While MSI still stands as one of the best choices for high-end PC components and gaming laptops, they also offer great mid-range gaming notebooks at affordable price ranges. We have with us the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard, featuring the latest Intel Skylake processor and the NVIDIA GTX 1050 GPU.
Design and Features
Every MSI gaming laptop that we had tried in the past had one thing in common with regard to design aspects: a brushed metallic chassis with gamer-centric curves that goes well along with the performance of the machine. The MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard features the familiar aluminum chassis with dimensions of 383 x 260 x 27~29mm and weighing only 2.4kg, which is quite good for a 15-inch gaming laptop. The 1920 x 1080 screen resolution is sufficient enough for this machine and friendly enough for the mid-range NVIDIA GPU to perform well.
Talking about displays, the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard can be bought with either an IPS display or a Wide-View panel, and our review unit came with the latter version. Despite the term “Wide-View”, this name scheming is often confused to be an IPS panel (known for having great viewing angles). But that isn’t the case here as the panel is technically a TN panel. We could easily guess because the screen loses its visibility from certain angles. We just wish that laptop manufacturers explain their brand terms before gamers buy the wrong model and a simple mention of a TN panel would have sufficed.
That said, the screen covers almost 94% of NTSC color reproduction, which is sufficient enough if you are into photography or video work. The multi-color backlit keyboard from SteelSeries is also something that we have already seen in all the MSI gaming laptops till date. The 1.9mm key travel is good enough for a pleasant typing experience, along with the numeric keypad on the right and the decent two-button trackpad on the bottom.
On the upper right side are the power button and the fan boost for cranking up the fans to the maximum if the need arises. During our time with the laptop, we didn’t come to a point where we had to increase the fan to its fullest because the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard didn’t heat up much during gameplay.
When it comes to connectivity, the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard features a reversible USB Type-C port, an HDMI 2.0 port, a mini Display Port, an RJ45 jack with Killer LAN, two USB 3.0 Type-A ports and audio jacks for mic-in and headphone-out.
While those ports are placed on the left side, the laptop holds a USB 2.0 port, the power connector, an SD card reader and the DVD drive on the right side.
The Cooler Boost 4 cooling fans push the hot air from the rear side of the laptop and do a good job at keeping the CPU and GPU cool for optimum performance. I should also mention that there was no sign of overheating on the keyboard area of the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard.
While it’s a bit of a disappointment that the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard doesn’t feature DynaAudio technology, the front-facing speakers are backed by the Nahimic Sound 2 audio tech for a 360-degree audio experience. For those who would want to upgrade the storage or RAM for a future date, the bottom panel appears to be removable. The internal power source included in the system is a 6-cell 41 Whr Li-Ion battery. While gaming can easily drain the battery fast, using the laptop for normal tasks can last over two hours, depending on the power profile and that application you use. We watched YouTube on Performance mode which the laptop ran for almost two hours, while low-power mode would certainly push the battery life further.
Specifications and Benchmarks
With all that said about the design, we now dive into the internal specifications of the machine. The processor used here is the 14nm Intel i7-7700HQ Kaby Lake chip, with its four cores and eight threads clocked at a frequency of 2.8GHz. The TDP of the processors is 45W, according to the readings of CPU-Z. Since this is a mid-range laptop, the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard comes with only a single 8GB DDR4 RAM (Samsung branded). Thankfully, the specification sheet of the laptop does mention that there are two DIMM slots inside.
The MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard comes with either the 2GB or 4GB GDDR5 version of the NVIDIA GTX 1050 GPU, and our review unit sported the latter version. We tested the machine with benchmarks such as CineBench R15 and GeekBench 4 for CPU performance, CrystalDiskMark for SSD performance, PassMark 9 for system performance and FutureMark tests for the GPU. We also ran some games at medium-high settings at 1080p.
The multi-core CPU performance that we achieved in CineBench R15 (721 points) is quite comparable with some of the Intel desktop processors and certainly faster than an Intel i5-6500. GeekBench and PassMark performance scores are also quite good, while the GTX 1050 scored 5576 points in FireStrike and 1795 points in the DirectX 12 based TimeSpy test. It’s not that bad as compared to higher end GPUs in the market. However, games such as Rise of the Tomb Raider could barely touch the 60fps mark in both medium and high presets. The Division with DX11 and DX12 modes could only run in between 30 and 50 fps on average. Gamers would perhaps want to turn down the graphical detail to low if they require 60fps gameplay.
While the MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard features the latest Kaby Lake processor and a desktop class mid-range GPU with 4GB GDDR5 in a stylish metal chassis, I was quite disappointed by the performance of the GTX 1050 for some of the latest game titles while playing at medium-to-high settings. This means that you will need to sacrifice a lot of game detail and tune down the presets to low. We wish that the machine came with the GTX 1050 Ti instead of the GTX 1050 GPU. That being said, older game titles which aren’t taxing can easily cross the 60fps without lowering the settings.
The 8GB DDR4 RAM isn’t something to be alarmed here as the system runs pretty fine unless you want to use it for some video editing purposes. The GP62 7RDX Leopard is probably one of the few gaming laptops that MSI offers with stripped down specifications to meet the expectations of budget-conscious buyers.
The MSI GP62 7RDX Leopard is priced at AED 4799 in the UAE.