64-core Threadripper 3990X is so far outside the envelope for most of us that it’s a desktop CPU in name only. The high motherboard cost, eye-watering CPU price and sheer number of cores mean this monster CPU is not only out of reach for most of people, but completely unneeded too. We already began to see the limits of standard Windows-based desktop PCs with AMD’s Threadripper 3970X, with diminishing returns in many benchmarks that simply can’t scale to use so many cores. Throwing a 64-core beast at them isn’t likely to improve the situation, so while the Threadripper 3990X is undoubtedly a monster CPU, it’s still a niche product that needs the right conditions to show its true potential. Its specs certainly pack a punch, though, with a…