MSI GS65: Performance and Portability with an executive design.

The MSI GS65 is a laptop from the MSI Stealth series which translates to a thin, light and portable laptop with very capable specifications. The latest MSI GS65 features a 6-core Intel i7-8750H processor and an Nvidia GTX 1060 or 1070 Max-Q video card depending on the model. It is also equipped with 16GB 2400MHz DDR4 memory with a 512GB m.2 SATA SSD for storage. It brings an immense power in a sleek design.

Design

Without a second look, the MSI GS65’s style is easily distinguishable thanks to the elegant matte black frame with gold frames around it. This gold color is also present on the touchpad, hinge, ventilation and the very desirable MSI logo at the center of the lid. MSI takes a different approach to this laptop compared to their usual gaming lines. Despite its high capabilities, MSI does not market this as a gaming laptop but more on a lifestyle approach. It doesn’t have the curvy angles and red accents all over the chassis and would be still quite the eye catcher in an office setting.

The MSI GS65 has a premium feel and is lighter than it looks, only weighing 4.14lbs and has a meager 17.33mm body. It fits easily into any backpack and won’t be a burden to carry around. This is impressive considering that it’s a device meant to be brought to your daily meetings and out-of-the-office work.

 

Keyboard and Touchpad

Even with the sleek profile of the MSI GS65, they managed to include plenty of ports and a SteelSeries keyboard with a decent travel and comfortable feedback. One thing that quite bothers me is that they still added the RGB backlight despite that adapts to the gaming mode despite the market they are aiming for.

Just below the keyboard is a glass-coated touchpad that doesn’t accidentally trigger when touched. While underneath the keyboard, they have equipped the MSI GS65 with their famous Cooler Boost Trinity thermal systems. However, with the extra space, MSI  didn’t bother adding better speakers and opted for tiny speakers that fire down from beneath the base. This causes the sound to get muffled when in use.

 

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US (GS65 Series)

Processor: Intel Core i7-8750H (Intel Core i7)
Graphics adapter: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q
Memory: 16384 MB, DDR4-2400 dual-channel
Display : 15.6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 141 PPI, AUO80ED, IPS, 144 Hz refresh rate, Glossy: no
Storage: Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ, 256 GB
Weight :1.838 kg ( = 64.83 oz / 4.05 pounds)

Performance

As a work laptop, the MSI functions more than required. Since the MSI GS65 goes without all the gaming design that many of their laptops have, it looks like a gold-plated laptop in a business meeting with rainbow keys that might be distracting for others. That can be resolved by switching it off or adjusting it to a color per key.

Some of the games we’ve tried it on include Rainbow Six: Siege, Dota 2, PUBG, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 and Witcher 3 and it went pretty smoothly despite not changing any of the settings. The heat management is surprisingly good for a laptop this thin. Under high strain, you can hear the fans blowing out the hot air from the sides and back, but heat never reaches the palm rests. The griffin battle in Witcher 3 is one of the tensest combat scenes there are.  The Nvidia GTX 1070 Max-Q never faltered, rendering the action at 54 frames per second on Ultra at 1080p.

We were most surprised with the MSI GS65’s 5 to hour battery life while doing productivity tasks (definitely not gaming), which is exceptional for a laptop with high-end specs. It’s an 82Wh battery giving you up to 8 hours of maximum power saving works – with all the connectivity turned off and screen brightness set as low as possible. For gaming, the battery lasts only around 1h 30 min. Anyway, we doubt anyone is going to game on the battery with FPS capped to 30.

 

Display

The display has thin bezels with vibrant colors (Thank you, IPS-level panels) and a 144hz refresh rate. The 144hz refresh rate enables smoother interactions for the user which are quite noticeable even when moving your cursor around. Thanks to AUO’s panels, MSI though tends to have really good displays in their laptops and they surely didn’t disappoint this time.

Conclusion

The MSI GS65 Stealth Thin-051 looks sleek, performs well, and has a long-lasting battery. It is an impressive gaming laptop that could equal a business laptop. The laptop delivers better and outperforms most of its ultra-thin rivals with the same components.

With the 6-core Intel Core i7 processor and GTX  1070 Max-Q, it can easily take care almost anything you throw at it. Still, we expected a few more improvements, like a better native auidio and less flashy RGB light. Nevertheless, we are pleased with what it has to offer and would be a good addition to your Christmas Wish List this December 2018.

Post Author: Christian

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