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Budget PCs Reviews
15,670 Reviews PC Advisor Best Buy Award

Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA review

£499 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Mesh

Our Rating: We rate this 4.5 out of 5

The Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA achieves the highest WorldBench 6 score here and provides staggering gaming performance.

MESH Computers entered administration on 31 May 2011. For up to date information, click here.

Systems at this price point always involve compromises - a meaty processor or a powerful graphics card will obliterate a £500 budget. But the Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA not only achieves the highest WorldBench 6 real-world speed score of the group, it also provides staggering gaming performance that leaves the competition stuttering and flickering in its wake.

We were somewhat surprised to find an AMD CPU under the hood of our Best Buy machine, and the Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA's 3.1GHz Phenom II X2 500 BE marks a turn-around for our previously Intel-dominated PC charts.

All the systems reviewed here feature ATI graphics cards, but the Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA's HD 4870 outclasses the competition and takes gaming to a new level of performance.

Other components are standard fare, with the Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA's smart black case concealing 4GB of DDR2 memory and a 500GB hard drive. The 19in display is perfectly acceptable but lacks a digital input. Usefully, Mesh preinstalls the CyberLink DVD suite.

One slight niggle, however, is the Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA's one-year warranty, which is disappointing in comparison with the two-year guarantees offered elsewhere.

Chart ranking: Budget desktop PCs (Nov 09 issue)

  1. Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA
  2. Palicomp Excalibur Ballistix E85-4670-19
  3. Arbico CD 8570 XL
  4. Eclipse Pearl i84R483
  5. Chillblast Fusion Horizon

>> NEXT PAGE: Budget desktop PCs buying advice

Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA Expert Verdict »

3.1GHz AMD Phenom II X2 550 BE
Windows Vista Home Premium 64bit (free upgrade to Windows 7)
Asus M2N68-VM motherboard
8 x USB 2.0
19in Hanns-G HG191A (0.28mm pixel pitch
1GB PCI Express HIS ATI Radeon HD 4870 (games scores: Crysis [High/Very High] = 51/26fps
Fear = 211fps)
onboard VIA VT1708B sound
speakers built into monitor
max DVD speeds: 22x/22x/12x/16x/6x/8x/12x/16x (DVD-R/+R/-R DL/+R DL/-RW/+RW/-RAM/-ROM)
CyberLink DVD software
one-year return-to-base warranty
WorldBench 6 score: 128
  • Overall: We give this item 9 of 10 overall

The Mesh Matrix II 550BE PCA offers unbeatable value and class-leading performance. If you want a gaming PC for less than £500, nothing else here comes close.

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