Notebookcheck

MSI Creator 17 A10SGS Laptop Review: Winning with a Mini LED

A rising light. In contrast to the similarly equipped GS75, the Creator 17 is targeted towards creative professionals as the name already tells us. However, its most unique feature is not the target group, but the brand-new Mini LED display with HDR support. Is it worth the high price, or is the technology just smoke and mirrors?
Florian Glaser, 👁 Florian Glaser, Andrea Grüblinger (translated by Mark Riege),
MSI Creator 17

The MSI website currently lists four basic configurations for the Creator 17. While the A10SE model uses a GeForce RTX 2060, the A10SF is equipped with an RTX 2070 Max-Q and the A10SFS with an RTX 2070 Super Max-Q. Our test unit, the A10SGS model that uses an RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, is particularly expensive. In terms of the display, you can either choose a 144-Hz Full HD panel or a 60-Hz UHD panel (including the Mini LED technology or not). With this, MSI is the first manufacturer that introduces a Mini LED laptop to the market.

MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Processor
Intel Core i7-10875H 8 x 2.3 - 5.1 GHz, Comet Lake-H
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q - 8192 MB, Core: 735 MHz, Memory: 1375 MHz, GDDR6, ForceWare 446.14, Optimus
Memory
32768 MB 
, 2x 16 GB SO-DIMM DDR4-2666, dual channel, all slots occupied, max. 64 GB
Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 3840 x 2160 pixel 255 PPI, B173ZAN05.0 (AUO278E), Mini LED IPS level, 4K/UHD, glossy: no, HDR, 60 Hz
Mainboard
Intel HM470
Storage
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB, 2048 GB 
, NVMe, slots: 2x M.2 Type 2280 (1 slot empty)
Soundcard
Realtek ALC298 @ Intel Comet Point PCH - cAVS
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 2 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 2 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: 1x headphones, 1x microphone, Card Reader: microSD, 1 Fingerprint Reader
Networking
Intel Ethernet Controller I225-V (10MBit/s), Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 (a/b/g/h/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5/ax = Wi-Fi 6), Bluetooth 5.1
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 20 x 396 x 259 ( = 0.79 x 15.59 x 10.2 in)
Battery
82 Wh Lithium-Polymer, 4 cells
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD (720p)
Additional features
Speakers: 2.0, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, 230-watt power supply, Creator Center, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
2.39 kg ( = 84.3 oz / 5.27 pounds), Power Supply: 725 g ( = 25.57 oz / 1.6 pounds)
Price
4200 EUR
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

The competitors of the Creator 17 include other 17-inch high-end laptops with a slim build such as the Razer Blade Pro 17, the Asus Zephyrus S GX701GXR, the Alienware m17 R2, and the MSI GS75 9SG sibling we already mentioned above.

Rating
Date
Model
Weight
Height
Size
Resolution
Best Price
83 %
07/2020
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
i7-10875H, GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
2.4 kg20 mm17.3"3840x2160
83 %
06/2019
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
2.3 kg18.9 mm17.3"1920x1080
88 %
06/2019
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
2.8 kg19.9 mm17.3"1920x1080
81 %
12/2019
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
2.7 kg18.7 mm17.3"1920x1080
84 %
02/2020
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
i9-9980HK, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
2.6 kg20.5 mm17.3"1920x1080

Case

Unfortunately, the case does not give justice to its premium price. Even though it is mostly made from aluminum, the materials creak a lot when trying to warp the case, which is similar to a cheap budget notebook and reduces the otherwise high-quality impression. Similarly to the GS75, the MSI leaves a lot to be desired in terms of the stability. Despite the use of metal, the lid and base unit can be pressed down noticeably. Other MSI models do markedly better here. But at least the workmanship is at the expected level.

MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17

In terms of pure visuals, the Creator 17 strikes a very good figure. The combination of the silver-gray color, slim-bezel design, and low height (2.0 cm, ~0.8 in) guarantee a very sleek and modern look that is neither too drab nor too playful and fits any situation. At around 2.4 kg (~5.3 lb), the weight is at the lower end of the scale of the 17-inch laptops and competitors. In addition, users will also be pleased with the relatively large opening angle of 150°.

Size Comparison

399.8 mm / 15.7 inch 295.5 mm / 11.6 inch 20.5 mm / 0.807 inch 2.6 kg5.7 lbs399 mm / 15.7 inch 272 mm / 10.7 inch 18.7 mm / 0.736 inch 2.7 kg5.89 lbs396 mm / 15.6 inch 259 mm / 10.2 inch 20 mm / 0.787 inch 2.4 kg5.27 lbs396 mm / 15.6 inch 259 mm / 10.2 inch 18.9 mm / 0.744 inch 2.3 kg5.03 lbs395 mm / 15.6 inch 260 mm / 10.2 inch 19.9 mm / 0.783 inch 2.8 kg6.06 lbs

Equipment

Connections

In terms of the connections, MSI hardly makes any compromises. If you disregard the microSD card reader (we would have preferred a standard model here), the Creator 17 offers an ample selection of connections, be it the RJ45 port, the two audio ports, the HDMI-2.0 port, or the Kensington lock opening. Those are accompanied by one Thunderbolt-3 port, one USB-C 3.1 Gen2 port, and according to the MSI home page, three USB-A 3.0 ports (while the labels on the case indicate 3.1 Gen2 = SS10). Since the connections are all located in the center area of both sides, there might be some limits in terms of movement with a lot of connected cables, if you are using a mouse.

Left side: power, RJ45 LAN, USB-A 3.0, microSD, microphone, headphones
Left side: power, RJ45 LAN, USB-A 3.0, microSD, microphone, headphones
Right side: USB-C 3.1 Gen2, 2x USB-A 3.0, Thunderbolt 3, HDMI 2.0, Kensington lock
Right side: USB-C 3.1 Gen2, 2x USB-A 3.0, Thunderbolt 3, HDMI 2.0, Kensington lock

Communication

Due to our recently changed test setup using an ax router instead of an ac router, the test results can only be compared with those of the Asus ROG Zephyrus S. The 1270 Mb/s when sending and 1340 Mb/s when receiving data achieved by the Creator 17 at a one-meter distance show the advantages of a very modern Wi-Fi chip. Instead of the Wireless AC 9560 that used to be very popular, the Wi-Fi 6 AX201 handles wireless connections here.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201
1340 MBit/s ∼100%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
924 MBit/s ∼69% -31%
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200
686 MBit/s ∼51% -49%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
682 MBit/s ∼51% -49%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
638 (min: 625, max: 645) MBit/s ∼48% -52%
Average of class Multimedia
  (44 - 1446, n=172)
573 MBit/s ∼43% -57%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201
1270 MBit/s ∼100%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
1110 MBit/s ∼87% -13%
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200
697 MBit/s ∼55% -45%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
668 MBit/s ∼53% -47%
Average of class Multimedia
  (46.1 - 1563, n=171)
542 MBit/s ∼43% -57%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
496 (min: 459, max: 531) MBit/s ∼39% -61%

Webcam

Like most manufacturers, MSI uses only a mediocre webcam, to say the least. The image sharpness and color accuracy leave something to be desired.

ColorChecker
7.5 ∆E
10 ∆E
11.2 ∆E
7.4 ∆E
10.7 ∆E
9 ∆E
10.3 ∆E
15.9 ∆E
14.6 ∆E
8.7 ∆E
8.1 ∆E
7.4 ∆E
11.4 ∆E
10.8 ∆E
20.3 ∆E
6.2 ∆E
16.8 ∆E
15.3 ∆E
1.8 ∆E
10.7 ∆E
13.5 ∆E
12.3 ∆E
7.3 ∆E
3.3 ∆E
ColorChecker MSI Creator 17 A10SGS: 10.44 ∆E min: 1.76 - max: 20.34 ∆E

Security

Besides the selection of colors, the fingerprint sensor integrated into the touchpad represents one of the most important differences to the GS75.

Accessories

A 230-watt power supply weighing about 0.7 kg (~1.5 lb) and measuring 15 x 7 x 3 cm (~5.9 x 2.8 x 1.2 in) is included. 

Maintenance

In order to reach the insides, you first have to remove a total of 15 screws from the case bottom and then pry it from its moorings. As you can see in the photos, some parts of the components are covered by a black foil, leaving only the fans, the battery, and the two M.2 slots directly accessible.

MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17
MSI Creator 17

Input Devices

Keyboard

The keyboard reminds us very much of the MSI gaming models. German buyers have to live with a unique layout in the Creator 17 keyboard that requires some getting used to. Among other things, this also concerns the position of the <>| key and the #‘ key. The latter leads to an Enter key of only a single line, which should deter some of those who type frequently. The presence of a dedicated number block is a matter of taste, as usual. We would call the typing experience good. In order to be able to use the 17-incher optimally also at night and in dark surroundings, the keyboard offers a white illumination that can be adjusted in several steps.

Chiclet keyboard...
Chiclet keyboard...
...with white illumination
...with white illumination

Touchpad

The touchpad mainly stands out with its width. 14 cm (~5.5 in) offers a lot of space for horizontal mouse movements. On the other hand, the vertical space is only 6.5 cm (~2.6 in). The smooth finish allows the fingers to slide comfortably and quickly across the surface. The gesture support (scrolling and zooming with two fingers, for example) also scores some positive points, even though this is the standard at this point. Left and right clicks in the lower corners of the touchpad are mostly recognized reliably, but they produce a quite loud clattering sound. 

Display

The new Mini LED display turns out to be the absolute highlight of the Creator 17. Unless mentioned otherwise, the following values were produced without HDR, because when using HDR, the MSI color profiles did not run as they were supposed to, and there were also some software and hardware problems with our measurement tools.

958
cd/m²
974
cd/m²
927
cd/m²
929
cd/m²
996
cd/m²
943
cd/m²
935
cd/m²
965
cd/m²
942
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
B173ZAN05.0 (AUO278E)
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 996 cd/m² Average: 952.1 cd/m² Minimum: 60 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 93 %
Center on Battery: 996 cd/m²
Contrast: 1465:1 (Black: 0.68 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 4.21 | 0.6-29.43 Ø5.8, calibrated: 2.03
ΔE Greyscale 4.1 | 0.64-98 Ø6
97% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 84% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.207
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
B173ZAN05.0 (AUO278E), Mini-LED IPS-Level, 3840x2160
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS HDR
3840x2160
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Chi Mei N173HCE-G33 (CMN175C), IPS, 1920x1080
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
AU Optronics B173HAN04.0, IPS, 1920x1080
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
AU Optronics B173HAN05.1, IPS, 1920x1080
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Chi Mei 173HCE, CMN175F, IPS, 1920x1080
Response Times
0%
-9%
-9%
14%
-12%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
7.2 (3.8, 3.4)
6.8 (3.4, 3.4)
5.6 (2.4, 3.2)
17.2 (8.8, 8.4)
Response Time Black / White *
8.8 (1.2, 7.6)
8.8 (1.2, 7.6)
-0%
10 (5.2, 4.8)
-14%
9.6 (5.2, 4.4)
-9%
7.6 (3.4, 4.2)
14%
10.8 (6, 4.8)
-23%
PWM Frequency
26600 (83)
26600 (85)
0%
25510 (17)
-4%
26320 (25)
-1%
Screen
102%
11%
-10%
3%
11%
Brightness middle
996
770
-23%
366
-63%
299.3
-70%
288
-71%
384.2
-61%
Brightness
952
759
-20%
343
-64%
294
-69%
276
-71%
357
-62%
Brightness Distribution
93
94
1%
91
-2%
94
1%
93
0%
90
-3%
Black Level *
0.68
0.07
90%
0.29
57%
0.29
57%
0.24
65%
0.29
57%
Contrast
1465
11000
651%
1262
-14%
1032
-30%
1200
-18%
1325
-10%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
4.21
1.51
64%
2.55
39%
1.92
54%
1.35
68%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
6.79
3.22
53%
4.73
30%
4.57
33%
3.45
49%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
2.03
0.71
65%
2.9
-43%
1.14
44%
1.42
30%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
4.1
1.93
53%
3.5
15%
3.08
25%
1.2
71%
Gamma
2.207 100%
2.38 92%
2.28 96%
2.42 91%
2.23 99%
CCT
7491 87%
6881 94%
7101 92%
7055 92%
6580 99%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
84
94
12%
60
-29%
57
-32%
65
-23%
65.5
-22%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
97
99
2%
94
-3%
88.7
-9%
96
-1%
98.5
2%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
51% / 79%
1% / 8%
-10% / -10%
9% / 4%
-1% / 7%

* ... smaller is better

To just say it right out: With an average brightness of about 950 cd/m², not only is the Creator 17 perfect for outside use, but it also outshines the rest of the competitors. With few exceptions, classic laptop displays only achieve between 300 and 400 cd/m², if even that. 97% coverage of the sRGB color space and 84% of AdobeRGB are also excellent and should satisfy professional users. 

CalMAN: Grayscale (HDR off)
CalMAN: Grayscale (HDR off)
CalMAN: Saturation (HDR off)
CalMAN: Saturation (HDR off)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (HDR off)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (HDR off)
CalMAN: Grayscale (calibrated)
CalMAN: Grayscale (calibrated)
CalMAN: Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN: Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (calibrated)

Due to the mediocre black value (0.68 cd/m² at full brightness), the contrast is only slightly above those of the competitors, even though 1465:1 still deserves some respect. With HDR activated, the brightness drops by about 200 cd/m², but the black value improves to 0.07 cd/m², resulting in a contrast of about 11,000:1 – an outstanding value, if you don't look at OLED panels. The viewing angles of the Creator 17 tend towards typical IPS levels.

MSI Creator 17 vs. sRGB (HDR off)
MSI Creator 17 vs. sRGB (HDR off)
Subpixel grid
Subpixel grid
MSI Creator 17 vs. AdobeRGB (HDR off)
MSI Creator 17 vs. AdobeRGB (HDR off)

Despite its relatively good response time (8.8 ms black-to-white), the 4K screen is only suited to a limited extent for gamers, who are not part of the target group anyways. A 60 Hz frame rate is not ideal in 2020 anymore, and at this point, many Full-HD panels support 240 or even 300 Hz. In addition, buyers will have to make do without G-Sync. The fact that the display flickers slightly below a brightness of 83% should not create any problems for sensitive users due to the high PWM frequency (26 kHz).

Backlight
Backlight
Viewing angles
Viewing angles

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
8.8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 1.2 ms rise
↘ 7.6 ms fall
The screen shows fast response rates in our tests and should be suited for gaming.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 9 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (24.5 ms).

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM detected 26600 Hz ≤ 83 % brightness setting

The display backlight flickers at 26600 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) Flickering detected at a brightness setting of 83 % and below. There should be no flickering or PWM above this brightness setting.

The frequency of 26600 Hz is quite high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering.

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 17893 (minimum: 5 - maximum: 2500000) Hz was measured.

Test Conditions

The preinstalled Creator Center resembles the Dragon Center from MSI's gaming laptops (see screenshots). Our measurements were produced with the "Balanced" user mode.

Creator Center
Creator Center
Creator Center
Creator Center
Creator Center
Creator Center

Performance

With an octa-core CPU, 32 GB of RAM, a 2 TB SSD, and an 8 GB graphics card, the Creator 17 definitely belongs to the high-end segment and should also offer sufficient reserves for future years – as long as you don't insist on the UHD resolution in 3D applications. 

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
HWiNFO
AS SSD Benchmark
CrystalDiskMark

Processor

While in the past, the lead of Intel's mobile Core-i processors remained mostly uncontested, with its Ryzen-4000 series AMD not only caught up but in parts also surpassed the prior laptop champion (the best example is the Ryzen 7 4800H). Correspondingly, despite its high performance we are unable to praise the Core i7-10875H used in the Creator 17 as much as we did a few months ago.

Single-core rendering
Single-core rendering
Multi-core rendering
Multi-core rendering
GPU load
GPU load

The octa-core model, which comes from the Comet Lake generation and is able to handle up to 16 threads in parallel via Hyper-Threading, offers 16 MB of L3 cache and a basic clock speed of 2.3 GHz. Via Turbo Boost, up to 5.1 GHz is possible under load. However, the Creator 17 is only able to make use of its overclocking potential to a limited extent. About 3.4 GHz under load of all cores (4.2 to 4.8 GHz under single-core load) points to a borderline cooling system. 

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MSI Creator 17 A10SGS Intel Core i7-10875H, Intel Core i7-10875H: Ø1291 (1283.24-1369.77)
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG Intel Core i7-9750H, Intel Core i7-9750H: Ø1133 (1114.27-1233.11)
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q Intel Core i7-9750H, Intel Core i7-9750H: Ø1076 (1067.18-1187.86)
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR Intel Core i7-9750H, Intel Core i7-9750H: Ø912 (890.85-1097.33)

Despite its limited Turbo, the 10875H is able to move slightly ahead of the old Core i7-9750H hexa-core darling, which is used in many of the competing laptops, as our Cinebench loop and the rest of the CPU benchmarks show.

Cinebench R20
CPU (Single Core)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
479 Points ∼100%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Intel Core i9-9980HK
478 Points ∼100% 0%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Intel Core i7-9750H
434 Points ∼91% -9%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Intel Core i7-9750H
422 Points ∼88% -12%
Average of class Multimedia
  (62.6 - 493, n=49)
401 Points ∼84% -16%
CPU (Multi Core)
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Intel Core i9-9980HK
4136 Points ∼100% +31%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
3155 Points ∼76%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Intel Core i7-9750H
2723 Points ∼66% -14%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Intel Core i7-9750H
2357 Points ∼57% -25%
Average of class Multimedia
  (148 - 3422, n=50)
1812 Points ∼44% -43%
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
197 Points ∼100%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Intel Core i9-9980HK
195 Points ∼99% -1%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Intel Core i7-9750H
180 Points ∼91% -9%
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
Intel Core i7-9750H
180 Points ∼91% -9%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Intel Core i7-9750H
173 Points ∼88% -12%
Average of class Multimedia
  (36 - 204, n=407)
132 Points ∼67% -33%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
Intel Core i9-9980HK
1754 Points ∼100% +28%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
1370 (min: 1283.24, max: 1369.77) Points ∼78%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Intel Core i7-9750H
1233 Points ∼70% -10%
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
Intel Core i7-9750H
1180 Points ∼67% -14%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Intel Core i7-9750H
1097 Points ∼63% -20%
Average of class Multimedia
  (72.4 - 1600, n=427)
527 Points ∼30% -62%
Blender 2.79 - BMW27 CPU
Average of class Multimedia
  (330 - 8394, n=35)
1139 Seconds * ∼100% -220%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
356 Seconds * ∼31%
7-Zip 18.03
7z b 4
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
40008 MIPS ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (2537 - 41529, n=31)
21393 MIPS ∼53% -47%
7z b 4 -mmt1
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
5277 MIPS ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (1445 - 5335, n=31)
4283 MIPS ∼81% -19%
Geekbench 5.1 / 5.2
64 Bit Multi-Core Score
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
6988 Points ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (392 - 7825, n=22)
4297 Points ∼61% -39%
64 Bit Single-Core Score
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
1287 Points ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (207 - 1320, n=21)
1070 Points ∼83% -17%
HWBOT x265 Benchmark v2.2 - 4k Preset
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
10.3 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (0.46 - 11.1, n=35)
5.68 fps ∼55% -45%
LibreOffice - 20 Documents To PDF
Average of class Multimedia
  (47.1 - 137, n=18)
66.8 s ∼100% +22%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
54.6 s ∼82%
R Benchmark 2.5 - Overall mean
Average of class Multimedia
  (0.58 - 2.86, n=22)
0.853 sec * ∼100% -47%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Intel Core i7-10875H
0.58 sec * ∼68%

* ... smaller is better

Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
1370 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
142 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
197 Points
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System Performance

According to PCMark 10, the Creator 17 lands in third place behind the Asus GX701GXR and the MSI GS75 9SG in the system performance. As expected, the laptop operates very quickly in terms of booting up, starting programs, and other load times.

PCMark 10 - Score
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
6049 Points ∼100% +5%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
5804 Points ∼96% +1%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB
5758 Points ∼95%
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
5734 Points ∼95% 0%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i9-9980HK, 2x SK Hynix PC601 NVMe 512 GB (RAID 0)
5502 Points ∼91% -4%
Average of class Multimedia
  (1144 - 5758, n=136)
4088 Points ∼68% -29%
V-Ray Benchmark Next
GPU
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB
210 mpaths ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (46 - 210, n=4)
144 mpaths ∼69% -31%
CPU
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB
9833 ksamples ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (1602 - 10324, n=5)
7974 ksamples ∼81% -19%

DPC Latencies

Our LatencyMon tool did not find any latency problems in the Creator 17. However, according to the YouTube statistics, our 4K video test did not run quite cleanly (producing frame drops).

Latencies
Latencies
Latencies
DPC Latencies / LatencyMon - interrupt to process latency (max), Web, Youtube, Prime95
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB
972.6 μs * ∼100%

* ... smaller is better

Storage Solution

MSI has equipped our test unit with a 2 TB NVMe SSD from Samsung. The PM981 is known for its high performance, which also goes for the Creator 17. The slightly smaller models in the Razer Blade Pro 17 and Asus ROG Zephyrus S, which come from the same build series, are beaten by about 20% in the CrystalDiskMark test. In contrast, the RAID combinations of the GS75 Stealth and Alienware m17 R2 perform at the same level.

MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR (RAID 0)
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
2x SK Hynix PC601 NVMe 512 GB (RAID 0)
CrystalDiskMark 5.2 / 6
8%
-23%
-22%
1%
Write 4K
158.7
95.46
-40%
100.7
-37%
96.09
-39%
110.6
-30%
Read 4K
41.59
42.59
2%
41.03
-1%
40.86
-2%
41.46
0%
Write Seq
2388
2851
19%
1146
-52%
1317
-45%
2378
0%
Read Seq
1623
2696
66%
1115
-31%
1030
-37%
2114
30%
Write 4K Q32T1
432.6
402.6
-7%
384.6
-11%
350.4
-19%
445.4
3%
Read 4K Q32T1
525.8
443.9
-16%
429.5
-18%
404.1
-23%
509.3
-3%
Write Seq Q32T1
2438
3420
40%
1859
-24%
2396
-2%
2735
12%
Read Seq Q32T1
3457
3514
2%
3179
-8%
3194
-8%
3206
-7%
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 3457 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 2438 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 525.8 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 432.6 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 1623 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 2388 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 41.59 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 158.7 MB/s

Constant Reads Performance: DiskSpd Read Loop, Queue Depth 8

010203040506070809010011012013014015016017018019020021022023024025026027028029030031032033034035036037038039040041042043044045046047048049050051052053054055056057058059060061062063064065066067068069070071072073074075076077078079080081082083084085086087088089090091092093094095096097098099010001010102010301040105010601070108010901100111011201130114011501160117011801190120012101220123012401250126012701280129013001310132013301340135013601370138013901400141014201430144014501460147014801490150015101520153015401550156015701580159016001610162016301640165016601670168016901700171017201730174017501760177017801790180018101820183018401850186018701880189019001910192019301940195019601970198019902000201020202030204020502060207020802090210021102120213021402150216021702180219022002210222022302240225022602270228022902300231023202330234023502360237023802390240024102420243024402450246024702480249025002510252025302540255025602570258025902600261026202630264026502660267026802690270027102720273027402750276027702780279028002810282028302840285028602870288028902900291029202930294029502960297029802990300030103020303030403050306030703080309031003110312031303140315031603170318031903200321032203230324032503260327032803290Tooltip
: Ø3244 (3021.37-3280.52)

Graphics Card

The GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q is a version of the regular RTX 2080 Super that is especially trimmed for efficiency. The RTX 2080 Super is meant for slim laptops designed for mobility. While the amount of shader units (3072) and the size of the video storage (8 GB GDDR6) are identical, the Max-Q version has significantly lower clock speeds. In the case of the Creator 17, the standard clock speed is only 735 instead of 1365 MHz. However, like the CPU, the GPU is able to receive an automatic boost (up to 1845 MHz in the Render test of the GPU-Z tool).

3DMark
2560x1440 Port Royal Graphics
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
5148 Points ∼100% +14%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
5092 Points ∼99% +13%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
4713 Points ∼92% +5%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
4545 Points ∼88% +1%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
4497 Points ∼87%
Average of class Multimedia
  (3032 - 4497, n=2)
3765 Points ∼73% -16%
2560x1440 Time Spy Graphics
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
8844 Points ∼100% +20%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
8479 Points ∼96% +15%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
8036 Points ∼91% +9%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
7923 Points ∼90% +7%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
7372 Points ∼83%
Average of class Multimedia
  (142 - 7372, n=91)
1711 Points ∼19% -77%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
23032 Points ∼100% +17%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
22391 Points ∼97% +14%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
20917 Points ∼91% +6%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
20119 Points ∼87% +2%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
19655 Points ∼85%
Average of class Multimedia
  (337 - 19655, n=447)
3128 Points ∼14% -84%
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
30910 Points ∼100% +18%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
29220 Points ∼95% +11%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
29052 Points ∼94% +10%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
27204 Points ∼88% +3%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
26292 Points ∼85%
Average of class Multimedia
  (352 - 26292, n=670)
3236 Points ∼10% -88%
SPECviewperf 13
Solidworks (sw-04)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
88.94 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (3.69 - 92.3, n=9)
59.8 fps ∼67% -33%
Siemens NX (snx-03)
Average of class Multimedia
  (5.87 - 157, n=9)
36 fps ∼100% +72%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
20.88 fps ∼58%
Showcase (showcase-02)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
96.17 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (11.3 - 96.2, n=9)
41.3 fps ∼43% -57%
Medical (medical-02)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
53.12 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (7.96 - 53.1, n=9)
21.2 fps ∼40% -60%
Maya (maya-05)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
210.17 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (27 - 210, n=9)
100 fps ∼48% -52%
Energy (energy-02)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
17.49 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (0.48 - 17.5, n=7)
8.58 fps ∼49% -51%
Creo (creo-02)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
169.96 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (25.2 - 170, n=9)
70.3 fps ∼41% -59%
Catia (catia-05)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
132.28 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (25.8 - 132, n=9)
80.3 fps ∼61% -39%
3ds Max (3dsmax-06)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
176.55 fps ∼100%
Average of class Multimedia
  (23.3 - 177, n=9)
68.9 fps ∼39% -61%

Using our The Witcher 3 role-playing game for one hour, we evaluated how the clock speed behaves over a longer time period. On average, the RTX 2080 Super Max-Q maintained 1215 MHz here. With this value, the Creator 17 ends up at the bottom of our field of comparison devices. Depending on the benchmark, the competitors were between 1 and 20% faster – and that without the "Super" addition. This is not surprising, since the Turing chip is also available with a higher TGP, which explains the better results (990 MHz basic clock speed).

0510152025303540455055606570758085Tooltip
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB2T0HMLB: Ø72.2 (65-77)

But whether with high or low TGP, overall the RTX 2080 (Super) Max-Q does not really deserve its label, since its performance is hardly any different than that of the RTX 2070 (Super). At times, the latter is even faster. Whether you want to blame Nvidia (specifications) or the laptop manufacturer (cooling system) remains up to you.

3DMark 11 Performance
22567 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
17053 points
3DMark Time Spy Score
7482 points
Help

Gaming Performance

In the native UHD resolution of 3840x2160 pixels, the RTX 2080 Super Max-Q is unable to run every current game smoothly and at maximum details. More demanding games such as Red Dead Redemption 2 and Control keep stuttering along. Things look much better in the QHD resolution of 2560x1440. Less than 60 FPS is a rarity here. Unfortunately, this resolution is not supported by the internal display, which is too bad. In Full HD resolution (1920x1080), all the games run smoothly.

To repeat it again: The Creator 17 was not designed for pure gaming. There are more affordable and better adjusted alternatives for that. The target group is clearly professional content creators. 

The Witcher 3 - 1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+)
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H
87.4 fps ∼100% +16%
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H
80.7 fps ∼92% +7%
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i9-9980HK
78 fps ∼89% +4%
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, i7-9750H
76.9 fps ∼88% +2%
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, i7-10875H
75.1 (min: 62) fps ∼86%
Average of class Multimedia
  (2.9 - 80.8, n=121)
21.5 fps ∼25% -71%
low med. high ultraQHD4K
GTA V (2015) 180 174 157 85.3 71.5 fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 138 75.1 49.8 fps
Dota 2 Reborn (2015) 155 141 139 125 102 fps
X-Plane 11.11 (2018) 113 99.8 84.3 67 fps
Shadow of the Tomb Raider (2018) 105 92 63 32 fps
Battlefield V (2018) 127 118 95.4 52.6 fps
Far Cry New Dawn (2019) 98 92 78 43 fps
Rage 2 (2019) 102 101 63.8 30.9 fps
Control (2019) 71.1 46.1 22 fps
Borderlands 3 (2019) 79.8 71.6 51.7 26.9 fps
FIFA 20 (2019) 217 213 189 114 fps
Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2019 (2019) 114 91.8 67.3 36.8 fps
Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order (2019) 102 95.2 72.2 36.8 fps
Red Dead Redemption 2 (2019) 62.4 41 35 21.5 fps
Gears Tactics (2020) 114 78.4 54 28.1 fps

Emissions

Noise Emissions

You should not expect a low noise level when you buy this. At times, the fans even rev up without any reason already during idle mode, producing a noise level of almost 40 dB(A). Under load, the Creator 17 produces between 46 and 48 dB(A). Although this is not louder than the competitors, the use of headphones is still recommended. In general, the noise characteristic of the Creator 17 fans is slightly uncomfortable (a permanent whirring noise).

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2036.232.433.130.9362541.634.935.733.238.53134.831.331.529.931.74036.135.740.635.734.15039.334.735.131.735.36333.631.330.229.128.88030.226.427.425.729.810029.627.526.124.729.812529.225.724.424.630.316029.827.627.225.832.220027.925.424.322.829.925028.323.62422.128.531530.226.423.421.330.340033.23021.819.532.650034.728.121.81934.263032.82620.817.83280033.326.820.31832.9100034.427.726.717.934.8125035.331.921.918.935.6160040.230.720.617.939.5200037.929.820.417.738250037.929.819.917.637.9315037.328.919.81837.1400036.827.819.617.936.6500035.225.919.61835630032.625.918.817.932.1800030.823.318.31830.51000028.520.218.317.928.21250025.119.619.117.824.31600021.618.818.317.920.9SPL48.140.533.230.447.8N6.13.51.91.46.1median 32.8median 26.8median 20.6median 18median 32.2Delta3.22.12.32.12.8hearing rangehide median Fan NoiseMSI Creator 17 A10SGS

Noise Level

Idle
32 / 33 / 40 dB(A)
Load
47 / 48 dB(A)
  red to green bar
 
 
30 dB
silent
40 dB(A)
audible
50 dB(A)
loud
 
min: dark, med: mid, max: light   Audix TM1, Arta (15 cm distance)   environment noise: 30 dB(A)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
i7-10875H, GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
i9-9980HK, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Average of class Multimedia
 
Noise
1%
7%
3%
3%
10%
off / environment *
30
30
-0%
28.2
6%
30
-0%
29.1
3%
31 (22 - 304, n=210)
-3%
Idle Minimum *
32
31
3%
28.2
12%
32
-0%
29.4
8%
31.1 (27.8 - 40.1, n=1011)
3%
Idle Average *
33
32
3%
28.2
15%
33
-0%
29.4
11%
31.9 (27.8 - 42.2, n=1013)
3%
Idle Maximum *
40
38
5%
30.8
23%
34
15%
31.5
21%
32.5 (27.8 - 47, n=1013)
19%
Load Average *
47
47
-0%
42
11%
40
15%
49.7
-6%
36.5 (28 - 51.8, n=1013)
22%
Witcher 3 ultra *
46
48
-4%
51
-11%
49
-7%
49.5
-8%
Load Maximum *
48
49
-2%
53
-10%
50
-4%
53.3
-11%
41.9 (32.5 - 62.7, n=1013)
13%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

The case temperatures are typical for a high-end notebook that is so fast. At the end of the 60-minute stress test with the FurMark and Prime 95 tools, we measure up to 52 °C (126 °F) on top and 59 °C (138 °F) on the bottom. We would therefore not recommend any 3D sessions holding it on your lap. For the components, our judgment is mixed. While the temperature of the GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q always remains below 80 °C (176 °F), the Core i7-10875H heats up to a maximum of 99 °C (210 °F) according to the HWiNFO tool.

The Witcher 3
The Witcher 3
Stress test
Stress test
Full load - top
Full load - top
Full load - bottom
Full load - bottom
Max. Load
 48 °C
118 F
52 °C
126 F
49 °C
120 F
 
 46 °C
115 F
51 °C
124 F
45 °C
113 F
 
 40 °C
104 F
43 °C
109 F
39 °C
102 F
 
Maximum: 52 °C = 126 F
Average: 45.9 °C = 115 F
59 °C
138 F
58 °C
136 F
49 °C
120 F
51 °C
124 F
52 °C
126 F
47 °C
117 F
42 °C
108 F
43 °C
109 F
43 °C
109 F
Maximum: 59 °C = 138 F
Average: 49.3 °C = 121 F
Power Supply (max.)  51 °C = 124 F | Room Temperature 24 °C = 75 F | Fluke t3000FC (calibrated), Voltcraft IR-900
(-) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 45.9 °C / 115 F, compared to the average of 31 °C / 88 F for the devices in the class Multimedia.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 52 °C / 126 F, compared to the average of 36.6 °C / 98 F, ranging from 21.1 to 71 °C for the class Multimedia.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 59 °C / 138 F, compared to the average of 38.9 °C / 102 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 30.9 °C / 88 F, compared to the device average of 31 °C / 88 F.
(-) Playing The Witcher 3, the average temperature for the upper side is 47.4 °C / 117 F, compared to the device average of 31 °C / 88 F.
(-) The palmrests and touchpad can get very hot to the touch with a maximum of 43 °C / 109.4 F.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 29 °C / 84.2 F (-14 °C / -25.2 F).
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
i7-10875H, GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
i9-9980HK, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Average of class Multimedia
 
Heat
-0%
17%
6%
-9%
16%
Maximum Upper Side *
52
55
-6%
43
17%
50
4%
54.2
-4%
41.8 (27.2 - 71, n=969)
20%
Maximum Bottom *
59
65
-10%
47.2
20%
47
20%
61.4
-4%
45.1 (28.5 - 82, n=969)
24%
Idle Upper Side *
34
30
12%
27.2
20%
33
3%
37.8
-11%
29.6 (21.1 - 40.2, n=821)
13%
Idle Bottom *
33
32
3%
30
9%
34
-3%
38.6
-17%
30.9 (21.5 - 44.4, n=821)
6%

* ... smaller is better

Speakers

The sound quality places the laptop in the middle of the field. The Creator 17 has two speakers that are hidden in the front area of the two sides. Since there is no subwoofer, the bass is also lacking. Instead, the 2.0 system is able to score with ample volume (up to 91 dB).

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2030.933.12533.239.23129.933.54035.740.35031.737.26329.138.98025.733.410024.732.612524.635.916025.838.820022.846.225022.148.631521.352.540019.568.15001978.463017.880.78001880.8100017.981.5125018.982160017.979.6200017.780.3250017.677.231501877.9400017.975.750001876.4630017.971.980001873.31000017.973.61250017.875.11600017.969.6SPL30.490.5N1.485.3median 18median 75.1Delta2.111.636.938.839.843.633.732.434.735.12931.928.335.127.930.424.627.724.733.328.233.52437.721.745.720.247.520.253.219.155.41866.21774.717.473.319.169.817.46617.168.717.265.417.566.817.367.317.570.317.168.217.269.917.468.617.362.717.452.330.181.11.448.9median 17.5median 661.710.6hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseMSI Creator 17 A10SGSMSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (91 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 32.6% lower than median
(+) | bass is linear (6.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 5.6% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (7.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 1.9% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (3.2% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (19.8% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 58% of all tested devices in this class were better, 10% similar, 32% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 18%, worst was 41%
Compared to all devices tested
» 41% of all tested devices were better, 8% similar, 51% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 65%

MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (81 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 28.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (7.8% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | reduced mids - on average 5.8% lower than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (10% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.3% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (3.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (22.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 80% of all tested devices in this class were better, 5% similar, 16% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 58% of all tested devices were better, 9% similar, 33% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 65%

Power Management

Power Consumption

For a Max-Q device with Optimus technology, the power consumption is quite high in parts (up to 42 watts during idle operation). This is not only related to the octa-core processor but also the bright Mini LED display. 

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 1.2 / 1.8 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 15 / 20 / 42 Watt
Load midlight 150 / 210 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
i7-10875H, GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
i9-9980HK, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
Average of class Multimedia
 
Power Consumption
16%
9%
-19%
-38%
44%
Idle Minimum *
15
13
13%
16.2
-8%
32
-113%
24.7
-65%
11.3 (2.1 - 101, n=968)
25%
Idle Average *
20
17
15%
20.4
-2%
34
-70%
35.9
-80%
15.9 (3 - 122, n=968)
20%
Idle Maximum *
42
25
40%
26.1
38%
36
14%
69.6
-66%
19.4 (4.6 - 181, n=968)
54%
Load Average *
150
96
36%
96.5
36%
95
37%
141.8
5%
60.1 (18.5 - 164, n=947)
60%
Witcher 3 ultra *
170
156
8%
182.9
-8%
155
9%
185.8
-9%
Load Maximum *
210
239
-14%
214.3
-2%
187
11%
235.4
-12%
78.4 (20.1 - 329, n=952)
63%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

The 82-Wh battery guarantees a solid but not outstanding battery life. Depending on the load and display brightness, the Creator 17 lasts between one and seven hours. When surfing the Internet via WLAN (at medium brightness), you can expect about 4.5 hours.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
7h 14min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
4h 26min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 07min
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS
i7-10875H, GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, 82 Wh
MSI GS75 Stealth 9SG
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 80.25 Wh
Razer Blade Pro 17 RTX 2080 Max-Q
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 70 Wh
Asus ROG Zephyrus S GX701GXR
i7-9750H, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 76 Wh
Alienware m17 R2 P41E
i9-9980HK, GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 76 Wh
Average of class Multimedia
 
Battery Runtime
17%
0%
-24%
-16%
22%
Reader / Idle
434
461
6%
295
-32%
246
-43%
426
-2%
423 (73 - 2085, n=912)
-3%
WiFi v1.3
266
357
34%
280
5%
182
-32%
290
9%
373 (96 - 942, n=286)
40%
Load
67
74
10%
86
28%
69
3%
31
-54%
86 (32 - 238, n=916)
28%
H.264
410
168
374 (114 - 1053, n=113)

Pros

+ extremely bright Mini LED panel with HDR support
+ relatively compact and light for a 17-incher
+ modern connections incl. Thunderbolt 3
+ very good system performance
+ sleek design

Cons

- case leaves room for improvement (particularly stability)
- CPU and GPU Turbo could be better
- high temperature development under load
- sound and webcam only mediocre
- limited maintenance

Verdict

MSI Creator 17 A10SGS. Test unit provided by MSI Germany.
MSI Creator 17 A10SGS. Test unit provided by MSI Germany.

The most expensive configuration of the Creator 17 delivered a mixed performance in our test. While the Mini LED display, offered as a first by MSI, is able to convince in all aspects, stealing the show from other competitors (almost 1000 cd/m² brightness!), the case offers less than could be expected (stability, quality impression, etc.).

Considering the performance of the RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, which stands in no relation to the price premium, we would recommend the more affordable version with the RTX 2070 (Super) Max-Q to interested buyers. The use of the Core i7-10875H Turbo could also be better. 

The fact that the Creator 17 will land in our Top 10 for Photo and Video Editing table despite those weaknesses, is not least due to its rich connection equipment including Thunderbolt 3. For the successor, we would wish for a more robust and less noisy case with a cooling system that does not operate as close to the limits.

MSI Creator 17 A10SGS - 07/05/2020 v7
Florian Glaser

Chassis
71 / 98 → 73%
Keyboard
79%
Pointing Device
78%
Connectivity
68 / 80 → 85%
Weight
61 / 20-72 → 78%
Battery
60 / 95 → 63%
Display
93%
Games Performance
92 / 90 → 100%
Application Performance
92 / 90 → 100%
Temperature
73%
Noise
69 / 95 → 73%
Audio
76%
Camera
43 / 85 → 50%
Average
74%
83%
Multimedia - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > MSI Creator 17 A10SGS Laptop Review: Winning with a Mini LED
Florian Glaser, 2020-07-17 (Update: 2020-07-18)
Florian Glaser
Editor of the original article: Florian Glaser - Managing Editor Gaming
Growing up with MS-DOS and Windows 3.1 in the early 90s, I discovered my interest in computers in my childhood. Especially computer games radiated a great fascination for me even then. From Monkey Island to Lands of Lore to Doom, everything was gambled that you could get your hands on. I have been working for Notebookcheck since 2009 with focus on high-performance gaming notebooks.