Gear

Desktop vs Laptops: Getting back into the desktop PC life with Aftershock

I’ve been running my games on a laptop for a few years but had long felt that I needed to get back to the desktop life. There’s always something nicer about having a proper desktop gaming PC.

In my quest to figure out the type of setup that I wanted, I got a test system from Aftershock that would help me figure out what I needed for the future.

The system that I was loaned was their Rapid Mesh system, which came with a Ryzen 5600X processor, a Radeon 6600XT video card, a 512 GB Samsung PM9A1 NVMe SSD, and 16GB of RAM (KLEVV CRAS X (8×2) DDR4 3600 MHz).

The rig was built with 1080p gaming in mind, which I think is still appropriate for those who are looking for a system that can run the latest games without any problems.

As a caveat, though, I ended up testing games on a 34-inch monitor in 1440p, so my results are a little lower than what you’d get for a 1080p monitor, but that’s a good thing. If you’re looking to stick to 1080p, then you won’t have problems running anything.

Form factor

Whenever I’ve built PCs in the past, they tend to look like an horrible and disorganized mess. The build I got from Aftershock was the polar opposite of that, with everything so neatly organized and oh-so-pretty.

Having a desktop also removes the need to clutter my desk with my old gaming laptop, which makes my table far more inviting. I’m not entirely sure that’s a great thing for me, though, because now I never want to leave the table.

Performance

I’m big on FPS games, with Call of Duty: Warzone and Halo Infinite being at the top of my playlist these last few months. Both titles tended to strain my old laptop, so they were the first games I tested out.

It’s been a long time since I’ve used an AMD video card, but I was pleasantly surprised by its performance.

Halo Infinite ran at 60 FPS with no problems on ultra, which made it a lot more fun to grind out ranked this season.

Call of Duty: Warzone, which is about as unoptimized as a game can get, ran at a smooth 60-70 FPS on high settings, which is already a win in my book.

Forza Horizon 5 is another game that I’ve been playing a lot of lately and ran the game on ultra with no problems.

In terms of load times, the Samsung NVMe SSD PM9A1 loaded everything at great speeds, including titles that can sometimes be a pain like Age of Empires 4.

I’m not a competitive gamer, but I definitely don’t want to feel handicapped by slow performance, and this test build definitely didn’t feel like it was lacking in that department.

Parting thoughts

Testing out the Aftershock Rapid Mesh was a lot of fun, and I definitely think it’s a great system for those that are looking to get started on their PC gaming journey. This test build was a lot of fun to play around with, and now I’ve also got a better idea of what I would to upgrade to maximize my performance with my 1440p monitor.

If you want to check out some similar builds, I recommend you check out the Aftershock site. They’ve got some great ready-to-ship builds, with a number of them coming under $2000.

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