Virtual Reality hardware will be reaching consumer hands in just shy of a month, and the gamers with these fancy new headsets will need to have machines that can deliver the high framerate visuals required for VR games. Most people who buy the first round of VR hardware likely already have a high end desktop computer, but part of the magic of VR is sharing it with others. It’s not exactly easy to cart around your high-end gaming desktop to your family and friends to show them what VR has to offer. MSI has a lineup of laptops that should do the job, though.
MSI has revealed which of its gaming notebooks that it considers to be “Vive Optimized.” The company has five notebooks that meet the needs of VR gaming. These machines all come equipped with Intel i7 Skylake processors and Nvidia’s desktop-class GTX 980 GPUs.
The GT72S 6QF Dominator Pro G 29th Anniversary Edition (GTX 980) offers a Full HD 17.3-inch G-sync IPS panel, dual NVMe M.2 SSDs in raid 0, a full color backlit Steelseries keyboard, and a host of other features.
The GT72S 6QF is also offered in two other variants. You can choose the Dominator Pro G Heroes Special Edition, which features Heroes of the Storm graphics on the lid, and the inside bezel, or you can opt for the Dragon Edition G 29th Anniversary Edition, which has a bright red lid with MSI’s dragon logo emblazoned across it and on the palm rest. All three GT72S 6QF models have the same specifications.
If the GT72S doesn’t offer the performance you really want, MSI also has two GT80S models that feature Nvidia VR-Ready GTX 980 GPUs and carry the “Vive Optimized” rating. The GT80S Titan SLI is available in 29th Anniversary Edition with a brushed metal black lid, or the Heroes Special Edition with the same artwork as the GT72S Heroes Edition.
As the name suggests, the GT80S Titan SLI features two Nvidia GPUs running in SLI for even more performance. These two GPUs are used to power an 18.4-inch Full HD display that is not G-sync, but the system features outputs for up to two external 4K displays, or, you know -- a VR HMD.
|GT80S 6QF Titan SLI||GT72S 6QF|
|CPU||Latest 6th Gen. Intel® Core™ i7-6920HQ processor / i7-6820HK processor||Latest 6th Gen. Intel® Core™ i7 processor|
|OS||Windows 10 Home||Windows 10 Home|
|Windows 10 Pro||Windows 10 Pro|
|Chipset||Intel® CM236||Intel® CM236|
|Memory||DDR4-2133, 4 slots, up to 64GB||DDR4-2133, 4 slots, up to 64GB|
|Display||18.4" Full HD (1920x1080), IPS level panel||17.3" Full HD (1920x1080), G-SYNC ready with 75Hz, IPS level panel (Optional)|
|Graphics||GeForce GTX 980 SLI||GeForce GTX 980|
|Graphics VRAM||8 / 4GB GDDR5||8GB GDDR5|
|Storage||1 x 2.5" HDD +||1 x 2.5" HDD +|
|up to Super Raid 4 (2 x NVMe M.2 SSDs by PCIe Gen3 X4 in RAID0) (Optional)||up to Super Raid 4 (2 x NVMe M.2 SSDs by PCIe Gen3 X4 in RAID0) (Optional)|
|Optical Drive||BD Writer / DVD Super Multi||BD Writer / DVD Super Multi|
|Audio||Sound by Dynaudio with Woofer||Sound by Dynaudio with Woofer|
|ESS SABRE HiFi audio DAC technology||ESS SABRE HiFi audio DAC technology|
|Nahimic Audio Enhancer||Nahimic Audio Enhancer|
|Webcam||Full HD type (30fps@1080p)||FHD type (30fps@1080p)|
|Card Reader||SD (XC/HC)||SD (XC/HC)|
|LAN||Killer E2400 Gigabit Ethernet with Killer Shield||Killer E2400 Gigabit Ethernet with Killer Shield|
|Wireless LAN||Killer Wireless-AC 1535||Killer Wireless-AC 1535|
|Bluetooth||Bluetooth v4.1||Bluetooth v4.1|
|USB 3.0 port||5||6|
|USB 3.1 port||1x USB 3.1 Type-C||1x USB 3.1 Type-C|
|Thunderbolt™ 3||USB3.1 Type-C interface, 4K output, 3A output charging (Optional)||USB3.1 Type-C interface, 4K output, 3A output charging (Optional)|
|Mic-in/Headphone-out||1/1 plus SPDIF Out x1||1/1 1(line in)/1(line out)|
|ESS SABRE HiFi||Support 32bit/384kbps sampling rate, up to 127dBA DNR unmatched by PC, Mac or mobile devices DAC||Support 24bit/192kbps sampling rate, up to 122dBA DNR unmatched by PC, Mac or mobile devices DAC|
|Keyboard||Single color backlighting (red) SteelSeries keyboard||Full-color backlight SteelSeries keyboard|
|Mechanical Keyboard with Switch by Cherry MX Brown||Silver Lining Print|
|Dimension||456(W) x 330(D) x 49(H)mm||428(W) x 294(D)x 48(H)mm|
|Weight (KG)||4.5kg||3.78Kg (w/ Battery)|
All five models are readily available through MSI’s reseller network.
Update, 10:00am PT, March 3, 2016: Corrected table. Titles were reversed.