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Arbico eXcel i2561 CS review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £550
inc VAT

A fast processor, large hard disk and excellent 24in monitor make the eXcel i2561 CS very good value, but there are still better deals available


3.3GHz Intel Core i5-2500, 4GB RAM, 24in 1,920×1,080 display, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit


Apart from a graphics card, there isn’t much room for any other upgrades. Although the cables have been neatly tied up, conditions are a bit cramped. There aren’t any free memory slots, so if you wanted to upgrade you’d have to get rid of the existing memory. External expansion is more generous, with two USB ports on the front panel and six at the rear, two of which are the faster USB3 ports. Two USB ports are taken up by the cheap Logitech keyboard and mouse set.

Arbico eXcel i2561 CS

A full set of analogue 7.1 audio outputs is provided, along with an optical S/PDIF output for digital transfer. For basic audio, the monitor’s internal speakers are sufficient – they’re clear but not very loud – but to enjoy movies on the Full HD screen we’d advise connecting a proper set of speakers. There’s no Blu-ray drive – just a DVD writer – but there’s plenty of room on the 1TB hard disk for videos.

Arbico eXcel i2561 CS Back

We really liked the big AOC 2436Vwa monitor that comes with the eXcel i2561 CS. It has excellent contrast and more natural colours than the 24in BenQ G2420HDS, which is supplied with the Dino PC Jurassic 2500. Although the PC itself is fairly unimpressive to look at, it has plenty of performance and room for expansion. However, the Dino PC Jurassic 2500 has far more space inside the case for expansion, and includes a Blu-ray drive, so it just pips the eXcel i2561 CS to the post for an award.

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Basic Specifications

Rating ****
Processor Intel Core i5-2500
Processor external bus 100MHz (Sandy Bridge DMI)
Processor multiplier x33
Processor clock speed 3.3GHz
Processor socket LGA1155
Memory 4
Memory type DDR3
Maximum memory 16GB
Motherboard Asustek P8H61-M Pro
Motherboard chipset Intel H61


USB2 ports (front/rear) 2/6
Firewire ports (front/rear) 0/0
eSATA ports (front/rear) 0/0
Wired network ports 1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support none

Internal Expansion

Case tower
PCI-E x1 slots (free) 2 (2)
PCI-E x16 slots (free) 2 (2)
Free Serial ATA ports 4
Free memory slots 0
Free 3.5in drive bays 3

Hard Disk

Hard disk model(s) Samsung SpinPoint F1 HD103SJ
Interface SATA2
Total storage capacity 1,000GB


Graphics card(s) Intel HD Graphics 2000
Graphics/video ports VGA, DVI, HDMI


Sound Realtek HD Audio
Sound outputs 7.1 line out, optical S/PDIF out
Speakers none

Removable Drives

Supported memory cards none
Optical drive type(s) DVD+/-RW +/-DL


Viewable size 24 in
Screen model AOC 2436Vwa
Native resolution 1,920×1,080
Screen inputs VGA, DVI

Other Hardware

Keyboard Logitech K120
Mouse Logitech M-U0003


Software included Nero Essentials 9
Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Operating system restore option Windows disc

Buying Information

Warranty two years RTB
Price £550

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