Notebookcheck

MSI GT75 8RG Titan (i9-8950HK, GTX 1080, Full-HD) Laptop Review

Florian Glaser, 👁 Florian Glaser (translated by Alex Alderson), 05/11/2018

Gaming Colossus. The GT75 8RG Titan marks MSI’s relaunch of its most powerful and massive 17-inch notebook. The desktop replacement includes a hexa-core CPU, a 120 Hz display and NVIDIA’s fastest mobile GPU to fit its high-end billing. We will be putting this gaming newcomer up against the toughest of competitors.

MSI GT75 8RG Titan

MSI’s product range not only includes compact laptops like the GS65 Stealth Thin but also thicker devices that are primarily thought of as remaining in one place. The best example apart from the 18-inch GT83 is the new 17-inch GT75, which has received a hardware update following the release of Intel’s new Coffee Lake architecture. This means that the GT75 now sports a six-core processor rather than a quad-core and comes in two flavours. There is the choice between the Core i7-8850H that clocks between 2.6-4.3 GHz with 9 MB L3 cache or the Core i9-8950HK. This has a higher base and maximum clock speed at 2.9 GHz-4.8GHz and 12 MB L3 cache. Both CPUs have unlocked multipliers.

MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan (GT75 Series)
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop) - 8192 MB, Core: 1582 MHz, Memory: 2500 MHz, GDDR5X, ForceWare 390.94
Memory
32768 MB 
, 2x 16 GB SO-DIMM DDR4-2666, Dual Channel, 2 of 4 slots occupied, maximum of 64 GB
Display
17.3 inch 16:9, 1920 x 1080 pixel 127 PPI, CMN N173HHE-G32 (CMN1747), TN, Full-HD, G-Sync, 120 Hz, glossy: no
Mainboard
Intel CM246
Storage
2x Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP (RAID 0), 512 GB 
, NVMe SSDs & HGST Travelstar 7K1000 HTS721010A9E630 1 TB HDD @ 7,200 RPM. Drive bays: 3x M.2-2280, 1x 2.5-inch
Soundcard
Realtek ALC1220 @ Intel Cannon Lake PCH
Connections
6 USB 3.1 Gen2, 1 Thunderbolt, 1 HDMI, 2 DisplayPort, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: 1x headphone jack, 1x microphone, 1x Line-in, 1x Line-out, Card Reader: SD,SDHC,SDXC
Networking
Aquantia AQtion 10Gbit Network Adapter (10/100/1000/10000MBit), Killer Wireless-AC 1550 Wireless Network Adapter (a/b/g/h/n/ac), Bluetooth 5.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 58 x 428 x 314 ( = 2.28 x 16.85 x 12.36 in)
Battery
75 Wh Lithium-Ion, 8 cells
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64 Bit
Camera
Webcam: FHD (1080p, 30 fps)
Additional features
Speakers: 2x 3 W speaker, 1x 5 W woofer, Keyboard: Chiclet, mechanical, RGB, Keyboard Light: yes, 2x 230 W power supply, Warranty card, Quick Start Guide, Dragon Center and additional manufacturer tools, Killer Performance Suite, XSplit Gamecaster, 24 Months Warranty
Weight
4.564 kg ( = 160.99 oz / 10.06 pounds), Power Supply: 1.56 kg ( = 55.03 oz / 3.44 pounds)
Price
4200 EUR
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

These high-end processors are complemented with 16 or 32 GB DDR4 RAM and an SSD-RAID two 128 GB and two 256 GB drives. MSI offers a choice of either a 120 Hz Full-HD panel or an IPS 4K display, both of which support G-Sync. Equally, there is a choice between two GPUs, for which MSI has distinguished with two GT75 model numbers. The GT75 8RF has a GeForce GTX 1070 onboard, while the GT75 8RG is equipped with the more powerful GeForce GTX 1080. Our review unit is based on the latter and has the specific model number GT75 8RG-090 Titan. This will be available on geizhals.de for approximately €4,200; the cheapest variant should start from €2,600.

We will not be examining the case, the connectivity or the input devices in this article as they largely remain unchanged from last year’s GT75VR 7RF Titan Pro. Our views on these areas can be found in last year’s review.

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

The GT75 has plenty of competition. Despite recent manufacturer focus on releasing devices with more attractively priced GPUs like the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, GTX 1060 and GTX 1070, there are now dozens of devices that are equipped with a GeForce GTX 1080. We have chosen five devices against which to compare the new GT75: The Acer Predator 17 X, the ASUS G703, the Alienware 17 R4, the HP Omen X 17, and the Aorus X9 DT. The X9 DT is currently the device to beat, what with its combination of a Core i9-8950HK processor and its small footprint.

Size Comparison

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SDCardreader Transfer Speed
average JPG Copy Test (av. of 3 runs)
Aorus X9 DT
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
202 MB/s ∼100% +153%
Asus G703
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
182 MB/s ∼90% +128%
Average of class Gaming
  (11.7 - 202, n=205)
90.1 MB/s ∼45% +13%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
80 MB/s ∼40%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
79 MB/s ∼39% -1%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
73.04 MB/s ∼36% -9%
maximum AS SSD Seq Read Test (1GB)
Aorus X9 DT
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
241 MB/s ∼100% +177%
Asus G703
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
240 MB/s ∼100% +176%
Average of class Gaming
  (13.4 - 257, n=203)
109 MB/s ∼45% +25%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
89 MB/s ∼37% +2%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
87.35 MB/s ∼36% 0%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
  (Toshiba Exceria Pro SDXC 64 GB UHS-II)
87 MB/s ∼36%
Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Killer Wireless-AC 1550 Wireless Network Adapter
686 MBit/s ∼100%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
681 MBit/s ∼99% -1%
Asus G703
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
681 MBit/s ∼99% -1%
Aorus X9 DT
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
639 MBit/s ∼93% -7%
Alienware 17 R4
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1435 Wireless Network Adapter
606 MBit/s ∼88% -12%
Average of class Gaming
  (141 - 702, n=180)
594 MBit/s ∼87% -13%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Realtek 8822BE Wireless LAN 802.11ac PCI-E NIC
593 MBit/s ∼86% -14%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Killer Wireless-AC 1550 Wireless Network Adapter
681 MBit/s ∼100%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
628 MBit/s ∼92% -8%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Realtek 8822BE Wireless LAN 802.11ac PCI-E NIC
604 MBit/s ∼89% -11%
Aorus X9 DT
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1535 Wireless Network Adapter
601 MBit/s ∼88% -12%
Alienware 17 R4
Killer Wireless-n/a/ac 1435 Wireless Network Adapter
589 MBit/s ∼86% -14%
Average of class Gaming
  (144 - 697, n=180)
534 MBit/s ∼78% -22%
Asus G703
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8265
506 MBit/s ∼74% -26%

Display

There are no surprises with the display. MSI uses a G-Sync capable 120 Hz panel in our review unit, like the one used in the previous GT75. This is a TN panel, presumably for the high response rates that TN panels can achieve. The model number is CMN N173HHE-G32 for reference. We measured 5.6 ms black to white response times and 8 ms for grey to grey. These are excellent values upon which none of our comparison devices can improve.

264
cd/m²
265
cd/m²
271
cd/m²
244
cd/m²
240
cd/m²
253
cd/m²
234
cd/m²
224
cd/m²
240
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 271 cd/m² Average: 248.3 cd/m² Minimum: 13 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 83 %
Center on Battery: 240 cd/m²
Contrast: 1091:1 (Black: 0.22 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 2.14 | 0.4-29.43 Ø6.2, calibrated: 1.54
ΔE Greyscale 1.62 | 0.64-98 Ø6.5
100% sRGB (Argyll 3D) 77% AdobeRGB 1998 (Argyll 3D)
Gamma: 2.28
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
CMN N173HHE-G32 (CMN1747), TN, 1920x1080
Aorus X9 DT
AUO B173HAN03.0 (AUO309D), IPS, 1920x1080
Asus G703
AUO B173HAN03.0 (AUO309D), IPS, 1920x1080
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
LP173WF4-SPF5 (LGD056D), IPS, 1920x1080
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
AU Optronics B173HW01, IPS, 1920x1080
Alienware 17 R4
TN LED, 2560x1440
Response Times
-122%
-110%
-432%
-457%
-202%
Response Time Grey 50% / Grey 80% *
8 (4.4, 3.6)
18.4 (9.2, 9.2)
-130%
17.6 (8.4, 9.2)
-120%
45 (18, 27)
-463%
44 (22, 22)
-450%
30 (18.8, 11.2)
-275%
Response Time Black / White *
5.6 (3.8, 1.8)
12 (6.8, 5.2)
-114%
11.2 (6, 5.2)
-100%
28 (6, 22)
-400%
31.6 (16, 15.6)
-464%
12.8 (10.8, 2)
-129%
PWM Frequency
26000 (19)
Screen
11%
-33%
-31%
-19%
-60%
Brightness middle
240
280
17%
274
14%
380
58%
343
43%
402.3
68%
Brightness
248
262
6%
268
8%
362
46%
332
34%
372
50%
Brightness Distribution
83
86
4%
80
-4%
91
10%
83
0%
86
4%
Black Level *
0.22
0.22
-0%
0.29
-32%
0.37
-68%
0.35
-59%
0.62
-182%
Contrast
1091
1273
17%
945
-13%
1027
-6%
980
-10%
649
-41%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
2.14
1.78
17%
3.99
-86%
4.12
-93%
3.35
-57%
5.6
-162%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
5.04
3.91
22%
7.33
-45%
8.19
-63%
5.62
-12%
9.8
-94%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 calibrated *
1.54
1.79
-16%
2.5
-62%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
1.62
0.74
54%
4.14
-156%
3.95
-144%
2.4
-48%
4.7
-190%
Gamma
2.28 96%
2.43 91%
2.58 85%
2.47 89%
2.35 94%
2.14 103%
CCT
6846 95%
6494 100%
7352 88%
6539 99%
6495 100%
7519 86%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
77
60
-22%
60
-22%
55
-29%
57
-26%
53.7
-30%
Color Space (Percent of sRGB)
100
92
-8%
92
-8%
84
-16%
88
-12%
82.2
-18%
Total Average (Program / Settings)
-56% / -11%
-72% / -45%
-232% / -97%
-238% / -86%
-131% / -83%

* ... smaller is better

The display is convincing overall, but there are exceptions. The GT75 has limited viewing angles because of its TN display and has mediocre brightness too. We measured average maximum brightness at almost 250 cd/m² in True Colour mode sRGB. The GT75 has a respectable black level and contrast ratio though, which we measured at 0.22 cd/m² and 1,100:1 respectively.

CalMAN: Greyscale
CalMAN: Greyscale
CalMAN: Saturation
CalMAN: Saturation
CalMAN: ColorChecker
CalMAN: ColorChecker
CalMAN: Greyscale (calibrated)
CalMAN: Greyscale (calibrated)
CalMAN: Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN: Saturation (calibrated)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (calibrated)
CalMAN: ColorChecker (calibrated)

We must praise the GT75 for its impressive colour space coverage. We measured 100% sRGB and 77% AdobeRGB, values are more likely in a workstation or professional photo and video editing devices. By contrast, the Aorus X9 DT managed 60% AdobeRGB coverage.

sRGB – 100%
sRGB – 100%
Sub-pixel array
Sub-pixel array
AdobeRGB – 77%
AdobeRGB – 77%

The 120 Hz panel has decent colour accuracy out of the box, delivering a homogenous and natural picture. We saw no tangible gain in further calibrating the display.

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
5.6 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 3.8 ms rise
↘ 1.8 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 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 3 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is better than the average of all tested devices (25.6 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
8 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 4.4 ms rise
↘ 3.6 ms fall
The screen shows fast response rates in our tests and should be suited for gaming.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 4 % 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 detected 26000 Hz ≤ 19 % brightness setting

The display backlight flickers at 26000 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) Flickering detected at a brightness setting of 19 % and below. There should be no flickering or PWM above this brightness setting.

The frequency of 26000 Hz is quite high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering.

In comparison: 52 % 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.

Performance

For reference, we set our review unit using the Power Options shift mode. This can be found in Dragon Center, the core software package that comes with MSI gaming notebooks. There is even full manual fan control; we set the fans to Auto for our tests, which is the default fan mode.

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
HWiNFO
GPU-Z
LatencyMon

Processor

Our review unit is powered by an Intel Core i9-8950HK, Intel’s most powerful mobile Coffee Lake CPU. Despite having a higher clock rate than its sibling, the Core i9-8950HK has the same 45 W TDP.

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

The increased number of cores results in much better performance in multi-core applications than last generation quad-core CPUs. In a Cinebench R15 multi-core benchmark the GT75 8RG scored 50-60% better than both the ASUS G703 and the Acer Predator 17 X, both of which are powered by an Intel Core i7-7820HK CPU that is overclocked to 4.3 GHz.

Cinebench R15
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
205 Points ∼100%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
185 Points ∼90% -10%
Aorus X9 DT
Intel Core i9-8950HK
185 Points ∼90% -10%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Intel Core i7-7820HK
184 Points ∼90% -10%
Alienware 17 R4
Intel Core i7-7820HK
171 Points ∼83% -17%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Intel Core i7-7820HK
162 Points ∼79% -21%
Average of class Gaming
  (79 - 209, n=420)
152 Points ∼74% -26%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Aorus X9 DT
Intel Core i9-8950HK
1388 Points ∼100% +1%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
1378 Points ∼99%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
932 Points ∼67% -32%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Intel Core i7-7820HK
874 Points ∼63% -37%
Alienware 17 R4
Intel Core i7-7820HK
867 Points ∼62% -37%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Intel Core i7-7820HK
770 Points ∼55% -44%
Average of class Gaming
  (196 - 1865, n=421)
749 Points ∼54% -46%
Cinebench R11.5
CPU Single 64Bit
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
2.33 Points ∼100%
Aorus X9 DT
Intel Core i9-8950HK
2.1 Points ∼90% -10%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
2.09 Points ∼90% -10%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Intel Core i7-7820HK
2.08 Points ∼89% -11%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Intel Core i7-7820HK
1.84 Points ∼79% -21%
Alienware 17 R4
Intel Core i7-7820HK
1.69 Points ∼73% -27%
Average of class Gaming
  (0.71 - 2.38, n=408)
1.68 Points ∼72% -28%
CPU Multi 64Bit
Aorus X9 DT
Intel Core i9-8950HK
15.13 Points ∼100% +1%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
Intel Core i9-8950HK
15.05 Points ∼99%
Asus G703
Intel Core i7-7820HK
10.33 Points ∼68% -31%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Intel Core i7-7820HK
9.55 Points ∼63% -37%
Alienware 17 R4
Intel Core i7-7820HK
9.53 Points ∼63% -37%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Intel Core i7-7820HK
8.47 Points ∼56% -44%
Average of class Gaming
  (1.13 - 21.2, n=509)
7.28 Points ∼48% -52%

We tested the extent to which the Core i9-8950HK can maintain its initial performance with a thirty-minute Cinebench multi-core benchmark loop. The GT75 performed admirably, managing to maintain a relatively constant clock speed even after the 50th benchmark pass. The CPU averaged 4.3 GHz, the maximum Turbo Boost speed when working across all six cores.

0102030405060708090100110120130140150160170180190200210220230240250260270280290300310320330340350360370380390400410420430440450460470480490500510520530540550560570580590600610620630640650660670680690700710720730740750760770780790800810820830840850860870880890900910920930940950960970980990100010101020103010401050106010701080109011001110112011301140115011601170118011901200121012201230124012501260127012801290130013101320133013401350136013701380Tooltip
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
2.33 Points
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
15.05 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
205 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
1378 Points
Help

System Performance

Expectedly, the GT75 8RG has extremely high system performance. This is reflected in PCMark 10 results, in which our review unit scored 6,558 points. This puts it in pole position among our comparison devices, with the Aorus X9 DT coming closest at 6,387; the remaining devices are much further behind.

PCMark 10 - Score
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK, 2x Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP (RAID 0)
6558 Points ∼100%
Aorus X9 DT
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK, Transcend TS1TMTE850
6387 Points ∼97% -3%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
5290 Points ∼81% -19%
Asus G703
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, 2x Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP NVMe (RAID 0)
5035 Points ∼77% -23%
Average of class Gaming
  (2603 - 6959, n=120)
4946 Points ∼75% -25%
PCMark 8
Work Score Accelerated v2
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
6123 Points ∼100% +6%
Aorus X9 DT
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK, Transcend TS1TMTE850
6055 Points ∼99% +4%
Asus G703
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, 2x Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP NVMe (RAID 0)
6016 Points ∼98% +4%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK, 2x Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP (RAID 0)
5801 Points ∼95%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
5450 Points ∼89% -6%
Alienware 17 R4
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, SK Hynix PC300 NVMe 512 GB
5088 Points ∼83% -12%
Average of class Gaming
  (2484 - 6515, n=315)
4928 Points ∼80% -15%
Home Score Accelerated v2
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
5975 Points ∼100% +4%
Asus G703
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, 2x Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP NVMe (RAID 0)
5944 Points ∼99% +4%
Aorus X9 DT
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK, Transcend TS1TMTE850
5859 Points ∼98% +2%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK, 2x Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP (RAID 0)
5720 Points ∼96%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
5221 Points ∼87% -9%
Alienware 17 R4
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK, SK Hynix PC300 NVMe 512 GB
5064 Points ∼85% -11%
Average of class Gaming
  (2554 - 6093, n=333)
4222 Points ∼71% -26%
PCMark 8 Home Score Accelerated v2
5720 points
PCMark 8 Work Score Accelerated v2
5801 points
Help

Storage Devices

One reason for the first-class system performance is the SSD-RAID. The GT75 8RG runs two Samsung PM961 256 GB M.2-2280 NVMe SSDs in RAID 0 to maximise transfer speeds. The PM961 is one of the fastest consumer drives currently available, so it is no surprise that running two of them in RAID 0 puts our review unit at the top of our storage devices benchmarks.

SSDs
SSDs
SSDs
SSDs
HDD
HDD
HDD
HDD

An example of the GT75 8RG’s benchmark performance is in AS SSD. This benchmark measured roughly 3,058 MB/s sequential read speeds and just under 2,196 MB/s sequential write speeds. These speeds are only beaten by the ASUS G703, that has two Samsung SM961 512 GB drives running also in RAID 0. The GT75 8RG blows notebooks with single SSDs out of the water in benchmarks and is 41% quicker on average than the Aorus X9 DT. It must be stressed that benchmarks are a measure of perceived performance and that in practice there is little noticeable difference between our comparison devices and the GT75 in this regard. If the 512 GB RAID array does not offer enough storage, then you could simply use the existing 1 TB HDD instead.

MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
2x Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP (RAID 0)
Aorus X9 DT
Transcend TS1TMTE850
Asus G703
2x Samsung SM961 MZVKW512HMJP NVMe (RAID 0)
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
Toshiba NVMe THNSN5512GPU7
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP
Alienware 17 R4
SK Hynix PC300 NVMe 512 GB
AS SSD
-41%
13%
-19%
-18%
-35%
Score Total
4066
2145
-47%
3962
-3%
2581
-37%
2862
-30%
2072
-49%
Score Write
1553
916
-41%
1519
-2%
930
-40%
1029
-34%
858
-45%
Score Read
1691
828
-51%
1633
-3%
1118
-34%
1248
-26%
831
-51%
4K Write
97.68
98.92
1%
148.44
52%
133.79
37%
116.23
19%
113.36
16%
4K Read
38.37
22.23
-42%
47.61
24%
39.52
3%
44.81
17%
35.61
-7%
Seq Write
2196.29
1018.64
-54%
2556.32
16%
1338.19
-39%
1145.25
-48%
734.8
-67%
Seq Read
3058.28
1517.93
-50%
3177.06
4%
2261.03
-26%
2352.48
-23%
1752.03
-43%
2x Samsung PM961 MZVLW256HEHP (RAID 0)
CDM 5/6 Read Seq Q32T1: 3485 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write Seq Q32T1: 2440 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K Q32T1: 364.9 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K Q32T1: 308.3 MB/s
CDM 5 Read Seq: 3321 MB/s
CDM 5 Write Seq: 2288 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Read 4K: 42.09 MB/s
CDM 5/6 Write 4K: 111.8 MB/s

Graphics Card

Graphics are handled by the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080, currently NVIDIA’s king of mobile GPUs. The DirectX 12 chip contains 2,560 shaders, 8 GB GDDR5X VRAM, and has a base clock of 1,582 MHz that can boost up to 1,911 MHz.

012345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031323334353637383940414243444546474849505152535455565758596061626364656667686970717273747576Tooltip
The Witcher 3 ultra

The automatic overclocking worked wonderfully in our review unit. After around an hour of The Witcher 3 in Full HD at Ultra settings, the GPU still clocked at 1,835 MHz. This matches the performance of most other GTX 1080 laptops in our tests, hence why the GT75 does not stand out from the crowd here. MSI still deserves credit for designing the GT75 well enough to get that level of performance out of the GTX 1080 as not all our comparison devices manage to do this.

3DMark - 1920x1080 Fire Strike Graphics
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
22566 Points ∼100% +5%
Aorus X9 DT
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
22240 Points ∼99% +4%
Asus G703
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
22160 Points ∼98% +3%
Alienware 17 R4
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
21846 Points ∼97% +2%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
21422 Points ∼95%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
20307 Points ∼90% -5%
Average of class Gaming
  (385 - 40636, n=448)
10263 Points ∼45% -52%
3DMark 11 - 1280x720 Performance GPU
Asus G703
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
29109 Points ∼100% +1%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
28918 Points ∼99%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
28595 Points ∼98% -1%
Aorus X9 DT
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
27966 Points ∼96% -3%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
27109 Points ∼93% -6%
Alienware 17 R4
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
26438 Points ∼91% -9%
Average of class Gaming
  (513 - 50983, n=521)
11899 Points ∼41% -59%

While the GTX 1080 is a fantastic GPU, the difference in price between the GTX 1070 equipped GT75 8RF and the GT75 8RG comes down to personal preference. In our opinion, a GTX 1070 would be sufficient in most applications and games when paired with a Full HD display.

3DMark 11 Performance
23175 points
3DMark Ice Storm Standard Score
193287 points
3DMark Cloud Gate Standard Score
42660 points
3DMark Fire Strike Score
18738 points
Help

Gaming Performance

Thanks to the exquisite performance, even graphically intensive games like Star Wars Battlefront 2 make benefit from the 120 Hz refresh rate. Four out of the six games tested hit over 100 FPS at maximum details.

The Witcher 3 - 1920x1080 Ultra Graphics & Postprocessing (HBAO+)
Alienware 17 R4
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK
78.1 fps ∼100% +2%
Asus G703
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK
77.9 fps ∼100% +1%
Aorus X9 DT
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK
77.4 fps ∼99% +1%
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 8950HK
76.8 fps ∼98%
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK
68.5 fps ∼88% -11%
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 7820HK
65 fps ∼83% -15%
Average of class Gaming
  (12.6 - 115, n=224)
44.5 fps ∼57% -42%

The GT75 would also be suitable for gaming on an external WQHD monitor. The GTX 1080 reaches its performance limit at 4K/UHD, which is a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160.

low med. high ultra
The Witcher 3 (2015) 14876.8fps
Ghost Recon Wildlands (2017) 11060.5fps
FIFA 18 (2017) 427418fps
Need for Speed Payback (2017) 145141fps
Star Wars Battlefront 2 (2017) 139121fps
Far Cry 5 (2018) 120113fps

Emissions

Fan Noise

Fan noise is unfortunately as loud as performance is high. While the upgrade to a hexa-core processor has not worsened this, the GT75 remains just as loud as its extremely loud predecessor. 43-62 dB(A) under load is loud even for a high-end gaming notebook. We would have thought that the GT75 would run quieter given its thickness and weight; it is one of the largest devices in its class.

Noise levels at idle
Noise levels at idle
Noise levels under load
Noise levels under load
Noise levels from speakers
Noise levels from speakers

Gaming sessions are only enjoyable with headphones. The fan noise is so loud that we would recommend sound sensitive users to look for an alternative device. The Acer Predator 17 X is the device of our GTX 1080 equipped comparison devices.

Noise Level

Idle
32 / 34 / 37 dB(A)
HDD
34 dB(A)
Load
43 / 62 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 GT75 8RG-090 Titan
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Aorus X9 DT
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Asus G703
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Alienware 17 R4
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Noise
-7%
1%
3%
11%
1%
off / environment *
30
30
-0%
30
-0%
30
-0%
28.3
6%
28.2
6%
Idle Minimum *
32
36
-13%
35
-9%
33
-3%
31.5
2%
35.6
-11%
Idle Average *
34
37
-9%
36
-6%
35
-3%
31.6
7%
35.6
-5%
Idle Maximum *
37
43
-16%
38
-3%
37
-0%
31.6
15%
35.7
4%
Load Average *
43
50
-16%
46
-7%
40
7%
36.8
14%
50.2
-17%
Witcher 3 ultra *
57
57
-0%
48
16%
48.2
15%
50.2
12%
Load Maximum *
62
61
2%
54
13%
50
19%
52.1
16%
50.2
19%

* ... smaller is better

Temperature

While the fan noise is a cause for criticism, and one which drops the GT75 below a “very good” emissions score, surface temperatures are pleasingly moderate. The keyboard and palm rest remain relatively cool under load, which makes extended gaming sessions reasonably pleasant.

Stress test
Stress test
Top case surface temperatures under load (Optris PI 640)
Top case surface temperatures under load (Optris PI 640)
Bottom case surface temperatures under load (Optris PI 640)
Bottom case surface temperatures under load (Optris PI 640)

The situation is less rosy under the hood. After an hour of FurMark and Prime95 stress testing, the Core i9-8950HK had heated up to 99 °C, while the GTX 1080 had hit 85 °C. Fortunately, there is no thermal throttling under full load. Both chips are still making use of their turbo speeds after this time, but neither is operating at full power.

Max. Load
 37 °C
99 F
37 °C
99 F
47 °C
117 F
 
 34 °C
93 F
35 °C
95 F
44 °C
111 F
 
 27 °C
81 F
30 °C
86 F
28 °C
82 F
 
Maximum: 47 °C = 117 F
Average: 35.4 °C = 96 F
53 °C
127 F
36 °C
97 F
44 °C
111 F
50 °C
122 F
36 °C
97 F
42 °C
108 F
29 °C
84 F
26 °C
79 F
26 °C
79 F
Maximum: 53 °C = 127 F
Average: 38 °C = 100 F
Power Supply (max.)  49 °C = 120 F | Room Temperature 20 °C = 68 F | Voltcraft IR-900
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 35.4 °C / 96 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 47 °C / 117 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 53 °C / 127 F, compared to the average of 41.7 °C / 107 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 24.9 °C / 77 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(±) Playing The Witcher 3, the average temperature for the upper side is 35.9 °C / 97 F, compared to the device average of 32.9 °C / 91 F.
(+) The palmrests and touchpad are cooler than skin temperature with a maximum of 30 °C / 86 F and are therefore cool to the touch.
(±) The average temperature of the palmrest area of similar devices was 28.7 °C / 83.7 F (-1.3 °C / -2.3 F).
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Aorus X9 DT
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Asus G703
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Alienware 17 R4
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Heat
-2%
-13%
-5%
14%
-9%
Maximum Upper Side *
47
43
9%
55
-17%
44.2
6%
35.6
24%
49.6
-6%
Maximum Bottom *
53
55
-4%
54
-2%
43
19%
39
26%
56
-6%
Idle Upper Side *
26
27
-4%
29
-12%
32.4
-25%
24.2
7%
29.6
-14%
Idle Bottom *
27
29
-7%
32
-19%
32.8
-21%
27.4
-1%
29.2
-8%

* ... smaller is better

Speakers

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2043.442.52537.237.33130384035.538.45027.136.36327.338.38027.247.310028.253.212525.154.316022.464.220023.370.42502273.931520.676.740018.877.950019.372.363018.363.780017.866.9100018.371.8125017.681.2160017.184.4200017.285.9250017.183.7315017.179.5400017.272.7500017.180.663001779.4800017.177.11000017.170.71250017.2651600016.966.4SPL29.892.7N1.394.7median 17.6median 72.7Delta1.96.541.441.235.834.629.827.736.933.428.727.325.832.627.443.225.947.124.645.821.753.221.958.522.663.219.867.319.170.717.968.217.764.917.66417.964.817.465.517.165.517.168.117.468.117.46917.463.817.766.817.56217.552.417.452.817.552.817.254.129.8781.344.1median 17.6median 641.66.9hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseMSI GT75 8RG-090 TitanAorus X9 DT
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (94 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 9% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (8.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 6.8% higher than median
(±) | linearity of mids is average (8.5% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 5.5% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (8% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (12.7% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 21% of all tested devices in this class were better, 7% similar, 72% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 8% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 89% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Aorus X9 DT audio analysis

(±) | speaker loudness is average but good (78 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 9.3% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (9.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.5% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (3.9% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | reduced highs - on average 5.2% lower than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (7.4% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (12.5% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 19% of all tested devices in this class were better, 8% similar, 73% worse
» The best had a delta of 6%, average was 17%, worst was 37%
Compared to all devices tested
» 8% of all tested devices were better, 2% similar, 90% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Power Management

Power Consumption

By way of comparison, the GT75 consumes slightly more power than the Aorus X9 DT across most tests. The GT75’s relatively power consumption takes its toll on its twin power supplies. While the Aorus X9 DT uses a very powerful 330 W power supply, the GT75 8RG-090 Titan requires two 230 W power supplies, which weigh a combined 1.56 kg. Having to connect two power supplies frequently annoyed us during testing, what with having double the cabling and having to be near two free plug sockets.

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 1.8 / 2.2 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 31 / 35 / 45 Watt
Load midlight 130 / 374 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Aorus X9 DT
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Asus G703
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Alienware 17 R4
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop)
Power Consumption
7%
11%
17%
31%
9%
Idle Minimum *
31
28
10%
26
16%
27
13%
21.6
30%
37.5
-21%
Idle Average *
35
37
-6%
30
14%
32
9%
26.4
25%
37.6
-7%
Idle Maximum *
45
40
11%
37
18%
41
9%
26.6
41%
37.6
16%
Load Average *
130
109
16%
123
5%
102
22%
95.6
26%
122.4
6%
Load Maximum *
374
353
6%
341
9%
248
34%
199.6
47%
277.4
26%
Witcher 3 ultra *
268
256
4%
257
4%
221.7
17%
180.3
33%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

The GT75 has quite poor battery life in part because it does not support NVIDIA Optimus graphics switching. This means that the GTX 1080 is always active. Our review unit lasted just one hour under 3D load at maximum brightness and just under four hours idling at minimum brightness. This is unimpressive for a device released in 2018. By contrast, gaming notebooks that are designed for mobility, like the Gigabyte Aero 15X or the MSI GS65, have significantly better battery runtimes. As our video test demonstrates, in daily use you should expect to get just under three hours use from the GT75 before needing a recharge.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
3h 45min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
2h 54min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 03min
MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 75 Wh
Aorus X9 DT
8950HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 94.24 Wh
Asus G703
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 71 Wh
Acer Predator 17 X GX-792-76DL
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 88.8 Wh
HP Omen X 17-ap0xx
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 99 Wh
Alienware 17 R4
7820HK, GeForce GTX 1080 (Laptop), 99 Wh
Battery Runtime
17%
-14%
33%
71%
17%
Reader / Idle
225
252
12%
200
-11%
313
39%
348
55%
276
23%
H.264
174
143
-18%
204
17%
Load
63
77
22%
54
-14%
90
43%
117
86%
69
10%
WiFi v1.3
190
151
251
333
181

Verdict

Pros

+ mechanical keyboard with RGB lighting
+ many upgrade and maintenance options
+ a wealth of connectivity
+ fast 120 Hz panel
+ very high performance
+ practical manufacturer tools
+ good sound
+ NVMe SSDs
+ G-Sync

Cons

- high fan noise in 3D applications
- occasional coil whine at idle
- two power supplies needed for the i9-8950HK CPU
- the case is very thick and heavy
- short battery life
MSI GT75 8RG Titan, test device courtesy of MSI Deutschland.
MSI GT75 8RG Titan, test device courtesy of MSI Deutschland.

If you can get past its size and weight, then the MSI GT75 8RG is a high-quality, well equipped and incredibly powerful desktop replacement that is reminiscent of classic tower PCs. The GT75 has extensive maintenance and upgrade options and plenty of connections among other things.

Added to this, MSI integrates a lightning fast and colour accurate 120 Hz display and a decent sound system. The input devices are equally impressive. One of the GT75’s highlights is its mechanical keyboard; whose typing experience is streets ahead of the competition.

We cannot fully recommend the GT75 8RG though. As with its predecessor, the fan noise is a real sticking point. Although the 17-inch device is practically 6 cm thick, the fans are extremely loud under load. They are so loud that you will need to use a headset when gaming. The same is true for the Aorus X9 DT, but this device is only 3 cm thick. This comparable performance shows MSI’s cooling system to be somewhat lacking.

MSI GT75 8RG-090 Titan - 05/16/2018 v6
Florian Glaser

Chassis
79 / 98 → 81%
Keyboard
87%
Pointing Device
75%
Connectivity
71 / 81 → 87%
Weight
43 / 10-66 → 59%
Battery
67%
Display
88%
Games Performance
100%
Application Performance
100%
Temperature
85 / 95 → 90%
Noise
55 / 90 → 61%
Audio
84%
Average
78%
87%
Gaming - Weighted Average

Pricecompare

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > MSI GT75 8RG Titan (i9-8950HK, GTX 1080, Full-HD) Laptop Review
Florian Glaser, 2018-05-11 (Update: 2018-05-16)