195 of 200 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2014
(I bought this laptop at a local Fry's but I wanted to review it here) I have been using this laptop to run The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on ULTRA HIGH settings all maxed with no lag. I get 60 FPS and when running bandicam, it stays the same! No drop of FPS.
Some people do not like Windows 8, and not having the start menu was very annoying, but I have adjusted perfectly by installing a program called Start8, which has a start menu that looks great for the windows 8 theme (you can also change it to look like the windows 7 start menu). The program is $5 though, so if you are looking for a free alternative I suggest "Startisback".
This laptop does not come with bloatware but comes with NVIDIA Control Panel (which is on pretty much all NVIDIA rigs), SteelSeries Engine (which lets you change the keyboard settings, macros, and LED color), Dragon Gaming center, and a few more. They are all useful.
This is a pretty new laptop, as it was recently added to my local stores and amazon.
MSI is actually not a cheap brand. MSI is most known for good computer parts, but they also make great computers.
- No Lag
- Newer GPU
- Light up keyboard (you can set the color of the LEDs to anything you want)
- Not heavy
- Large clear display
- No glare on display
- You can switch between intel integrated graphics and the NVIDIA GeForce 860m GPU to save battery. (Use intel integrated graphics while web browsing, etc, and use the NVIDIA GeForce when gaming or using graphically intense programs)
- Computer gets warm when gaming, but I just made sure the left side (where the vents are) were ventilated and it was fine.
- Games lag when the laptop is unplugged and running on battery (but this happens with pretty much all laptops I know of)
it doesnt make popcorn
133 of 140 people found the following review helpful
on August 26, 2014
There's quite a few things I can say about this laptop as I've owned it for awhile now.
1) This laptop is a beast of a machine and can handle anything you throw at it.
2) It's incredibly light weight making it easy for travel and perfect for going to a friends place to play games with them.
3) The audio is absolutely astonishing and you might as well be sitting in a movie theater.
4) The keyboard is nice and feels great to use
1) This thing runs HOT. Like a R9 290x hot.
2) The Killer Lan Network Driver seems to be part of a "application control suite" and I've yet to figure out how to just install the driver instead of the obnoxious "going to block all your programs if you switch networks" application that comes with it.
3) MSI has touch and go customer service that will result in them telling you to reset the computer for almost any issue (check a few of the other lower star reviews).
4) MSI set up a C partition and a D partition on the same hard drive. I absolutely loath when companies decide how a hard drive should be partitioned and what size they are for me. That could just be my personal opinion though.
Now for the reason why I'm taking off 2 stars :
Like I stated above the customer service/technical support seems to have a geek squad approach to issues. My laptop has been plagued by a problem where sometimes certain applications do not connect to the internet (Steam, Skype, etc.) and youtube videos won't play. It takes more than several restarts or cold boots to address this issue and reinstalling flash does not address the youtube problem. I was told to reset my laptop, losing a lot of my installed games included a heavily modded Fallout (not looking forward to addressing that once I get this issue fixed) and the problem persisted. This is also after a few blue screens I've had since I bought the laptop.
So in general I'm taking off a a star for the archaic approach to technical support for the laptop and then 1 star for these incredibly frustrating issues I'm having with a $1,300 laptop.
Great powerhouse laptop for the money, just expect mediocre support if you happen to have the luck of me and a few other buyers.
UPDATE AS OF 8/27/2014:
Customer service goes through a very basic routine of "reset your computer, try this driver update, here is a RMA." A RMA would not be so bad if not for the turn around of around 10-30 days not including the shipping to and from their repair center. So theoretically you could be without this laptop that you paid $1,300 for over a month for an issue deemed hardware related when it might not even be the case.
My case turned out to be the factory installed OS was corrupted so resetting it and using the recovery partition would just corrupt it again, luckily for me I have my own copy of Windows 8 which after installing my laptop now works perfectly.
Another issue I was having with the laptop was that the LAN seemed to block images and videos from loading and it seemed incredibly sluggish. After going back and forth with support I found a "bandwidth control" option with the Killer Ethernet Switch and disabled it and now everything runs perfectly. So maybe it is just me but the "Lan Suite" is trash. So I've had to perform my own tech support for a $1,300 laptop twice.
68 of 78 people found the following review helpful
on April 7, 2014
Purchased this laptop over the similarly priced Destroyer with the GTX870M GPU for the style and portability that this unit offers. It is also the most powerful Maxwell GPU available in a laptop currently (870 and 880 are both slightly modified Fermi based units).
Stuff you want to know:
- It appears to be running the Maxwell 860M, supported by clock speed and part number.
- There is one 2.5' bay (filled with an excellent HDD), two mSATA slots, and two RAM slots (filled with an 8GB and 4GB). Accessing any of these will require breaking a warranty seal.
- According to MSI the warning seal is "preventative" and they don't actually deny service when broken, still -1 star for the scare tactic.
- Laptop runs shockingly cool for a rig of this power. 45C at the bottom and 65C at the exhaust port after 30 min. of BF4 on Ultra.
- There are some glitches. Relatively minor thus far, but you should expect this on a system this new.
- Extremely appealing aesthetic design, not the typical garish gaming rig.
- Most powerful overall unit in this price range that will still fit in your backpack!
- GTX 860M performs fantastic with the new 337.50 driver. 1080p Max settings on everything!
- HDD is excellent, for a HDD. Absolutely the fastest HDD based laptop I have ever used.
- Keyboard is fantastic. Easily the best laptop keyboard I have ever used, and the color effects can be configured to your preference.
- Screen is extremely good for a matte solution.
- Ships with an outdated GFX driver that wont run anything. 337.50 Beta drivers were released today (4/7/2014) and are the only alternative to the shipped version. No issues with 337.50 thus far, but given the Beta status I suspect I will find something broken before long.
- Really should be using at least a small hybrid SSD to be called a modern gaming laptop, but as I said the included HDD isn't bad for what it is.
- Must void warranty to install RAM, add an SSD, or clean the crap out of the fan? -2 stars for this alone, FIX IT MSI!
- Sound Blaster presets are extremely poor. DTS and Dolby have had some wonderful innovations in the past decade, Sound Blaster is still the same as they were back in the 90s from a preset perspective.
- Integrated speakers are disappointing. Midrange and Bass are completely gone. If you only listen to Banjo riffs this should be perfect for you...
- Windows 8.1. It's not MSI's fault, but sometimes I wonder how Microsoft can be so out of touch. Metro was and is a huge flop in the mobile space on Windows Phone, what makes them think it will be a different story here?
- It is configured out of the box with a dynamic disk! That's bad news for those of you who want to add an SSD as you will almost certainly end up reimaging the entire thing.
- Occasional low level crashes that cause the device to completely power down without warning. Able to reproduce this 100% in the boot recovery menu->advanced->boot options. Wait a few seconds after it boots into the utility and it will crash. Have seen it twice randomly in windows.
I'll update this review if anything significant happens over time.
Update: I installed the SSD, what a pain! Use the "Burn Recovery" utility to create a set of backup DVDs or flash drive, then install the SSD (remove the HDD even if you are using an mSATA for now), hold F3 on boot, run recovery disk, proceed thru recovery, after booted into new OS install open disk management, delete the data partition, expand the OS partition to fill the space. If you are doing an mSATA drive you will also need to: connect HDD to USB with adapter, use Acronis True Image to wipe all of the old windows 8 partitions (cant do this in drive management), reinstall HDD in SATA bay, and finally format with a new MBR NTFS partition in drive management. If this process description does not make sense I would strongly suggest you buy one of the models with an SSD included!!
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on May 21, 2014
So far laptop is great other than a couple of issues.
1. multi tasking and graphics. Easly handels running 3 eve clients plus shadow runs returns (both at highest setting) along with the mumble and jabber all at same time.
2.The restore uility works very well (reason see Con #2)
1. heat: you do not want to have this directly on your lap. Also unless you keep the cooling boster on the area around bottem left of will become hot to the touch. It will roast any thing put to the left of the laptop (so far it cooked a hot dog, will try popcorn this next weekend).
2. Norton is preinstalled (failed to see common malware speed dial) also yellowed flag the .dil that runs the steel keyboard as questionable will disable it. Recomend removing norton asap get a different anti virus.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2014
This is going to be rather long, but I hope it teaches you something.
I got a really fast delivery, delivered by Fed Ex. Came in two boxes. A larger box with some measly stuffing and then the box containing the box with the laptop. Yeah, it has a lot of boxes.
No damage to the product upon delivery. Easy and fast setup, with the exception of the first time you log into windows. It takes a bit. But afterwards, it boots up in around 10 seconds. From power button press to the login screen.
Upon use, gaming is phenomenal. Don't expect it to run Battlefield 4 on maxed settings and expect to see a constant 60 frames. It's a laptop, treat it like one. Though, on Borderlands 2 I can run it on most settings maxed and still maintain a constant 60 frames. Some games are plagued by Nvidia optimus. Which sometimes can make a game run with onboard graphics rather than the dedicated nvidia card. If you have troubles, it's an easy fix.
I make music and videos using my laptop, and the RAM is more than enough to do all of it. So even if the gaming doesn't appeal to you, (which it really should), the possibilities of advanced movie production and other things like it are definitely worth the buy.
As far as the physical appearances go, I love it. The black and red design go wonderfully together. The only issue with the appearance is that if you use the Dual Color setting. The 0 Numpad key and Function key glow two contrasting colors, but it's not really too big of an issue. Hard to notice unless you look for it.
The HDD is lightning fast, and the USB 3.0 ports are amazing. The only issue that I have with input is the disk tray is a bit wobbly, but it works.
Lastly, the keys themselves. They are easy to push and quiet. Like you would expect in a laptop. If your hands get sweaty, I'd recommend wiping the residue off the keys every once in a while with a wet wipes or something.
Overall verdict. If you have the money, there is no better buy. Some people have issues with the network card causing disconnects, but that is if you are far from your router. I haven't had that issue. If you have any specific questions, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I have had this laptop for 2 months, and feel competent enough to answer your questions.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on June 21, 2014
I bought this laptop a week ago and here is my review:
-5/5 Keyboard: Very nice keyboard to type and game. The LEDs are fantastic, there are 6 different modes you can set it on. My favorite is the one that lights up to the music/sound you are playing.
-5/5 Processor: The listed processor was supposed to be an i7-4700HQ, I got an i7-4710HQ! Only difference is the Mhz, which is 100 more and the turbo is also 100mhz more, which is nice. This processor is a beast, it'll handle everything I throw at it.
-5/5 Video card: The switch between the IGP and dedicated is nice. GTX860M handles everything great at 1080p. It is a lot better than the previous generation, the GTX700 series. It's more efficient and less power hungry. I only ran wildstar on it (which is pretty demanding at the moment, probably due to optimization) but I am getting around 40-60fps on high. I am pretty sure it'll handle 90% of the games out there on high, if not max.
-5/5 Memory: Memory is pretty good. It is just DDR1600 memory, so it is expected. It came with 12GB. Not sure if it's running dual-channel.
-5/5 Bloatware: There isn't much bloatware on here. I started up the laptop and 90% of the things are already updated (besides the nvidia drivers). There are a couple MSI stuff but overall I am impressed with how little bloatware were installed.
-4/5 Hard drive: There's a hitachi 7200rpm 2.5 hard drive in here. It's pretty fast. It's not as fast as an SSD but i'll take it. There's also two mSATA slot for you to add some SSD's in the future. That's what I plan on doing.
-4/5 Speakers: There are 4 speakers, two on the bottom, two on top. This thing can get LOUD and CLEAR! It's awesome. There isn't much bass but it is expected. It's a laptop.
-4/5 Weight: For what it's packing inside, this thing is light! 6lbs and some change. Compare with an ASUS, which is 11lbs! I only place it on hard surfaces but when you need to use it on your lap for a few minutes, it's not bad.
-3/5 Surface material: This thing is an oil magnet. It wipes off easily but it could have been better. It looks nice when it doesn't have your oil from your skin everywhere.
-3/5 Display: The display is mediocre. It looks washed out sometimes but I've seen worse. It's very bright at least. Not and IPS if some of you were wondering.
-3/5 Noise: The noise is bearable when working with light tasks. It's not very loud but you can hear the fan spinning. When you game however, it can get pretty loud. It is not a problem for me though. There is also a button to increase the fan speed when you game and that makes it even louder.
-2/5 Heat: One of my issues is the heat. Not so much external, but internal. Even when I am not gaming, just working on some programming stuff, the cores got up to 85c. They really need to improve on this. I will be planning a repaste in the future, it is too new for me to be tinkering with it. The external heat blows on the left side of the laptop, it can get hot, but it's not that bad, only if you're a lefty. I wouldn't recommend gaming on your lap, it gets warm under there.
Overall, it is a great laptop. I did expect 95% of the stuff on here, other than the heat from the processor.
I highly recommend this laptop as a gaming laptop. GTX860M is a great video card, way better than the previous generation.
Maybe yours will come with an upgraded processor like mine did.
I probably left a few things out to review but I will update in the future.
If you have any questions, please let me know.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on August 3, 2014
I'm going to make a long story short. It has really boss specs, like this laptop tore through games like it was nothing. But heating issues ultimately lead to its downfall and me returning it. Even with a cooling pad it could reach over 80c in as little as 20 minutes.
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on June 2, 2014
I already tried msi before at 2012 and that laptop was so awsome (gt60 if anyone's wondering)
This laptop is also good. It has a powerful gpu (860m gtx) the frame rates are high, and gaming is smooth even while recording (hats go off for shadow play for this).
Another thing I like is the small power adapter. Its a little wide but thin. Looks a little like those dell adapters but I think its a little smaller. So the adapter isn't a problem at all. (Keep in mind the adapter depends on the gpu inside. And if you want the most powerful laptop but with a small adapter then go for any laptop with a gtx860m gpu or less. Anything beyond this model in the gtx 800 range is gona have a brick of an adapter)
However this laptop has some shortcoming that you have to be aware off.
The trackpad is really bad. If you take a look at the properties of the track pad your gona feel good. But when you try the trackpad, your not gona like it. It is just SLOW! And at full hd resloution its just a pain. And having windows 8 is not helping since you cant increase the speed of the mouse from the windows settings.
That can be solved with a mouse, but why is the trackpad so slow.
And I wish the computer didnt go so hot under the 'q w e r' keys. Since you use them a lot with games like lol and dota.
Otherwise my brother is very happy about the laptop.
Note: at first we had a problem with low fps at minecraft (50~60 is not acceptable for a gpu of this caliber) makin recording not smooth at maximum graphics setting. I think the problem came do to my brother using optfine mod for minecraft.
First we went to nvidia settings. And choose to use the nvidia gpu for minecraft, but this didnt solve the problem.
We solved the issue by right clicking the desktop icon of minecraft. And from there choose the nvidia gpu to run that application. And after that we got 170~203 fps.
Sorry for the long explanation but I know some people are doing there research right now.
Update: it appears the slow trackpad problem can be solved. And here is how:
Go to control panel and search for 'mouse'. Go to the third tab on the top pointer options and the first slider is for increasing the mouse speed.
Go ahead and increase it to one point before max. And keep the pointer below it checked (Enhance accuracy...), it really helps!
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2015
In terms of performance, this computer is astonishing--until something goes wrong. Then you'll have to deal with an appallingly poor support department. They are imperious; the first answer you'll get is, "You must have a virus. Restore to factory default." That, of course, takes you back to ZERO, and you have to reload everything. . .unless, of course, you have a data backup (please!), in which case you only have to restore ALL your files. In my case, I had an image of the HD, but that to might contain the "virus," so I couldn't use it. Of course what I learned later was that there was never any virus. Tech support simply did not want to work through the problem. To when it re-occurred, I called and got the same instruction: "Restore/reformat. You must have a virus." So I said "This didn't work last time. I want you to find the problem." So guess what they did? Yup. They restored it to factory default. And sent it back a month later. They didn't bother to read my list of "issues," which included problems with the optical drive. That they didn't touch; it's still not working properly. I will never, ever buy from them again--even though their components are usually great and reliable. If you are the one who gets a bad one, you can use this only for a very expensive doorstop.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2014
I just purchased this computer, my games are slow, it keeps dropping the wifi. The disc tray doesn't work. The screen goes white. It is extremely slow. MSI techs are NO help. They finally sent me a return number and said it would take 25 days to fix it, and that doesn't include shipping. PLEASE READ MSI FEEDBACK ABOUT THIS COMPUTER. I sure wish I had. What an expensive computer, to find it doesn't work. UGH>