The Mesh Elite Pro 10 CS has a huge and slightly garish case, but its display is top-notch
Processor: Quad-core 3.9GHz Intel Core i5-4690, RAM: 8GB, Front USB ports : 1x USB3, 2x USB2, Rear USB ports: 2x USB3, 4x USB2, Total storage: 120GB SSD, 1TB hard disk, Graphics card: Nvidia GeForce GTX 960, Display: 22in Iiyama Prolite E2283HS-B1, Operating system: Windows 10 Home
The Mesh Elite Pro 10 CS cuts an imposing figure in its AvP Venom case. The futuristic-looking design, complete with blue LEDs and glossy plastic, might not be to everyone’s taste, but it’s definitely striking. It’s taller than most midi-towers and particularly curvy, even on the top. You won’t be resting anything on this case unless you want it sliding off.
The glossy front panel is a door that hides the external 5¼in drive bays. The side panel has a large viewing window so you can see the internal components, and Mesh has neatly cabled the system with tubing to bundle all the loose cables together, making everything look neat. As such, airflow inside the case isn’t a problem, aided by the 120mm exhaust fan in the back of the case. There’s also space in the top of the case for a 240mm liquid processor cooler if you want to add one in the future.
The Elite Pro 10 CS uses a quad-core Intel Core i5-4690 clocked at 3.9GHz. This is based on Intel’s 4th-generation Haswell architecture, so is no longer the newest technology. Still, it’s more than capable for most desktop tasks, as our application benchmarks show. The PC scored 97 overall.
The processor is paired with a single 8GB stick of 2,133MHz DDR3 memory. The MSI B85M-E45 motherboard supports up to 32GB across four slots, so upgrading the RAM is easy. Adding a second stick will also allow you to take advantage of dual-channel architecture, which improves performance.
The motherboard offers reasonable space for upgrades, but you won’t be able to install a second graphics card as it has only one PCI-E x16 slot. There are two PCI-E x1 slots, although one is obstructed by the dual-slor Nvidia GeForce GTX 960 graphics card. A free PCI slot is provided for older expansion cards.
The PC has four SATA3 ports and two slower SATA2 ports. Two of the SATA3 ports have storage drives plugged in, and a SATA2 port is taken up with a DVD-RW optical drive. There are no M.2 or SATA Express ports for the latest generation of storage drives, but Mesh has included a 120GB SSD and a 1TB hard disk. We’re always glad to see an SSD system drive, as these improve boot times and system responsiveness, while the 1TB hard disk provides plenty of storage space. If you’re a serious gamer, the SSD may be too small for many of the latest blockbusters, though.
The case has plenty of spare drive bays for extra storage or a memory card reader. It has three 2½in drive bays, two of which are spare, and four 3½in bays with three spare. There are also three external 5¼in drive bays, only one of which is in use.
The Elite Pro 10 CS’ Nvidia GeForce GTX 960 has 2GB of GDDR5 memory and performed as well as we expected. It’s a proven mid-range card that can handle most of today’s games at medium to high quality. Dirt Showdown isn’t particularly taxing for a modern card, and the GTX 960 made light work of it, achieving a smooth 80fps at 1,920×1,080 resolution with 4x anti-aliasing and Ultra quality graphics. This is a few frames short of what we’ve seen from some GTX 960-equipped PCs, but Dirt tends to be held back by the processor at frame rates this high.
In Metro: Last Light we saw 28.7fps at 1,920×1,080 with SSAA turned on and Very High quality settings. You’ll need to turn SSAA off to achieve a smoother 52.6fps. The GTX 960 has two DVI outputs alongside HDMI and DisplayPort so you can easily set up a multimonitor configuration.
There’s just one USB3 port on the front of the case, alongside two slower USB ports. This is supplemented by two USB3 ports and four USB ports on the rear. We like to see more of the faster ports on a modern PC. The back also has three audio jacks that can be used in combination with the front headphone and mic jacks for 7.1 audio. Gigabit Ethernet is provided for wired networking, and there’s a pair of PS/2 connections for a legacy keyboard and mouse.
If you spend £100 more and order the Elite Pro 10 CS as a complete system, you’ll receive a 22in Iiyama ProLite E2283HS-B1 monitor and a keyboard and mouse. We’d prefer a larger 24in display, as supplied with many other systems at this price, but what the monitor lacks in size it makes up for in image quality. Its contrast ratio of 1,233:1 is impressive, as are its 0.2cd/m2 black levels. Our test images showed deep blacks and plenty of contrast. Images are fun and vibrant on this screen, but its below-average 86.9% coverage of the sRGB colour gamut shows it’s not the most colour-accurate display.
The monitor is joined by a wired Logitech MK120 keyboard and mouse. This is a good budget set. The keyboard is comfortable to type on and has a good space-saving design without sacrificing comfort. There are no media or volume shortcut keys, however. The mouse is basic but comfortable to use.
The Mesh Elite Pro 10 CS is a well-built system with decent application performance and one of our favourite mid-range graphics cards. The display is on the small side, but we liked its high contrast ratio, and the inclusion of an SSD and hard disk is admirable. The Yoyotech Warbird RS10 and Chillblast Fusion Gladiator have the advantage for power, but if you want a good balance of application and gaming performance, along with the responsiveness that an SSD affords, the Elite Pro 10 CS is a worth alternative. For other options check out our Best desktop PCs and buying guide.
|Processor||Quad-core 3.9GHz Intel Core i5-4690|
|Memory type||2,133MHz DDR3|
|Motherboard chipset||Intel B85 Express|
|Ports and expansion|
|Front USB ports||1x USB3, 2x USB2|
|Rear USB ports||2x USB3, 4x USB2|
|Other ports||2x PS/2|
|Case size HxWxD||504x190x490mm|
|PCI (free)||1 (1)|
|PCIe x1 (free)||2 (1)|
|PCIe x16 (free)||1 (0)|
|Serial ATA (free)||4x SATA3, 2x SATA2|
|Memory slots (free)||4 (3)|
|Drive bays 2 1/2″ (free)||3 (2)|
|Drive bays 3 1/2″ (free)||4 (3)|
|Drive bays 5 1/4″ (free)||3 (2)|
|Total storage||120GB SSD, 1TB hard disk|
|Memory card reader||None|
|Optical drive type||DVD-RW|
|Graphics card||Nvidia GeForce GTX 960|
|Graphics/video ports||2x DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort|
|Sound card||Realtek ALC887|
|Sound card outputs||Line in, line out, microphone|
|Display||22in Iiyama Prolite E2283HS-B1|
|Inputs||HDMI, DVI, VGA|
|Operating system||Windows 10 Home|
|Operating system restore option||Restore partition|
|Warranty||One year collect and return, two year parts cover, lifetime labour|
|Price including delivery (inc VAT)||£700|
|Price excluding monitor (inc VAT and delivery)||£600|
|Part Code||Elite Pro 10 CS|