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MSI GT60

MSI GT60 gaming laptop review

MSI GT60 2OC-022US

Pros: Highly equipped for hardcore gaming, gamer friendly design, full HD screen, excellent keyboard, matrix display support, very fast, does not lag when playing latest games.

Cons: No Solid State Drive, the Hard Drive is 1 TB @5400 rpm, cooling system could have been better.

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MSI GT60 2OC-022US is a Windows 8 gaming laptop loaded with a great deal of thrust. It features full HD native resolution, matrix display, customizable backlight keyboard, Dynaudio, and incorporates latest technologies such as Cooler Boost 2, Super RAID 2, and Killer DoubleShot.

Design and features

The hardware
When it comes to raw gaming power, the MSI GT60 2OC-022US stands out from other Windows 8 gaming laptops available for relatively same price, such as HP ENVY DV7T, and Alienware AM14XR2-7222BK. It sports 4th generation Intel Core i7- 4700MQ 3.2 GHz processor, Nvidia Geforce GTX770M discrete graphics with 3GB DDR5 graphics memory, and 8GB DDR3 RAM. With this much raw power, you can expect to play any 2013 games with a little tweaking of graphics details and display resolution settings.

MSI GT60

MSI GT60 2OC-022US comes with 1 terabyte Hard Drive with 5400 rpm, which is a bummer. A Hard Drive with such low RPM is supposed to result in lower data transfer rate. This could have been a much better and more effective configuration if MSI provided a 128GB SSD with a 500GB 5400rpm HDD like on its other model, the MSI GT60 2OD-026US.

On the positive side, MSI GT60 series gaming laptops feature gamer friendly design, solid construction, and latest technologies to boost overall performance. The MSI GT60 2OC-022US is no different. The GT60 2OC-022US amalgamate plastic and metal for its casing. The lid is made of brushed aluminum, which is surrounded by a thick plastic frame. The MSI logo on the lid in shiny chrome gives it an exotic look.

The interior
The interior of the notebook is made of black plastic, except for the palmrest, which is made of brushed aluminum. A panel of touch buttons is located above the keyboard. The panel includes buttons for media, fan, keyboard lights, screen on/off, airplane mode, disk eject, and so on. The most important of these buttons is the fan button.

MSI GT60

Pressing the fan button will increase fan speed. However, as the fan speed increases, so does the noise. Yet a hardcore gamer should find this fan button very handy when playing high end games for a long time. The airplane mode disables all wireless connection to and from the notebook. The keyboard lights button brings up the keyboard light software by MSI and let you change the keyboard backlight options. It is more of a fancy feature much like that of the Alienware M17 gaming laptops; but it will come handy when playing games in a relatively dark surroundings. The LED indicators for power, Hard Drive access and so on are located below the Trackpad. They add more beauty to the laptop’s interior.

MSI GT60Keyboard
MSI GT60 2OC-022US features full-size SteelSeries keyboard with number pad. The keyboard keys are finger friendly. Your fingers will not slip even when your hands are sweaty. Aside from gaming, the keyboard gives to a very nice typing experience, thanks to the fast and responsive keys. Overall, the keyboard construction is solid and you can expect it to last for a long time.

MSI GT60Trackpad
MSI GT60 2OC-022US comes with a rather smaller (3 x 1.8-inch) Trackpad. Despite its smaller size, we could easily perform the Windows 8 gestures such as pinch-to-zoom, swiping etc accurately. The Trackpad offers a single mouse bar; but two separate buttons would have been better.

Ports
MSI GT60 2OC-022US has two audio out, one headphone-in, mic-in, one USB 2.0 ports, and the DVDRW on its right panel. On the left panel, it has three USB 3.0 ports, a card reader, and the vent. On its back, it has the power-in, Ethernet, and three video out ports, including one HDMI port. The placement of ports is intuitive, which will reduce cluttering of cables. The USB 2.0 on the right panel will come handy if you want to use a wired mouse for gaming or for Windows navigation.

Performance

MSI GT60 2OC-022US’s 15-6 inch LED backlight anti-glare LCD produced crisp and vibrant picture. The default contrast or brightness settings of the display did not hurt our eyes even in low light condition. The viewing angles were reasonable. The screen did not suffer wash out of colors, or picture distortion when we played games from a slightly angular direction (both horizontally and vertically).

MSI GT60 2OC-022US did not lag no matter what we threw at it. We played Crysis 3, Far Cry 3, Bioshock Infinite, Dirt 3, and NFS MW 2, and World of Warcraft. Frame rate did not go below 41fps even when playing these games in full HD resolution with maximum game details settings. Frame rate reached above 100 when playing World of Warcraft. We did not experience latency while playing online multiplayer games, thanks to Killer DoubleShot technology. It is to mention here that despite our presumption regarding poor data transfer rate because of the large capacity Hard Drive with low RPM (1 TB @ 5400rpm), we experienced no lag in disk access. Possibly the Super RAID 2 technology made up for the lower rpm of the Hard Drive.

On the negative side, despite many vents and MSI’s much hyped Cooler Boost 2 technology, GT60 2OC-022US tended to heat up easily. Playing Crysis 3, and Far Cry 3 for 20 minutes each raised the temperature of the laptop. For example, keyboard temperature rose to 37 degree centigrade. But the bottom left corner heated up to 41 degree centigrade; which was significantly warmer than the generally accepted comfort threshold. However, increasing the fan speed reduced the temperature to normal.

Aside from gaming, the MSI GT60 2OC-022US performed every task at lightening fast speed. The webcam and built-in microphone was reasonably good and gave to a good video chatting experience.

The Dynaudio built-in stereo speakers produced much better sound than what we have experienced on many other gaming laptops. Yet, you will probably use a pair of good headphones or bigger speakers for louder and heavier sound.

The MSI GT60 2OC-022US offers a decent battery backup. It lasted 1 hour and 37 minutes of hardcore gaming with Wi-Fi enabled (gaming performance slightly decreased when ran on battery). On the other hand, the battery lasted for 3 hours and 48 minutes of continuous Web browsing over Wi-Fi and using applications such as Adobe CS5.

Bottom line, performance wise, MSI GT60 2OC-022US is worth the price.

Conclusion

MSI GT60 2OC-022US is one of the most powerful gaming laptops available for $1300 to $1400 price range. It has a gamer friendly design with a solid construction. They keyboard will last quite a long time no matter how hard you play. It has an intuitive placement of ports that will reduce cluttering of cables. But most importantly, it holds enough power to play any game without lagging. You might also like our post on Best laptops under $500.

Specifications

CPU: 4th generation Intel Core i7 3.2 GHz
OS: Windows 8
Chipset: Intel HM87 Chipset
Memory: DDR3, up to 1600 MHz, 4 slots, max 32GB
msi gt60LCD Size: 15.6″ Full HD, anti-glare LED backlight
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 770M
Graphics VRAM: GDDR5 3GB
HDD (GB): 1 TB @5400rpm
Optical Drive: DVD Super Multi
Audio: 2W X2 HD 2 Speakers, 1 subwoofer
Webcam: 720p
LAN: Killer DoubleShot
Wireless LAN: Killer DoubleShot
Bluetooth: Bluetooth v4.0
D-Sub (VGA): 1
HDMI: 1(v1.4)
USB 2.0 port: 1
USB 3.0 port: 3
Keyboard: SteelSeries 102 keys Full-color backlight
AC Adapter: 180W
Battery: 9-Cell Li-Ion (7800mAH)
Dimensions: 395 x 267 x 55mm
Weight: 3.5kg.

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