MSI GS75 Stealth (RTX 2080)
From $3,099.00 - $4,999.00
The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 as part of a gaming laptop, much like its desktop equivalent, carries with it a premium cost of entry. That is, a price to match the increase in performance you’d find. Which is why for gaming laptops in this range, you’d want to see that level of quality and focus on the higher end of the spectrum across the board. From the underlying components and other bits of key hardware like storage, memory, and the CPU – in addition to the overall build, the feel of the keyboard, and the quality of the display.
The MSI GS75 Stealth from the respected hardware maker is such a gaming laptop, representing a feat in engineering and design – one where the powerful NVIDIA RTX-driven piece of hardware weighs less than most 15-inch gaming laptops. And does so with a large and vibrant 17.3-inch display and without feeling flimsy or like a few corners might have been cut along the way. Oh, and it also sports a very stylish design – one-part sleek Italian sports car and one-part gold accented bit of tech.
Look and Feel
As part of the MSI GS75 Stealth, the MSI logo takes on the feeling of a high-end sports car – which is matched by the thin and matte black finish that blends with the gold accents seen in the hinges that hold up the display right down to the outline that circumnavigates the large trackpad. Although once turned on the Steel Series keyboard offers up full per-key RGB lighting, a pale golden uniform backlight works a lot better in selling the sleek and high-end look. The Steel Series keyboard, which is now part of most MSI laptops, is of high quality with a great feel – and the large trackpad is a welcome addition especially when you factor in its precision.
“A feat in engineering and design – one where the powerful NVIDIA RTX-driven piece of hardware weighs less than most 15-inch gaming laptops.”
This is all matched by the excellent metallic build of the MSI GS75 Stealth, one that is remarkably only 18.95 mm thick in addition to weighing in at a very light 2.25 kg. Again, for a 17.3-inch display device this is commendable and overall the MSI GS75 Stealth’s minimalist design looks as great as it is portable and ready to be taken on-the-go. The near bezel-free design of the display also means that at a glance it’s much smaller than most laptops sporting the same scree-size. With this thin and light build the Stealth has more in common with ultrathin laptops than it does pure gaming ones. Although it excels on that front too – the top of the line variant comes packed with an impressive NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 with Max-Q Design.
Under the Lid
Processor: Intel Core i7-8750H
Display: 17.3" FHD (1920x1080), 144Hz, IPS-Level
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 With Max-Q Design, 8GB GDDR6
Memory: Up to 32GB DDR4 2666MHz SDRAM
Storage: M.2 NVMe PCIE 1TB SSD
OS: Windows 10
Interfaces: 1x Type-C (USB3.1 Gen2 / DP / Thunderbolt 3), 1x Type-C USB3.1 Gen1, 3x Type-A USB3.1 Gen2, 1x RJ45, 1x Micro SD, 1x (4K @ 60Hz) HDMI
Weight: 2.25 kg
The MSI GS75 Stealth we had the pleasure of testing featured the 8th generation Intel CPU listed above alongside a NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080. It’s worth noting that newer variants of the MSI GS75 Stealth sport the latest 9th generation Intel CPUs alongside configurations covering the entire mobile RTX range – RTX 2060, RTX 2070, and the RTX 2080. And on that front any card in the RTX series feels like a great match for the FHD (1920x1080) 144Hz display – as hitting framerates in this range or maintaining something above 60-fps is doable.
In terms of display, the IPS-panel is of the same high quality found elsewhere offering up a bright and vibrant image with a large viewing angle. In terms of everything else, what you get out of the box is standard in terms of memory speed and configuration options, plus the M.2 SSD as the main drive. One cool feature, that you wouldn’t expect to find in an ultrathin-like build is the support for 3 separate M.2 drives, adding to the versatility of the MSI GS75 Stealth as a laptop that can be used for gaming, productivity and stuff like video editing without the need to plug-in a suite of external hard-drives.
Also wonderful are little touches like the inclusion of a 24bit/192kHz ESS Sabre Hi-Fi DAC – which results in excellent fidelity for music, movies, and of course gaming. With a decent pair of headphones. It feels like the right sort of addition to complement the always average laptop speakers you find.
As an ultrathin device we were kind of half expecting to find the performance to be not as great as it could be, or that the cooling would be of the overly loud variety to compensate for overall lack of space. Both predictions turned out to be false, which is great, because the MSI GS75 Stealth turned in excellent results across the board. Especially for the intensive list of games included in our bench-marking.
Compared to numbers we’ve seen in RTX 2070 powered gaming laptops the RTX 2080 sees about a 10% increase in performance. Something that is nowhere near desktop-like levels – but still, impressive. In fact, maintaining 60 frames-per-second at a minimum with the RTX 2080 variant of the MSI GS75 Stealth is attainable whilst turning in-game details as high as they can go. Even though that’s not really required for 1080p.
As highlighted in the 3D Mark benchmarks and the Port Royale test, the MSI GS75 Stealth can run games with real-time raytracing enabled. And in terms of pure performance can also be connected to a 4K-TV or display to push some titles at higher resolutions.
Price wise and regardless of the brand or make or model, it’s somewhat hard to recommend a gaming laptop powered by an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080. That is unless money is of little concern, and if that’s the case go big. Go RTX 2080 big. That said with an RTX 2060 or RTX 2070 prices are far more reasonable and performance for the most part is still more than acceptable for a laptop with a 1080p 144Hz display. As found in the MSI GS75 Stealth.
“With this thin and light build the Stealth has more in common with ultrathin laptops than it does pure gaming ones.”
Available in various configurations, including RTX 2060 and RTX 2070, MSI’s flagship gaming laptop is a winner on all fronts. From excellent cooling to a long-lasting battery to an ultrathin build and a lightweight feel. Throw in a large and vibrant 17.3-inch display and it becomes a thing of beauty. And in the tech world when all the above happens, what you get is a complete package. Which is a description befitting the MSI GS75 Stealth.