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MSI Unveils Multiple Gaming Notebooks With Intel Skylake Processors

MSI released a new wave of laptops based on Intel's Skylake chips across its Gaming and Prestige product series.

The highest end of the new laptops from MSI is the GT72 Dominator (which we've written about recently), utilizing an Intel Skylake Core i7-6820HK and listed an Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M on its specification info. MSI claimed that this is the first laptop on the market that will use a mobile Skylake CPU capable of overclocking. The system also takes advantage of MSI's Super RAID 4, which pairs a 256 GB SSD drive in a RAID-like configuration with a 1 TB HDD, and will contain up to 64 GB of DDR4 clocked at 2133 MHz.

With these specs, the GT72 Dominator is well-suited for high-end gaming at 2K resolutions, which brings up the greatest flaw in this system: the display. The 17.3" system uses an Anti-Glare IPS 1080p display. Although this is what we would want to see on many mid-range gaming laptops, a system with such high settings as this would really be better suited with a 2K display.

Stealth And Apache

MSI released two new laptops in the Stealth and Apache which all feature similar specs. These systems use an Intel Skylake Core i7-6700HQ paired with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 970M and 16 GB of DDR4 2133 MHz.

The display issue is still present here, as these systems could at times make better use of a 2K display instead of a more conventional 1080p display. Only one of the systems, the GS60 Stealth, packs in a display above 1080p, featuring a 3840x2160 IPS panel. This is somewhat surprising, as this display would be far more helpful on the GT72 Dominator, but it instead shows up on a lower-end laptop.

"We've perfectly complemented Intel's newest processor with cutting-edge components that will delight even the most hardcore gamer," said Andy Tung, president of MSI Pan America. "Our new notebooks now have even more power, impressive battery life, and superb features for longer gaming and work sessions on the go."

These laptops lack the Super RAID 4 technology but maintain two storage devices inside of each system. The GS60 Stealth uses a 256 GB M.2 SATA SSD, while the other gaming laptops rely on smaller 128 GB SSDs. All of these systems also contain a 1 TB 7200 RPM HDD for additional storage.

Another surprising move that MSI made was to include USB 3.1 support only on the GS70 Stealth. It seems that MSI is trying a tactic of spreading high-end features out across its products, but not putting all of these new high-end features on a single system.

MSI stated that select gaming notebooks would also support an ESS Sabre HiFi Audio DAC and a "SuperPort" (a USB Type-C connector capable of doubling as a USB 3.1 port, data transfers up to 1,000 MB/s, and dual-4K video output.) However, it appears that this will be available only on the GS70 Stealth, as it is the only one listed with USB 3.1 support.

Prestige

The Prestige laptops are similar to the Gaming series laptops, being built around an Intel Core i7-6700HQ. These laptops differ from the Gaming laptops primarily in the GPU used, which is either an Nvidia GeForce GTX 950M or GTX 960M. These systems also lack an SSD, while two systems contain less RAM relative to the gaming series laptops. MSI uses 1080p displays on these laptops as well, but on these systems, that is the perfect display to pair with the rest of the internal hardware.

All of MSI's new laptops also feature SteelSeries proprietary Silver-Lining Print technology, which can reduce eye strain when using the system for long periods, as well as regulating the illumination of the keyboard on systems that feature LED keyboards.

These systems are available now at multiple online retailers.

Follow Michael Justin Allen Sexton @EmperorSunLao. Follow us @tomshardware, on Facebook and on Google+.

Michael Justin Allen Sexton is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He covers hardware component news, specializing in CPUs and motherboards.