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Reviews

InterPro IPW-AL review: A superbly built workstation

Excellent performance and well-rounded features make for a very competent workstation for the money

A side view of the InterPro IPW-AL workstation
Price
£3,663 exc VAT
  • Excellent 3D modelling animation abilities
  • Tidy setup
  • Minimal noise
  • Lesser Core i9 12900K processor

InterPro chose not to use the range-topping Intel Core i9 processor for its summarily named IPW-AL. However, it has still managed to put together a workstation that competes strongly in almost every area – and it's £105 under our £4,500 budget, too. However, you will need to fork out £25 for delivery.

Instead of the KS version of the 16-core Intel Core i9-12900, InterPro opted for the 12900K variant one rung down. This misses out on the top 5.5GHz Turbo mode, instead offering a maximum clock of 5.2GHz for its eight P-cores, with a base frequency of 3.2GHz. The eight E-cores max out at 3.9GHz, with a base 2.4GHz frequency. 

While the 12900K saves money, InterPro hasn't skimped on RAM, taking full advantage of this processor's support for DDR5. It supplies 64GB as two 5,600MHz DIMMs, leaving two slots free if you ever need to upgrade to the Asus ProArt Z690-Creator motherboard's 128GB maximum.

Graphics is taken care of by the obvious choice at this price: the PNY Nvidia Quadro RTX A4500. This provides 7,168 CUDA cores and 20GB of GDDR6 frame buffer with a 640GB/sec bandwidth.

It's an all-Samsung affair when it comes to storage, and generous in quantity, too. InterPro supplies two SSDs, with the main one for operating system and apps being a Gen 4 Samsung 980 Pro M.2 NVMe unit. This delivered 6,823MB/sec sustained reading and 4,948MB/sec writing in CrystalDiskMark 8, so safe to say you won't be kept waiting. The secondary SSD is a SATA-connected Samsung 870 Evo, which provided 560MB/sec reading and 524MB/sec writing.

Despite the lesser Core i9 processor, the InterPro IPW-AL still delivered a very fast result in the PC Pro benchmarks, with an overall score of 650. This is thanks to its scores of 634 in the video-encoding portion of the test and 794 in multitasking, although the 248 in our image-editing section reflects the slightly lower maximum single-core clock speed. Also reflecting the slower processor is the Maxon Cinebench R23 multicore result of 26,672.

The system's SPECviewperf 2020 results were excellent. Scores of 161 in 3dsmax-07 and 486 in maya-06 demonstrate excellent 3D modelling animation abilities, while 128 in catia-06, 183 in creo-03, 443 in snx-04 and 302 in Solidworks-05 reveal just how good the InterPro system will be for engineering, CAD or product design tasks. 

As with all the systems here, InterPro has put together a superbly built workstation. All the cables are tidy with minimal mess, making it easy to work inside the top-quality Fractal Design Define 7 case. It's a popular choice this month, with InterPro choosing the slimmer version (210mm wide compared to the 240mm of the standard edition). Much of the room inside is taken up by the excellent Corsair H150i RGB Pro XT Water Cooler and like all of its rivals here that meant there was minimal noise.

InterPro hasn't aced every performance test in this price category. The Intel Core i9-12900K processor has a few weaknesses compared to the KS variant, and as a result, a few of the software workloads in SPECviewperf suffer marginally. General system performance is superb, and you benefit from 4TB of secondary SSD storage for a great price.

InterPro IPW-AL Specifications 

Processor

Intel Core i9 processor 

RAM

64GB

GPU

PNY Nvidia Quadro RTX A450

Warranty 

3 years (hardware swap out)

Operating system

Windows 11 Home

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