The Mesh Dynamo i3V is a 15in laptop with an Intel Core i3 chip.

Our review sample of Mesh's Dynamo i3V gave away its heritage by retaining its original MSI packaging and branding. Its consumer-friendly looks incorporate a glossy black lid with a pinstripe effect that continues through to the silver-grey finish of the interior wrist rest which incorporates an ‘invisible' recessed single-button touchpad.

It's a valiant effort, but nowhere near as impressive as Packard Bell's, admittedly much more expensive, Packard Bell EasyNote TX86. Perhaps the most unexpected design feature of the Mesh Dynamo i3V is in the location of the interface ports. While connectivity is relatively good — both ExpressCard and flash card reader slots are provided on the lefthand side and a single USB 2.0 port is found to the right — all the remaining ports are situated at the back.

This includes the power, VGA, HDMI and two more USB 2.0 ports. There are only two of the latter, which means you'll be turning the Mesh Dynamo i3V laptop or reaching around and plugging blind whenever you need to attach or disconnect more peripherals.

An anti-glare 15.6 inch widescreen display is fitted, and the Mesh Dynamo i3V system comes with 3GB of RAM and a 320GB Hard drive. The 2.13GHz Intel Core i3 330M processor is the same model used in Samsung's P530 and performance is very similar – a score of 94 points being achieved in WorldBench 6.

The Mesh Dynamo i3V's Scrabble-tile style keyboard incorporates full-sized cursor keys and lacks any special control buttons, placing their features on the standard function keys instead.  From here you can selectively activate the 802.11b/g/n networking, Bluetooth and built-in webcam.

The default Windows wallpaper depicted a trio of happy Mesh Dynamo i3V users leaping skyward as though from an invisible trampoline, but this is actually a heavy laptop, weighing in at 2.45kg.

Mesh is currently offering the Mesh Dynamo i3V with a free upgrade to the faster Intel Core i3-350M processor. It's the same generation processor with all the same specs, but clocked a fraction faster.

See also: Group test: what's the best Budget Laptop?

See also: Group test: what's the best laptop?

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

Mesh Dynamo i3V: Specs

  • 2.13GHz Intel Core i3 330M
  • 15.6in matt, 1366x768 display
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
  • 3GB DDR3-1066 RAM
  • 320GB 5400rpm SATA 3Gb/s HDD
  • Intel GMA 4500MHD
  • HDMI, VGA
  • Stereo speakers, headphone jack, mic input
  • 3x USB 2.0
  • Super Multi Dual Layer
  • 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth
  • 10/100/1000Mb/s
  • SD/SDHC, ExpressCard
  • webcam
  • 49Wh Lithium Ion, removable
  • 374x247x34.5mm
  • 2448g
  • 2.13GHz Intel Core i3 330M
  • 15.6in matt, 1366x768 display
  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
  • 3GB DDR3-1066 RAM
  • 320GB 5400rpm SATA 3Gb/s HDD
  • Intel GMA 4500MHD
  • HDMI, VGA
  • Stereo speakers, headphone jack, mic input
  • 3x USB 2.0
  • Super Multi Dual Layer
  • 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth
  • 10/100/1000Mb/s
  • SD/SDHC, ExpressCard
  • webcam
  • 49Wh Lithium Ion, removable
  • 374x247x34.5mm
  • 2448g

OUR VERDICT

In all, the Mesh Dynamo i3V is a difficult offer to pass by. Build quality is less impressive and it’s pretty average in most respects, but there's a decent specification and, quite attractively, a lower price than its peers. It'll hold its own against laptops costing £100 more.

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