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MSI - 15.6" Gaming  Laptop - Intel Core i7 - 16GB Memory - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 - 512GB Solid State Drive - Matte Black With Gold Diamond Cut-Angle_Standard

Customer rating

Rating 4.8 out of 5 stars with 1946 reviews

98%
would recommend to a friend

Expert rating

Rating 4.2 out of 5 stars with 11 reviews

Pros

Cons

Customer ratings & reviews

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  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Laptop, Very Few Compromises

    Posted
    Jacob

    Firstly, the laptop has a great finish quality on it and is constructed of high grade materials. It does pick up some fingerprints, but cleans off very easily. There are not many places for dust to be lodged in, and it fits perfectly into my 15" Thule case from Best buy as well. The hinge is thin, but sturdy, and the screen does not annoyingly bob up and down. The speakers are reasonably loud, and are located at the bottom corners. Due to being placed much closer to you, they do a good job at conveying surround sound combined with the high quality of the laptops sound management systems. However, they could be louder, and they are muffled when placed on a soft surface. This is not a deal breaker for me though, as they are leagues above any other thin-and-light form factor laptop. Cooling: The laptop has extremely well designed cooling fans, and in regular use or browing on chrome, they seem not to even be on. The design which expels air out of the sides and back while intaking from the bottom and top works very well, and they are still at barely a whisper while playing games like Assasin's Creed Origins, Battlefield 3, Grand Theft Auto, etc; something I could not say about my Razer Blade 14. Although I havent needed to use this feature, the fans can be manually controlled in MSI's included Dragon Center and they do a fantastic job under harsh rendering loads (I used Adobe Premiere Cs6 to render a 4k Video). -Unfortunately, the bottom of the laptop does get very hot, but that is unavoidable in this form factor. a simple solution is to place one thin object between your lap and the computer if you are gaming on it. Keyboard Quality: No complaints. The layout is slightly different from other computers I have worked on such as a MacBook Pro or a Razer Blade, but I learned the new layout quickly as it is very intuitive. The volume and brightness controls are quickly toggles to the directional keypad with the fn button, making on-the-fly adjustments while gaming or working in a fullscreen program very fluid. Keyboard Lighting: The Steelseries Keyboard is very easy to type on, no mushy, not too loud, and has Per-Key RGB. This was one feature I loved from my Razer Blade, but I believe this keyboard does it better. You can program as many macro's to change the keyboard as you want, write your own lighting setups, use preloads, or even download pre-made layouts for your most used programs. My favorite was setting the keyboard to burn in orange and red while playing DOOM. Support and setup are very easy as the client comes pre-installed. Monitor/LCD: The panel did not live up to all of my wildest dreams, but if you give it a chance you can appreciate the 144hz display. It is extremely bright, has a quality finish on it, and looks stunningly smooth on the games that are optimized to run on it. However, I do wish the contrast ratio was better, and a 7ms response time, while amazing for a laptop, is not incredibly better than most monitors. Ports: One of the main reasons I got this laptop was because of all of the port offerings it had while still being extraordinarily thin. It packs a full size ethernet port, allowing you to truly experience low-latency gaming or high dowload speeds. I had no problem with my 300mb/s home network. --USB-C works amazingly, and can support multiple other devices and monitors through one port. --Audio connectors are high quality, sturdy, and dont seem like they would break anytime soon. They are not recessed into the body so you do not have to worry about them getting gunk in them or becoming misaligned. --Three USB 3.1 gen 2 ports are more than enough for me. If you're plugging more than that in... well, you can always extend them with a USB-C dock. They are sturdy and hold plugs with no wobble. --Inclusion of a full-size HDMI is much appreciated, however I will not be using mine unless I have to. It seems very study, but I recommend you try to use the more durable display ports and usb-c ports as breaking the HDMI port can be very hard to repair. Nonetheless, it is very nice to have and so long as you dont put stress on the connector or use low-grade cables, it should last the lifetime of the device. Next, Performance. Battery life is OK. Nothing exceptional unless in battery saver mode, but for a gaming laptop, it is crazy. Turn down the brightness and hit power saver, and you can go a good 8 hours, give or take 2 depending on if you are just writing documents, or doing more intensive tasks like streaming 1080p video. Still, you wont feel absolutely tethered constantly. The small power adapter is pretty easy to throw in a backpack, but I did like my Razer Blade 14's smaller adapter. That being said, for the extra couple of inches you get an extra 20 watts of power, and that is worth it when you are gaming. The i7 6-core processor is a beast. I mean, crazy. It doesnt choke on anything. It is like having a desktop everywhere you go, and multiple processes at once is a breeze. The flexibility of having a low base clock and a high turbo speed mean it works very well regardless of the task at hand. Paired to the gtx 1070, this laptop really lets you push the limits, and it is nearly neck-and-neck with the 1080 laptops. Although I cant include everything in this review, the last peice I would like to add is about UPGRADABILITY. A very touchy, hit-or-miss subject for some consumers. If you are like me, you want to know the laptop is going to be able to keep up with the competition for at least a few years down the road. I was extremely happy to see that there is not only one, but two m.2 slots on the bottom, so you can always upgrade the storage if you want. The ram slots, of which there are two, while not easy to get to, can be upgraded. Unfortunately, I believe you may only go up to 32gb of ram, but I barely ever use all 16. In terms of future proofing though, not many other computers can do better, and for the form factor, nobody beats this. As a side note, all of the swappable components other than the wifi card will require you to take out the motherboard and flip it over. It is a simple enough laptop that it can be done by most gamers with care, but it is no job to be rushed (you could break fragile connectors) so hiring a certified technician may be a good avenue for more entry level users. In conclusion: This is a solid machine, a beast that dosnt draw too much attention, but puts full size towers to shame with little difficulty. It is built well, designed with the user in mind, and works as intended. MSI did a great job, and the price is unbeatable for the power and new technology you are getting.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    A solid laptop..... so far.

    Posted
    ivandrago

    This is the second one of this same laptop. I purchased the first one from a local Best Buy, but upon turning it on I found the backlighting to be too irregular. I have a big issue with that, but not everybody will notice and/or care about it. Because of backlighting tech, there's no actual black, but illuminated grey. That's the state of the technology, I suppose. I/you just have to accept that. The keyboard is the best that I've ever used on a laptop. It's a pleasure to type on it. It's just the right amount of clicky without being loud enough for others to hear you typing. The multicolor keyboard backlighting is solid, but the secondary keys are just painted on, which was disappointing. It makes no sense that they wouldn't have just gone the tiny extra step. The Razor line does the same thing. The sound leaves much to desire over my last laptop which had great sound (HP Envy 17 3D 2010). This one has a tinny weak sound that can barely be heard over light coffeehouse chatter and music. The sound from the headphone jack is very solid though with no noticeable line noise while plugged in but so far I can't find options to tweak the sound profile for my various headphones. I haven't had a chance to really test the performance, but most of the professional reviews put this near the top amongst laptops with this form factor. The fans have only kicked up a few times since I've used it and they're a little loud, but not the loudest I've ever heard. There's a small amount of fan whine while the laptop is running, but nothing that's wildly distracting. This laptop has a mother and gpu facing up, so installations of ram and storage will take a bit more finesse to accomplish. In the end, this setup will probably extend the life of the laptop. The vent game is on point for something this slim. The port selection is reasonable. It's got everything most people will need..... except for a dang SD card port. Dongle city, here I come. At least I won't need one for connecting to ethernet, unlike Apple or Razor laptops. Both of which don't have an SD port either. The build quality is fair, but not great. The build quality of both Razor and Apple laptops is better than this one, but it's a trade-off. This laptop would more than likely be $400 more expensive and would have heat dissipation problems. I'd rather have a cheaper frame than have the fans blasting under medium load (Razor) or CPU/GPU throttling (Apple). There's a small bit of frame flex when my palms are on the wrist rest that causing a tiny bit of plastic creak. I'll correct it when I install more ram and storage though. In summary, I have a good feeling that this laptop will serve me well for the next few years. Time will tell. If it blows up next week, you'll be the first to know after I get out of the burn clinic. ;)

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great

    Posted
    Ryan

    I am a college student who is hardly home, either spending long hours on college campus or at work. Most of my weekends are spent at my family's house, girlfriend's house, or visiting friends. Got this to replace my dell xps 13 for work/college and gaming desktop I built 7 years ago. Gets the job done in luxury. This laptop is great for all those needs. Pros: 1. looks great, feels great, runs fast, size/weight is perfect for a mobile work/gaming life, no performance issues, MSI branding is awesome. 2. MSI programs are not as cumbersome as people made them out to be; I find their utility beneficial and quite simple to operate. 3. Battery life is better than most gaming laptops I am aware of. Cons: 1. Battery life still leaves something to be desired. 1-2 hours with gaming (myself and most do not game while unplugged anyways). 3-5 hours depending on settings. For 2 consecutive college courses (4 hours), this barely makes the cut. Does not compare to my old dell xps 13, which gets 5-6 hours. Plan for outlets if you are planning to work remotely. You can't treat this like a dell xps 13 or macbook air/pro, even if it a $2000 laptop. 2. Heat. Not as bad as people made it out to be but still hot. This is a fair trade off to me for the slimness and weight. Runs hot while gaming but manageable, though I do not game for more than 2-4 hours consecutively. I don't know how this laptop would tolerate say 10-12 hours of consecutive gaming. Still, would not recommend using on your lap for more than 30 minutes. 3. Expensive... this is the audi and BMW of laptops. You are paying for the brand. I like the MSI brand, so this was fine for me. 4. MSI has a history of poor customer support with repairs being expensive, again the Audi and BMW of laptops. 5. Steelseries (LED keyboard) interface. Attempting to customize the LED patterns on the keyboard is more stressful than navigating my internship in neurosurgery. I just use the default patterns. Summary: Great replacement for gaming desktop and school/work laptop for someone that is constantly out and about. In terms of work/professional laptop, cannot rival macbooks or Dell XPS series, though I was aware of this prior to purchase.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Good but has driver issues

    Posted
    JoshO

    The thing that most attracted me about this laptop was the looks. I really like the black with gold trim. And the components under the hood was very respectable. I'm glad that the thin & light, sleeper gaming machine is the current trend. This laptop replaces my 4 year old, full sized gaming rig. I am upgrading from 4th gen i5-4670k to 8th gen i7-8750H and GTX 760 to GTX 1070MQ. As far as the processing power goes, I can't tell the difference as I don't normally use CPU intensive applications. However the graphics performance was definitely noticeable. This laptop can run The Witcher 3 on Ultra settings and maintaining 60fps without a problem. My old machine was struggling to keep up 30fps on medium settings. The display looks beautiful. I have never seen a 144hz screen on a laptop until now. When I went back to my old monitor for comparison, it was very noticeable. I never realized how choppy my mouse looked in 60hz monitors. There are some minor light bleed on the top and bottom right corners of my screen but it's only noticeable if I'm staring at a completely black screen. The keyboard feels a bit mushy. I wish there was a bit more feedback when you pressed down on the key but I haven't had any issues so far with the keys not registering. Plus, when I'm at home, I'll most likely dock the laptop on a cooler and use a separate monitor and keyboard for daily use. I like the back lit lights and all of its configurations. It comes with a gold color profile that matches the gold trim on the chassis pretty well. I would have given it a 5 star rating if it weren't for some issues out of the box. Updating the drivers is the first thing I do whenever I get a new computer and I encountered problems during the updates. The main offender was the audio driver. When I was installing the Realtek audio drivers (obtained from MSI website), it went into an infinite loop of the audio drivers uninstalling and rebooting. If it worked correctly, it's supposed to Uninstall old drivers > Reboot > Install new drivers. I had to research what the heck was going on and it turns out WIndows 10 will cut in during middle of this process and will install a version of the drivers from windows update and for some reason the Realtek driver keeps thinking that it needs to uninstall this driver and hence the infinite loop. I had to google "how to stop windows 10 from automatically updating drivers" and I had to do some registry editing and prayed for rain. I was able to eventually install it through some trial and error. I'm worried that all of this is going to go out of wack on the next windows update. I'm docking 1 star for the trauma I had to go through. Out of the box, this laptop gets extremely hot when in middle of gaming. I guess it's one of the trade offs of having such a small footprint. I was seeing CPU temperatures of 90C while gaming. GPU was a bit lower at 80C. There is an included MSI software to control fan speeds (Dragon Center). By default, Dragon Center doesn't ramp up the fans high enough. Knowing that I'll have this high of a temperature for prolonged period of time was concerning. I haven't repasted the laptop with new thermal compound because repasting with this laptop is a bit involved with its flipped motherboard. The flipped motherboard will also make things difficult when accessing the upgradable ram slots and the extra nvme for a 2nd SSD. Having the available upgrade slot is nice though. BTW, this version of GS65 (GS65 STEALTH THIN-037) has a slower SATA SSD instead of nvme. I'll probably consider upgrading when nvme SSD prices come down. Speaking of things that don't come with this version of GS65, the Killer N1550 ac wifi is replaced with Intel 9560 ac. The Intel wifi card was giving me over 200Mbps download speed on 5Ghz (which is my home internet speed) and the router is on the other side of the house (over 30ft) so no complaints here. Not sure if it's a good comparison but, my Nintendo switch was getting 50Mbps from the same distance. Overall I'm happy with the GS65 and if you can overcome the difficulty with the audio drivers, you have a very solid laptop with good looks and great gaming.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Portable and Powerful

    Posted
    ajen1

    Bought this laptop at the $1999 price and was able to use the $100 student discount offered at the time and for that price minus tax this is IMO a very capable and good looking laptop. One thing to note about the Best Buy model from what I've read is that it uses a SATA SSD instead of NVMe and an Intel Wifi card instead of a Killer card which gives it the lower price than other retailers. Not an issue for me but may matter to some. Build Quality: This was probably the one thing I was suspect about given a lot of reviews I've seen/read. It's an all metal outer chassis with some plastic bits (screen hinge/rear exhaust panel). In two separate best buy's the palm area creaked when pressed on which I've read from some owners is a somewhat common problem. Lucky for me I've had none on my model. There is some flex to the display and the area above the keyboard by the power button. Overall I'm pleased with the build quality but don't expect macbook pro or razer unibody type sturdiness/feel. It is very light and considering how much power its packing makes it even more amazing. Display: 1080p 144hz screen. Matte finish so less light reflections. MSI advertises it as "IPS level" on their website but viewing angles are good, and has good color reproduction on the rgb and adobe rgb spectrums. Gaming on it has been excellent especially when hitting those 100+ fps. I plan on using this for photo editing and some light video editing on the go. Keyboard/Trackpad: Decent key travel/feel. The key caps feel like they're metal as well and they have individually lit RGB that you can customize. No number pad but it's nice to have your hands centered when typing. Track pad is just okay. Tracking is adequate but I've had times where it right clicks when I don't intend to. Speakers: Bottom firing. They get decently loud and sound is good for basic use. This is assuming you're gonna use headphones for gaming. Performance: This thing is will handle any basic tasks you throw at it (Internet browsing, Youtube, Word processing). Overall use through out the UI is snappy and responsive. With the 144hz refresh rate Windows animations look so smooth, even just moving the mouse pointer around. Can play pretty much any AAA gaming titles out with the hardware enclosed. Played some Far Cry 5 and No Man's Sky and It's been a blast. Smooth stable performance. Fan noise is noticeable during gameplay but not too loud IMO. The areas above the keyboard do get warm. Misc: - Like many of said this is a fingerprint magnet! Beautiful when clean but any sort of oils from your hands will smear on the outside. - Port selection is good. One thing I wish it had was a full size SD card slot especially since gaming laptops make very good photo/video editing machines. - Front facing camera on the top bezel so no booger view. Quality is meh but not something I care about. There's even a dedicated button to disable the camera on the hardware level. Windows doesn't recognize the camera unless activated on. - Battery life. Been mainly using this at home and I've mainly used this at places I can plug in so can't comment at the moment.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Look & Specs - Bad Thermals & Build Qualit

    Posted
    Sicrashdummie

    Don't get me wrong. This notebook is beautiful. I picked it over the Gigabyte Aero 15X, Alienware Anything, Razer Anything, Asus Zephyrus, and so on. This market is getting insane, but there are many flaws in every design. Whether it thermals, build quality, compatibility, lack of peripherals, screen selection, and so on. Pros - -Great Specs at the average price point for this type of machine -Display - 144Hz IPS- 15 inch monitor in a 14 inch chassis - Looks amazing and is taken advantage of with the 1070 Max Q. Not to mention, there is almost no bezel at roughly 4mm. -The camera is at the top of the display. No creepy late 1990s AOL video chat action. Other companies have opted to put the camera at the bottom, but I would rather not have one if you have to do that. -Keyboard is responsive and the size is right, plus RGB. It actually helps people like myself who like to set the keys to indicate certain areas of the keyboard. It helps with casting skills and so on. -Super Light -Sophisticated build with no silly external RGB lights or logos. -Looks like an Ultrabook or MacBook Pro -The touch pad is nice and smooth. -The MSI software seems nice and bug free. There does seem to be overlap between different programs, but that is to be expected in this day and age of competitive simplicity. -No number pad, so my hands can sit nice and center on the laptop while typing. Cons- -Great Specs, but apparently MSI used thee worst thermal paste ever, the Gigabyte Aero 15X is coming 15-20C lower with the stock configuration. Apparently the only fix is to change the thermal paste to a liquid metal composition, but you can throw the standard warranty of 24 months in the trash with the tube. The reviews showing this mod, bring the temperature down 20C and the performance on stress tests up around 20%. -1070 MAX Q is a down-clocked version of the 1070, but the thermals would be melting this thing with a full on 1070 -Display - flimsy with light bleed that is noticeable in darker rooms. It is to be expected with how thin the screen is. Watch out when carrying this baby, apply too much pressure and I can easily see why this display would warp or crack. By too much, I mean the pressure that a normal person would apply to a laptop that weighs more than the four pounds this bad boy weighs. -The camera is 720p and nothing to write home about. -The keyboard does flex a bit and the software is not the Steelseries software will puzzle some purchasers. -Super light, but super fragile. You need to pick one up and open it a few times to really see what I mean. -The touch pad too responsive or swipes, but the actually clicks on the bottom require too much pressure for an average user. -No number pad. I like this, but some might complain if they are buying this laptop for productivity and not just gaming. -The ventilation pattern used is kind of dated looking and the top area around the power button is too flexible and honestly too big. -MSI does load it with bloatware, but you can delete most of it and you will want to keep quite a bit of it. Overall- I would definitely recommend the GS65 Stealth Thin 8RF-037 to anyone looking for the best all around gaming Ultrabook. It is like a Microsoft Surface, MacBook Pro, and Real Alienware (RIP) wrapped into one. It is a bit pricey, but the display itself, destroys the competition. It is sleek and sophisticated, unlike some competitors who are too scared to move toward portability instead of durability. Nobody buys a exotic car because it is durable, but they know how to take care of it, and respect it. That said. I respect the build of this notebook, which is going to be hard for many gamers to say the same. Of course it's not super durable; it weighs 4 pounds with a 14 inch chassis and 15 inch screen. You won't be disappointed unless something is wrong with the one you purchase, so check it out carefully. Overall - 9/10

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Excellent Laptop with Minor Issues

    Posted
    SteveK

    First, I would give this 4.5 stars if I could. This is not a perfect 5/5 laptop, but better than a 4/5 one. I'm a college professor who plays games. I'm going to be using this mostly for work/school but don't want to be throttled when I am playing games. I also do some light video editing and other graphic design stuff. Pros: - Very fast processor and great graphics performance - The screen is amazing! I'm more impressed with 144 hz than I thought I would be. - The keyboard is very pleasant to type on and the changing colors are cool - The laptop just looks great and has a very nice profile - Light and easily portable Cons: - The build quality leaves much to be desired. I had to immediately return the first unit I purchased because the bottom panel was screwed on too tight in the front-center just under the touchpad. It warped the profile of the laptop and was causing issues with the touchpad. It also cause a very loud cracking sound where the plastic pieces were rubbing against one another. It was immediately apparent as I was taking the laptop out of the box. I returned the unit and do have one that is much better; however, there is still some of the same cracking noise between the plastic pieces. Even now as I'm typing, as I slightly lift my hands up to type there is creaking noises. I am probably going to try and tighten or loosen the screws. Maybe even take off the bottom panel and see if there is something else I can do to lessen this problem. Ultimately, this is unacceptable for a $2,000 laptop. I was looking at the HP Spectre x360 before and those are built rock solid. If I was looking only at build quality, I would return this immediately, go for the HP and get $500 back. But I would lose some power, which is why I am not doing that. Maybe Con: Speakers aren't the best but I'll rarely use them so it doesn't matter much to me. Bottom Line: Check your laptop before you leave the parking lot to make sure that it was properly manufactured. Best Buy did handle the exchange for a new one very well; it was only a minor inconvenience. If you do find the build quality to be acceptable, then this is a wonderfully fantastic laptop that otherwise exceeded my expectations. My wife says it looks like a lamborghini...

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Stunning deal of a laptop for the price

    Posted
    FernandoLy

    I have had the laptop for a week now. And I must tell you, I'm very impressed by it. First thing is the bettery life, for one charge I can browsing web, doing Office work and playing Youtube videos at 30% volume and half brightness. I get around 7-8 hours of continuous use (minded that I undervolted the CPU to 150mV), that's almost tripled when compared to my old Acer Aspire E15. Second thing, the performance. It blazes through every games I tested. Ghost Recon at high setting 75-85 fps, Fortnite 120+ fps at high, Far Cry 5 80-100 fps at High,.. it was such an enjoyable gaming experience for me personally. The heat is manageable between 75-85 degree C, and the surface is cool at palm resting area but it gets hotter when closer to the vent on each sides of the machine. The SSD comes in the laptop is a SANDISK SATA SSD, for everyday use it works just fine, the read/write speed is average for a SATA SSD which is still blazing fast when compared to HDDs. But for me 512GB is a small amount of storage so I will add a 512GB Samsung 970 EVO along the way. Which leads to upgradeability I think it's hard to get inside and upgrade the RAM and also the SSD for the first time, non-techy user, but for the experienced ones, I think it's not impossible. Third thing is the design language. I tell you, it looks gorgeous in person with all the gold accent and stealthy (like its name) brushed aluminium finish. It's very lightweight at just 1.8kg and the thinness is only under 2cm, so carrying it around is a blessing when compared to my old not-too-bulky Acer Aspire E15. The downsides are it's a fingerprint magnet itself, you need to carry a microfiber cloth with you at all time if you want to keep it shine and clean, another thing to note that there are a little squeaky noise when press down hard at the right palm rest area, noted that this only happens when you press down really hard which is not the normal usage case scenario. Overall, I think it is a steal for around $2000 price point, great specs come with exceptional performance, long battery life for a day work and beautiful, sleek design. The downsides are mediocre build quality for a $2000 laptop (which is unbeatable for the specs) and there are some small bugs here and there along the way such as the RGB light not working as intended (need some tweaking in Steelseries Engine 3) and the NVidia Optimus isn't switching the graphic card at the right time ( can be configured manually in the settings). Hands down the best laptop design and specs wise for the $2000 price range.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Powerful Laptop but Runs Hot

    Posted
    ZapC
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Member

    Title says it all. The new 6 core coffeelake CPUs are very nice and the 1070 mq edition is not too far off from my AIO cooled GTX 1080 in my desktop. The new design's screen is a delight to use because of its small bezels. Comparing this screen to my Macbook Pro 15 2014 screen and also my Dell S2417DG, its color accuracy is better than that of the Dell's but Dell's 24 incher beats it with GSYNC support and higher resolution. The MBP's resolution is also higher albeit with much lower refresh rate. However, the screen on the GS65 does overall feel pretty nice to use. Do note that this Best Buy model use a m.2 SATA drive and not an NVMe drive. This is a non issue however, as the laptop is upgradable (there are 2 m.2 slots and both support NVMe though only 1 supports SATA). So you can put in an aftermarket SSD. The RAM is also upgradable, though it seems like mine is 16 GB in 2x 8 GB sticks at 2666 MHz. So keep that in mind if you are wanting to upgrade to 32 GB. With RAM prices finally dropping however, this might be a good option if you are using this for more than gaming and light computational work. Just note that the disassembly process is not great, especially with the motherboard being backwards; RAM and SSD access is on the side of the motherboard from where you open it so be careful! The keyboard feels decently nice to type on. The less travel design does not bother me at all and the keyboard feels almost as comfortable to use as my MBP's (before the scissor switch mess in the newer models). Obviously, this is not as nice as a mechanical keyboard but that is expected. Some users have noted keyboard flex but I have not noticed any on mine. Not having a numpad is ok for me as I'm already used to it from the MBP. The trackpad is again decent to use compared to some other laptops. There are no physical buttons (I'm ok with this coming from a MBP). Gestures work great and it is a responsive trackpad. Again, quality is almost on par with MBP’s amazing trackpad. I have no flex in my wrist rests like other users have noted. On to why this laptop has 4 stars instead of 5. The default fan curve in MSI dragon center is simply not enough for gaming. First off, GPU fans do not spin up when your computer is not using the GPU. I have changed that so that it is at 30% even with the iGPU in use. I also changed the fan curve so that it goes up to around 130-140%. Even with these fan curves and a 170 mV undervolt and 500 MHz underclock using throttle stop, the laptop consistently reached 80 C on the CPU while playing Battlefield 1 and PUBG. The fans are loud when they ramp up and go even through headphones. The GPU was fine at around 70 C. Overall however, the laptop is pretty nice to use.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Solid Gaming Purchase

    Posted
    Rockets

    Let me say this upfront; I am a bit of a tech geek. Unboxing this laptop was an exciting event for me. This IS a beautiful machine. The design aesthetic of this laptop is very subtle. It has an all black aluminum constructed body with clean lines. There are no aggressive cuts or angles like you see on many gaming laptops. This simpler design ethos appeals to me, but I'm not judging (you do you; everyone has their preference). If you like or want something that stands out then this laptop may not be for you. The all black casing has only the MSI dragon logo on the lid and some very nice gold accenting. It just looks good. Now let's talk about size. As far as gaming laptops go, this bad boy is THIN. I'd compare it to a Razer Blade Stealth or a Digital Storm Equinox in both size and design. This thin form factor does have some drawbacks. If you are looking for a powerhouse of gaming awesomeness, then this design may not be for you. You may need to consider some of those larger laptops or a desktop. Nothing can compare to the hardware (and horsepower) you can put in a desktop. But if you are willing to trade some horsepower for portability, you will not be displeased with this laptop. My initial impressions of the build quality and workmanship are high. The laptop feels good in hand. It is not "plasticee" feeling (I'm certain that is not a word) which is a plus and it is not heavy. This laptop would be easy to tote around all day. The heart of this machine is an 8th generation CORE i7 processor. It has an Nvidia GTX1070 MAXQ discrete graphics card with 8GB of GDDR5 memory. This particular build of the GS65 line comes with a 512GB SSD and 16 GB of DDR4 system memory. Some builds have as much as 32 GB of system memory and various SSD configurations (including some with RAID). With the specs included in this build this laptop is VR ready (if that is something that appeals to you). An unexpected delight is the keyboard. I thought the LED lighting effects on the keyboard would just be another thing, but I have to admit; it's kinda cool. It also allows for highlighting of individual keys based on the game you are playing or application you are running. I also like typing on this keyboard (I'm doing it right now). Some people prefer keys with a lot of spring in them. If that is you, then you should try to type on this keyboard before purchase. It is a bit less "springy" (another made up word) then some keyboards I've used. The keys have good separation and positive feel. I don't want to labor on about installed software, but one item to highlight is that MSI includes Dragon Center. Dragon Center is a utility which allows you to tweak system performance such as running up the CPU. Just know that, by design, this utility will not allow overclocking unless you are plugged in (it is what it is). I have no complaints so far and the laptop has been responsive and a pleasure to use, but I admit I have yet to run the hardware through its paces with some more intensive games.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    The reviews are true, there no m.2

    Posted
    Peter
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus Member

    I was told I would get a free headset if I write a review. So…. Overall, the laptop performs as expected it is super fast even without the m.2. The screen is awesome for being a 1080p. There is no PWM going on with screen diming ( I have sensitive eyes and have had issues with the surfaces in past). Battery life can be all over the place as you use the laptop. It switches between the integrated graphics and the 1070 which can skew numbers a bit. You can force it to only use one or the other if you like. The laptop stays cool to the touch even under gaming. The matte finish is nice if you sit somewhere with a lot of light that can be reflected. I mostly play Overwatch and see temps get to 80c on cpu and near 90c on the gpu this is with the auto mode. You can pull up Dragon Center, fn+f7, and change the setting to ramp up the fan/ performance mode. Using perforce mode and setting the fans to boost temps drop by 10c and it does get loud. Some minor complaints I have is with the flex from the chassis. It has not broken in half or anything like that yet. I use this for grad courses and throw it into my messenger bag everyday with text books. There are some sharp edges around the laptop. Mainly where the top and bottom pieces come together on the chassis. Edges have caught on my bag, granted my bag is lined with fabric. Even though you can upgrade/ add another m .2 device, the mobo is flipped upside down so it can be a pain to change out. I feel like this is done to help places like best buy get some money for those who do not want to tear their $2000 laptop apart. The Razer Blade 15 and Gigabyte Aero14/15 are all easily upgradeable. I would highly recommend this laptop if you want a do everything laptop. This thing is a beast! The Razer and Gigabyte are other options to consider. I was dead set on getting the Razer till I drove 100mi to go biking and thought I would stop by and see another example of the Blade 15. This laptop is fairly similar to the GS63 but with some steroids. You get high end specs for where the Blade15 starts, but you do not get the amazing build quality that Razer had. I steered from Razer due to all the complaint reviews about QC and having customer support issue. There are a hand full of people in my classes that have the Razer, and I can see some of those complaints coming out. My main complaint still lies with the sharp edges. I wish it had a touch screen.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Does exactly what you expect from it.

    Posted
    pgwipeout
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    The GS65 is meant to be a light desktop replacement. It performs this task admirably. For reference, this replaced my Yoga 900. Physical Design: The device is well built with good materials. It is difficult to find defects or impart bends on the case. The back quarter of the entire device is dedicated to heat sinks and fans, and it needs it. The motherboard is installed in such a way that you must remove it in order to access the NVMe slots and RAM. It feels well built, and does not bend or warp. Hardware: This machine is a beast of a laptop. The processor is incredible, compiling Linux 4.18-rc4 full deb-pkg takes 22 minutes. The GTX 1070 graphics is great, I run Surviving Mars at max settings and it easily tops over 100 fps. The display looks great, but can be a little bit on the blue hue side, if you are sensitive to that turn on Windows nightlight. Despite having two NVMe slots, the hard drive is a SATA drive. There is a dedicated key that cuts power to the webcam. There has been a few times where the touchpad will cease to function, cycling the touchpad enable button off then on fixes it. Software: The MSI software SUCKS. Despite having twelve logical cores and more ram than it knows what to do with, the MSI software is slow, glitchy, and unintuitive. The SATA hard drive is partitioned horribly, they split the drive into the "Windows" partition and the "Data" partition. On top of that, there is a 20GB "Restore" partition, on top of the Windows Recovery partition that is placed immediately following the Windows partition. This means if you want to get rid of the Data and MSI Restore partitions, it is extremely difficult to do so without breaking the Windows Recovery partition. The switch between GPUs is not always seamless. For some reason MSI messed with the default Windows power settings, it is set to High Performance out of the box and has some odd sleep and hibernation defaults. Linux Support: Good, with some caveats. With the dual gpu, you have a choice between the integrated graphics and good battery life, (Seriously, I get better battery life on this thing in Linux then I do on Windows) or the dedicated GPU with Nvidia's drivers and not so great battery life. The open source drivers for the Nvidia card DO NOT play nice with dual gpu yet, and the system will panic after loading X, so use Nvidia's drivers or disable the GTX with Bumblebee. Sleep causes all of the wireless nodes to go into Airplane mode, and only a reboot can fix it. Overall, it is a great machine and I'd recommend it to anyone who needs a lightweight powerhouse.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Pretty good but...

    Posted
    extraelk

    So I have been looking for a new pc for quite some time now. I originally wanted to build a desktop due to the novelty and customization options but ended up settling for a laptop since I am still in school and use it in class a lot. I opted for the MSI Stealth Thin over the MSI Stealth Pro because of the 144hz display and more powerful gpu. I use the laptop for light gaming and 3D rendering and it excels at both of these, for example, max settings in GTA online I am easily pulling 80 fps. While playing more gpu intensive games for extended periods of time the chassis does become pretty warm, but it isnt burning my palms. The next thing I want to talk about is the fans. While idling the 2 gpu fans remain off and the cpu fan sits around 2000 rpm, which is hardly noticeable. While gaming the fans whir up and make a little more noise but I mostly use headphones while gaming so it isnt a problem. The reason I gave 4 stars instead of 5 is because after owning the laptop for only 1 month an issue came about with the fans. Just last night I was playing a game of League of Legends (not gpu intensive at all) and felt the laptop start vibrating madly. Took my headphones off and noticed one of the fans on the gpu side was making a horrendous noise and vibrating a lot. Opened dragon center and the cpu fan read 5000 rpm (fairly normal for what i was doing) and the gpu fan read 800 rpm (red flag). After messing with the fan settings for about 30 seconds I decided to reboot because I couldn't figure it out and didnt want to potentially further damage any hardware. After the reboot the gpu fan is functioning perfectly fine but now the cpu fan makes a ticking noise. As if the plastic fan blades are rubbing some other internal component. Noise completely disappears around 3500 rpm but anywhere else it is noticeable. So as I am typing this review, the cpu fan is sitting at 1990 rpm and making a not so loud but definitely noticeable ticking. Very dissapointed as I purchased this laptop on Aug. 8th 2018 and it is now Sept. 6 2018. Not even a full month. Thankfully I bought the protection plan through best buy so I will be taking it in shortly. Will possibly change my review to 5 stars if and when they can get this fixed.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Exactly what I wanted.

    Posted
    Andrew
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    I was in the market for a laptop with a good MATTE screen, fast multicore CPU, and nice backlight keyboard that had rgb. All of this in an ultrabook format. This laptop has all of that. I didn't need it for gaming but it has a maxq 1070 which is basically a small form factor 1060 but with 8gb of vram. Its nice. I hated every other gaming computer on the market right now (June 2018). Only other competitor was the razer blade (not the stealth). But I don't really like razor products so I thought I was out of luck. Im bad with pros, I think of pros as being something I didnt expect to get with my money... but ill try: I really like the touchpad, iv tried alot of touchpads and this one works with me. I think its the best rgb keyboard on the laptop market right now. I think most other gaming computers are very ugly. This rgb is beautiful and I love how the fucntion keys light up when you hit FN. I only found 4 cons: 1. Battery does not last long, maybe 4-5 hours with just a browser and discord open. I would of been okay if it was a bit heavier with maybe an extra 2 hour charge. I understand gaming you should be plugged in but common. 2. I really like the casing, but it does seem a bit flimsy for a 2k computer. 3. The first program i opened after i started up crashed, it was very laggy doing basic things. It turns out that some gaming computers have been having problems where the GPU tells the CPU its going to take care of things and there is lag. However, most of the problems have been fixed by now, and you really just need to update your windows, update your graphics card, and youll be good to go. 4. It does get hot like people say, but so do all laptops. I think maybe when a gaming computer is marketed, they should include rebates or discounts towards a cooling pad or try and make an accessory specifically for the model. 4/5 stars because I feel like for a 2k computer, the material of the housing could be a bit higher quality. But all the silicon i got inside was worth it. Best buy has a pretty good deal on this laptop compared to other places currently. PS: Remeber that if you are reading this review, you are looking for a THIN laptop. If you dont care that its thin, and you want a powerhouse laptop. Buy something else.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Solid Gaming/Productivity Laptop

    Posted
    Mic10
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Member

    I was torn between this GS65 and the Gigabyte Aero 15x. After reading other reviews of the 15x running hotter and its heftier price tag, I decided on the GS65. I needed a laptop that was portable, had decent enough battery life, and good performance for multitasking and occasional gaming. This laptop delivers. Pros: -Keyboard. The key travel is short on the keyboard, but the keys are very tactile and register a press as soon as you feel the feedback. I don't care much for the RGB lighting, but the keyboard defaults to a gold color that matches the device's trim. -Screen. The screen is fantastic and probably my favorite part. Colors pop and the 144Hz refresh rate makes everything feel so smooth. This is my first time using a display with a high refresh rate, and it'll be hard to go back to 60Hz. -Performance. Wow does this thing fly. 6 cores/12 threads destroys everything I've thrown at it, from games to photo editing. The RAM is dual channel, which is nice since other 16 GB models of this notebook are only single channel. Though the SSD is SATA rather than NVMe, it is still plenty fast, and loads programs and games very quickly. The 1070 Max-Q delivers great gaming performance, and I achieved an average of 92 fps in Far Cry 5 and 85 fps in GTA V. -Battery. For a gaming laptop, the battery is great. Yesterday I was able to web browse and work (no gaming) for 6 hours away from the charger. It's no ultrabook, but it also packs much more powerful hardware. The lack of G-Sync also means that it can switch between the 1070 and the integrated graphics, which stretches out the battery more than just using the 1070. Cons: -Noise. When gaming, this thing gets LOUD. On auto setting, the fans can get loud enough to drown out sounds from the speakers. Everything runs cool (the max temp I've seen is 82C), but it comes at the cost of crazy volume. I use headphones most of the time, but this could be an issue for some people. -Build quality. I haven't seen the same amount of chassis flex that others are experiencing, but the build is just ok. The laptop creaks when I pick it up, and the screen flexes a good amount when opening the lip from a corner. It's not bad enough that I'm worried about the longevity, but this thing wouldn't survive even a small drop or heavy objects being placed on top of it. Overall I'm giving it 4 stars because I feel the cons do not detract from the experience of using and gaming on the GS65. It's not a perfect notebook, but if your priorities are portability and performance and are willing to tolerate the noise, it's pretty great.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Laptop except build quality

    Posted
    PsycoBracket

    This laptop is a great according to the advertised hardware and software specifications. The only place where it falls behind is its build quality considering its premium cost. I had previously bought the GTX 1060 Razer Blade 15 from Best Buy, but I returned it and got this laptop instead. So I have compared these two laptops. Pros: 1. The GS65 has better hardware specs and performance as compared to the Razer Blade 15 with the same cost (GTX 1060 and not 1070). 2. The GS65 hardly heats up externally and the cooling is way better as compared to Blade 15. The Blade 15 gets extremely hot to touch above the keyboard and underside the laptop. I tested both laptops by playing Farcry 5 on Ultra High graphics with Anti Aliasing and Vsync turned on for around 5-6 hours. 3. The overall battery life is better on GS65 as compared to Razer Blade 15. 4. The Keyboard has dedicated keys for HOME, END, PGUP, PGDN which are important for me as a Computer Science student. The Blade 15 lacks these keys. 5. The GS65 is extremely light as compared to the Blade 15. This is partially due to the Blade 15's premium aluminum uni-body build. 6. The GS65 has a software based camera lock button which the Blade 15 lacks. Honestly did not expect this feature in either of them. Cons: 1. The build quality is quite shoddy in comparison to Blade 15 and could have been better considering the price. 2. The gs65 screen has a lot of backlight bleed and is not as great as the Blade 15 screen. 3. The GS65 touchpad feels antique in comparison to the Blade 15 touchpad. 4. The fans are extremely loud in GS65 at their max rpm as compared to the Blade 15. 5. The speaker quality is very bad in GS65 but so is the same for Blade 15. The speakers in GS65 are on the underside of the laptop. 6. A small amount of bloatware present in GS65; no bloatware in Blade 15. 7. The keyboard font in GS65 is too flashy and for the Blade 15 is perfect considering both are advertised as gaming ultra-books meant to be taken for a formal meeting as well. This did make me think twice before buying either laptop. 8. NO FINGERPRINT SCANNER IN GS65 MODEL OF BESTBUY IF IT IS A SELLING POINT FOR YOU. In conclusion, I personally loved the Blade 15 for its build quality and design, but the overheating and "slower performance at same price" made me choose the GS65 over it. "Cringes at myself".

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Laptop!

    Posted
    Bill

    I owned the previous model from MSI (the GS 63) so most of my comparison's will be coming from the older model in MSI's lineup. First of all, this is a great laptop. I haven't had any temp issues while gaming on a desk, Temps were my biggest concern with a laptop this small but so far so good. That being said, I think Best Buy could have done a better job letting customers know this isn't a normal GS 65. The BB model has a slower harddrive, cheaper wifi card, and a lower price. For me it was well worth it - but Best Buy trying to pass of theirs $300 bucks cheaper as an amazing deal is a little 'used-car-salesman-ee'. Just add 'b' to the end of the model number and own it. The laptop is an absolute pain to upgrade yourself. More so than with other manufactures, make sure you get the specs you'll want a year or two down the road. The power button is back on top! (where it should be). Battery life is NOT the advertised 8 hours, but I can constantly get around 7 watching YouTube and doing homework (mostly coding and writing). In Overwatch I'm seeing about 150fps on Ultra with the GPU getting up to 76C or so. Well within my comfort range. That's the only shooter I play, so I keep the frames down for everything else to be nice to the GPU. The speakers are .... adequate. They're on the bottom, so I actually get the best sound out of them laying in my bed watching movies. On a desk.... honestly I'd recommend a comfy set of headphones. They'll work for YouTube, but other media really suffers. The size of this thing deserves its own paragraph. The previous model - with the same size 15.6" screen - is almost 2 inches wider than the GS 65. When I went to the store to pick it up, I was convinced they had handed me a 13" model.... it's without a doubt the smallest 15" laptop I've ever scene. I bought the MSI because of it's size, the fact its one of the only gaming laptops with an Ethernet port, and MSI seems to know what they're doing. They also offer a year of drop protection if you register the laptop when you buy it - which is really nice. The only thing its missing (which the GS 63 had) is an SD card slot - which I may have only used once or twice but its really nice to have, especially on a 'flagship' type device. Even a micro would make switching cell phones a lot less painless. tldr: Great machine, awesome specs, super small, but one too many quirks to get 5 stars.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Nice and Sleek Laptop with Power

    Posted
    Crilico

    I've been pushing off a laptop purchase for quite some time...trying to find one that was sleek, powerful, and (relatively) quiet. About a year and a half ago I purchased the razer blade 14 thinking it was just that, ending up only disappointed when I received a faulty unit with numerous issues. I returned that unit and decided to wait. Now, enter the MSI GS65 stealth...I finally broke down and made the leap again. Almost two week into using the machine, I am pleased with my purchase. The stealth is very sleek looking, with just the accent of gold here and there and the nice looking dragon logo on the back. I can feel confident using this thing out in public...it is very sleek and I love the aesthetic design. Performance wise, it has plenty of power to plow through the games I enjoy...granted I am not a hardcore gamer. Testing the stealth out playing Doom, I was able to hit 90-100 fps on ultra setting in areas with the machine plugged in on performance mode...and it looked beautiful on the high refresh screen. Audio was clear and crisp, though I would imagine if you want a truly immersive experience you would be hooking this thing up to some real speakers or just use a headset. Fan noise from the laptop while charging and when kicked into gear is noticeable, but nothing obnoxious...and when playing a game it isn't a bother. When doing non-performance tasks, I notice no fan noise...maybe a whisper once in awhile. The laptop does get quite warm while gaming; it would probably be uncomfortable on my lap...but I normally use this on a hard surface anyways...so nothing unexpected there. Build quality would be the most lacking of any characteristics on this machine. It is fine, just not as solid as what I was accustom to with my previous long-running laptop (an older macbook pro). When I pick it up with one hand at the corner of the laptop to move it from one room to another while in use, it honestly feels a bit fragile, Im pretty sure i heard some crackling the first few times I did this...but I'm sure this was nothing major, just minor flexing of the frame/case/etc., though this is still an uneasy sound to hear. The track-pad is also not the best, though I almost always use a wireless mouse anyways. Overall, I would recommend this, as it is a good value, and one of the best looking laptops out there.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    So far it has been wonderful

    Posted
    karkoski22

    I have had this laptop now for two weeks. I am now past the point of refund from the store and I still feel I would not need to or want to return this product. Immediately I fell in love with the matte color with gold trim, and the GTX1070 was a complete selling point along with the crazy refresh rate. The SSD carries itself well and overall the laptop runs very quickly compared to my ASUS ROG Strix GL502VM that has a 1TB Sata HDD and GTX1060. Thus why I have upgraded to the MSI SGS65 Stealth Thin. At this point I have played only two games on this rig. However, they are rather GPU and CPU intensive; Escape from Tarkov and Squad. I plan to play ARMA as well as GTA V but am waiting to grab another SSD to avoid overloading my default SSD which is a relatively small size at 512Gb. So far, both of these games have run exceptionally well with the GS65. Escape from Tarkov is terribly optimized still as it is in Beta testing, but even so, this laptop ran it wonderfully. And for Squad; Looks and runs amazing! Now there are a few concerns I have that I am hoping will not turn in to some of the horror stories I have heard about this product. I have noticed at several occasions screen flickering as if the computer is trying to determine which graphics to use (dedicated or on-board) and that launching the Dragon Center via the function and dragon center keys fails to launch far too often. I did recently update dragon center to 2.2 so as to be compatible with my cellphone, so if I continue to experience this I may need to revert. As far as the screen flickering, I was on battery and browsing incognito. Not exactly computer literate so I cannot diagnose the issues professionally, but both of these issues have happened after the Dragon Center 2.2. install. I have gamed on this laptop at max settings for over 10 hours continually and I received no serious lag spikes or frame rate issues due to throttling or lack of power. I have heard that this machine tends to really throttle itself so I will be looking out for that in the future and will now start monitoring temps, as before I didn't it was necessary as all gameplay attempts went very smoothly. As of this moment, I am enjoying the heck out of this laptop. This review will be updated and MSI contacted if the screen and dragon center issues keep happening. For now, wonderful machine.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    a powerful laptop that doesn't look atrocious

    Posted
    NickNameSchmicName

    *MSI is offering a SteelSeries Siberia 200 Headset for this review. In no way is that influencing my overall rating of this laptop. Sleek, lightweight(for a 15") and professional looking. Most gaming laptops look cheesy and bulky. The gold and black are a nice combo. It does show fingerprints pretty badly though. With some effort you can flex the machine and you'll notice some creaking here and there but over all in my opinion the build is sturdy enough. I'm thinking they built it this way to keep cost and weight down. I would like to see a magnesium alloy like the Surface Book or some other lightweight durable metal. They have a version of this device on Amazon with NVME for the people who want the best of the best. I couldn't justify the additional $500 as this device is already too powerful for what I do. I'm pretty sure it can be upgraded if need be as well. Screen resolution and brightness are great. The 144Hz makes gaming and regular use look sooo smooth. The sound quality is awesome for a laptop, try the Nahimic sound test! Plenty of ports for external cameras and headsets.(The camera is activated by pressing the Fn and F6 keys, otherwise it will not work) Keyboard feels nice. I wish they used a professional looking font for the lettering on the keys. And the trackpad is so so. The left and right click are very low and when clicking around it's easy to move too far up on the trackpad and get a stiff unresponsive press. Battery life is pretty decent. If you are gaming for a long amount of time obviously it will drain pretty quickly but for normal use it'll get the job done. If you are away from home for an extended amount of time I would still bring a charger just in case. Overall I love this lightweight, powerful, sleek laptop. You could build a really good gaming desktop for this price but if you prefer mobility and freedom, you definitely get what you pay for with this device. When choosing this device I was deciding between the Surface Book 2, and Razer 15". All of these have their own unique attributes but I decided on this because for the price/power/quality it suited me best. Hope this helps someone. Enjoy!

    I would recommend this to a friend