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MSI GF63 8RC (i5-8300H, GTX 1050) Laptop Review

Affordable narrow bezels. The GF63 is nearly the same size and weight as the GS65 but for hundreds of dollars less. MSI has created an excellent budget gaming system that's also light enough for schoolwork and travel.

First showcased at Computex 2018, the 15.6-inch MSI GF63 represents the company's first narrow-bezel laptop for entry-level gamers. It can be considered as an affordable version of the sleeker GS65 that debuted earlier this year alongside the mobile Intel Coffee Lake-H series. The system is a direct successor to the GF62VR and it is a complete design overhaul from top to bottom as our review below will detail.

Only two SKUs of the GF63 are available at the time of writing. The GF63 8RC and GF63 8RD come with GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q graphics, respectively, with Core i5-8300H and i7-8750H CPU options. Both configurations are otherwise equipped with the same features and 1080p IPS panel. Note that the GTX 1060 and 1080p TN options from the GF62VR series have been dropped alongside a number of other changes. Our test unit today is the entry-level SKU with the i5-8300H CPU, GTX 1050 GPU, 1 TB HDD, and 8 GB of DDR4 RAM for about $750 USD.

Direct competitors in the entry-level gaming space are numerous. Any 15.6-inch gaming system with GTX 1050 graphics can be considered an alternative including the HP Pavilion Gaming 15, Lenovo Legion Y530, Asus TUF FX504, Acer Nitro 5, Dell G5/G7, and the Gigabyte Sabre 15.

More MSI reviews:

MSI GF63 8RC (GF63 Series)
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop) - 4096 MB, Core: 1354 MHz, Memory: 7008 MHz, GDDR5, 398.35, Optimus
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR4-2666, 1333.3 MHz, 19-19-19-43, Single-Channel
Display
15.6 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 141 PPI, AU Optronics B156HAN02.1, IPS, ID: AUO21ED, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel HM370
Storage
Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049, 1024 GB 
, 7200 rpm
Soundcard
Intel Cannon Lake-H/S - cAVS (Audio, Voice, Speech)
Connections
3 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: 3.5mm, Card Reader: SD
Networking
Qualcomm Atheros AR8171/8175 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000MBit), Intel Wireless AC 9462 (b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 4.x
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 21.7 x 359 x 254 ( = 0.85 x 14.13 x 10 in)
Battery
51 Wh Lithium-Polymer, 3-cell
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: 720p
Additional features
Speakers: 2x 2W Speaker, Keyboard: Chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, Dragon Center 2.2, SCM, 12 Months Warranty
Weight
1.86 kg ( = 65.61 oz / 4.1 pounds), Power Supply: 594 g ( = 20.95 oz / 1.31 pounds)
Price
750 USD
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case

Visually, the GF63 has more in common with the GS65 than the GF62VR that it replaces. Whereas the GF62VR had plenty of angles, slants, and accents, the GF63 is more minimalist with smoother and flatter surfaces. The outer lid is now a flat piece of brushed aluminum for a sleeker look overall. This "flat top" approach is common on thin gaming laptops like the Asus Zephyrus, Lenovo Legion Y530, or the Razer Blade and it's great to see MSI bring the concept to a more affordable model.

Interestingly, the plastic bottom plate is intricately designed with angles, bumps, and slants in contrast to the rest of the notebook. Aside from aesthetic reasons, the uneven bottom doubles as feet and raises the system slightly for improved airflow.

While we love the new design, there is still room for improvement in terms of rigidity. Light creaking and flexing will occur when attempting to twist the base. The brushed aluminum keyboard deck flexes slightly when applying pressure with a finger and the thin lid is even more susceptible to warping and side-to-side twisting.

As for the hinges, they are satisfactory with minimal teetering when adjusting or transporting. Still, we would have preferred a tighter grip as we're a bit concerned about the longevity of the small hinges. Overall chassis rigidity feels slightly better than the GS65 since the GF63 is thicker, but it is still a few steps below the competing narrow-bezel Asus GL504GM. MSI still needs a bit more time to perfect a sturdier narrow bezel design.

Construction is otherwise excellent on our test unit with no unintended gaps or crevices between materials. The inner bezel could be flatter against the edge of the bottom of the screen, but this is a minor observation.

The GF63 is roughly 31 percent smaller in volume and 14 percent lighter than the last generation GF62VR with dimensions close to that of the GS65. Thus, its portable size is easily the highlight of the system when compared to the competition. The next closest 15-inch narrow bezel gaming laptop is the Lenovo Legion Y530, but it is both heavier and pricier. The new Dell G series laptops are massive and overweight when compared to what MSI has to offer for budget-conscious gamers.

Base is stronger than the pricier GS65
Base is stronger than the pricier GS65
Lid opened to maximum angle (~150 degrees)
Lid opened to maximum angle (~150 degrees)
Surprisingly lightweight and small
Surprisingly lightweight and small
Brushed aluminum outer lid and palm rests are a fingerprint magnet
Brushed aluminum outer lid and palm rests are a fingerprint magnet

Connectivity

MSI has made a bunch of changes to ports and port placement from the GF62VR. The GF63 includes all ports from the GF62VR save for the SD card reader and mini DisplayPort and all existing ports have been rearranged to reduce desk clutter. There is no Thunderbolt 3 support, but that is to be expected for its price category.

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Front: No connectivity
Front: No connectivity
Left: AC adapter, USB 3.1
Left: AC adapter, USB 3.1
Rear: HDMI 1.4
Rear: HDMI 1.4
Right: 3.5 mm earphones, 3.5 mm microphone, 2x USB 3.1 Type-A, USB 3.1 Type-C, Gigabit RJ-45, Kensington Lock
Right: 3.5 mm earphones, 3.5 mm microphone, 2x USB 3.1 Type-A, USB 3.1 Type-C, Gigabit RJ-45, Kensington Lock

Communication

The Intel 9462 is a 1x1 WLAN card capable of transfer rates of up to 433 Mbps. In comparison, higher-end gaming laptops like the Asus GL504GM are shipping with 2x2 Intel 9560 WLAN cards that can run up to 1.73 Gbps. It's clearly a cut corner, but casual or mainstream gamers will likely not notice in practice. Both 802.11ac and Bluetooth 5 are thankfully still supported and we didn't experience any connectivity issues during testing.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
666 MBit/s ∼100% +140%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174
657 MBit/s ∼99% +136%
Asus Strix GL504GM
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
657 MBit/s ∼99% +136%
Dell G5 15 5587
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
485 MBit/s ∼73% +74%
MSI GF63 8RC
Intel Wireless AC 9462
278 MBit/s ∼42%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Asus Strix GL504GM
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
675 MBit/s ∼100% +92%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
633 MBit/s ∼94% +80%
Dell G5 15 5587
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
582 MBit/s ∼86% +66%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
Atheros/Qualcomm QCA6174
559 MBit/s ∼83% +59%
MSI GF63 8RC
Intel Wireless AC 9462
351 MBit/s ∼52%

Maintenance

The bottom panel is secured by 12 Philips screws and removing the panel requires breaking a factory sticker. MSI has informed us that it will accept returns with broken seals so long as the end-user was only upgrading the storage or RAM. If trying to return the system to a reseller or store, however, all bets are off as a broken factory seal is usually an automatic red flag. We're hopeful that MSI will remove the seal from its lineup one day as most other gaming laptops have none for the bottom panel.

Once inside, users have easy access to the both storage bays, both DDR4 SODIMM slots, and the removable WLAN module.

(Source: MSI)
(Source: MSI)

Accessories and Warranty

There are no extras in the box save for a velvet cleaning cloth. 

The limited one-year limited manufacturer warranty applies. MSI requires owners to register the purchased product online before submitting any questions.

Input Devices

Keyboard

MSI has completely revamped both the keyboard and touchpad from last year's model. The NumPad and tri-zone RGB lighting on the GF62VR keyboard are now gone likely to save on cost and weight. Fortunately, the Arrow keys are still full-size which is an uncommon find on many laptops and feedback feels uniform across all main keys including the Backspace, Delete, and Space keys. Travel, however, remains similar to the GF62VR if not shallower for an overall light typing experience. Firmer feedback would have been appreciated to be closer to the GE series or a desktop keyboard.

Touchpad

The touchpad is disappointingly poorer than the touchpad of the GF62VR. Not only is its surface area slightly smaller (10.6 x 6.5 cm vs. 10.8 cm x 6.0 cm), but it omits the dedicated mouse keys on the last generation model. Thus, simple actions like dragging and dropping are more difficult on the GF63 than on the GF62VR. Additionally, clicking on the touchpad produces a spongy and unsatisfying click with short-medium travel. Cursor control is otherwise smooth with only a small amount of sticking when gliding across the plastic surface. Be prepared for unsightly fingerprint buildup over time.

The NumPad and mouse buttons on the GF62VR are gone on the GF63
The NumPad and mouse buttons on the GF62VR are gone on the GF63
Tri-zone keyboard lighting on the GF62VR is now just a single-zone red light with three illumination intensities
Tri-zone keyboard lighting on the GF62VR is now just a single-zone red light with three illumination intensities

Display

All launch SKUs of the GF63 come equipped with 60 Hz 1080p IPS panels as standard with no other options. Brightness and contrast are improved over the TN panel of the GF62VR at the cost of slightly slower black-white and gray-gray response times. Overall characteristics are actually very similar to the LG panel on the competing Dell G5 5587. Users who want even faster response times and refresh rates for less ghosting should consider the GS65.

Subjectively, display quality is excellent and better for gaming purposes than the TN panel on the GF62VR. It's not perfect, however, as we can notice a slightly grainy overlay that prevents onscreen content from appearing as crisp as a glossy alternative. Backlight bleeding is surprisingly minimal and uniform across all four edges and corners of the screen. We were expecting at least one or two notable bleeding spots, but there are none to be found on our unit.

The AU Optronics B156HAN02.1 panel on our GF63 is also used on the 15.6-inch Asus VivoBook S15 S510 and Lenovo Legion Y530 narrow bezel laptops. Consequently, all three laptops share similar display properties such as response times and color spaces.

No major backlight bleeding issues
No major backlight bleeding issues
Subpixel array (141 PPI)
Subpixel array (141 PPI)
259.2
cd/m²
265.4
cd/m²
267.7
cd/m²
255.9
cd/m²
266.6
cd/m²
258.2
cd/m²
246.9
cd/m²
256.9
cd/m²
239.4
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 267.7 cd/m² Average: 257.4 cd/m² Minimum: 4.83 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 89 %
Center on Battery: 266.6 cd/m²
Contrast: 919:1 (Black: 0.29 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 5.93 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2, calibrated: 3.6
ΔE Greyscale 6.8 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
59.3% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 37.6% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.43
MSI GF63 8RC
AU Optronics B156HAN02.1, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
AUO80ED, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Asus Strix GL504GM
AU Optronics B156HAN08.2 (AUO82ED), IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Acer Aspire 7 A715-71G-53TU
BOE NV156FHM-N42 , a-Si TFT-LCD, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
Chi Mei N156HGA-EAL, TN LED, 15.6, 1920x1080
Dell G5 15 5587
LGD053F, 156WF6, IPS, 15.6, 1920x1080
Response Times
48%
70%
-40%
-20%
7%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
33.2 (15.2, 18)
20 (10, 10)
40%
7.8 (4.4, 3.4)
77%
49 (25, 24)
-48%
49.6 (24.8, 24.8)
-49%
33 (16, 17)
1%
Response Time Black / White *
27.2 (15.6, 11.6)
12 (6.8, 5.2)
56%
10.4 (5.2, 5.2)
62%
36 (20, 16)
-32%
24.4 (20, 4.4)
10%
24 (14, 10)
12%
PWM Frequency
20000 (90)
25510 (20)
Screen
24%
29%
11%
-19%
-7%
Brightness middle
266.6
250.9
-6%
350
31%
267
0%
223.9
-16%
229
-14%
Brightness
257
257
0%
338
32%
250
-3%
208
-19%
224
-13%
Brightness Distribution
89
83
-7%
90
1%
82
-8%
88
-1%
87
-2%
Black Level *
0.29
0.32
-10%
0.33
-14%
0.31
-7%
0.56
-93%
0.28
3%
Contrast
919
784
-15%
1061
15%
861
-6%
400
-56%
818
-11%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
5.93
2.77
53%
4.3
27%
4.65
22%
9.7
-64%
6.1
-3%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
16.28
5.89
64%
7.78
52%
8.2
50%
19.7
-21%
12.2
25%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
3.6
2.5
31%
2.83
21%
6.12
-70%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
6.8
4
41%
4.4
35%
2.65
61%
12.9
-90%
5.68
16%
Gamma
2.43 91%
2.27 97%
2.26 97%
2.44 90%
2.18 101%
2.4 92%
CCT
7192 90%
6901 94%
7517 86%
6820 95%
15225 43%
6989 93%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
37.6
60
60%
60
60%
38
1%
75
99%
36
-4%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
59.3
92
55%
92.5
56%
59
-1%
100
69%
57
-4%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
36% / 28%
50% / 35%
-15% / 2%
-20% / -19%
0% / -5%

* ... smaller is better

Color space covers just 49 percent and 38 percent of the sRGB and AdobeRGB standards, respectively, to indicate a budget IPS panel. In comparison, the TN panel on last year's GF62VR covers all of sRGB for richer and more accurate colors. It's unlikely that MSI will carry over the TN option from the GF62VR because the GF63 was designed specifically for narrow bezel panels. Graphics artists may want to consider the pricier MSI GS65 instead which uses a more accurate IPS panel than on the GF63.

vs. sRGB
vs. sRGB
vs. AdobeRGB
vs. AdobeRGB

Further measurements with a X-Rite spectrophotometer reveal inaccurate grayscale and colors out of the box with an overly cool color temperature. Our calibration addresses many of these issues especially in regards to grayscale and colors at lower saturation levels. Because of the narrow gamut, however, colors still become increasingly inaccurate at higher saturation levels. We recommend applying our calibrated ICC profile above to get the most out of the display.

Grayscale before calibration
Grayscale before calibration
Saturation Sweeps before calibration
Saturation Sweeps before calibration
ColorChecker before calibration
ColorChecker before calibration
Grayscale after calibration
Grayscale after calibration
Saturation Sweeps after calibration
Saturation Sweeps after calibration
ColorChecker after calibration
ColorChecker after calibration

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
27.2 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 15.6 ms rise
↘ 11.6 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 56 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
33.2 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 15.2 ms rise
↘ 18 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 21 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (41 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 not detected

In comparison: 53 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 8929 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Outdoor visibility is better than on the GF62VR due to the wider IPS viewing angles and slightly brighter backlight. Nonetheless, the display is just not bright enough to make a significant difference and onscreen content will still be washed out when under sunlight. As portable as the system may be, the GF63 is at its best when used indoors or under shade.

Outdoors under sunlight
Outdoors under sunlight
Outdoors under shade
Outdoors under shade
Outdoors under sunlight
Outdoors under sunlight
Wide IPS viewing angles with no major color or contrast shifting
Wide IPS viewing angles with no major color or contrast shifting

Performance

As mentioned in the intro, current SKUs are limited to the Core i5-8300H or i7-8750H CPU with GTX 1050 or GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q graphics. Such a combination puts the GF63 squarely for mainstream gamers on tight budgets. Users who want more powerful options should consider the MSI GE, GS, or GT series where GTX 1060 graphics or higher are common.

Nvidia Optimus is included by default for graphics switching to the integrated UHD Graphics 630.

Processor

CineBench R15
CineBench R15

The Core i5-8300H directly replaces the i5-7300HQ and it provides a significant performance boost as well due to its implementation of Hyper Threading. CineBench R15 Multi-Thread reveals it to be about 51 percent faster than the i5-7300HQ in the MSI GV72 while barely edging out the i7-7700HQ in the last generation GF62VR. Users who want to upgrade to the i7-8750H SKU will get another 30 percent boost in CPU power when compared to the i5-8300H.

Running CineBench R15 Multi-Thread in a loop is a good way of testing CPU performance sustainability. The initial high score of 811 points for the first loop eventually drops to 749 points by the third loop to represent a dip of about 7.5 percent. The performance deficit is minor and of no concern when gaming.

See our dedicated page on the Core i5-8300H for more technical information and benchmark comparisons.

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MSI GF63 8RC GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049; CPU Multi 64Bit: Ø749 (744.21-811.72)
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877 GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 7700HQ, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW256G7; CPU Multi 64Bit: Ø726 (715.1-730.83)
Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
205 Points ∼94% +21%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
Intel Core i7-8750H
175 Points ∼80% +3%
MSI GF63 8RC
Intel Core i5-8300H
170 Points ∼78%
Average Intel Core i5-8300H
  (151 - 174, n=16)
169 Points ∼78% -1%
MSI Prestige PS42 8RB-059
Intel Core i7-8550U
162 Points ∼74% -5%
MSI GT75VR 7RF-012 Titan Pro
Intel Core i7-7820HK
160 Points ∼73% -6%
MSI GV72 7RD-1048XPL
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
149 Points ∼68% -12%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
144 Points ∼66% -15%
MSI GE72VR-6RF16H21
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
140 Points ∼64% -18%
CPU Multi 64Bit
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
1378 Points ∼31% +77%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
Intel Core i7-8750H
1011 Points ∼23% +30%
Average Intel Core i5-8300H
  (604 - 850, n=16)
783 Points ∼18% +1%
MSI GF63 8RC
Intel Core i5-8300H
777 Points ∼18%
MSI GT75VR 7RF-012 Titan Pro
Intel Core i7-7820HK
758 Points ∼17% -2%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
Intel Core i7-7700HQ
734 Points ∼17% -6%
MSI GE72VR-6RF16H21
Intel Core i7-6700HQ
676 Points ∼15% -13%
MSI GV72 7RD-1048XPL
Intel Core i5-7300HQ
516 Points ∼12% -34%
MSI Prestige PS42 8RB-059
Intel Core i7-8550U
502 Points ∼11% -35%
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
170 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
777 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
103.29 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Help

System Performance

PCMark benchmarks rank our GF63 24 percent slower than the average gaming laptop in our database since this is an entry-level laptop for gamers. System performance is rather slow when navigating through the OS or launching applications and we highly recommend configuring with a primary SSD to avoid the disadvantages of a mechanical drive.

We experienced no software or hardware glitches during our time with the unit.

PCMark 10
PCMark 10
PCMark 8 Home Accelerated
PCMark 8 Home Accelerated
PCMark 8 Work Accelerated
PCMark 8 Work Accelerated
PCMark 10 - Score
Dell G5 15 5587
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 8300H, SK hynix SC311 M.2
5483 Points ∼71% +48%
Asus Strix GL504GM
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPU7
5463 Points ∼70% +47%
Average of class Gaming
  (2603 - 6959, n=120)
4946 Points ∼64% +33%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
4646 Points ∼60% +25%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 7700HQ, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW256G7
4644 Points ∼60% +25%
Acer Aspire 7 A715-71G-53TU
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Kingston RBUSNS8180DS3128GH
4092 Points ∼53% +10%
Average Intel Core i5-8300H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (3050 - 4479, n=6)
3900 Points ∼50% +5%
MSI GF63 8RC
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049
3711 Points ∼48%
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
5731 Points ∼88% +24%
Asus Strix GL504GM
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPU7
5474 Points ∼84% +19%
Dell G5 15 5587
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 8300H, SK hynix SC311 M.2
5339 Points ∼82% +16%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 7700HQ, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW256G7
5090 Points ∼78% +10%
Average Intel Core i5-8300H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (4609 - 5271, n=6)
5051 Points ∼78% +10%
Average of class Gaming
  (2484 - 6515, n=315)
4928 Points ∼76% +7%
Acer Aspire 7 A715-71G-53TU
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Kingston RBUSNS8180DS3128GH
4908 Points ∼75% +6%
MSI GF63 8RC
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049
4609 Points ∼71%
Creative Score Accelerated v2
Average of class Gaming
  (2303 - 9529, n=225)
5474 Points ∼57%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 7700HQ, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW256G7
5136 Points ∼54%
Acer Aspire 7 A715-71G-53TU
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Kingston RBUSNS8180DS3128GH
4890 Points ∼51%
Average Intel Core i5-8300H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (4646 - 4704, n=2)
4675 Points ∼49%
Home Score Accelerated v2
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
4676 Points ∼77% +26%
Asus Strix GL504GM
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPU7
4362 Points ∼72% +18%
Dell G5 15 5587
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 8300H, SK hynix SC311 M.2
4331 Points ∼71% +17%
Average of class Gaming
  (2554 - 6093, n=333)
4222 Points ∼69% +14%
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 7700HQ, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW256G7
4069 Points ∼67% +10%
Acer Aspire 7 A715-71G-53TU
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Kingston RBUSNS8180DS3128GH
4055 Points ∼67% +9%
Average Intel Core i5-8300H, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (3704 - 4030, n=6)
3898 Points ∼64% +5%
MSI GF63 8RC
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049
3704 Points ∼61%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
3704 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
4609 points
Help

Storage Devices

Two internal storage bays are available (M.2 2280 + 2.5-inch SATA III) with support for NVMe PCIe SSDs. Our test unit has a single 7200 RPM Seagate BarraCuda ST1000LM049 1 TB HDD with a very fast average transfer rate of 140 MB/s according to HD Tune. However, these results are probably skewed because of the integrated 128 MB cache as nearly every other 7200 RPM HDD in our database returns an average transfer rate much closer to 100 MB/s. Subjectively, there are still notable delays when launching applications as one would expect from a HDD-based PC.

See our table of HDDs and SSDs for more benchmark comparisons.

HD Tune. Note the spike towards the end of the test that skews the average
HD Tune. Note the spike towards the end of the test that skews the average
CDM 5
CDM 5
MSI GF63 8RC
Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049
Panasonic Toughbook CF-54G2999VM
Seagate BarraCuda Compute 1TB ST1000LM048
Lenovo IdeaPad 330-15ARR-81D2005JGE
Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LM035
Dell G3 15 3579
Seagate Mobile HDD 1TB ST1000LX015-1U7172
Dell Latitude 15 3590-K8JP
Toshiba MQ01ACF050
CrystalDiskMark 5.2 / 6
-14%
-39%
-40%
-13%
Write 4K
1.244
1.145
-8%
0.217
-83%
0.202
-84%
1.216
-2%
Read 4K
0.544
0.453
-17%
0.367
-33%
0.461
-15%
0.451
-17%
Write Seq
97.1
52.22
-46%
98.79
2%
53.48
-45%
117.6
21%
Read Seq
162.1
122.7
-24%
131.1
-19%
107.2
-34%
120
-26%
Write 4K Q32T1
1.674
2.428
45%
0.222
-87%
0.882
-47%
1.212
-28%
Read 4K Q32T1
0.998
1.063
7%
0.781
-22%
1.057
6%
0.844
-15%
Write Seq Q32T1
134.8
73.66
-45%
97
-28%
63.74
-53%
115.1
-15%
Read Seq Q32T1
154.8
120.4
-22%
93.25
-40%
77.14
-50%
121.6
-21%
Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 154.8 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 134.8 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 0.998 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 1.674 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 162.1 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 97.1 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 0.544 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 1.244 MB/s

GPU Performance

The Pascal GeForce GTX 1050 sits comfortably between the Maxwell GTX 960M and GTX 970M in terms of raw performance. Users who want the faster GF63 8RD SKU with GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q graphics will see a performance boost of about 22 percent to be near identical to the GTX 970M. Jumping to a different laptop with GTX 1060 brings an enormous graphics advantage of almost 100 percent over the GTX 1050.

3DMark 11
3DMark 11
Cloud Gate
Cloud Gate
Fire Strike
Fire Strike
3DMark
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
MSI GT63 Titan 8RG-046
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8750H
21058 Points ∼52% +247%
MSI Gaming Z GeForce GTX 1070 OC Bios Desktop PC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K
18408 Points ∼45% +203%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
11814 Points ∼29% +95%
MSI GP62 7REX-1045US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ
7866 Points ∼19% +30%
MSI GE72-6QF8H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
7450 Points ∼18% +23%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H
7428 Points ∼18% +22%
MSI GV72 7RD-1048XPL
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ
6140 Points ∼15% +1%
MSI GF63 8RC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H
6069 Points ∼15%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (5329 - 6393, n=40)
6035 Points ∼15% -1%
MSI GL62-6QFi781H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M, 6700HQ
4239 Points ∼10% -30%
MSI Prestige PS42 8RB-059
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
3712 Points ∼9% -39%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Graphics
MSI GT63 Titan 8RG-046
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8750H
133548 Points ∼72% +243%
MSI Gaming Z GeForce GTX 1070 OC Bios Desktop PC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K
108238 Points ∼59% +178%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
83747 Points ∼45% +115%
MSI GP62 7REX-1045US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ
51059 Points ∼28% +31%
MSI GE72-6QF8H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
45543 Points ∼25% +17%
MSI GV72 7RD-1048XPL
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ
39080 Points ∼21% 0%
MSI GF63 8RC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H
38928 Points ∼21%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (14979 - 40201, n=39)
36178 Points ∼20% -7%
MSI GL62-6QFi781H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M, 6700HQ
29742 Points ∼16% -24%
MSI Prestige PS42 8RB-059
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
21586 Points ∼12% -45%
3DMark 11
1280x720 Performance Combined
MSI Gaming Z GeForce GTX 1070 OC Bios Desktop PC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K
11274 Points ∼62% +55%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
10475 Points ∼58% +44%
MSI GT63 Titan 8RG-046
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8750H
9853 Points ∼54% +36%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H
8877 Points ∼49% +22%
MSI GF63 8RC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H
7264 Points ∼40%
MSI GP62 7REX-1045US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ
7163 Points ∼39% -1%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (4446 - 7607, n=38)
6820 Points ∼38% -6%
MSI GV72 7RD-1048XPL
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ
6293 Points ∼35% -13%
MSI GE72-6QF8H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
5815 Points ∼32% -20%
MSI GL62-6QFi781H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M, 6700HQ
5417 Points ∼30% -25%
MSI Prestige PS42 8RB-059
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
4354 Points ∼24% -40%
1280x720 Performance GPU
MSI GT63 Titan 8RG-046
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8750H
28785 Points ∼56% +278%
MSI Gaming Z GeForce GTX 1070 OC Bios Desktop PC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 (Desktop), 4790K
26098 Points ∼51% +243%
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H
14879 Points ∼29% +95%
MSI GE72-6QF8H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M, 6700HQ
9889 Points ∼19% +30%
MSI GP62 7REX-1045US
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (Laptop), 7700HQ
9394 Points ∼18% +23%
Dell XPS 15 9570 i7 UHD
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, 8750H
9079 Points ∼18% +19%
MSI GV72 7RD-1048XPL
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ
7874 Points ∼15% +3%
Average NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop)
  (6744 - 8223, n=38)
7656 Points ∼15% +1%
MSI GF63 8RC
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H
7611 Points ∼15%
MSI GL62-6QFi781H11
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M, 6700HQ
4938 Points ∼10% -35%
MSI Prestige PS42 8RB-059
NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 8550U
4686 Points ∼9% -38%
3DMark 11 Performance
7529 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
19994 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
5511 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Modern titles are playable at native 1080p with most effects turned down. Gamers who want to hit 60 FPS more easily should consider the GTX 1060 instead. Otherwise, expect 30 FPS when playing the latest games even if equipped with the GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q.

See our dedicated page on the GeForce GTX 1050 for more technical information and benchmark comparisons.

low med. high ultra
BioShock Infinite (2013) 234.1180.8159.864.5fps
The Witcher 3 (2015) 123.572.540.120.6fps
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2016) 124.772.838.633.7fps

Stress Test

We stress the system with synthetic loads to identify for any potential throttling or stability issues. When subjected to Prime95, the CPU can be observed running at up to 3.5 GHz for the first few seconds before dropping to a steady 2.1 GHz and a core temperature of only 57 C. Note that the base clock rate of the i5-8300H is higher at 2.3 GHz and so the GF63 is throttling just slightly to maintain the cool core temperature. This behavior is very odd because a wide temperature overhead is available for even faster clock rates, but the CPU refuses to stabilize at anything higher than 2.1 GHz despite running on the High Performance profile. It's not until we initiated Prime95+FurMark that the CPU would then decide to stabilize at a faster 2.8 GHz clock rate and at a higher core temperature of 81 C. We suspect it could be a bug in the automatic throttling settings of the CPU as this behavior is not normal on most other laptops.

When running Witcher 3 or higher loads, the GPU can reach temperatures greater than 83 C. In comparison, the GTX 1060 in the last generation GF62VR stabilizes at just 72 C in the same benchmark test despite being the more demanding GPU. The higher core temperatures of the newer GF63 can be explained by its gutted cooling system as our next section below will detail. Thankfully, the higher temperatures and aforementioned odd CPU behavior do not impact gaming performance as shown by our steady frame rate counter while running Witcher 3

Running on battery power will limit both CPU and GPU performance despite setting the system to High Performance and the GPU to 'Prefer maximum performance'. A Fire Strike run on batteries returns Physics and Graphics scores of 9573 and 4734 points, respectively, compared to 10653 and 6069 points when on mains.

System idle
System idle
Prime95 stress
Prime95 stress
Prime95+FurMark stress
Prime95+FurMark stress
Witcher 3 stress
Witcher 3 stress
0102030Tooltip
MSI GF63 8RC GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049: Ø20.1 (17-22)
CPU Clock (GHz) GPU Clock (MHz) Average CPU Temperature (°C) Average GPU Temperature (°C)
Prime95 Stress 2.2 -- 57 --
FurMark Stress -- 1468 -- 93
Prime95 + FurMark Stress 2.8 1380 81 93
Witcher 3 Stress 3.9 1645 ~67 83

Emissions

System Noise

Fan noise (White: Background, Red: System idle, Blue: 3DMark 06, Orange: Witcher 3, Green: Prime95+FurMark)
Fan noise (White: Background, Red: System idle, Blue: 3DMark 06, Orange: Witcher 3, Green: Prime95+FurMark)

MSI has halved the size of the cooling solution. When compared to the six heat pipes and two fans of the GF62VR, the GF63 utilizes just three heat pipes and a single fan. The move makes sense because the GF63 lacks a GTX 1060 option, but it also implies that MSI will unlikely introduce GPU options more demanding than the GTX 1050 series in the near future since the cooling system here may not be up to the task.

Fan noise is always present on the GF63 because the fan never idles. Simply sitting on desktop produces a fan noise of about 34 dB(A) by default not unlike on the GF62VR. Fan control options are available in the MSI Dragon control center software, but we are unable to get a completely silent streaming or emailing experience no matter the setting even after accounting for the HDD noise.

Fortunately, the GF63 is noticeably quieter than the GF62VR when gaming. Running Witcher 3 produces a fan noise of 43 dB(A) compared to 48 dB(A) on the last generation model at the cost of higher GPU temperatures as shown in our Stress Test section above. The low-to-mid 40 dB(A) range is commonplace for gaming laptops.

Our unit suffers from no audible electronic noise.

Noise Level

Idle
33.8 / 34 / 34.2 dB(A)
Load
37.3 / 46 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: 28 dB(A)
MSI GF63 8RC
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 8300H, Seagate BarraCuda Pro Compute 1TB ST1000LM049
MSI GS65 Stealth Thin 8RE-051US
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
Asus Strix GL504GM
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 8750H, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5256GPU7
Acer Aspire 7 A715-71G-53TU
GeForce GTX 1050 (Laptop), 7300HQ, Kingston RBUSNS8180DS3128GH
MSI GF62VR 7RF-877
GeForce GTX 1060 (Laptop), 7700HQ, Intel SSD 600p SSDPEKKW256G7
Dell G5 15 5587
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q, 8300H, SK hynix SC311 M.2
Noise
3%
0%
6%
-5%
3%
off / environment *
28
28.4
-1%
28.5
-2%
30.4
-9%
28.1
-0%
30.3
-8%
Idle Minimum *
33.8
28.4
16%
30
11%
30.4
10%
33.5
1%
31.1
8%
Idle Average *
34
28.4
16%
30
12%
30.8
9%
33.5
1%
31.1
9%
Idle Maximum *
34.2
29.6
13%
30
12%
30.8
10%
33.5
2%
34.2
-0%
Load Average *
37.3
43.5
-17%
41.8
-12%
33.6
10%
41.3
-11%
34.9
6%
Witcher 3 ultra *
43.4
45.7
-5%
47.6
-10%
48.5
-12%
42.7
2%
Load Maximum *
46
45.7
1%
50
-9%
43.4
6%
53.5
-16%
44
4%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

Dual exhaust from left corner
Dual exhaust from left corner

Surface temperatures are flat on both sides of the system when idling save for the spot directly underneath the 2.5-inch SATA bay. Users who decide to replace the 2.5-inch drive with a M.2 SSD will be moving this hot spot towards the M.2 slot instead.

When under very high loads, the right side of the keyboard can become as warm as 50 C since the GPU is located directly underneath this region. Interestingly, results are similar to the GF62VR where we were also able to record a surface temperature of 50 C on this exact same spot on the keyboard. Because of the asymmetric cooling solution of the GF63, however, temperatures on the bottom of the notebook are warmest towards the back right corner where the two ventilation grilles are located. Be sure to allow for adequate airflow surrounding this corner of the notebook.

System idle (top)
System idle (top)
System idle (bottom)
System idle (bottom)
Witcher 3 stress (top)
Witcher 3 stress (top)
Witcher 3 stress (bottom)
Witcher 3 stress (bottom)
Maximum stress (top)
Maximum stress (top)
Maximum stress (bottom)
Maximum stress (bottom)
Max. Load
 50 °C
122 F
50.8 °C
123 F
47.4 °C
117 F
 
 36 °C
97 F
49 °C
120 F
40 °C
104 F
 
 27.2 °C
81 F
28.6 °C
83 F
32 °C
90 F
 
Maximum: 50.8 °C = 123 F
Average: 40.1 °C = 104 F
43.2 °C
110 F
52 °C
126 F
49.2 °C
121 F
32 °C
90 F
39 °C
102 F
35.2 °C
95 F
30.4 °C
87 F
30.2 °C
86 F
25 °C
77 F
Maximum: 52 °C = 126 F
Average: 37.4 °C = 99 F
Power Supply (max.)  46.8 °C = 116 F | Room Temperature 22.6 °C = 73 F | Fluke 62 Mini IR Thermometer
(-) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 40.1 °C / 104 F, compared to the average of 32.9 °C / 91 F for the devices in the class Gaming.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 50.8 °C / 123 F, compared to the average of 39.3 °C / 103 F, ranging from 21.6 to 68.8 °C for the class Gaming.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 52 °C / 126 F, compared to the average of 41.7 °C / 107 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 29.3 °C / 85 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(-) Playing The Witcher 3, the average temperature for the upper side is 39.9 °C / 104 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are reaching skin temperature as a maximum (33.6 °C / 92.5 F) and are therefore not hot.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.7 °C / 83.7 F (-4.9 °C / -8.8 F).

Speakers

The stereo 2 x 2 W speakers have good sound quality with balanced mid and high tones. Bass is average at best since the system lacks a dedicated subwoofer unlike on the larger Lenovo Legion Y730 17 or MSI GT75 series. Higher volume settings are loud enough to fill a small conference room and will vibrate the chassis only minimally. Gamers will appreciate the separate 3.5 mm jacks for earphones and microphone.

As with all other MSI gaming laptops, the Nahimic software is once again included for audio control.

Speakers on bottom front corners
Speakers on bottom front corners
Pink noise
Pink noise
Revised UI for Nahimic 3 software
Revised UI for Nahimic 3 software
dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2034.133.72533.636.13132.732.64031.935.25032.732.86331.432.88031.131.51003130.512530.530.816028.140.520027.750.725027.358.131527.661.440026.364.1500266563026.266.48002870.2100027.364.3125025.965.3160025.463.5200024.366.3250024.563.131502464.140002467.1500023.864.6630023.664.6800023.564.71000023.467.21250023.468.71600023.260SPL37.377.7N2.943.7median 25.9median 64.3Delta2535.335.132.931.831.83236.535.132.428.93328.936.328.848.32761.52752.924.860.92462.822.763.322