MSI GE76 Raider review: Gaming thrills and spills

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(Pocket-lint) - The past clip we saw an MSI Raider laptop we recovered ourselves earnestly impressed with not lone the plan aesthetic but the wide operation of powerfulness and capabilities. So erstwhile the latest and top MSI GE76 Raider for 2021 arrived, we were assured that we were going to person a bully clip gaming connected this machine. 

But things person changed a spot since past time. Now the Raider has a snazzy RGB lighting bar, a overmuch faster refresh complaint screen, PCIe Gen 4 NVMe retention and, of course, the latest successful Nvidia graphics tech too. But does each that marque it worthy the hefty terms tag?

Stylish spec-rich gaming

  • Intel Core i9-11980HK CPU, 64GB DDR4-3200MHz RAM
  • Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 graphics
  • 1x M.2 NVMe SSD (PCIe Gen 4)

The MSI GE76 Raider has superior hardware nether the hood. The exemplary we tested not lone has a high-end Intel Core i9 CPU, but besides boasts a monolithic 64GB of RAM, and an Nvidia RTX 3080 GPU successful this setup.  

This is simply a precocious specification that ticks each the boxes. Not lone is determination person capable powerfulness to negociate the bulk of modern triple-A games, but besides to bash different things similar stream, seizure footage and video edit each from 1 spot too. 

The eventual  streaming acceptable   up, ready for backmost  to schoolhouse  and assemblage   with Currys PC World

The eventual streaming acceptable up, ready for backmost to schoolhouse and assemblage with Currys PC World By Pocket-lint Promotion · 26 August 2021

The included RTX 3080 graphics besides has enactment for Resizable BAR, which means that the Intel CPU and Nvidia graphics paper tin pass much efficiently and present amended performance. Meanwhile, PCIe Gen 4 retention gives you faster footwear times and faster load times for games too. 

Ultra-fast display

The MSI GE76 Raider has a fig of antithetic surface options depending connected your preference. You tin either take a 4K show with 120Hz refresh complaint oregon opt for Full HD with a buttery creaseless 360Hz. It's the second that we played astir with.

Naturally, if you person a accelerated refresh-rate surface you request the almighty tech to maximise the show and get the framework rates to warrant it. As you mightiness expect, this laptop tin negociate that too. We ran a fig of antithetic games to enactment it done its paces, including Dirt 5, Far Cry New Dawn, The Outer Worlds, Rainbow Six Siege and more. 

On precocious settings, we managed to get up to 300fps with Rainbow Six Siege - which is precisely what you privation if you're playing competitively oregon similar to deliberation of yourself arsenic a pro gamer. Other games similar The Outer Worlds managed up to 200fps connected maximum settings too. The creaseless and slick cyberpunk first-person shooter Ghostrunner topped retired astatine 120fps with immoderate assistance from Nvidia DLSS and looked glorious connected this instrumentality too. 

To truly propulsion the laptop, we besides hooked it up to the Pimax Vision 8K X. That's a virtual world headset with dual autochthonal 4K screens that requires an utmost gaming PC successful bid to tally good - yet the MSI managed the task perfectly. The laptop managed to present immoderate large visuals successful the VR satellite and did truthful without batting an eyelid too. 

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The show is large too. It's bully and agleam with bully colour and pleasant viewing angles. Having a 17.3-inch sheet besides means you're not squinting astatine the surface and wishing you could plug into a monitor. 

The GE76 Raider besides has a fig of options for tweaking the display. It has immoderate True Colour show options for gaming, anti-blue light, movies and much controllable via MSI Center. So you tin easiness the misery connected your eyes portion moving but besides soak up the glorious gaming goodness erstwhile it's clip to get to play.

Copious convenient connectivity

  • 1x USB Type-C (Thunderbolt 4), 1x USB Type-C (3.2 Gen2), 2x USB Type-A (3.2 Gen1), 1x USB Type-A (3.2 Gen2)
  • 1x (8K @ 60Hz / 4K @ 120Hz) HDMI and 1x Mini-DisplayPort
  • SD Express paper reader
  • RJ45 Ethernet port
  • 99.9WHr battery 
  • Wi-Fi 6E

There's nary denying that the MSI GE76 Raider has precise bully highlights astir it, including erstwhile it comes to connectivity. We had immoderate complaints astir the MSI GF65 Thin that the USB ports were, um, bladed connected the crushed and each connected the right-hand broadside - meaning they got successful the mode of your rodent - but that contented isn't an contented with the Raider. 

The GE76 has a bully premix of USB-A and USB-C ports connected either broadside and its rear too. There's besides entree to some HDMI and Mini-DisplayPort connections truthful you tin plug into an outer gaming monitor (or adjacent monitors). You tin besides get 120Hz 4K connected an outer monitor, truthful you person plentifulness of options. 

In presumption of net connectivity, this laptop sports an RJ45 Ethernet larboard and Wi-Fi 6E - truthful you've got everything you request for a coagulated experience. We recovered the Wi-Fi transportation to beryllium coagulated adjacent erstwhile gaming astatine the different extremity of our house, but evidently for streaming oregon competitory play the Ethernet transportation volition springiness you the edge. 

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One tiny lowlight is the artillery life. MSI says the Raider has a 99.9whr artillery and should past longer than others. But our investigating showed astir 3 hours max retired of the laptop during modular use. You tin get a tad much with artillery mounting tweaks, turning brightness down and lighting off, but it's inactive not amazing. 

Atmospheric RGB lighting 

  • MSI Center controls
  • SteelSeries Engine keyboard lighting controls
  • Mystic Light with panoramic aurora lighting design

This Raider continues to impressment successful the wide aesthetic. It's built to beryllium coagulated and sturdy but besides casual connected the eye. The plan includes an aurora lighting barroom astatine the beforehand which offers immoderate absorbing ocular effects you tin customise wrong the software. Naturally, you tin crook it disconnected if you don't privation to usage it, but it adds a bully glow to your gaming abstraction without being unnecessarily gaudy. 

Add to that a SteelSeries keyboard setup includes per-key illumination and a assortment of controls successful SteelSeries GG software, and you get an thought of the other benignant you're getting. That keyboard plan has a somewhat raised lodging that lets RGB lighting bleed through. It's besides a bully setup with a full-sized layout that's somewhat compacted.

Function keys springiness you plentifulness of other power too. There's 1 for the lighting, an adjustable instrumentality button, a virtual on-screen crosshair, measurement and brightness adjustment, keyboard brightness adjustment, and much besides. No media playback controls sadly, but you can't person it all. 

Verdict

All told, the MSI GE76 Raider is simply a pleasing gaming laptop with plentifulness to offer. It's powerful, portable and plentiful successful presumption of the amusive and thrills it delivers. Obviously, each that powerfulness comes astatine a price, but it's good worthy the disbursal successful our mind. 

Also consider

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Others to see  photograph  1

MSI GF65 Thin

If you privation thing that's bladed but inactive has the powerfulness to deliver, past the GF65 Thin is worthy a look too. It's not arsenic spec-rich arsenic the Raider, but it's besides a batch cheaper. 

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Pocket-lint

Others to see  photograph  2

Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 

Brilliantly balancing benignant and powerfulness to present a laptop that's capable to crippled brilliantly and inactive enactment good for productivity too. It's reasonably affordable considering the specs and worthy a look arsenic a result.

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Writing by Adrian Willings. Editing by Mike Lowe. Originally published connected 26 August 2021.

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