It’s been a long, long time since I played a PC game, yet alone on a gaming laptop. In fact, it has been so long since I’ve played a game on a computer that I initially freaked out when I was offered the opportunity to review the MSI GP75 Leopard (“GP75”) gaming laptop. This machine came with top of the line graphics and hardware that it’s a beast that no noob should ever tinker with. That’s what I initially thought anyway.
Before you read any further, please keep in mind that I’m not a seasoned pro when it comes to gaming and technology.Instead of laying out all the technical specifications and nitty-gritty details that can be easily found on the GP75’s product page, this review will be focused more on my experience with the laptop and how noob friendly such a laptop is, because let’s face it, even noobs and casual gamers love superior technology to play their games on!
Right off the bat, the laptop comes packaged in such a sleek box that screams ‘professional gamer’. The laptop itself has a sleek gun-metal-black colour with a bold red MSI logo that further adds to the stylish look that the brand was clearly going for.
Upon first glance, it’s very hard to tell whether the laptop is a heavy duty professional work-station or a gaming laptop built for performance. It’s not exactly a thin laptop as the creator laptops I’m used to. The design almost gives it a hybrid look (which is likely what the designers were going for).
What really stands out though is the incredibly thin bezel on the laptop’s 17.3” Full HD display which, when playing games, provided visuals that were crisp, clear and wide enough to enjoy every inch of what’s on screen without being too over the top. Another feature that I really liked was that the underside of the laptop included a special etched design that gives a very trendy look different to any laptop I’ve seen before.
Most of all, when it comes to the GP75, what really sold it to me in terms of design is the fact that this beast of a gaming machine was fairly light. No, it’s not as light as the creator laptops or standard laptops that don’t require a whole lot more hardware. However, it’s weight is decent enough to be portable. This means you’ll be able to take the laptop to game anywhere, anytime!
Equipped with a 10th Generation Intel Core i7 processor, the laptop packs power beyond anything I’ve ever used before. With a performance boost that surpasses previous generations, you can really feel the capabilities of this gaming laptop.
Playing games like Valorant and Forza Horizon 4 felt so smooth, without a single hitch or lag when playing online. Forza, especially, ran so well on the laptop that I had to remind myself I was playing a game and not watching a racing video.
Interestingly though, the loading time of Forza was slightly longer than the loading time on an Xbox One X, which to me only really highlights the difference between having a dedicated gaming console that just runs games, compared to a machine that does everything in one.
Visually, I could gush and go on about just how stunning games, images and videos looked on the GP75 laptop. To say the laptop is a beast when it comes to graphics is an understatement. With its NVIDIA RTX 2070 graphics card, this laptop not only brings games to life in a way that can blur the lines between what’s CGI and what’s real, but is also able to provide ray-tracing with compatible games. There were times where in game items looked so real that it felt like it would pop out of the screen! Unfortunately, I didn’t own any of the ray-tracing compatible games on PC, so I was unable to give the feature a try. However, I was still astounded and very impressed with just how crisp, clear and stunning everything looked on screen.
Having a 144HZ refresh rate on the display, only added to the magnificence being portrayed on screen. I don’t think I’ve ever seen colours look so deep and vibrant with each line on objects being so well defined. Playing Forza was definitely ideal to see the graphics card and display work in tandem to give off the most gorgeous looking cars you’ll ever see.
I’m used to standard, non-gaming laptops and laptops that are built more for content creation than gaming so I’m very familiar with overheating when it comes to trying to do multiple things on my laptop. The sound of the fans working overtime is very common whenever I’m streaming off my personal laptop, especially given how much CPU usage OBS (the streaming broadcasting software most streamers use for those of you non-streamers) takes up.
This particular gaming laptop features dedicated thermal solutions for both the CPU and GPU (graphics processing unit) with about seven heat pipes that allow for the best possible performance and optimal cooling during extreme gaming sessions.
It’s this added cooling feature that makes the laptop look a bit thicker than your everyday personal laptop with small open spaces that allow effective energy flow. Interestingly, when I was playing games on the laptop, I would hear the fans actually work but the laptop never got hot, which was great for my tabletop!
SteelSeries RGB Keyboard
The GP75 packs a real punch when it comes to features but not just on the inside! Looking at the laptop’s keyboard, you’ll notice SteelSeries’ logo closeby. Upon turning it on, the keyboard begins to light up in RGB colours. That’s because MSI has partnered with SteelSeries to deliver a keyboard experience unlike anything I’ve experienced in laptops before. The GP75’s keyboard works with the SteelSeries Engine Software to allow you to personalise your keyboard the way you would with a normal RGB gaming keyboard. That means the ability to sync the lighting effects to in game actions or notifications. With a variety of colours and combinations to choose from, the keyboard can be specifically customised to suit your personal preferences. You can even get the keyboard’s back lights to pulse to music!!
When you’re so used to your laptops crashing, overheating and just not wanting to perform at the extent that you want it to, it’s such a godsend to play with a laptop that just…works. The MSI GP75 laptop was a refreshing change. The smoothness in gaming and the incredible graphics made games feel like more of a ‘real life’ experience rather than just a standard game. The fact that the laptop was able to run for hours on battery despite being put through intense usage was something I never believed would be possible on anything that wasn’t a gaming desktop or console. Being able to personalise the keyboard and make the laptop my own was a bonus feature that really made me feel like a true gamer ready to take on any challenge. It was really fun being able to try out different effects and colour combinations, something I only was able to do with a standalone keyboard and mouse in the past.
After using such a powerful machine for everything from playing games to just working on my reviews and general computer use, I don’t think I’d ever be able to go back to using just a standard laptop. Of course, given the thickness of the laptop, I probably won’t be able to use it in bed and have it sit on my lap. Either way, I can never go back now that I’ve experienced superiority in gaming laptops.
After weeks of use, I would recommend this laptop to anyone wanting to get into PC gaming but don’t quite have the space for a desktop and prefer portability. This laptop is not only easy to use but is also intuitive in the sense that it knows how best to optimise for certain games. I wish I’d had some of the RTX compatible games to be able to give ray-tracing a try but I just can’t justify buying a game all over again to test a feature when I already bought the game on console. MSI is clearly going all out for their gamers with the next generation of gaming laptops and this laptop is proof of their commitment to empowering gamers with the right tools they need to enjoy everything gaming has to offer. The only downside…is the cost.