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MSI GS75 8SG Stealth (i7-8750H, RTX 2080 Max-Q) Laptop Review

Florian Glaser, 👁 Florian Glaser, Felicitas Krohn (translated by Stephanie Chamberlain), 03/27/2019

Good-looking. The brand-new GS75 not only belongs to the flattest gaming laptops on the market but also to the best-looking ones. In our detailed review, you'll find out if the 17-incher can also shine under the hood.

MSI GS75 8SG Stealth

MSI sells the successor to the GS73 in three different base configurations. While the GS75 8SE has to get by with a GeForce RTX 2060, the GS75 8SF comes with the GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q. The GS75 8SG that we tested and cost about 3,800 Euros (~$4,267) comes equipped with GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics.

32 GB DDR4 RAM (2x 16 GB @2666 MHz) and a RAID 0 system are conveniently on board. The latter is made up of two 512 GB NVMe SSDs. A 144 Hz Full HD panel is provided as the display (as in the other models).

The GS75 is rivaled by other 17-inch laptops with a slim design and Turing GPU like the Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX, the Lenovo Legion Y740-17, the Schenker XMG Neo 17 and the MSI GE75 8SF. In this review we'll find out which device comes out on top.

MSI GS75 8SG Stealth (GS75 Series)
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q - 8192 MB, Core: 735 MHz, Memory: 6000 MHz, GDDR6, ForceWare 419.35, Optimus
Memory
32768 MB 
, 2x 16 SO-DIMM DDR4-2666, Dual-Channel, all slots occupied
Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 127 PPI, N173HCE-G33 (CMN175C), IPS, Full HD, 144Hz, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel Cannon Lake HM370
Storage
2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ (RAID 0), 1024 GB 
, Slots: 3x M.2 Type 2280 (one free slot)
Soundcard
Realtek ALC1220 @ Intel Cannon Point PCH
Connections
1 USB 3.0 / 3.1 Gen1, 4 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 1 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: 1 headphone, 1 microphone, Card Reader: microSD
Networking
Killer E2500 Gigabit Ethernet Controller (10/100/1000/2500/5000MBit/s), Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW) (a/b/g/n = Wi-Fi 4/ac = Wi-Fi 5), Bluetooth 5.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 19 x 396 x 259 ( = 0.75 x 15.59 x 10.2 in)
Battery
80.25 Wh, 5280 mAh Lithium-Polymer, 4 cells
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: HD (720p)
Additional features
Speakers: 2.0, Keyboard: Chiclet, RGB, Keyboard Light: yes, 230-Watt power adapter, Quick Start Guide, Recovery Manual, Dragon Center, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
2.278 kg ( = 80.35 oz / 5.02 pounds), Power Supply: 725 g ( = 25.57 oz / 1.6 pounds)
Price
3800 EUR
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

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Case

The GS75 inherits most of the strengths and weaknesses of its 15-inch brother, the GS65, which has now been available for a bit longer. On the positive side, we can mention the sleek design. The combination of metal surfaces (only the bottom side is made of plastic), short height and slim display bezels make for a stylish appearance. Thanks to the copper-colored hinges and the same-colored lid border, the 17-incher stands out from the crowd.

Unfortunately, the chassis wasn't completely pleasing. Analogous to the 15-inch version, the weak point is found in its stability. Under strong force, both the lid and the base unit give way and/or show a great amount of flex. Although many thin and light gaming laptops struggle with stability, the GS75 takes the bottom spot here, particularly as the case creaks in different places or produces various sounds when twisted. The workmanship and hinges are nothing special either. Even though the display can't be opened as far as on the GS65, the maximum opening angle is above-average.

MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth

One of the biggest highlights of the GS75 is its low weight. 2.3 kg is easily transported and marks the lowest value in the test field. Competitors weigh from 2.5 to 2.8 kg. In regard to the height, the GS75 comes head-to-head with the Asus GX701GX, which is likewise 19 mm thin. The Lenovo Y740 follows with 23 mm.

Size comparison

412.6 mm / 16.2 inch 304.9 mm / 12 inch 23 mm / 0.906 inch 2.8 kg6.17 lbs397 mm / 15.6 inch 268.5 mm / 10.6 inch 27.5 mm / 1.083 inch 2.6 kg5.82 lbs396 mm / 15.6 inch 261 mm / 10.3 inch 27.5 mm / 1.083 inch 2.5 kg5.51 lbs399 mm / 15.7 inch 272 mm / 10.7 inch 19 mm / 0.748 inch 2.6 kg5.81 lbs396 mm / 15.6 inch 259 mm / 10.2 inch 19 mm / 0.748 inch 2.3 kg5.02 lbs

Connectivity

Ports

MSI doesn't miss a trick in terms of ports. As you can expect from a current gaming laptop, the 17-incher provides a Thunderbolt 3 port (to connect eGPUs, for example). Three USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports and one USB 3.0 Type-C port are also respectable. Two audio jacks for headphones and microphone are also to be found. External displays can be easily connected through the HDMI 2.0 port. Top: Despite its thin design, the GS75 houses an RJ45 LAN port. It's somehow unfortunate on the contrary that MSI didn't include a full-fledged card reader but instead only built in a variant for microSD cards. As a security feature, the GS75 provides a Kensington lock hole.

We would describe the distribution of the ports as mediocre. Due to the fan outlets being located on the sides, most ports are located quite far to the front. Depending on the amount of cable, the use of an external mouse could be hindered (keyword: movement radius).

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

Communication

The Wi-Fi performance is top-notch. In our range test with the reference router Linksys EA8500 (1 m distance) the GS75 took the top spot among the comparison devices when receiving data and second place when sending data. The differences are however very small, when excluding the XMG Neo 17.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
697 MBit/s ∼100%
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
679 MBit/s ∼97% -3%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
663 MBit/s ∼95% -5%
MSI GE75 8SF
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
658 MBit/s ∼94% -6%
Average of class Gaming
  (141 - 1380, n=283)
614 MBit/s ∼88% -12%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
599 MBit/s ∼86% -14%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI GE75 8SF
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
686 MBit/s ∼100% +5%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
674 MBit/s ∼98% +4%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
651 MBit/s ∼95%
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Intel Wireless-AC 9560
647 MBit/s ∼94% -1%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
Killer Wireless-AC 1550i Wireless Network Adapter (9560NGW)
605 MBit/s ∼88% -7%
Average of class Gaming
  (144 - 1160, n=283)
566 MBit/s ∼83% -13%

Software

As is typical of MSI, a large software package comes preinstalled. As usual, the linchpin is the so-called Dragon Center, which combines dozens of features. The most relevant is probably the "System tuner". Here you can adjust the display and sound profiles (True Color and Nahimic), as well as the DPI settings, the performance mode (Shift) and the fan management.

All our measurements were done with the fan set to "Auto". Regarding the Shift option, the "Comfort" mode was planned actually. Since it led to very bad results in 3D usage (contrary to the pre-production device, which we had briefly in the office on the occasion of Turing's release), we had to switch to the "Sport" profile for the 3D tests. The latter had subjectively little effect on noise development, etc.

Dragon Center
Dragon Center
Dragon Center
Dragon Center
Dragon Center
Dragon Center

Accessories

While the software features were quite ample, the delivery can be described with the word "poor". Alongside a power adapter (230 Watts), only a quick-start guide and a recovery manual were to be found in the box.

Maintenance

Extensive maintenance options aren't to be expected from the GS75. When the 15 Phillips screws are removed from the bottom side and the cover is popped off (tip: It's best to start at the level of the RJ45 port), there's only access to the fans, battery and storage. All remaining components are glued over with a black foil, whereby the CPU and GPU can't be upgraded.

MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth

Warranty

MSI honors a two-year warranty on the GS75. The service is of the pickup and return type.

Input devices

Keyboard

The keyboard may be instantly recognizable for many readers. No wonder, MSI has been using the tried-and-tested SteelSeries chiclet keyboard for years, which features per-key RGB backlighting and also a quite good typing feel.

However, some buyers will have to get used to the arrangement. As usual, MSI used a pretty particular layout, which differs significantly from the (German) standard in favor of better gaming control. Moreover, we would've preferred the keyboard to be placed further above. The palm rest is a bit narrow for our taste. Nevertheless, the keyboard received an overall score of "good".

SteelSeries keyboard...
SteelSeries keyboard...
...with RGB backlighting
...with RGB backlighting

Touchpad

Regarding the touchpad, the manufacturer used an extremely wide ClickPad. 14 cm is by laptop standards an enormous amount, even in the 17-inch range. On the other hand, the height of only 6.5 cm is quite limited, which was hardly an issue for us in practice. The most annoying aspect turned out to be stability. The click areas on the left and right corners have an extremely deep travel. Unlike on the (rather quiet) keyboard, inputs are quite loud or rather rattly.

In terms of precision, there's barely anything to complain about. The multitouch gestures (zooming, scrolling, etc.) work mostly flawlessly and are easily recognized. Also nice: Thanks to the smooth surface, fingers glide fluently over the touchpad.

Display

Except for the missing G-Sync support, the display meets almost every standard a gamer could want for in a high-end gaming laptop in 2019. Be it the reaction time (below 10 ms) or the frequency. 144 Hz not only guarantees a buttery-smooth Windows operation, but it also affects gaming positively - at least when enough graphical power is available.

329
cd/m²
346
cd/m²
321
cd/m²
335
cd/m²
355
cd/m²
319
cd/m²
318
cd/m²
318
cd/m²
302
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
N173HCE-G33 (CMN175C)
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 355 cd/m² Average: 327 cd/m² Minimum: 19 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 85 %
Center on Battery: 355 cd/m²
Contrast: 1365:1 (Black: 0.26 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 1.54 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6, calibrated: 0.77
ΔE Greyscale 2.19 | 0.64-98 Ø6.2
95% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 61% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.42
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
N173HCE-G33 (CMN175C), IPS, 1920x1080
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
B173HAN04.0 (AUO409D), IPS, 1920x1080
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
AU Optronics B173HAN03.2, IPS, 1920x1080
Schenker XMG Neo 17
BOEhydis NV173FHM-N44 (BOE07B6), IPS, 1920x1080
MSI GE75 8SF
Chi Mei N173HCE-G33, IPS, 1920x1080
Response Times
3%
-69%
-89%
-11%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
7.6 (3.8, 3.8)
7.2 (3.6, 3.6)
5%
15.6 (8, 7.6)
-105%
18.8 (9.6, 9.2)
-147%
9.6 (5.2, 4.4)
-26%
Response Time Black / White *
9.6 (5.2, 4.4)
9.6 (4.4, 5.2)
-0%
12.8 (7.6, 5.2)
-33%
12 (6.8, 5.2)
-25%
10.4 (5.2, 5.2)
-8%
PWM Frequency
25510 (17)
971 (99)
-96%
25770 (17)
1%
Screen
-29%
-99%
-31%
-1%
Brightness middle
355
288
-19%
299.1
-16%
304
-14%
370.4
4%
Brightness
327
287
-12%
273
-17%
289
-12%
348
6%
Brightness Distribution
85
91
7%
81
-5%
90
6%
89
5%
Black Level *
0.26
0.2
23%
0.27
-4%
0.26
-0%
0.29
-12%
Contrast
1365
1440
5%
1108
-19%
1169
-14%
1277
-6%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
1.54
2.33
-51%
5.07
-229%
2.65
-72%
1.26
18%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
3
5.34
-78%
10.55
-252%
6.11
-104%
3.02
-1%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
0.77
2.47
-221%
3.31
-330%
1.5
-95%
1.21
-57%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
2.19
1.19
46%
6.8
-211%
2.75
-26%
1.4
36%
Gamma
2.42 91%
2.41 91%
2.46 89%
2.46 89%
2.2 100%
CCT
6893 94%
6710 97%
7805 83%
6763 96%
6747 96%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
61
57
-7%
58.5
-4%
60
-2%
59.7
-2%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
95
88
-7%
89.9
-5%
92
-3%
94.4
-1%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-13% / -24%
-84% / -95%
-60% / -43%
-6% / -3%

* ... smaller is better

The Full HD panel manages to make a good to very good impression in the remaining disciplines too. MSI opted for a model from Chi Mei, specifically the CMN N173HCE-G33, which is also found in the GE75, for example. Alongside the relatively high luminance (about 327 cd/m²), the ample contrast is also worth mentioning. 1365:1 could only be outperformed by the Asus GX701GX in the test field. The latter sits below the GS75 in terms of brightness, but it offers a somewhat better black level in return.

CalMAN: grayscales
CalMAN: grayscales
CalMAN: color saturation
CalMAN: color saturation
CalMAN: ColorChecker
CalMAN: ColorChecker
CalMAN: grayscales (calibrated)
CalMAN: grayscales (calibrated)
CalMAN: color saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN: color saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (calibrated)

Regarding color-space, MSI comes first again. 95% of sRGB is definitely noticeable on a gaming laptop. Color accuracy is not bad either. The sRGB mode found in True Color ensures a natural-looking image without blue tints or anything of that sort, as is common in many other laptops.

MSI GS75 8SG vs sRGB (95%)
MSI GS75 8SG vs sRGB (95%)
MSI GS75 8SG vs AdobeRGB (61%)
MSI GS75 8SG vs AdobeRGB (61%)

Backlight bleeding is not a big deal on the GS75 either. The flickering we noticed, which occurs up to a brightness of 17%, shouldn't be an issue even to sensitive users due to its high frequency (around 25 KHz).

Against the light
Against the light
Subpixels
Subpixels
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
9.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 5.2 ms rise
↘ 4.4 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. » 8 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (24.8 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
7.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 3.8 ms rise
↘ 3.8 ms fall
The screen shows very fast response rates in our tests and should be very well suited for fast-paced gaming.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 5 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (39.5 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 25510 Hz ≤ 17 % brightness setting

The display backlight flickers at 25510 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) Flickering detected at a brightness setting of 17 % and below. There should be no flickering or PWM above this brightness setting.

The frequency of 25510 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 9331 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

Performance

The GS75 promises to be highly future-proof in this configuration equipped with a GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, SSD RAID and 32 GB DDR4 RAM. The hexa-core CPU shouldn't reach its limits so quickly in the coming years either.

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

Processor

Sure enough, MSI opted for Intel's hexa-core Core i7-8750H processor, which can provide up to 12 threads in parallel through Hyper-Threading. The Coffee Lake model is specified with a TDP of 42 Watts and offers 9 MB of L3 cache.

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

The base clock speed is marked at 2.2 GHz, whereby up to 4.1 GHz is possible through Turbo Boost. However, this value is only applicable to single-core load. When all cores are working, the maximum clock speed possible is 3.9 GHz. The GS75 achieved between 3.1 and 3.9 GHz in Cinebench's Multi-Core test, which is neither bad nor particularly good.

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MSI GS75 8SG Stealth Intel Core i7-8750H, Intel Core i7-8750H: Ø1017 (1007.38-1101.08)
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX Intel Core i7-8750H, Intel Core i7-8750H: Ø1112 (1090.93-1218.55)
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH Intel Core i7-8750H, Intel Core i7-8750H: Ø1139 (1122.59-1232.82)
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.98 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
12.08 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
175 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
1101 Points
Help

In our Cinebench loop, the 17-incher lagged behind the Asus GX701GX and the Lenovo Legion Y740, which are also equipped with a Core i7-8750H. As with the competitors, the overall score dropped by several percent after the second pass, but then remained at a fairly constant level.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
Intel Core i7-8750H
175 Points ∼100%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Intel Core i7-8750H
174 Points ∼99% -1%
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Intel Core i7-8750H
170 Points ∼97% -3%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
Intel Core i7-8750H
167 Points ∼95% -5%
MSI GE75 8SF
Intel Core i7-8750H
166 Points ∼95% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (77 - 215, n=535)
157 Points ∼90% -10%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
Intel Core i7-8750H
1233 Points ∼100% +12%
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Intel Core i7-8750H
1218 Points ∼99% +11%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
Intel Core i7-8750H
1101 Points ∼89%
MSI GE75 8SF
Intel Core i7-8750H
1066 Points ∼86% -3%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Intel Core i7-8750H
1042 Points ∼85% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (196 - 2022, n=538)
841 Points ∼68% -24%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
Intel Core i7-8750H
1.98 Points ∼100%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Intel Core i7-8750H
1.98 Points ∼100% 0%
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Intel Core i7-8750H
1.94 Points ∼98% -2%
Average of class Gaming
  (0.71 - 2.43, n=423)
1.692 Points ∼85% -15%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Intel Core i7-8750H
13.5 Points ∼100% +12%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
Intel Core i7-8750H
12.08 Points ∼89%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Intel Core i7-8750H
11.51 Points ∼85% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (1.13 - 22.3, n=524)
7.45 Points ∼55% -38%

System performance

The built-in SSD duo not only makes for short boot times and load times but also for a generally fast system. This subjective impression was backed up by the system tests. With 5605 points, the GS75 stayed well ahead on PCMark 10 and was only beaten by the Lenovo Y740.

PCMark 10 - Score
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
6053 Points ∼100% +8%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ (RAID 0)
5605 Points ∼93%
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
5596 Points ∼92% 0%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H, Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 1TB
5411 Points ∼89% -3%
Average of class Gaming
  (2603 - 7511, n=231)
5250 Points ∼87% -6%
MSI GE75 8SF
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H, Kingston RBUSNS8154P3256GJ1
5138 Points ∼85% -8%

Storage solution

MSI combined in our review device two already quick NVMe SSDs (Samsung PM981) into an extremely fast RAID 0 arrangement, which provides a lot of storage space due to its 1 TB overall capacity. As expected, both SSDs performed excellently in benchmarks. However, the Asus GX701GX proved that a single SSD doesn't necessarily have to work slower, since its 1000 GB drive (also Samsung PM981) was usually on par.

If more storage space is required, a third M.2 slot can be found inside the case, which only supports SATA III instead of PCIe though. The GS75 doesn't have a 2.5-inch bay. MSI preferred to use this space for a larger battery - an understandable decision.

MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ (RAID 0)
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ
Schenker XMG Neo 17
Samsung SSD 970 EVO Plus 1TB
MSI GE75 8SF
Kingston RBUSNS8154P3256GJ1
AS SSD
10%
-29%
23%
-49%
Score Total
4123
4771
16%
2784
-32%
5248
27%
2109
-49%
Score Write
1558
2091
34%
1441
-8%
2413
55%
799
-49%
Score Read
1708
1721
1%
878
-49%
1869
9%
869
-49%
4K-64 Write
1197.05
1733.9
45%
1212.35
1%
2048.1
71%
650.03
-46%
4K-64 Read
1366.28
1576.8
15%
727.26
-47%
1579.26
16%
748.37
-45%
4K Write
94.41
122.46
30%
96.04
2%
117.57
25%
67.12
-29%
4K Read
40.89
53.01
30%
35.05
-14%
53.48
31%
25.36
-38%
Seq Write
2667.63
2347.01
-12%
1328.15
-50%
2468.54
-7%
822.99
-69%
Seq Read
3004.86
910.97
-70%
1152.78
-62%
2359.28
-21%
948.8
-68%
2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ (RAID 0)
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 3537 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 3440 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 350.2 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 304.6 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 2896 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 2862 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 39.45 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 86.34 MB/s

Graphics card

Since the GS75 supports Optimus for graphics switching, the computer can dynamically switch between the processor's integrated graphics chip (UHD Graphics 630 in this case) and the dedicated GeForce GPU. In order to save energy, the latter is used only for demanding 3D tasks.

3DMark
2560x1440 Port Royal Graphics
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
4655 Points ∼100% +11%
MSI GE75 8SF
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
4231 Points ∼91% +1%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
4193 Points ∼90%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
4102 Points ∼88% -2%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
4009 Points ∼86% -4%
Average of class Gaming
  (1097 - 5942, n=67)
3968 Points ∼85% -5%
2560x1440 Time Spy Graphics
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
8512 Points ∼100% +12%
MSI GE75 8SF
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
7789 Points ∼92% +3%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
7587 Points ∼89%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
7202 Points ∼85% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (368 - 13013, n=173)
5780 Points ∼68% -24%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
21515 Points ∼100% +8%
MSI GE75 8SF
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
20236 Points ∼94% +2%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
19875 Points ∼92%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
19800 Points ∼92% 0%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
18520 Points ∼86% -7%
Average of class Gaming
  (385 - 40636, n=561)
11547 Points ∼54% -42%
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
29453 Points ∼100% +11%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
26449 Points ∼90%
MSI GE75 8SF
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
26097 Points ∼89% -1%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q
25765 Points ∼87% -3%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop)
25248 Points ∼86% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (513 - 50983, n=636)
13686 Points ∼46% -48%

The GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q found in the top-of-the-line model is currently the second most-powerful laptop GPU after the "normal" RTX 2080, which wasn't designed to be energy-efficient. 2944 shader units and 8 GB GDDR6 VRAM is a good match for current and upcoming games.

It should be pointed out though, that the GS75 is equipped with the 80-Watt version of the RTX 2080 Max-Q instead of the 90 W variant, which can be noted by the clock speeds (base: 735 vs. 990 MHz). This explains why there's a performance difference compared to the Asus GX701GX, which performs around 10% better across all 3D tests. The Lenovo Y740 falls back a few percent despite having an identical TDP.

3DMark 11 Performance
19735 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
15962 points
3DMark Time Spy Score
7180 points
Help

The GS75 didn't lower its guard in our endurance test with The Witcher 3 (Full HD/Ultra). The frame rate remained fairly constant and no bottom outliers were to be seen. According to the GPU-Z tool, the RTX 2080 Max-Q oscillated at around 1245 MHz with a temperature of 73 °C (ca 80 °C @CPU). On the Unigine Heaven 4.0 benchmark, we measured 1320 MHz on average.

051015202530354045505560657075808590Tooltip
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 2x Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB512HAJQ (RAID 0): Ø74.4 (67-80)
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB1T0HALR: Ø80.8 (71-85)
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, Samsung SSD PM981 MZVLB256HAHQ: Ø69.7 (63-76)

Gaming Performance

The GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q is capable enough to run all modern games smoothly at native resolution (1920x1080) with high to maximum details. Only on processor-intensive titles like Metro Exodus was the 60 FPS mark not always reached. In most cases though, the display's 144 Hz rate can be appreciated adequately.

The Witcher 3
3840x2160 High Graphics & Postprocessing (Nvidia HairWorks Off)
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
57.6 (min: 49) fps ∼100% +14%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
50.6 (min: 43) fps ∼88%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
49.5 fps ∼86% -2%
Average of class Gaming
  (9.3 - 89.2, n=58)
42.5 fps ∼74% -16%
1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+)
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
81.7 (min: 68) fps ∼100% +8%
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
75.4 (min: 62) fps ∼92%
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
73.1 fps ∼89% -3%
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
73 fps ∼89% -3%
MSI GE75 8SF
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
70.9 fps ∼87% -6%
Average of class Gaming
  (12.6 - 115, n=331)
50.5 fps ∼62% -33%

QHD monitors with 2560x1440 pixels wouldn't pose much of a challenge for the RTX 2080 Max-Q. It's only in the 4K range (3840x2160 pixels) that the high-end GPU reaches its limit.

low med. high ultraQHD4K
The Witcher 3 (2015) 75.4 50.6 fps
Shadow of the Tomb Raider (2018) 75 58 33 fps
Battlefield V (2018) 112 91.2 52.4 fps
Apex Legends (2019) 130 128 fps
Far Cry New Dawn (2019) 92 82 fps
Metro Exodus (2019) 66.4 54 fps
Anthem (2019) 86.1 78.9 fps
Dirt Rally 2.0 (2019) 143 85.1 fps
The Division 2 (2019) 93 77 fps

Emissions

Noise emissions

MSI could make improvements in the fan control department. Even when the laptop isn't doing anything, the fans rev up in the direction of 40 dB at times. These unnecessary variations in speed will be very bothersome for sensitive users. Otherwise, the GS75 is fairly quiet when idle at 31-32 dB.

Noise levels (idle)
Noise levels (idle)
Noise levels (load)
Noise levels (load)
Noise levels (speakers)
Noise levels (speakers)

The 17-incher's performance under load is something to criticize too. 47-48 dB is quite loud for a Max-Q laptop. The Lenovo Y740 shows how to do it better by only reaching 32-46 dB during 3D usage (admittedly with slightly lower performance).

Noise Level

Idle
31 / 32 / 41 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 GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
MSI GE75 8SF
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
Average of class Gaming
 
Noise
3%
10%
5%
0%
5%
off / environment *
30
29
3%
28.3
6%
29
3%
28.3
6%
29.4 (27.7 - 32, n=334)
2%
Idle Minimum *
31
29
6%
31.5
-2%
29
6%
33.5
-8%
31.4 (28 - 42, n=757)
-1%
Idle Average *
32
32
-0%
31.6
1%
32
-0%
33.6
-5%
32.6 (28 - 46.6, n=757)
-2%
Idle Maximum *
41
33
20%
31.6
23%
33
20%
35
15%
34.6 (28 - 52, n=757)
16%
Load Average *
47
47
-0%
32.3
31%
42
11%
38
19%
40.8 (30.1 - 58, n=758)
13%
Witcher 3 ultra *
47
49
-4%
43
9%
49
-4%
50
-6%
Load Maximum *
48
51
-6%
45.5
5%
49
-2%
56.9
-19%
48.2 (38.9 - 64.1, n=758)
-0%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

Heat development also leads to mixed feelings. While the chassis remains comfortably cool throughout the whole surface when idle, some areas become over 50 °C hot under load, which prevents gaming on your lap.

The Witcher 3
The Witcher 3
Stress test
Stress test
Full load (top)
Full load (top)
Full load (bottom)
Full load (bottom)

Under the hood, the CPU heats up particularly. The Core i7-8750H made itself comfortable at around 90-95 °C during our 60-minute stress test with the Furmark and Prime95 tools. On the other hand, the GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q remained much cooler at 76 °C.

Max. Load
 48 °C
118 F
48 °C
118 F
48 °C
118 F
 
 43 °C
109 F
46 °C
115 F
44 °C
111 F
 
 38 °C
100 F
40 °C
104 F
38 °C
100 F
 
Maximum: 48 °C = 118 F
Average: 43.7 °C = 111 F
57 °C
135 F
58 °C
136 F
47 °C
117 F
53 °C
127 F
54 °C
129 F
44 °C
111 F
40 °C
104 F
41 °C
106 F
39 °C
102 F
Maximum: 58 °C = 136 F
Average: 48.1 °C = 119 F
Power Supply (max.)  47 °C = 117 F | Room Temperature 20 °C = 68 F | Voltcraft IR-900
(-) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 43.7 °C / 111 F, compared to the average of 33.2 °C / 92 F for the devices in the class Gaming.
(-) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 48 °C / 118 F, compared to the average of 39.6 °C / 103 F, ranging from 21.6 to 68.8 °C for the class Gaming.
(-) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 58 °C / 136 F, compared to the average of 42.3 °C / 108 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 25.4 °C / 78 F, compared to the device average of 33.2 °C / 92 F.
(-) Playing The Witcher 3, the average temperature for the upper side is 42.1 °C / 108 F, compared to the device average of 33.2 °C / 92 F.
(-) The palmrests and touchpad can get very hot to the touch with a maximum of 40 °C / 104 F.
(-) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.8 °C / 83.8 F (-11.2 °C / -20.2 F).
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
MSI GE75 8SF
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
Average of class Gaming
 
Heat
1%
4%
0%
9%
-1%
Maximum Upper Side *
48
53
-10%
38.6
20%
47
2%
41.2
14%
45.9 (28 - 68.8, n=722)
4%
Maximum Bottom *
58
50
14%
43.6
25%
56
3%
46
21%
49.6 (25.9 - 78, n=720)
14%
Idle Upper Side *
29
27
7%
30.2
-4%
28
3%
26.2
10%
30.8 (21.6 - 46.8, n=674)
-6%
Idle Bottom *
28
30
-7%
35
-25%
30
-7%
30.2
-8%
31.8 (21.1 - 50.3, n=672)
-14%

* ... smaller is better

Speakers

The 2.0 system integrated in the front area is unfortunately not good for the price. Sound is quite soft and tinny, so that it doesn't create a proper atmosphere for watching movies, gaming or music playback. As shown by our audio analysis, this shortcoming also affects the GS65 15-inch sibling. Deep tones are especially underrepresented. Ergo, a headset or external speakers should be used when possible.

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2038.638.72532.135.33128314035.537.95028.529.76327.329.88025.529.810025.530.212524.228.916022.929.820024.335.825024.139.231521.24440020.851.150019.354.363018.161.480017.868.8100018.169.5125018.869.3160017.669.6200017.368.7250017.963.6315017.764400017.858.9500017.759.9630017.657.2800017.5561000017.854.71250017.6591600017.557.9SPL30.377.6N1.436.1median 17.9median 57.9Delta2.31040.943.13638.231.531.732.539.126.729.826.13026.228.826.933.226.233.822.94224.250.122.451.520.353.720.153.119.755.619.160.719631964.717.768.617.367.417.465.617.464.117.45717.558.717.663.517.46317.560.517.557.517.461.417.361.330.375.81.435.6median 17.7median 60.52.56hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseMSI GS75 8SG StealthMSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (78 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 23.2% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 8.8% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.9% away from median
(+) | highs are linear (6% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (25.1% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 87% of all tested devices in this class were better, 2% similar, 10% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 73% of all tested devices were better, 6% similar, 21% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

MSI GS65 8RF-019DE Stealth Thin audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (76 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 16.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.7% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 4.9% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (5.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(+) | balanced highs - only 2.5% away from median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (7.1% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (16% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 41% of all tested devices in this class were better, 7% similar, 53% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 19% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 77% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Energy management

Energy consumption

When idle, energy consumption is slightly lower than on the other RTX 2080 Max-Q competitors. Thanks in big part to the graphics switching, the 17-incher requires only 13 to 23 Watts. 215 Watts was measured under load, which is backed up by a sufficiently capable power supply. In everyday gaming, 147 Watts is to be expected. This value sits well below comparably fast RTX 2070 laptops.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 1.6 / 2.2 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 13 / 17 / 23 Watt
Load midlight 90 / 215 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
MSI GE75 8SF
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H
Average of class Gaming
 
Power Consumption
-22%
-20%
0%
-18%
-24%
Idle Minimum *
13
19
-46%
20.2
-55%
13
-0%
16.4
-26%
19.4 (3.4 - 113, n=718)
-49%
Idle Average *
17
22
-29%
27.2
-60%
16
6%
21.9
-29%
24.8 (6.6 - 119, n=718)
-46%
Idle Maximum *
23
30
-30%
28.7
-25%
21
9%
25.4
-10%
30.2 (8.3 - 122, n=718)
-31%
Load Average *
90
104
-16%
90.8
-1%
96
-7%
90.7
-1%
104 (14.1 - 319, n=709)
-16%
Load Maximum *
215
203
6%
165.4
23%
191
11%
222.9
-4%
172 (21.9 - 590, n=708)
20%
Witcher 3 ultra *
147
167
-14%
152.1
-3%
172
-17%
203.3
-38%

* ... smaller is better

Battery life

When it comes to battery life, the GS75 beats all of its contenders. In order for the 17-incher to be able to stay unplugged for as long as possible, MSI has opted for an 80 Wh battery. In comparison, the competition has only been equipped with 46 to 76 Wh. In combination with the fairly low energy consumption, the system exhibits an above-average battery runtime.

7:44 hours in idle usage at minimal brightness is respectable for a high-end laptop, as well as 5:16 hours when browsing the web on Wi-Fi and at medium brightness. On the other hand, the GS75 is hardly suitable for mobile gaming. In this case, the longest it can last is an hour. The fact that 3D performance drops to around 75% when running on battery (massive GPU throttling) is also noticeable.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
7h 44min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3
5h 16min
Load (maximum brightness)
0h 54min
MSI GS75 8SG Stealth
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 80.25 Wh
Asus Zephyrus S GX701GX
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 76 Wh
Lenovo Legion Y740-17ICH
GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q, 8750H, 76 Wh
Schenker XMG Neo 17
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H, 46.74 Wh
MSI GE75 8SF
GeForce RTX 2070 (Laptop), 8750H, 65 Wh
Average of class Gaming
 
Battery Runtime
-22%
-40%
-20%
-33%
1%
Reader / Idle
464
298
-36%
315
-32%
349 (39 - 1174, n=677)
-25%
WiFi v1.3
316
230
-27%
190
-40%
224
-29%
212
-33%
259 (78 - 622, n=382)
-18%
Load
54
52
-4%
55
2%
79 (18 - 202, n=644)
46%

Verdict

Pros

+ decent battery life
+ low weight
+ RGB backlighting
+ good IPS panel
+ sleek design
+ Thunderbolt 3
+ high performance
+ extremely flat
+ slim bezels
+ SSD RAID
+ 144 Hz

Cons

- case could be more stable
- suboptimal fan control
- limited maintenance
- disappointing sound
- very expensive
In review: MSI GS65 8SG Stealth. Test unit provided by MSI Germany.
In review: MSI GS65 8SG Stealth. Test unit provided by MSI Germany.

 With the GS75 8SG Stealth, MSI released a mostly successful gaming laptop with slim bezels.

The combination of Core i7-8750H and GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q tackles all current games effortlessly - at least at the native Full HD resolution. 3D content ran overall very smoothly on the fast-reacting and contrast-rich 144 Hz display, despite it lacking Nvidia's G-Sync technology.

Another strength of the 17-incher is its good mobility. Alongside the weight and height, the battery life also manages to impress. The modern ports, which include Thunderbolt 3, are also praiseworthy.

We weren't completely satisfied with the case. Although the design and quality of the materials are of a high level, the stability leaves something to be desired. In order to achieve a "very good" overall score, the manufacturer would also have to improve the sound quality and fan control.

The steep price (~3,800 Euros (~$4,267) for the top-of-the line model) will detract some interested consumers from buying. Most of the time, comparably fast laptops with an RTX 2070 GPU are significantly lower priced.

MSI GS75 8SG Stealth - 03/27/2019 v6(old)
Florian Glaser

Chassis
72 / 98 → 74%
Keyboard
79%
Pointing Device
75%
Connectivity
66 / 81 → 81%
Weight
61 / 10-66 → 91%
Battery
83%
Display
91%
Games Performance
98%
Application Performance
100%
Temperature
78 / 95 → 82%
Noise
66 / 90 → 73%
Audio
62%
Average
78%
86%
Gaming - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > MSI GS75 8SG Stealth (i7-8750H, RTX 2080 Max-Q) Laptop Review
Florian Glaser, 2019-03-27 (Update: 2019-03-29)