The Official MSI GS73VR Owners' Lounge

Discussion in 'MSI Reviews & Owners' Lounges' started by NHF, Aug 23, 2016.

  1. colonels

    colonels Notebook Consultant

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    checking the teardown pics of the GS73 the speakers are located exactly in the lower left corner next to the headphone and mic jacks. it could be improper shielding or like you said a short somewhere, the problem is it is random, but when it starts occurring i can force it to repeat itself with internet speed tests, but just initiating a speed test itself does not make it start occurring lol!
     
  2. lovidore

    lovidore Newbie

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    Hi all,

    I'm considering buying this laptop as a portable gaming laptop that I can occasionally carry with me to places and do some gaming. The slim and lightweight form factor are what are most appealing to me while packing a 1060 and a 120 Hz FHD screen.

    Among the games I'll be playing:
    • Killer Instinct
    • WoW
    • Dota 2
    • CS:GO
    • Gears of War 4
    After looking through this thread I found a few things to be concerned about:
    • High Temperature (mainly concerned about the chassis, and not the components since this won't be a daily driver)
    • Very high fan noise under load
    • Coil while & electrical noises
    • Banding + Light bleed on the screen
    • Hit and miss build quality on the laptop

    Are these considered widespread and commonly occurring issues? Which are bearable and which are considered deal breakers? And if you would recommend another laptop besides this, what would you recommend considering similar specs? Budget is no issue to me (within reason)
     
  3. colonels

    colonels Notebook Consultant

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    i have fixed this issue... it was a simple channel change (before it was set to AUTO)
    my router is linksys ac 2.4ghz and 5ghz
    i played around with the channels setting in the router (not in the wifi adapter settings) went to both ends of the spectrum and finally got a clear signal in the middle
    no more low download speeds while playing games
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2016
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  4. montobrah

    montobrah Notebook Consultant

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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2016
  5. Derek712

    Derek712 Notebook Virtuoso

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    Hi lovidore,

    The only major issues on this list above I've had are the CPU coil whine, occasional stuttering from GPU switching and the bottom edges being sharp(on my previous unit). I definitely haven't had issues with constant keypresses - that would drive me crazy. I might have the touchpad issue but I don't ever click it, I only tap and double tap. I have no misalignment problems with my keyboard or screen but I do see that some of the footpads aren't touching. Luckily all 4 corners are touching and there's no wobble but a couple of the center ones look like they have a gap. I don't think the CPU throttling is a major issue though. That's pretty normal for thin laptops with this CPU. I guess they could have done a dual fan like they did with the GPU.

    I had some of the minor problems but I resolved most of them by doing a clean install. I don't use Nahimic, Killer, True Color or Dragon Center. The only catch with not using Nahimic is I have to manually change my output device when using headphones. To me it's worth it to have better sound and CPU overhead but it's slightly annoying. Color banding isn't an issue on my screen(I have the 4k version currently). I don't remember it on the 120Hz version either. After a couple months, I've generated a small amount of BLB on the top edge, likely from the lid being so thin and the panel flexing. The BLB varies day to day so I'm confident that's the case. In my opinion, it's really minor and nothing compared to how bad it "could" be. On the 120Hz TN panel there was super light edge bleed but it was hardly noticeable at all. I agree the M.2 and HDD suck - I replaced them immediately. As for the LEDs, the primary colors are solid but mixing them gives you strange results on some of the bottom keys. This is actually pretty normal given the LEDs they are using rely on resistance to change colors and they aren't individually lit. Alienware also has the same issue which is why they lock you into only using 16 or so colors and no longer white(it looks beige/pink).

    Hope this helps.
     
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  6. montobrah

    montobrah Notebook Consultant

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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2016
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  7. Derek712

    Derek712 Notebook Virtuoso

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    So Lunatics just confirmed that he has the same mouse lag when the dGPU occasionally switches on the Razer Blade as well. He repeated the same test when you left click the power icon and the mouse stops responding for a split second. I've actually grown quite used to it and I hardly notice it anymore but it's nice to know it's not just an MSI issue. It's most likely something to be fixed by Intel now.
     
  8. s9yau

    s9yau Newbie

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    Hello,

    Thank you all for sharing this information, very useful for those hesitant to pull the trigger on this machine. I received mine a week ago, model number 6RF-076XFR Stealth Pro (120Hz FHD TN panel). Used as an occasional gaming machine (CS:GO, Battlefield 1, Civ V and VI...) and light photo/video editing.

    I've had a peruse through this entire thread and there seems to be some unfortunate cases of questionable quality control or underperforming machines. Rather than regurgitate benchmarks, I figured I'd do my part to reinforce any observations from other users, and give my take on highly subjective aspects about using this machine in a fairly casual manner.

    First impressions:
    • Coming from a ASUS N752VX (premium-ish 17.3" multimedia machine), this MSI is refreshingly slim and light. This thing is staying at home as a desktop replacement, I'm not expecting it to fit in and be carried around in a backpack.
    • Nice but thin aluminium panels all over. Picking it up one handed gives me the impression it's going to bend under its own weight but I think it's just the micro-depression of the base plate - no permanent damage. Carry vertically or with two hands!
    • Fairly slim bezels (obviously not Dell XPS territory) and matt screen get a thumbs up.
    • Power socket is about two thirds toward the back along the right hand side; I wish it was right at the back corner near the screen hinge so that it doesn't bother my corded mouse, or better yet on the left side of the laptop.
    • French buyers beware, removing the bottom panel (e.g. to replace HDD) invalidates warranty because there is a security sticker covering one of the screws.
    • Man the hinge is stiff, certainly no one-handed opening cos the base comes flying up but at least it doesn't wobble around with enthusiastic typing.
    • Lol, a MSI driver/utility disk is bundled in the box but this thing has no optical drive.
    • No glaring case gaps (can't squeeze a credit card in anywhere) or mis-aligned port cutouts or keyboard. The bottom edge of the right-hand side USB port was warped out away from the chassis by a couple of mm but was easily remedied by pushing it flush back in.
    • These bloody GeForce / Core i7 / MSI stickers need to come off.
    • All 9 feet appear to touch the table, unlike reported by other users. Ultimately, no wobbling when on table.
    Setup:
    • Light-up lid logo is not as garish as others have made out: only the dragon lights up and scales with the screen brightness.
    • Laptop came wih FreeDOS, so had to install my own copy of Win 10 via USB. Needed to head into the BIOS to change the boot order no problem (couldn't figure out which key to press to load advanced boot menu).
    • All the USB ports are TIGHT and very rough-feeling, the Win10 USB stick is scratched to high heaven.
    • Turns out that the useless driver/utility disc has been copied onto a pre-created partition on the SSD but I intend nonethless on downloading the latest versions from the interweb.
    • Hard eyegasm as soon as I wave around my mouse and see the cursor float around in 120 Hz heaven. I seriously underestimated the gain over a 60 Hz screen.
    • Clean install = no MSI bloatware. The only things I installed are SteelSeries Engine 3 and nVidia GeForce Experience. I let Win 10 handle the rest. I notice that Win10 auto installs some ****e Elan Touchpad drivers for the trackpad and (unsure if this is related or not) I don't have three/four finger gestures anymore or four-finger tap to open action centre like I did on my ASUS. I read that I need to rollback and block these drivers but not yet got around to doing it.
    • Keyboard is a delight to type on. The key font is a bit gamer-esque but not offensively so. NICE BACKLIGHT!
    • Fn key is on left side of space bar / Win key is on the right side of space bar. Someone in this thread was moaning about lack of Win key on the left but this is how I dealt with it: in BIOS, enable the "switch Win/Fn keys". Physically pop off + swap the keyboard keys so Win is on left and Fn is on the right of space bar. Fn in this position is great; because it lets you change one-handed the screen brightness (default mapped to left/right arrow keys) and volume (default mapped to up/down arrow keys). At a stretch, can even change brightness of keyboard backlight one-handed (default mapped to +/- on numberpad).
    • Enter key is not 'tall' and is shaped like a shift key, the upper half being allocated to "µ" and "*" symbols. I keep hitting the symbols when I want to do a line return or enter a web address. Hopefully I'll get used to it.
    • Insert is above the 7 on numberpad; Delete is above the 8 on the numberpad. Others have pointed out this unorthodox layout, preferring the Del key to be where the Ins is. Similar to the Win/Fn key switcharoo, I popped + swapped the keyboard keys and used 'Clavier+' software to remap the buttons.
    • Some users have reported being swindled by a SATA M2 drive; I have a Toshiba THNSH5128GPU7 which appears to be NVMe. I confirm the presence of an archaic 5400rpm HDD. Both need replacing at some point with some sexier SSDs, once I muster up the courage to invalidate the warranty.
    1 week of use:
    • Trackpad is decent, does not wobble like my ASUS, has not yet got jammed when clicked as reported by another user. Touchpad experience is nonetheless still more pleasurable on my 7 year old Macbook Pro. Though I use a mouse most of the time because mouse > trackpad.
    • The power light around the on/off button just in front of the right hinge is permanently bright red and in your face, can't modify/disable and is distracting in a dim environment.
    • Keyboard is a genuine delight compared to all previous laptops I've ever owned. I think I'm mis-hitting less the enter key. So far, no continuous key press issue as reported by another user.
    • Minor backlight bleeding along top corners when screen is black in dark room, but since my screen is never black during actual use, I couldn't care less. No obvious colour banding issues.
    • I have not under-volted the CPU or tweaked any performance settings. No fan noise during Windows use. Very high fan noise under stress e.g. during games but I wear heapdhones so I'm not particularly bothered.
    • No stuttering issues or mouse lag as reported by other users.
    • Keyboard backlight levels do not seem to be at evenly distributed increments, more like 0, 50%, 70%, 100% i.e. still bright on lowest setting.
    • Genuinely loving the screen fluidity and smoothness in twitch gaming like in CS:GO. Admittedly not the most graphically demanding title but just the fact that there is significantly reduced screen tearing even without v-sync is a blessing.
    • I think the speakers are absolute crap but I play audio through a bluetooth soundbar or headphones.
    • I honestly cannot hear any trace of coil whine.
    • Has not yet felt too hot to the touch; but never used on lap, always at a desk.

    All in all a positive experience so far, perhaps I've been lucky in the hit&miss lottery, or - as someone else mentioned - the 'vocal minority' with dodgy GS73VRs may be airing their pain more than those who aren't having any major problems.

    Let's see how long this honeymoon lasts...
     
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  9. montobrah

    montobrah Notebook Consultant

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    Last edited: Nov 11, 2016
  10. cgeorgescu

    cgeorgescu Notebook Enthusiast

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    About the screen banding, that very severe banding... Serviced in the MSI-approved service (small company that services lots of brands, not only MSI), took half hour, the problem is completely gone. They said they re-flashed some eeprom (or something) cause the MB "knew" the panel is type X while, in fact, it was Y, something like that. I'm not sure they opened the laptop for that, I left it then got a call after about half hour saying it's fixed. Certainly not enough time to replace the panel or anything else.

    Now a mini-review of this particular unit I have:
    - during normal usage, there's no noise on mine, the CPU cooler is rarely making any noise, at idle or low usage is either off or spinning at very low speed, don't know. For example now, if I get closer, I can hear the HDD but not really the CPU cooler. And it's with the default paste;
    - I don't plan to game on this thing but I installed Far Cry 4 and Doom (this new one) just to see how modern games look like (as I stopped gaming at Quake 3, million years ago). The coolers ramp up, OK, make some noise but nothing dramatic. I ran these 2 games for about half hour each at higher-than-default quality on 4K and ultra on FHD, plenty of hot air gets out through those vents, there's some noise but still acceptable. No need for headphones or anything like I read in the reviews, it only makes more noise but I could play those without any problem;
    - the screen has some minimal bleeding but it's only visible during boot (max backlight, nothing on the screen) in a very dark environment. It's also very bright, I use it at ~1/3 backlight, and contrast is perfect at any brightness level. Viewing angles are very good too;
    - the 4K screen is so sharp at 17.3", all text on the web is so sharp, and that starts to be a problem when I play a FHD movie full-screen. I quickly got used to this sharpness, being able to see the smallest detail in every picture, seeing the text no matter how small, and now FHD movies look a little bit blurry, more like HD than10-15GB mp4 (I live in Romania where 1Gbps over fiber is $12 per month, I download such bd-rips in minutes. Only Doom took about half hour, but it was 60GB);
    - now I sharpen movies in VLC with HW-based decoding, I just need to ensure the Nvidia board is started (so with the laptop not on Eco), otherwise it stutters on the Intel one. And there's no noise from the GPU coolers cause, don't know, probably sharpening a FHD stream and enlarging it to 4K takes like 1% of this GTX 1060' time and energy;
    - normally, people would use this 4K 17.3" screen at 200% scaling to have the text sized like on FHD (127ppi) but better rendered. Well, the screen is so sharp that, if you need some extra space, it's still OK to run it at 175% scaling (145ppi) for several hours without feeling that you're destroying your eyes. At 175% it has the approx. density of FHD on 15.6" (141ppi). Very useful for Visual Studio, Eclipse, Phpstorm and software development (but also for Photoshop guys as they get slightly smaller, but still visible, palettes). If you're into web development, at this density it fits 2 browsers, side-by-side, without any scaling;
    - still about the screen... Not the screen's problem but it's worth mentioning: sometimes you face a window or a whole software that doesn't know about scaling. When it doesn't know and it's scaled proportionally by Windows itself, it seems very blurry as you come from super-sharp fonts. When it's not scaled, it's tiny like tiny. Modern software seems to go OK, all software development tools I played with so far show no problem and scale very well without logoff/logon, making the 200/175% scaling switch very useful when I want everything more relaxing or need more space;
    - I found I can use the touchpad 99% of time only by tapping, not pressing it. The only operation I need to press it for is right-click-drag (when I drag and drop a file but, at drop, I want to have the context menu instead of the default action), everything else is smooth and without any click, just tap(s) and swipes;
    - the backside doesn't get hot on normal usage but only when gaming or doing something heavy. It never gets warm on the top side;
    - the keyboard is very OK, silent, but has the known Fn-Win and Del-Pause/Break problems (keys being switched). I switched back Fn-Win in Bios and remapped Del onto Pause with the SteelSeries software. To my preference, I also mapped AltGr onto the 2nd "\" key (right of spacebar, as there's the other, larger one next to Enter);
    - the SATA SSD is, well, a SATA SSD. Not a good one, not a bad one, quite average. Will replace it with the 960 PRO when I'll finally get it (and put this lame SSD into my wife's Asus which I hope will come with a functional M2 slot even if I ordered the HDD-only version (on purpose, knowing that I'll have this extra M2 SSD));
    - the dragon logo on the back is barely noticeable: at home I use the screen at very low brightness, in the office I crank up the brightness, the dragon get whiter but the whole environment is full of light, the dragon never looks like being illuminated. Looks like it's of some white plastic, not backlighted, not macbook-like;
    - the whole laptop passes as "business" enough, doesn't look like a gaming machine after I peeled off the stickers (especially the very stupid xoticpc sticker I got on the right). I was afraid of that long red line it was supposed to have on the back, especially that the MSI pictures show it being long, thick and sparkling-red. Well, my unit doesn't have that line end-to-end but only that short part in the middle, under the "stealth". And it's very dark-red on mine, nothing like what I see on MSI's site. Also, the red trim around the trackpad is very dark and barely noticeable;
    - people mentioned the fingerprints... Yeah, technically it collects but not so much to be a problem;
    - the power connector on the right is stupid but, being at 90 degrees, is not extremely stupid. But fitting external monitors to it is stupid as the HDMI and miniDP are very close to one-another (hard to use both), very close to the power connector, on the right side, and towards the front, not back.

    Now I'm not really using it for work as I'm waiting for that 960PRO, don't want to install and re-install everything million of times.
    (a strange detail: this unit came with W10home, OK. When I had the banding problems, I installed another W10, fresh, to test. Being temporary, I never needed to activate, also I had no key. The banding was still there, of course, but that fresh W10 was already activated immediately after install. Then I put Ubuntu, then W10 back, it got activated again. Now I have W10Pro, my company's copy, which I installed fresh again, and which I know very well it asks for the VLC key to activate. Well, for some unknown reason, it never asked (yet) on this very laptop. Don't know why. And I installed it 2 times, fresh, first with a local account (for testing purposes, still with the screen banding problem), then with my MS account. Let's say my MS account was somehow linked to my W10Pro license (which I have), but how that the other W10home and the 1st install of this W10pro were activated, I don't know. They both boot with the MSI, not the default Win logo)
     
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