Maingear Vybe H81

Affordable Gaming System With Acceptable Performance

Maingear Vybe Gaming Desktop PC
Maingear Vybe. ©Maingear

Manufacturer's Site

The Bottom Line

Feb 14 2015 - If you aren't interested in building a PC from parts for gaming and want to not spend a lot, the Maingear Vybe H81 i very affordable even if it makes a few compromises on the performance. The problem is if you have a bit more to spend, there are better options for performance and features.


  • Excellent Build Quality and Support
  • Very Affordable Base Configuration
  • Wide Range of Customization Options


  • Gameplay Suffers from Lower End Graphics Card
  • Small Hard Drive
  • Upgrades Quickly Drive Up Price


  • Intel Pentium G3258 Dual Core Desktop Processor
  • 8GB PC3-12800 DDR3 Memory
  • 500GB 7200rpm SATA Hard Drive
  • Dual-Layer DVD Burner
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Graphics Card with 1GB GDDR5 Memory
  • Intel HDA 7.1 Audio Support
  • Gigabit Ethernet
  • Four USB 3.0, Four USB 2.0, HDMI, DVI, VGA
  • Windows 8.1

Review - Maingear Vybe H61

Feb 14 2015 - Maingear is generally known for very high end gaming systems. The Vybe is their affordable desktop system for those that might want a well known brand instead of building their own computer from parts which tends to be more affordable. Now the company offers some very solid support for their systems which may be very compelling reason to buy it. Last year's model used the AMD platform for affordability but they have decided to move back to the Intel platform for their entry level model.

The base $799 version of the Vybe H81 comes with an Intel Pentium G3258 dual core processor. Now that provides it with decent gaming performance but it does lag behind in other more demanding tasks like desktop video work. Most people will want to upgrade to the Core i5-4590 to get more performance.

Now, the Pentium processor is clock unlocked which means it could be used for overclocking unlike the Core i5 processor but the H81 chipset essentially removes the ability anyways. The process is match up with 8GB of DDR3 memory for a smooth overall experience in Windows.

Maingear has decided to go with the bare minimum route when it comes to the storage. They start the Vybe H81 out with just a 500GB hard drive. This is especially disappointing as more and more companies are moving to two terabyte dives that provide four times the amount of storage as this and slightly better performance as well. Some competitors at this price point are even starting to include solid state drives for even faster performance. Now there is room inside of the system to add extra drives but there are also four UBS 3.0 ports for use with high speed external drives. The system does include a dual layer DVD burner for playback and recording of CD and DVD media.

If there is one area that really could use an upgrade, it is the graphics system. The base Vybe H81 configurations come with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 graphics card with just 1GB of memory. This means tht the system is much more limited and can play some games up to a 1920x1080 with high detail levels but often it will need to be turned to keep up good frame rates.

It would be nice to see at least the GTX 750Ti as standard. Users will likely want to upgrade the card if they intend to use the system for gaming as there are also a number of other limitations including just a single PCI-Express graphics card slot that prevents adding a second video card to boost performance and a smaller 430 Watt power supply which limits using many of the high performance graphics cards.

Now the base entry price for the Maingear Vybe H61 makes it one of the most affordable systems at just $799. The gaming performance is hampered but the low cost makes upgrading to a faster graphics card easy. The problem is once you upgrade, the price tends to be more expensive for less performance and features than the competition. For instance, the Digital Storm Vanquish II features the faster GTX 750 Ti graphics and twice the hard drive space at the same rough price point if the Bybe H61 is upgraded to the same Core i5 processor. The iBUYPOWER 2014 Paldin E goes even further with an overclocking capable system with GTX 960 graphics card and even an SSD for far greater performance.

Manufacturer's Site

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