game to the last key / Laptops and PCs

Many game lovers for various reasons try not to mess with gaming laptops. Someone frightens off the price, somebody has difficulty with the upgrade, and some – the fact that really powerful and truly gaming laptops capable of drawing modern games at high quality settings and in high resolution, while giving the user convenient controls and quality display, up to insulting a little. In all respects, from the processor and graphics adapter to the convenience of working with built-in input devices, the laptop almost always loses its desktop counterpart with a high-performance hardware base. Well, the difference in value between them helps to decide definitively with the choice. Naturally, not in favor of the laptop.

The new gaming laptop of the company MSI with the long name MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI can change the current situation. The manufacturer is modest about this, but this model seems to be not just one of the most productive mobile gaming machines, but literally the most productive one. In the GT80 2QE Titan SLI, one of the most high-performance modern mobile processors coexists with a pair of powerful NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M graphics cards combined in SLI mode, as well as with a full-sized keyboard SteelSeries with full Cherry MX mechanical switches – like desktop gaming keyboards. The manufacturer proudly declares that this is the first notebook in the history to have a mechanical keyboard with illumination.

The laptop comes in a large, but surprisingly thin box of black and red colors with a plastic carrying handle. The weight of the box is rather big, so it is not recommended to walk with it on foot for long distances. Inside, in addition to the device itself, an impressive set of accessories was found:

We will return to the accessories a little later, so now we only note that the package really pleases the eye, but the question of why in the box with one of the most expensive gaming laptops in the world there is no basic cover for transportation, it remains open. It's still a mobile PC, and MSI is just famous for not depriving most of its gaming models with a regular cover. In the case of the GT80 2QE Titan, this would be especially important, since it would not be easy to find a suitable bag for such a huge device.

* Average price according to "Yandex.Market" data at the time of writing

The laptop comes in several modifications, differing in the processor, as well as the amount of RAM and disk subsystem. We were tested for the option in the maximum configuration: it is based on a quad-core Intel Core i7-4980HQ processor, built on the Haswell architecture. It has 6 MB of cache memory and runs at a base clock speed of 2.8 GHz, increasing to 4 GHz with one active core or up to 3.8 GHz with four active cores in Turbo Boost mode.

This processor appeared only in the third quarter of last year, so laptops based on it are only just beginning to be sold. It would be wicked to call it the most productive mobile processor for today, after all the models of the Extreme series are still produced. For example, there is an Intel Core i7-4940MX with advanced overclocking capabilities, but it has almost 20% more TDP than the Intel Core i7-4980HQ, and is 57W compared to 47W, respectively. For a high-performance laptop, such a significant difference in times complicates an already difficult cooling system. The choice of the processor is more than justified, since it is comparable in its capabilities to desktop high-performance solutions.

The Intel Core i7-4980HQ processor works with a maximum of 32 GB of DDR3L-1600 memory. In this modification of the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI notebook these features are used 100 percent. All four SO-DIMM slots on the motherboard are occupied by the DDR3L-1600 HMT41GS6BFR8A-PB modules manufactured by the South Korean company Hynix Semiconductor of 8 GB each.

The basis of any gaming laptop – video adapter – in this case it is necessary to classify to the key features of the novelty. As a rule, this hardware component is a weak link in the mobile gaming PC, which does not allow to compare it fully with desktop solutions. But MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI will give a head start to its desktop brothers: it features the two most powerful NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M mobile graphics cards today, combined with SLI technology. These discrete cards are based on the GM204 chip, built on the Maxwell architecture, and operate at 1038 MHz. Each graphics card has 8 GB of GDDR5 memory with a frequency of 1253 MHz (effective frequency of 5 GHz). The notebook itself has three video outputs: one HDMI version 1.4 and a pair of Mini DisplayPort interface versions 1.2, to which three monitors with resolution up to 3840 × 2160 pixels can be connected simultaneously.

Also MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI can work and with built-in graphics Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200. This is one of the most productive embedded solutions today, based on the core GT3e and featuring the built-in memory Embedded DRAM (eDRAM) with a capacity of 128 MB. The eDRAM memory can be used to store data not only from the GPU core, but also from the CPU cores, which positively affects the processor performance. In the case of the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI, the only thing that is really important to know about the integrated graphics is that the laptop can switch to it – that is, it can work from the battery at least some noticeable time. Not all gaming laptop manufacturers leave the processor graphics active. The GPU button allows you to manually switch from one video adapter to another – in case the automatic switching for some reason did not work (and this happens on many laptops).

The second key feature of the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI (after two video cards in SLI mode) is its high-performance disk subsystem. Or rather, its two parts. The first is not noticeable – it's a 2.5-inch hard drive HGST Travelstar 7K1000 (HTS721010A9E630) produced by the company division Hitachi . It has the maximum capacity of 1 TB for the models of this line, a buffer memory of 32 MB and operates with an eSATA 6 Gb / s interface and a spindle speed of 7200 rpm. This disk is divided into two logical partitions, the bulk of which is empty, and 12.89 GB are given under the recovery partition.

Reading speed when testing in AIDA64: upper values ​​for HDD HGST Travelstar 7K1000, lower – for RAID 0 array of four SSDs Toshiba THNSNJ256G8NU.

 HDD HGST Travelstar 7K1000 performance when tested in HD Tune "width =" 400 "/> </a> </td>
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<td> <a href=  HDD RAID 0 performance from four SSDs Toshiba THNSNJ256G8NU when tested in HD Tune "width =" 400 "/> </a> </td>
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HDD HGST Travelstar 7K1000 performance when tested in HD Tune

Performance of HDD RAID 0 array of four SSDs Toshiba THNSNJ256G8NU when tested in HD Tune

If you plan to store various data on the hard disk, then a virtual disk is created for the system files and installed games on the basis of a RAID array assembled on four M.2 solid-state drives, which are Toshiba THNSNJ256G8NU modules with a capacity of 256 GB each . The array has its name MSI Super RAID 3, but in fact it is a usual RAID 0. For the user, this means an unsurpassed speed of working with data – about 1600 MB / s for reading and about 1300 MB / s for writing. Even among the owners of high-performance desktop gaming computers, there are a few lucky people who can boast of such performance values ​​of disk subsystems. To understand the performance level of such a RAID array, it's enough to say that the OS on this laptop is loaded in about four to five seconds.

The laptop is equipped with an optical drive Blu-Ray Hitachi-LG HL-DT-ST BD-RE BU20N and a reader for flash cards format SD (XC / HC). For the sound answer unremarkable module Realtek ALC892 and quite an interesting system with two pairs of stereo speakers and a subwoofer from the manufacturer of Hi-Fi-acoustics, the company Dynaudio, with which MSI has been cooperating for five years. In addition, the notebook has three independent sound amplifiers for four speakers, a subwoofer and a linear audio output. The latter can be connected headphones with an impedance of up to 48 ohms. In addition to the analog audio output, the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI also has a digital optical S / P-DIF output, as well as a microphone jack.

The network interfaces are represented by a gigabit Ethernet controller and a Wi-Fi 802.11 b / g / n module. Also on the motherboard is a PCI-E-controller Killer e2200, which combines wired and wireless interfaces with Killer DoubleShot Pro technology, which can significantly increase the overall network bandwidth. Complement the picture of a set of USB ports of five, and all of them have a specification 3.0.

The rechargeable battery is built into the case. Its capacity is 75 W * h (5225 mAh, 14.4 V). To charge the battery, as well as to operate the laptop from the network, a power adapter of really impressive dimensions and weight is used: 200 × 100 × 43 mm, 1.3 kg. The adapter has an equally impressive output power – 330 W (16.9 A, 19.5 V), comparable to the power supplies of desktop PCs.

# Design and ergonomics

Developers MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI managed to pack all high-performance hardware stuffing, including a rather large cooling system, in a relatively thin case. At the same time, there was room for designer delights, which are quite enough for the novelty. Traditionally for a serious gaming laptop, this model is executed in a characteristic brutal style. The case with all its ribs of rigidity and cooling ventilation grilles suggests something like a sports car, or something about a spaceship. In short, it immediately sets the user to the game mode.

The main body elements are made of dark gray plastic, and only the upper part of the lid and the inner panel above the keyboard are made of metal, painted also in a dark gray color. At the same time on the cover flaunts branded red logo with a white, glow when working with a dragon – the hallmark of the game series of MSI notebooks. The lid is fastened on one large loop slightly offset from the back lateral face to the center. No locks are provided, but it is adjacent to the body very tightly, with a minimum (taking into account the scale of the device) gap.

 Ventilation grilles in the lower part of the shell "height =" 343 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
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Ventilation grilles in the lower part of the hull

The laptop turned out to be easier than it seems. When you take it in your hands, you strain and prepare to apply a sufficiently large effort, which in fact is superfluous, since the mass of the device is much less than expected. Its misinforming role in this is played by those numerous reinforcement ribs and ventilation grilles of a highly developed cooling system, which give this model solidity. The latter are located on the sides, behind and at the bottom of the shell.

 Feet "height =" 362 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
<p> The case of the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI has a traditionally narrowing to the front edge of the form for more comfortable working with the keyboard, but in spite of this, the distance from the table surface on which the laptop is located during operation to the top edge of the front edge in the open the state is large enough. In its formation, even rather tall triangular legs, located along the perimeter of the lower surface of the body, took part. The wrist lining in the delivery set is just designed to compensate for this difference and ensure proper comfort when working. </p>
<div align=  Front panel indicators "height =" 346 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
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Indicators of the front panel

The front panel of the laptop carries three LED indicators informing the user about the operation of the wireless adapter, the power mode and the activity of the data storage system.

 Left side view "height =" 335 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
<div align=  The right view "height =" 333 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
<p> On the left side face, closer to the user, are all audio connectors, three USB 3.0 ports, a flash card reader and a Kensington security lock slot, and an optical drive is directly built under the notebook cover. The starboard side is almost empty – only a couple of USB 3.0 ports are located here. </p>
<div align=  Back view "height =" 303 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
<p> But on the back edge of the laptop are those interfaces that do not require frequent access for connecting and disconnecting various devices. It's about three video outputs, a network connector RJ-45 and a block four-pin plug for connecting the power adapter. </p>
<h2 class= # Interior and input devices
 MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI in the expanded state "height =" 590 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
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MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI in the open state

In the expanded form, the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI is not less interesting . The cover of this model opens quite widely, but not completely, but at an angle of about 135 degrees, which is more than enough for comfortable work both at the table and with a laptop on your lap. In this case, the stroke at the lid is rather tight, and it itself is slightly bent, if you take it not in the center, but with the edge. The display has a wide enough frame around the perimeter, and above it is a webcam with a pair of microphones. This is all the usual in the design of MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI ends.

 Location of controls "height =" 248 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
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Location of controls

Unusual for any laptop mechanical keyboard SteelSeries in this model is also very unusual located – not in the center and closer to the hinges of the lid, like other mobile PCs, and as far as possible to the left and the user. This is done in order to provide the greatest comfort when working, because the case of the laptop is quite high, and even with a wristlet touching the keys located far from the edge, it is not very convenient. The asymmetrical arrangement of the keyboard minimizes this problem.

 Touchpad "height =" 565 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
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The touch panel

The reverse side of the coin with this arrangement is an unusual placement of the touch panel, which, with the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI, along with the buttons that emulate the main mouse buttons, moved from the central place under the keyboard to the side. As a result, using the touch panel of this laptop is not nearly as convenient as the same input device for other models. However, frustrating is hardly worth it, because the touch panel for a gaming laptop is just an additional input device. Without a mouse, you can not use this PC anyway. But the touch panel of the MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI is not simple. Another original solution of MSI designers is that pressing one (touch) key instantly turns the panel into a digital block that complements the main keyboard.

Above the keyboard and touchpad extends a huge, almost empty metal space, occupied only by a barely perceptible perforation behind which the built-in speakers hide, and a small triangular block of additional keys. The biggest button in this box controls the power, the middle switches between the modes of operation with the built-in or discrete graphics adapter, and by clicking on the smallest button, you can, in the truest sense of the word, make a lot of noise – to force the cooling system to work at maximum speed.

 The design of the keys Cherry MX Brown "height =" 365 "width =" 600 "/> </a></p>
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The design of the keys Cherry MX Brown

For the sweet, we left the description of the SteelSeries keyboard as one of the main features of this model. It has plastic keys with the usual high profile for desktop analogues, under which mechanical switches Cherry MX type Brown are hidden. «Коричневая» серия известных любому геймеру клавиш отличается от чисто игровых серий Black и Red тем, что представляет собой некий компромисс между обычными клавишами для набора текста и чисто игровыми. Эти клавиши не имеют характерного клика при нажатии и характеризуются достаточно длинным ходом.

Подушечка под запястья" height="379" width="600"/></a></p>
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Подушечка под запястья

Несмотря на универсальность «по паспорту», на деле печатать тексты на такой клавиатуре неудобно. Зато играть, используя любую из имеющихся клавиш, можно с комфортом настольной клавиатуры. Единственным недостатком является высота, на которой клавиатура расположена. Но, во-первых, производитель постарался максимально — насколько это вообще возможно — опустить подложку с клавиатурой внутрь корпуса, уменьшив таким образом высоту верхней кромки клавиш на несколько миллиметров. Ну а во-вторых, как уже было сказано ранее, в комплекте поставки с MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI есть специальная подушечка под запястья, компенсирующая этот недостаток. Подушечка достаточно плотная, но прогибается под тяжестью рук. Внутри, по всей видимости, она имеет гелевый наполнитель, а снаружи покрыта прочным тканым материалом, приятным на ощупь. Скольжению по столу противодействует основа, выполненная из силикона или какого-то мягкого пластика.

Раскладка клавиш" height="172" width="600"/></a></p>
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Раскладка клавиш

Раскладка клавиатуры не мобильная, а такая, как у настольных моделей, с той лишь разницей, что клавиша [Win] перенесена с левой стороны на правую. Сделано это в угоду нуждам игроков, которые, используя стандартные для большинства игр клавиши управления [W][A][S] и [D]не рискуют случайно выйти из игры, задев [Win] ладонью или запястьем. Впрочем, эту клавишу можно отключить и программным способом с помощью ПО из комплекта поставки. Все клавиши у клавиатуры пластиковые, но указанную выше игровую четвёрку и примкнувшую к ним клавишу [Esc] можно заменить металлическими из комплекта поставки.

Набор сменных игровых клавиш" height="449" width="600"/></a></div>
<p>Дополнительные сменные клавиши поставляются в металлической коробке вместе с пластиковым ключом для монтажа и демонтажа. Клавиши вряд ли можно назвать более удобными, чем обычные пластиковые, но внешний вид ноутбука они делают еще более ярким. Исключительно по субъективному ощущению, вместо золотистого цвета клавиш в данном случае куда гармоничнее бы смотрелся красный цвет, сочетающийся со вставками корпуса. Впрочем, на скорость это, как говорится, не влияет.</p>
<div align=
Подсветка" height="334" width="600"/></a></p>
<p>Весь блок с клавиатурой и сенсорной панелью имеет регулируемую подсветку красного цвета. Регулировка осуществляется аппаратно, курсорными клавишами с предварительно нажатой функциональной клавишей [Fn]. Подсветка имеет три уровня яркости, а также может быть отключена полностью.</p>
<h2 class=#Внутреннее строение
Под быстросъёмной панелью" height="375" width="600"/></a></p>
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Под быстросъёмной панелью

Как-либо улучшить и без того максимально возможные характеристики MSI GT80 2QE Titan SLI крайне затруднительно. Разве что заменить жёсткий диск более ёмким, если возникнет такая необходимость. Тем не менее добраться до основных съёмных компонентов этого ноутбука проще, чем в других моделях. Для этого требуется лишь открутить два винта в нижней части корпуса, а затем открыть крышку ноутбука и сдвинуть металлическую панель над клавиатурой вправо. При этом для доступа откроются два из четырёх слотов с модулями памяти, жёсткий диск, SSD-модули и — вместе со всеми этими съёмными составляющими — четыре несъёмных динамика.

Внутреннее строение" height="290" width="600"/></a></p>
<div class=

Внутреннее строение

Система охлаждения" height="432" width="600"/></a></p>
<div class=

Система охлаждения

Сняв нижнюю пластиковую панель корпуса, пользователь получает доступ только к оставшимся двум слотам оперативной памяти. Все остальные доступные снизу компоненты несъёмные. Впрочем, если когда-то понадобится проводить чистку системы охлаждения, то лезть придётся именно сюда. В целом нужно отметить, что собран ноутбук очень плотно. Несмотря на крупные габариты корпуса, свободного пространства внутри нет совсем. Ну а по поводу самой сборки нет ни малейших нареканий — ничего не болтается, не шатается и не скрипит.

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