Falcon Northwest Tiki 2022 Review: Tiny Gaming PC That Slays


Back within the mid-90s, I recall sitting round with pals on the faculty lunch desk poring over shiny magazines like PC Gamer and the long-defunct PC Accelerator, in addition to the immense, phone-book-like Computer Shopper. Sure, you had your Dells, and your Compaqs, and your smaller distributors too, like ZEOS, Quantex, ALR, and the fledgling Alienware. Yet amongst PC players within the Nineties, none of these names held fairly the identical status as Falcon Northwest. Whether it was the excessive specs of the machines, smooth designs, or their distinctive, elegant promoting, Falcon Northwest established itself because the Bugatti of the build-to-order pc world. Back then, all of us constructed our personal machines as a result of we had been poor, however all of us wished that Falcon brand as a badge of standing.

As such, it is not with a small quantity of reverence that I went into this overview. A Falcon Northwest machine, proper right here in our sizzling little fingers. This is not the primary Falcon Northwest system that HotHardware has reviewed, after all; it is not even the primary Tiki. However, the final Tiki that we reviewed was outfitted with an Intel Haswell processor and a first-generation GeForce GTX Titan GPU. That was again in 2013. Haswell certain would not really feel like 9 years in the past, does it?

Naturally, this newest modern Tiki is brand-new and bursting on the seams with highly effective, up-to-date {hardware}, like AMD’s 3D V-Cache outfitted Ryzen 7 5800X3D. Let’s check out the complete specs earlier than we dive in:

Falcon Northwest Tiki (2022): Specifications & Features

falcon northwest tiki specifications


The Tiki is not the quickest machine that Falcon Northwest sells, after all, however pay particular consideration to these dimensions. Indeed, it is a critically trim little machine—about the identical dimension as a PlayStation 5, as helpfully demonstrated by this picture from Falcon itself:

ps5 sizecomparison falcon northwest tiki

Sure, the PS5 is large for a recreation console, however that is no recreation console—it is a full-fledged gaming PC prepared for Ultra HD gaming at excessive frame-rates. The Ryzen 7 5800X3D is the quickest gaming CPU on this planet proper now, and the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti is only one step behind the large GeForce RTX 3090. Falcon will even put a Radeon RX 6950 XT into this factor too, in order for you.

If now we have any complaints with the specs as shipped, it will be the comparatively restricted storage. A single 2TB SSD serves surprisingly effectively for a pure recreation system, notably now that the majority people have moved to streaming media. Still, you’ll be able to fill it up shockingly quick with Steam downloads. If we had chosen and bought this technique ourselves, then that circumstance can be our personal fault—the Tiki will be outfitted with a second M.2 SSD in addition to a pair of 8TB SATA SSDs or a single 3.5″ SATA HDD with as much as 14TB of capability.

Inspecting The Falcon Northwest Tiki

front rear falcon northwest tiki

The entrance of the Tiki is a strong plate of aluminum with a cutout for an RGB LED Falcon Northwest brand. The entrance panel I/O is up on the highest of the machine; we’ll get to that in a second. The again panel I/O is all that’s supplied by the ASUS ROG Strix B550-I motherboard and the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti Founders Edition graphics card.

We do have a small nitpick right here, in that there is really quite few USB ports. You get one USB 2.0 port, three USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports, a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port, after which one other USB Type-C port completely for audio output. It feels wasteful to plug in a keyboard or mouse to a USB 3.2 Gen 2 port, however you will have to try this on this machine except you need to hook them into the entrance panel USB ports. We would actually have favored to see a second USB 2.0 port on the again for enter units. Still, most folk do not want piles of USB, so in the end it is not more likely to be an issue. Even in case you do, you could possibly simply hook up a hub.

front panel falcon northwest tiki

A pair of USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports (5 Gbps), a 10-Gbps USB Type-C port, and a 3.5mm audio combo jack comprise the entrance panel connections. This is a totally acceptable entrance panel configuration, generally seen on a number of DIY instances. We might need favored to have seen one other USB port or a card reader, however it is a gaming machine by way of and thru. Most players in all probability will not make use of such lodging, they usually’d make the wiring contained in the machine much more sophisticated.

case interior falcon northwest tiki

Opening up the facet of the case merely requires undoing two thumbscrews within the again and lifting it off. Getting into the Tiki could not be simpler, though getting it closed could be a appreciable problem largely because of the Asetek liquid cooler. This reviewer prefers air coolers, and inquired with Falcon Northwest as as to whether such an choice was accessible, however there was not. That’s a disgrace, as a result of reattaching the facet of the Tiki with these hoses in the best way with such tight quarters will be nerve wracking.

As you’d count on for a machine barely 4″ huge, the Tiki is cramped inside, however not extraordinarily so. Over on the left, you’ll be able to see the Falcon Northwest badge with the system serial quantity and the proprietor’s identify on it—”Hot Hardware”, on this case. Every Falcon Northwest machine is custom-built and personalised for the purchaser. Underneath that label is the bracket that may maintain a single 3.5″ HDD or a pair of two.5″ SSDs. You may set up them your self, even, though we’re unsure the place the SATA energy cables ended up in our construct.

Another nitpick that now we have concerning the Tiki is the shortage of filtering on the system intakes. There’s no two methods about it—any particles or mud that will get close to the case goes proper inside, particularly if the system is loaded and the followers are going.

falcon tiki airflow

We requested Falcon about this, they usually replied that there merely wasn’t room within the chassis for filters, or no less than not ones that might be cleaned simply. Ultimately the exact same open-ness within the chassis makes it simple to slide the nozzle of a can of air by way of the gaps and blow out the followers, so regulate issues do you have to go for one among these tiny titans. It’s not a deal-breaker, but it surely might be an annoyance when you’ve got a dusty home or shedding pets.

As far as consumer upgrades go, Falcon Northwest will assist and guarantee the system “till it has been modified previous the purpose the place [Falcon] can be able to supporting it.” The firm tells us that that usually means changing the motherboard. The firm additionally tells us that the majority consumer upgrades are graphics card upgrades. The 1000-watt energy provide on this machine ought to definitely serve, even for the subsequent power-thirsty era.

As with each Falcon Northwest system, the Tiki is constructed totally from off-the-shelf elements other than its chassis, so there’s actually not a lot else to say right here other than “good job.”

Let’s get into how the machine runs, lets?

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