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Review: ZOTAC MEK1 Gaming PC

ZOTAC announced its upgradeable range of gaming PCs called MEK1 in December last year. We received the new MEK1 for a test drive at Gadget Voize Labs. After playing with it for close to two weeks, we must say, we are impressed with what ZOTAC has managed to build!

The MEK1 features a brilliant design and overall build quality. It features bold RGB lighting strips that run along each side panel. While we expected it to come with a metal body, ZOTAC has built the MEK1 around a hard plastic shell, which nevertheless feels robust.

On the front face, there is a hidden compartment, which when opened reveals the power button surrounded by a ring of RGB LED, along with two USB 3.0 ports, a microphone jack, and a 3.55mm audio jack. The two RGB strips on the edges of the MEK1’s body can be fully customised using ZOTAC’s very own Spectra software. The power button RGB ring, however, is locked at blue.

The case of the MEK1 is quite angular. It comes with vents all over the body. According to ZOTAC, the design was inspired by robots and we believe the overall design gives it a unique look. Turn the PC around and you find a bunch of ports at the back, such as four USB 3 ports, five audio jacks, and dual Ethernet.

You also get two USB 2.0 ports, optical audio, PS/2 ports for legacy accessories and HDMI, DisplayPort and DVI to connect monitors. There is no USB-C port though.

One of the biggest surprises here with the ZOTAC MEK1 is that it comes with Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Ti graphics to power all the performance you will need. The MEK1 runs on an Intel Core i7-7700 processor, coupled with 16GB of DDR4 memory, 240GB NVMe SSD, and a 1TB HDD for all your storage requirements. It comes installed with Windows 10 out of the box.

We ran a couple of benchmarks such as AIDA64, Cinebench R15, and PCMark 8 to gauge the performance of the PC. AIDA64 was used to check the memory latency and read-, write-, and copy speeds. We ended up with a Memory Read of 33451 MB/s, while Memory Write gave us 33675 MB/s.

Cinebench R15 was used to take a look at single- and multi-core performance of the MEK1. During our tests, the Single-Core numbers on Cinebench R15 turned out to be 178 cb, while the Multi-Core performance was recorded at 874 cb. OpenGL meanwhile gave us 143 FPS, which is very good.

PCMark 8 was used to test general computing performance through various tests that included web browsing, photo editing, video chat and playback, writing, and gaming. During our Conventional tests, we ended up with 4496 points, while in the Accelerated tests, we got 5198 points.

Gaming performance was fantastic on the ZOTAC MEK1. Its strong specs help the MEK1 in offering plenty of performance for today’s games and general software. While the Zotac MEK1 may seem smaller than most gaming systems out there on the market, it has plenty of graphics power.

The MEK1’s GTX 1070 Ti handles any current game on a 1080p display. It zipped through Rise of the Tomb Raider and Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor with averages of 103fps and 121fps, and it handled Deus Ex: Mankind Divided at 68fps.

The MEK1 is also a good performer at 1440p. It was able to handle Tomb Raider running at its toughest settings at 1440p, by averaging at 81fps. Those are very respectable marks for a gaming PC.

Overall, ZOTAC has done quite well with the MEK1 Gaming PC. Pairing their own GTX 1070 Ti with an i7 7700 results in good performance across the board. For a price of AED 6650 for a full-blown gaming PC with very good performance, the ZOTAC MEK1 is a steal.

Price: AED 6650

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Chris Fernando

Chris N. Fernando is an experienced media professional with over two decades of journalistic experience. He is the Editor of Arabian Reseller magazine, the authoritative guide to the regional IT industry. Follow him on Twitter (@chris508) and Instagram (@chris2508).

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