Mesh 7 review

Price when reviewed

The Mesh 7 was hotly anticipated in the PC Pro Labs this month, but it’s not a new CPU or graphics card we’ve been eager to see. You’ve probably already guessed from the picture, but our excitement comes entirely from Thermaltake’s staggering Level 10 chassis.

Created in partnership with designers from BMW, it’s one of the most outlandish cases you’re likely to see. With its hardware ensconced in individual enclosures and attached to a towering spine of brushed aluminium, it’s hard not to be impressed – indeed, the Mesh drew a crowd of perplexed admirers within minutes of its arrival in the Labs.

The Level 10 is vast compared to the average chassis – it’s 666mm tall and weighs 21kg when empty – and its eye-catching design means it will dominate any room it occupies. Thermaltake’s innovative approach means the motherboard, CPU and graphics card are contained within the main enclosure. The PSU and optical drives are housed in separate boxes, and each of the six hard disk bays is its own isolated, removable tray.

Mesh 7

It also comes with several practical benefits. The motherboard tray, optical drive cover and PSU bracket can all be easily removed, and a hole in the motherboard tray allows easy access to the backplate of a heatsink or water-cooling unit. Each hard disk enclosure has a red LED that lights up when it’s occupied, too.

The Level 10 just isn’t built to the standard you’d expect, though. The motherboard enclosure wouldn’t open or close without grating on one of the 120mm case fans and, with the open door no longer supported by the rear fan mount, it noticeably sagged, too heavy for its own hinges.

Due to the asymmetric design, the chassis wobbled at the touch when sat on a flat surface and sagged slightly to one side when fully stocked with components; hardly the sturdy, indestructible build we’d expect given its preposterous price.

Away from the glamour, the Mesh 7 boasts decent upgrade potential: three DIMM sockets, four hard disk bays and two 5.25in bays lie empty alongside two spare PCI Express x16 sockets and two PCI slots. The port selection is fairly standard, with four USB ports and an eSATA connector on the front, and six more USB sockets alongside eSATA, FireWire and PS/2 on the rear.


Warranty1 yr return to base N/A

Basic specifications

Total hard disk capacity1,064
RAM capacity6.00GB
Screen size24.0in


CPU familyIntel Core i7
CPU nominal frequency2.66GHz
CPU overclocked frequency3.60GHz
Processor socketLGA 1366
HSF (heatsink-fan)Akasa Freedom Tower


MotherboardAsus P6T SE
Motherboard chipsetIntel X58
Conventional PCI slots free2
Conventional PCI slots total2
PCI-E x16 slots free2
PCI-E x16 slots total3
PCI-E x8 slots free0
PCI-E x8 slots total0
PCI-E x4 slots free0
PCI-E x4 slots total0
PCI-E x1 slots free0
PCI-E x1 slots total1
Internal SATA connectors6
Internal SAS connectors1
Internal PATA connectors1
Internal floppy connectors1
Wired adapter speed1,000Mbits/sec


Memory typeDDR3
Memory sockets free3
Memory sockets total6

Graphics card

Graphics cardATI Radeon HD 5970
Multiple SLI/CrossFire cards?no
3D performance settingLow
Graphics chipsetATI Radeon HD 5970
Graphics card RAM2.00GB
DVI-I outputs1
HDMI outputs1
VGA (D-SUB) outputs0
DisplayPort outputs1
Number of graphics cards1

Hard disk

Hard disk usable capacity931GB
Internal disk interfaceSATA/300
Spindle speed7,200RPM
Cache size32MB
Hard disk 2 make and modelSamsung SSD
Hard disk 2 nominal capacity64GB
Hard disk 2 formatted capacity59
Hard disk 2 spindle speedN/A
Hard disk 3 make and modelN/A
Hard disk 3 nominal capacityN/A
Hard disk 4 make and modelN/A
Hard disk 4 nominal capacityN/A


Optical disc technologyBlu-ray reader
Optical disk 2 make and modelN/A
Optical disk 3 make and modelN/A


Monitor make and modelIiyama Prolite E2407HDS
Resolution screen horizontal1,920
Resolution screen vertical1,080
Resolution1920 x 1080
Pixel response time5ms
Contrast ratio1,000:1
Screen brightness300cd/m2
DVI inputs1
HDMI inputs1
VGA inputs1
DisplayPort inputs0

Additional Peripherals

Speaker typeN/A
Sound cardRealtek HD Audio


ChassisThermaltake Level 10
Case formatFull tower
Dimensions318 x 614 x 666mm (WDH)

Power supply

Power supply rating850W

Free drive bays

Free front panel 5.25in bays2

Rear ports

USB ports (downstream)10
FireWire ports1
eSATA ports2
PS/2 mouse portyes
Electrical S/PDIF audio ports1
Optical S/PDIF audio output ports1
3.5mm audio jacks6

Front ports

Front panel USB ports4
Front panel eSATA ports1
Front panel memory card readerno

Mouse & Keyboard

Mouse and keyboardLogitech wireless keyboard and mouse

Operating system and software

OS familyWindows 7

Noise and power

Idle power consumption172W
Peak power consumption545W

Performance tests

Overall application benchmark score2.56
Office application benchmark score2.28
2D graphics application benchmark score2.68
Encoding application benchmark score2.10
Multitasking application benchmark score3.16
3D performance (crysis) low settings186fps
3D performance settingLow

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