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Mesh Elite P4 1.8GT

Power PC

Review Processor speeds seem to be without ceiling. A year ago the Pentium III had yet to touch 1GHz - now, 12 months on, the Pentium 4 is nudging 2GHz. Intel's 2GHz chip is expected later this month - for now, the highest Pentium clock speed you can buy is 1.8GHz.

As P4 processors have proved rather disappointing when it comes to performance, we were interested to see what affect such a high clock speed would have. The Mesh Elite P4 1.8GT backs up the processor with 256MB of Rambus, an 80GB hard drive and a 64MB Leadtek WinFast GeForce 3 graphics card, all of which combined to give it a PC WorldBench 2000 score of 169.

Once again the P4 fails to beat its Athlon rivals running at 1.3GHz and 1.4GHz - most of which score nearer to 200. The Mesh is also beaten by a PC powered by a slower 1.7GHz P4, the Hi-Grade Ultis.

However, it's not all bad news for the Elite. Intel markets the P4 as a top performer for multimedia tasks, which are not the focus of our WorldBench tests. So we timed the Elite's performance for video encoding, with impressive results. It took just 8.41 minutes to encode a 560MB AVI file into a 96MB MPEG-2 movie, while a similarly specified 1.4GHz Athlon-based PC took over ten minutes for the same task. This adds up to a real time saving if you do a lot of video encoding work.

The Mesh is a powerful PC, although we were unimpressed by its graphics performance given its GeForce 3-based graphics card. The P4 is expensive, and we are not sure that it gives you your money's worth. ®


Price: £1699
Contact: 020 8208 4702


Processor type: Pentium 4
Clock speed: 1.8GHz
RAM: 256MB Rambus
Hard drive: 80GB
CD-RW: 40x/16x/10x
DVD-ROM: 16x
Graphics card: 64MB GeForce 3
Monitor: 19in Mitsubishi Diamond Pro
Sound card: Creative SB Live 5.1
Warranty: Three-year


Build quality: 8
Features: 8
Performance: 7

All details correct at time of publication.

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