MSI GS75 8SG Stealth Laptop Review (i7-8750H, RTX 2080 Max-Q)
Not only the label of smoothest gaming laptops in the market, but also the easiest-looking one belongs to the lastest GS75. You will find out in our thorough analysis whether the 17-incher really can blossom under the hood.
MSI is selling this machine, the successor of GS73 in three distinct base settings. Although a GeForce RTX 2060 is on board for the GS75 8SE, the GS75 8SF comes with the GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q.
The GS75 8SG is fitted with GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics and priced at about 3,800 Euros (~$4,267). It is handy to be using 32 GB DDR4 RAM (2x 16 GB @266 MHz) and a RAID 0 system. The latter comprises one of the two NVMe SSDs of 512 GB. The screen contains a 144 Hz Full HD panel (as in other designs).
Other 17-inch laptops with a slim design and Turing GPU such as the Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701 – Premium Powerful Gaming Laptop, the Lenovo Legion Y740-17, the Schenker XMG Neo 17 and the MSI GE75 8SF are competing with the GS75. In this review, we will find out which device comes out on top.
The GS75 acquires most of its 15-inch brother’s strengths and weaknesses, the GS65, which has been made available for a little longer now.
On the useful hand, the sleek design can be mentioned. The combination of metal surfaces (only the bottom side is produced of plastic), brief height and slender bezels of display gives it a stylish look. Thanks to the copper-colored handles and the same-colored lid border, the 17-incher stands out from the crowd.
Unfortunately, it was not solely pleasing to the chassis. The soft point is discovered in its stability, similar to the 15-inch variant. Both the lid and the base unit offer way and/or illustrate a good deal of flex under strong force.
Despite the fact that many slim and light gaming laptops struggle with stability, the GS75 takes the bottom place here, especially as the case cracks in distinct locations or when twisted generates distinct sounds. There is nothing unique about the workmanship and rests either. Although it is not possible to open the screen as far as the GS65, the maximum opening angle is just above average.
One of the GS75’s greatest highlights is its small weight. 2.3 kg is easy to transport and marks the smallest test field value. Competitors weigh between 2.5 and 2.8 kg. The GS75 goes head-to-head with the Asus GX701GX, which is also 19 mm thin, in terms of height. The 23 mm of the Lenovo Y740 follows.
MSI is not missing a ports trick. As you can consider from a present gaming laptop, a Thunderbolt 3 port is offered by the 17-incher (for instance, connecting eGPUs).
Also respectable are three USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports and a USB 3.0 Type-C port. There are also two audio jacks accessible for earphones and microphones. The HDMI 2.0 port allows easy connection of external screens.
Top: The GS75 houses a RJ45 LAN port despite its slim design. On the contrary, it is somehow disappointing that MSI did not include a packed-fledged card reader, but only intended for microSD cards in a variant instead. The GS75 offers a lock hole for Kensington as a safety function.
We’d define the ports ‘ allocation as lackluster. As the fan sources are on the sides, most ports are very far from the front. The use of an inner mouse (keyword: motion radius) could be inhibited depending on the quantity of cable.
The reliability of Wi-Fi is brilliant. The GS75 took the top spot among the comparison systems when gathering information in range exam with the reference router Linksys EA8500 (1 m distance). However, the distinctions are very low if the XMG Neo 17 is ignored.
As is common of MSI, there is pre-installed a big software package. The linchpin, as usual, is the so-called Dragon Center, combining dozens of characteristics. Probably the “system tuner” is the most essential. The screen and sound profiles (True Color and Nahimic), the DPI settings, the performance mode (Shift) and the fan management can be adjusted here.
All the readings shared here were performed with the “Auto” fan. The “Comfort” mode was effectively scheduled for the Shift choice.
Tests resulted in very poor outcomes in 3D use (contrary to the pre-production device we had briefly in the office during Turing’s launch), we had to move to the 3D test profile “Sport.” The latter had a little perceived impact on the growth of noise, etc.
Whereas the software characteristics were quite comprehensive, the delivery with the term “poor” can be defined In addition to an energy adapter (230 Watts), the box contained only a quick start guide and a recovery manual.
Enormous servicing alternatives from the GS75 are not to be hoped. When the 15 Phillips bolts are erased from the bottom side and the cover pops off (Starting at the RJ45 port stage is best), only fans, battery and storage access are available. All remaining elements are attached in a black foil, making it impossible to upgrade the CPU and GPU.
All remaining elements are attached in a black foil, making it impossible to upgrade the CPU and GPU.
Many readers can immediately recognize the keyboard. Hardly any surprise, for years, MSI has been using the tried and tested SteelSeries chiclet keyboard, which includes per-key RGB backlighting as well as a pretty good type feeling.
Some customers will need to get used to the arrangement, however. As normal, in favor of better gaming control, MSI used a quite specific design, which varies considerably from the (German) norm.
In addition, we would have preferred to place the keyboard further above. The remainder of the palm is a little tight to our liking. However, the keyboard got a “excellent” general rating.
The manufacturer used an incredibly broad ClickPad with regard to the touchpad. 14 cm is an enormous quantity of laptop norms, even in the 17-inch range. On the other side, the height of just 6.5 cm is quite restricted, which in reality was hardly a problem for us.
It turned out that the most irritating element was stabilization. The left and right corners of the click fields have a very profound travel. In contrast to the (somewhat quiet) keyboard, the inputs are rather loud or buzzy.
There is hardly anything to complain about in terms of accuracy. Most of the gestures of multitouch (zooming, scrolling, etc.) operate perfectly and are readily acknowledged. Fingers glide fluently over the touchpad thanks to the soft surface.
With the exception of the missing support from G-Sync, the display meets almost every standard that a gamer might want in 2019 in a high-end gaming laptop, either its the time of response (less than 10 ms) or the frequency. Not only does 144 Hz guarantee a buttery-smooth Windows operation, it also has a positive effect on gaming-at least when there is adequate graphical power. In the remaining fields, the Full HD panel also manages to create a good to very nice image.
For instance, MSI opted for a Chi Mei model, primarily the CMN N173HCE-G33, also discovered in the GE75. The wide contrast is worth noting in addition to the comparatively elevated luminance (about 327 cd / m2).
1365:1 could only be surpassed in the test field by the Asus GX701GX. In terms of light intensity, the latter lies below the GS75, but in trade it provides a somewhat better black level.
As far as color space is concerned, MSI is coming back first. Of course, 95% of sRGB is visible on a gaming computer. The precision of the color is not bad either.
As is prevalent in many other laptops, the sRGB mode found in True Color guarantees a natural-looking picture without blue tints or anything like that.
Backlight bleeding on the GS75 isn’t either a large deal. The dimming we observed, which happens up to 17 percent brightness, due to its high frequency (around 25 KHz) should not be a concern even for delicate buyers.
Display time of response
Display reaction times demonstrate how quickly the screen can shift from one color to another. Slow reaction times may result in after-images and it may cause objects to appear blurry (color fringing). Fast-running 3D title gamers should pay close attention to fast reaction times.
Screen Flickering / PWM (Modulation pulse-width)
Some notebooks will simply switch on and off the backlight in fast succession to dim the screen-a technique called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM). Ideally, this frequency of cycling should be undetectable to the human eye. If the frequency is too poor, users with vulnerable eyes may experience pressure or headaches, or may even notice the flickering overall.
In this setup, fitted with a GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, SSD RAID and 32 GB DDR4 RAM, the GS75 promises to be extremely future-proof. Neither should the hexa-core CPU achieve its boundaries so rapidly in the coming years.
Entirely convinced enough, MSI chose Intel’s Core i7-8750H hexa-core processor, which can deliver up to 12 threads in tandem through hyper-threading. The Coffee Lake model does have a 42 Watts TDP and offers 9 MB of L3 cache.
The base clock velocity is 2.2 GHz, whereby Turbo Boost enables up to 4.1 GHz. This value, however, applies only to single-core loading. If all cores work, the greatest possible clock speed is 3.9 GHz. In Cinebench’s Multi-Core exam, which is neither bad nor especially good, the GS75 obtained between 3.1 and 3.9 GHz.
In the Cinebench loop, the 17-incher underperformed in front of the Asus GX701GX and the Lenovo Legion Y740, which are also fitted with a Core i7-8750H. Such as the rivals, after the second pass, the actual score fell by several percent, but stayed at a relatively steady level.
Performance of the system
The built-in SSD duo allows for not only brief boot times and load times, but a usually quick system as well.
The system tests supported this subjective feeling. The GS75 remained well ahead on PCMark 10 with 5605 points and was only beaten by the Lenovo Y740.
Solution for storage
MSI combined in our review device two already quick NVMe SSDs (Samsung PM981) into an extremely fast RAID 0 arrangement, which provides a lot of storage space due to its 1 TB overall capacity.
Particular device discussed here merged two already fast NVMe SSDs (Samsung PM981) into an incredibly fast RAID 0 system, providing more than enough storage room owing to its general capability of 1 TB.
Both SSDs conducted perfectly in performance metrics as anticipated. The Asus GX701GX, however, demonstrated that a single SSD does not necessarily have to operate slower, as its 1000 GB drive (also Samsung PM981) was generally parallel.
If more storage capacity is needed, it is possible to find a third M.2 slot inside the case, which only supports SATA III instead of PCIe. The GS75 has no bay of 2.5 inches. For a bigger battery, MSI preferred to use this room-an understandable choice.
As the GS75 supports Optimus for graphics changing, the machine can switch between the integrated graphics chip of the processor (in this case UHD Graphics 630) and the dedicated GeForce GPU dynamically. The latter is used only for demanding 3D activities to save energy.
In the top of the-line model, the GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q is currently the second strongest laptop GPU after the “normal” RTX 2080, which was not designed to be power-efficient. A nice match for present and upcoming games is 2944 shader units and 8 GB GDDR6 VRAM.
However, it should be observed that the GS75 is provided with the RTX 2080 Max-Q 80-Watt version instead of the 90W variant, which can be identified by clock speeds (base: 735 vs. 990 MHz).
This describes why there is a distinction in efficiency relative to the Asus GX701GX, which in all 3D trials works about 10 percent better. Despite getting the same TDP, the Lenovo Y740 comes back a few percent.
In an exciting challenge with The Witcher 3 (Full HD / Ultra), the GS75 has not reduced its guard. The frame rate stayed relatively continuous and there were no bottom outliers to be seen.
The RTX 2080 Max-Q fluctuated at around 1245 MHz at a temperature of 73 ° C (about 80 ° C @CPU) according to the GPU-Z instrument. An average of 1320 MHz was recorded on the Unigine Heaven 4.0 benchmark.
The GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q is capable of running all contemporary games smoothly with high to maximum information at native resolution (1920×1080). The 60 FPS mark was not always reached only on processor-intensive titles such as Metro Exodus. However, the display’s 144 Hz rate can be properly valued in most instances The RTX 2080 Max-Q would not be threatened by QHD monitors with 2560×1440 pixels. The high-end GPU reaches its limit only in the 4 K range (3840×2160 pixels).
In the fan control department, MSI has a lot of room for improvement. Even if the laptop does nothing, the fans sometimes take priority in the direction of 40 dB.
For delicate consumers, these unnecessary changes in velocity will be very upsetting. Otherwise, when idle at 31-32 dB, the GS75 is relatively quiet. The efficiency under load of the 17-incher is also something to be criticized. For a Max-Q laptop, 47-48 dB is quite noisy.
The Lenovo Y740 demonstrates how to do it stronger by attaining only 32-46 dB during 3D use with somewhat reduced efficiency.
Developing heat also results in mixed emotions. While the chassis stays comfortably cool when idle all through the entire surface, some areas become under load over 50 ° C warm, preventing gambling on your lap.
The CPU particularly heats up under the hood. During our 60-minute stress test with the Furmark and Prime95 tools, the Core i7-8750H became comfortable at around 90-95 ° C. The GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, on the other hand, remained at 76 ° C much cooler.
Unfortunately, the front-facing 2.0 system integration is not great for the cost. Sound is pretty soft and tinny, so it doesn’t generate the right atmosphere for watching films, playing games or playing music.
As our audio analysis suggests, this deficiency also impacts the 15-inch sibling of the GS65. In particular, deep tones are poorly represented. Ergo, where necessary, a headset or external speakers should be used.
Consumption of energy
The energy consumption is marginally smaller when idle than on the other rivals of the RTX 2080 Max-Q. The 17-incher needs only 13 to 23 Watts, thanks in large portion to the graphics switching. A total of 215 Watts were measured under load, supported by a power supply that is properly capable.
About 147 Watts are to be anticipated in everyday gaming. This value is well below RTX 2070 laptops that are comparably quick.
The GS75 defeats all its competitors when it comes to battery capacity. MSI has opted for an 80 Wh battery to allow the 17-incher to remain disconnected for as long as possible. In contrast, only 46 to 76 Wh was attached for the contest.
The system displays an above-average battery runtime in conjunction with the relatively small energy consumption. 7:44 hours of inactive use for a high-end laptop with limited brightness, as well as 5:16 hours of Wi-Fi and medium brightness when browsing the internet.
On the other side, for mobile gaming, the GS75 is hardly appropriate. The shortest it can last in this scenario is an hour. Also notable is the fact that when running on batteries (huge GPU throttling) 3D output falls to about 75 percent.
MSI has been released as a successful gaming laptop with slim bezels with the GS75 8SG Stealth.
The combo of Core i7-8750H and GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q easily addresses all present games-at least at standard Full HD resolution. Overall, 3D content went very smoothly on the fast-reacting and high-contrast 144 Hz screen despite the lack of G-Sync technology from Nvidia.
The 17-incher’s other power is its excellent flexibility. In addition to weight and height, the life of the battery is also remarkable.
Also commendable are the contemporary ports, which include Thunderbolt 3. We were not entirely satisfied with the situation. Despite the elevated rate of material design and quality, the stabilization leaves something to be desired.
The manufacturer would also have to enhance the sound quality and fan control to obtain a “very nice” general rating.
The high cost for the top of the-line model (~3,800 Euros (~$4,267) will dissuade from buying some deeply invested customers. Most of the time, relatively quick RTX 2070 GPU laptops are priced considerably lower.
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