MSI GS70 2QE Stealth Pro ReviewManufacturer: MSI
UK price (as reviewed): £1,399.99 (inc VAT)
US price (as reviewed): Various models from $1,699 (ex TAX)
While PCs are getting smaller and are usually much better-value than their portable equivalents, there are still plenty of reasons to get a gaming laptop. They're usually not as fast as their desktop equivalents, but lack little in terms of grunt compared to most mid-range PCs. The price premium for cramming in all that hardware into such a tiny space is usually hefty, but for many, it's a price worth paying. Of course, if you won't be using any extra PC paraphernalia, such as a monitor, then you'll want something that's fairly large and the 17in MSI GS70 2QE Stealth Pro might be just the ticket.
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Stealth is quite and apt name here as this is one of the slimmest gaming laptops we've seen. It's barely thicker than 220mm including the case feet - we've seen 15in ultrabooks that are larger, but if you're looking for something that's thin, light, but still packs a big punch and a big screen, then keep reading. At £1,400 the GS70 2QE Stealth Pro is leaning towards the upper price range of MSI's extensive group of laptops, although it's available in a variety of options with some models being equipped with a red exterior and up to three SSDs in RAID 0.
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It's certainly no slouch, with a 2.6GHz Intel Core i7-4720HQ quad-core mobile CPU, which sits between a desktop Core i3 and Core i5 in terms of performance depending on whether you're dealing with single-threaded or multi-threaded tasks. Nvidia is the GPU provider of choice and under the hood is a GeForce GTX 970M, which is a potent beast in the world of mobile GPUs and should offer enough grunt to play most games at decent settings at the GS70 2QE Stealth Pro's native 1,920 x 1,080 display.
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The screen, in general, was vibrant and bright enough to be visible outdoors in low to moderate sunlight, largely thanks to the anti-glare non-touch coating. While colours and viewing angles were impressive, this is still a TN panel so will lag behind laptops equipped with IPS screens.
The chassis is well made, predominantly from aluminium, with matt surfaces inside and a brushed aluminium lid. The latter does have a fair amount of lateral flex, but the lid itself is fairly solid and resists downward pressure quite well. The keyboard surround is very solid indeed, with little if any flex and the main chassis is a rock, again with little or no flex evident at all.
- CPU Intel Core i7-4720HQ (2.6GHz/ 3.6GHz turbo-boost)
- CPU cores Four physical (quad core)
- Memory 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3 1,600MHz
- Graphics Nvidia GeForce GTX970M
- Storage 2 x 256GB mSATA SSD, 1 x 1TB 7,200rpm hard disk
- Chipset Intel H87
- Screen 17in, 1,920 x 1,080 matt anti-glare, TN, non-touch.
- Optical Drive None
- Dimensions (mm) 418 x 287 x 21.8 (W x D x H)
- Networking 1 x Killer DoubleShot Pro Gb Gigabit LAN, Killer DoubleShot Pro 11ac, Bluetooth V4.0
- Audio Dynaudio 8-channel - mic, headphone, SPDIF out.
- Keyboard backlighting Yes
- Battery 6-cell 60wh
- Webcam 1080p, 30fps
- Operating system Windows 8.1
- Weight 2.66kg (with battery)
- Ports 4 x USB 3, 2 x Mini DisplayPort, HDMI, SD card reader
- Warranty 2 Year Collect & Return (1 Year Global)
- Extras Protective wallet, rucksack, mouse, Siberia V2 headset, mouse mat, keyboard cover