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Mesh Matrix II 955BE Hush - Mesh Matrix II 955BE Hush
In terms of the Mesh's gaming performance, while the 4870 was a very impressive card and received our prestigious Editor's Award when we reviewed it, it is now over a year old and starting to show its age - plus the model we reviewed had double the RAM of the HIS card used here. Thus this 4870 won't run Crysis at high resolutions with all the details turned up to 'high' (30fps at 1,680 x 1,050 was about the limit) as does its successor, the 4890, but it will still stomp its way through most other games without too much difficulty.
In Call of Duty 4, for example, the Matrix II 955BE Hush returned an average of 72 frames per second (fps) at 1,920 x 1,200 with details set to maximum and two samples of anti-aliasing (AA). The aforementioned overclock didn't have too much of an effect on most games as this PC is limited by its graphics card rather than the CPU.
The rest of the Mesh's specifications include 4GB of basic Samsung 1333MHz DDR3 RAM, fully used by a 64-bit version of Windows Vista Premium, and a fairly generous 750GB Samsung Spinpoint F1 HD753LJ hard drive with a 32MB buffer - both more than adequate for the average consumer.
At this price point the LG Blu-ray reader (which will also read the now defunct HD-DVD format and of course write to CD and DVD) is a great inclusion, helping to turn the Matrix II 955BE Hush into a well-rounded package for most of your entertainment needs. The only minor downer is that the non-modular generic 550W PSU Mesh has used is hardly likely to have high efficiency ratings.
Finally on the software front we have the usual additions such as a trial version of Microsoft Office and a full version of Works 8.5, Bullguard Internet Security (90 day trial) and the less usual, but welcome inclusion of Cyberlink's OEM Video Editing Suite. Mesh's RTB one-year warranty is nothing to write home about, though the company does offer a warranty upgrade of one year on-site plus two years RTB parts and labour as a £42.54 option.
Overall then we have a PC that, while not a stunner in any area, performs well across the board and generally uses quality components. Unfortunately one of those, the HIS graphics card, means the machine is far from quiet. It's a pity too, since the £799 Matrix II 955BE represents excellent value for money - a similarly-configured system from Dell, for example, will set you back well over £1000 without a monitor. As long as you alleviate the noise issue by upgrading the graphics card to a 1GB HD4890 (which should cost around £30 when this configuration becomes available on Mesh's website) this PC package is easy to recommend.
If you can get around the noise issue by upgrading the HIS graphics card, the Mesh Matrix II 955BE Hush offers excellent value and generally good performance, making it well worth considering for gamers on a budget.