MSI GF75 Review 2021

The MSI GF75 is a precisely tailored gaming notebook with the latest Intel Core i7 processor and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti. Together with good quality and a fair price, the 17.3 inches convinces in almost all areas.

The MSI GF75 is one of the cheaper gaming laptops at a price of over 1,099$ . The focus is clearly on the CPU, but the rest has also been well coordinated. However, you also have to make a few compromises.

MSI GF75 Review 2021

Technical data MSI GF75 Review 2021

Display17.3 ″ IPS 144Hz, anti-glare, 250 nits
resolution1920 × 1080 pixels (Full HD)
processorIntel® Core ™ i7 10750H (6x 2.60 GHz, 5GHz Boost)
graphicNVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti (6GB VRAM)
random access memory16 GB DDR4 2666 MHz
hard disk512 GB PCIe SSD
networkBluetooth 5.1
Wi-Fi 6 AX201 (802.11a / b / g / n / ac / ax)
connections3 x USB 3.2 Type-A
1 x USB 3.2 Type-C
1 x HDMI
2 x 3.5 mm jack connection
battery pack3 cell Li-Polymer battery, 51 Wh
Input devicesbacklit keyboard
touchpad
SoundStereo speakers
cameraHD (720p at 30 fps)
securityDevice for a Kensington lock
operating systemFreeDos
Dimensions397 x 260 x 23.1 mm (without feet)
Weight2.2kg

No surprises in the box

Laptop, charging cable, and some paper – that’s all you can expect in the packaging of the MSI GF75. But it doesn’t really take more to get started.

MSI mostly uses cardboard for the packaging, which always results in plus points for me in terms of environmental awareness.

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Metal, plastic and no blinking

MSI makes no compromises when it comes to quality. The display lid and the palm rest are made of aluminum. It feels good but also reveals some fingerprints when viewed from the right angle. Nevertheless, it is preferable to pure plastic housings from other manufacturers. Many of the buyers, like me, will certainly appreciate the use of aluminum in this case.

The transitions from the display lid to the large fan outlets on the side are well made, and you won’t find any sharp edges on the MSI GF75. The sides and the bottom are made of plastic and are also cleanly deburred. Nothing can be overly indented, and the weight of 2.2 kg is okay for a 17.3 ″ gaming laptop.

MSI GF75 Review

It is also easy to write on the keyboard. Long texts are also easy to handle. The keyboard has a backlight that can be adjusted in four brightness levels. The only available color is red. The MSI GF75 uses a rubber dome and not a mechanical keyboard.

There is no Windows key to the left of the space bar, which can be good and bad – depending on the user. At least for my taste, MSI could have deleted the number pad. Then there would have been more space for the individual keys. But some customers will surely be happy that he is there.

MSI GF75 keypad

On the other hand, the trackpad in the MSI GF75 is not entirely successful. It feels great and responds with absolute precision to inputs, but it is too small to be really useful for productive work. But if you always gamble with a mouse at your desk anyway, you won’t miss anything here.

In a perfect world, the MSI GF75 would remove the number pad, raise the keyboard further, and make the trackpad about four times the size. Then it would be a machine that, in addition to gaming, can also be used for productive work without accessories. Whereby that would remind you of a different product.

MSI GF75

The general design is almost minimalist for a gaming notebook. Nothing flashes in different colors or pulses to a beat. MSI has practically eliminated one of the typical features of gaming notebooks: the RGB lighting – and I couldn’t be happier.

The webcam is located in the upper display frame. It has a resolution of 720p and provides recordings as you would expect. I’m a bit divided here. On the one hand, it is good that MSI has installed a webcam. In the future, video conferences will not be less, but only more. On the other hand, you’re doing your video partner a disservice if you look like you tuned in from the year 2000. Maybe MSI should consider doing without the camera altogether. Then gamers can directly buy a suitable solution should they need one.

MSI GF75 cam

Otherwise, the display bezels are narrow and fit a laptop in 2020. There are deductions in the B grade because the display lid of the MSI GF75 cannot be opened with one hand.

Connections designed for gaming

Gamers will get their money’s worth with the MSI GF75. There are exactly the connections that are needed—none more, but also none less. There is also an HDMI port and two USB-A ports on the left, in addition to the power connection. Both are 3.2 Gen1 connectors.

MSI GF75 Review usb slots

The MSI GF75 relies on a network port, a USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-C port, and another fast Type-A port on the right side. It cannot load via the Type-C port. A 3.5mm connector follows this for the microphone and headphones. A device for a Kensington lock forms the end.

What a gamer doesn’t need isn’t there. SD card reader or two mini DisplayPorts for more monitors? You don’t need it and it only cost money. But from the wired mouse to the professional gaming headset, everything else can be connected to the MSI GF75. If you really want more, you can easily expand via Type-C or a docking station.

17.3 ″ display with 144Hz and 66% sRGB

No experiments were performed on the MSI GF75’s display. With a full HD resolution and an average maximum brightness of 240nits, it is perfect for a sitting distance of around one meter in closed rooms.

The MSI GF75 is not intended for color-critical work, as the common sRGB color space is only covered by 66%, and the AdobeRGB color space is only covered by 49%. Alternatively, a corresponding external monitor can be used for such work.

In gaming, however, color fidelity only plays a subordinate role. Here, gamers benefit more from the 144Hz display and the matte panel. This makes particularly fast shooters such as Call of Duty or Fortnite a lot of fun. Tearing or ghosting did not occur during the test. But the MSI GF75 doesn’t have to hide when it comes to the other rates either.

The display does not break records in any category, but the results of the MSI GF75 are good for everyday use and especially for the price shown.

Your software and yours only

One of the greatest strengths of the MSI GF75 is the software. Aside from the BIOS, there aren’t any. Like the ASUS ROG Strix G17 (test), the MSI’s gaming notebook does not have pre-installed Windows. After a clean reinstallation via Windows Media Creation Tool, you can install exactly the software you need. No Candy Crush or Mc Afee if you don’t specifically want that.

If you have never installed Windows 10 from a USB stick, you should look at our guide and follow our video step by step. Allow some time for preparation, installation, and updates, after which the MSI GF75 is ready for use.

Gaming performance fits for Full HD and a little more

The display of the MSI GF75 has a resolution of 1920 × 1080 pixels. The gamer offers the best performance precisely for this resolution. In Assassin’s Creed Odyssey with the gigantic Open World, the MSI GF75 manages 46 FPS at maximum details. Meanwhile, physics-heavy shooters like The Division 2 run in Full HD with maximum details at 58 frames per second.

When the resolution is increased to WQHD via an external monitor, we quickly move in the 30 FPS range for current AAA titles with the MSI GF75. The same goes for 4K when the details are greatly reduced. It’s playable, but PC gaming is just more fun with higher frame rates.

The MSI GF75 does otherwise well in the remaining benchmarks. For example, the SSD achieves excellent values ​​with 2200MB / s when reading and 1250MB / s when writing. The performance of the six cores of the Intel Core i7-10750H also impressed us in our Cinebench tests with several runs. The values ​​remain stable after ten runs, and there is no thermal throttling of the performance.

The MSI GF75 boxes in the Full HD gaming class, and it is currently doing well there. The i7 processor also ensures that it stays that way for years to come. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti, on the other hand, could reach its limits in two years with current AAA blockbusters.

By the way, gambling on the go is not possible without an external power supply. If the MSI GF75 is not running on mains, the NVIDIA graphics card will not start, and you will have to be content with the CPU’s internal UHD graphics unit. Otherwise, the gamer consumes around 20-25% battery per hour in office mode. Depending on the display brightness, you will need a power socket after four to five hours.

Fan and sound

The sound of the MSI GF75 is clearly one of the better on the market. The bass may not be pronounced, but the highs are good and clean – even at maximum volume. There is a bit of a lack of volume, but this is always the case with laptops because the resonance space does not exist. For a podcast or a YouTube video, it is always enough. For everything else, you should use a headset.

The headset is then also necessary for gaming. If you really ask the MSI GF75, you will hear it too. The fans do not emit any high-frequency whistling, but a clear hum is audible. Unfortunately also when idling.

Upgrading is possible and quick

To get to the inside of the MSI GF75, twelve cross-head screws of the same length have to be loosened. There is a screw under a sticker. Although the guarantee is not affected by breaking this “freshness seal”, I still want to show you whether it is worthwhile and which components are interchangeable.

MSI GF75 motherboard

Both RAM banks are occupied, but easily accessible. The MSI GF75’s 16 GB of RAM can quickly become up to 64 GB. The same applies to the NVMe SSD.

MSI GF75

There are big pluses for the preparation of a 2.5 ″ SSD. This can simply be plugged into the free slot and expands the existing 500 GB memory of the MSI GF75. Such small details are consumer-friendly and always welcome.

MSI GF75 Review 2021

Conclusion: MSI GF75 Review 2021

The MSI GF75 dispenses with everything unnecessary and focuses on the core elements that gamers need with a large and fast display, a strong CPU and a suitable GPU. In addition, MSI packs all of this in a case that feels great.

MSI GF75

There are also well-chosen connections, a solid, if not very color-accurate display and a fast SSD. Even if the concept of the keyboard doesn’t suit my taste, it will still find a lot of fans. If the fans could be fine-tuned, the MSI GF75 would be the ideal 17 ″ gaming laptop for full HD gaming.

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