Have we accomplished the point area high-end laptop technology has acquired to the point area one apparatus can awning the majority of abeyant use-case scenarios? Can the latest attenuate and ablaze machines featuring six-core Intel processors and Nvidia’s GTX 1070 Max-Q GPU alter your amateur apparatus and your ultrabook – while carrying abundant CPU application to assignment as a high-end 4K video alteration workstation? In a multi-month experiment, we put MSI’s GS65 Stealth laptop to the test, with some alluring results.
The GS65 is one of a baby ambit of notebooks afresh appear that bear appalling CPU and GPU ability in a anatomy agency absolute agnate to a 15-inch MacBook Pro. Effectively, these machines assignment by demography high-end desktop CPU and GPU processors and active them at bargain clocks – at frequencies acquainted to bear the candied atom in agreement of achievement per watt (what Nvidia refers to as the Max Q point). The Core i7 8750H in the GS65 is architecturally identical to the Core i7 8700K from the desktop realm, artlessly active in a bargain ability window. And it’s the aforementioned with the GTX 1070 – admitting Nvidia’s adaptable allotment actuality absolutely has 128 added CUDA cores than its desktop counterpart.
These machines are about delivered with 1080p, 144Hz 15-inch screens, while accumulator is taken affliction of with M.2 SSDs. This is acute for abundance workloads and affluence of use in Windows: NVMe SSDs use PCI Express connectivity for acute bandwidth, every bit the according of the best desktop drives… because they are the best desktop drives. All of the 8750H/1070 Max-Q notebooks affection two M.2 SSD slots on their mainboards, bar the new Razer Blade 15, which alone has one.
Our video breakdown of the MSI GS65 Stealth and how it endless up as amateur machine, ultrabook and 4K alteration assembly unit.
To sum up then, at the accouterments level, we accept higher-end desktop brand genitalia with ability tweaks commutual with accompaniment of the art storage, aerial abundance displays and all awash into a amalgamation that’s aloof 17.9mm thick. This new brand of laptop additionally comes with aerial accommodation batteries advised to action eight hours of backbone in archetypal alive tasks – there’s an 80WHr accommodation array in the GS65, but the agnate Gigabyte Aero 15X ramps this up to 94WHr. This aspect is additionally acute to the testing; we’ve got the anatomy agency actuality to alter an ultrabook but the continued array activity begin in that affectionate of laptop additionally needs to be delivered actuality too.
So how did we go about testing the GS65’s abundance credentials? Well, we chose 4K video alteration application Adobe Premiere Pro and 4K video compression with Handbrake as our called accent tests because these are absolutely a real-life challenges Digital Foundry has faced at contest like E3 and Gamescom. With compression, we antecedent aerial affection 4K video abduction (typically in ProRes architecture application an Atomos Ninja Inferno) as these 1gbps files charge to be diminished bottomward with no apparent accident of affection again transmitted aback to base.
During E3 2017, we lashed up a mini ITX arrangement with a Core i7 6700K active at banal clocks (but under-volted to abstain over-heating). It did the job, but portability was a botheration – abnormally as there’s no chip awning or ascribe devices. Clocks are lower on the MSI’s Core i7 8750H, but an added two cores and four accoutrement delivers added achievement than our old solution. In fact, the 8750H is about 10 per cent faster than a desktop Core i7 7700K. Put simply, this akin of ability in a anthology is fantastically liberating.
Better than last-gen desktop achievement additionally translates into a nigh-on seamless video alteration acquaintance too. We’ve got a brace of real-life examples actuality to authenticate what a game-changer this was for us. During E3 2018, John captured Forza Horizon 4 at the Microsoft booth, again put calm this adapt aback at the hotel. Handling aerial bandwidth 4K60 ProRes video airish aught issues for the MSI machine.
Another, added demanding archetype is the altercation video anchored beneath apperception on Nvidia’s new RTX technology, attempt alfresco our auberge at Gamescom. We acclimated two Panasonic GH5 cameras to blur the altercation at 4K60 resolution. The final video was 1080p, but the absolute adapt was based on those 4K streams – we can use portions of the angel to zoom in on speakers with no arresting accident of quality, or use the absolute 4K angel downscaled for added shots of the three of us. What we end up with on the timeline is assorted 4K streams handled in alongside – a ascetic processing claiming and yet the acquaintance was still absolute desktop-like, with abounding real-time playback on the timeline. Indeed, the better limitation actuality was the 1080p resolution of the screen, as against to the application of the assemblage itself.
In the case of both edits, the 4K assets were stored on SSDs affiliated by USB 3.0 adapters, acceptation that connectivity on the IO isn’t bound either. While an SD agenda aperture would accept been useful, the MSI does accept admission to Thundert over USB-C, acceptation that there is admission to absolute aerial bandwidth for accumulator if, for some reason, USB 3.0 isn’t enough.
This video – attempt and edited at Gamescom – is a 1080p project, but it’s congenital from assorted 4K60 shots and it was edited absolutely on the GS65 Stealth. It’s the final achievement of the activity you see pictured above.
The basal line? Across two barter events, the MSI GS65 Stealth accepted added portable, added able and easier to use than our absolute mini-ITX PC, carrying a desktop-grade experience. The CPU is quantifiably stronger than earlier desktop quad-core i7s and we accept GTX 1070 cartoon ability too – and Adobe Premiere does use the GPU abundantly for video furnishings rendering. The better niggles with the GS65 appear bottomward to acoustics and thermal management. The admirers in the GS65 aren’t loud but the angle is annoying and back editing, babble cancelling headphones accomplish all the difference. There’s additionally the faculty that the CPU may be hitting thermal banned regardless, based on accouterments ecology during gaming.
And gaming is our aing big claiming for this abeyant all-rounder. Benchmarks acknowledge that the Core i7 8750H is about ten per cent faster than a 7700K, but a non-power-limited 8700K outperforms it with about 25 to 30 per cent added horsepower. For gaming, the big catechism apropos the Max-Q cartoon accouterments – yes, we should apprehend bargain clocks compared to the desktop GTX 1070, but aloof how abundant slower is it?
MSI GS65 Stealth: Core i7 8750H/GTX 1070 Max-Q Analysis
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