‘GTO’ is a three-letter acronym with a chequered history. First found adorning legendary Ferrari and Pontiac racing cars in the 1960s, the letters were once synonymous with performance and style.
Now, ATI has purloined them for the latest spin of its last-generation X1800 graphics, and thereby the hallowed trilogy of letters has passed unto the Mesh Matrix Titan, which contains the aforementioned card.
But instead of meaning no compromise performance, GTO now appears to stand for performance beyond what you might expect for the money. So this Mesh system isn’t a dream PC, but it is meant to offer good value. With a dual-core Athlon 64 X2 processor, Creative X-Fi audio, and Creative 7.1 speakers thrown in, you certainly get a lot more than just GTO graphics.
The motherboard is even CrossFire ready, so there’s room to extend the performance and longevity of the graphics at a later date. This may not be a Ferrari, but could it be a more practical fully loaded hot hatch?
Mesh Matrix Titan GTO
HEC-550TD-PTE 550W PSU
2.2GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+
1GB 400MHz PC3200 DDR SDRAM
256MB Connect3D ATi Radeon X1800GTO graphics
19in ViewSonic VX922 SXGA TFT (1,280 x 1,024)
250GB Maxtor DiamondMax 10 SATA
Sony DW-Q120A dual-layer DVD-RW; Sony DDU1615 DVD-ROM
2 x Gigabit LAN, 56k modem
Creative SoundBlaster X-Fi XtremeMusic
Creative Labs Inspire T7900
Windows XP Home, Microsoft Works 8.5, CyberLink PowerDVD 5 (2 channel) / PowerProducer 3 / PowerDirector 3 / PowerCinema 4
One year onsite plus two years RTB parts and labour
Price: £1,173 inc VAT
As always, we’d recommend 2GB of memory in a system primarily aimed at gaming, although you can still get away with 1GB. This upgrade would set you back £75 plus VAT for Titan systems, so you may find it cheaper elsewhere as Mesh is only supplying basic Samsung OEM DIMMs. We’d also like to have seen a media reader to complete the specification. But otherwise this is a well balanced collection of components, with nothing insanely over specified at the expense of anything else. It's great to see the X-Fi in there, although it's not the FPS version with onboard RAM - but then, this is a relatively mid-ranged system.