The MSI Katana GF66 does double obligation as a contender for not solely the most effective gaming laptops available on the market but in addition for the most effective pupil laptops available on the market – assuming you are a pupil with a good price range who likes to do some common gaming.
Of explicit observe are the Eleventh-gen Intel Core i7-11800H CPU and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU that we now have packed into this laptop computer, which means that it may pace pretty quickly by way of even essentially the most demanding duties, and run the newest titles that PC gaming can supply.
Whether or not you are within the battery life or the typing expertise of the MSI Katana GF66, our assessment ought to reply all of your questions – and assist you to to determine whether or not or not this reasonably priced gaming laptop computer from MSI must be your subsequent pc improve.
MSI Katana GF66 assessment: display screen and design
The MSI Katana GF66 comes with a shiny, sharp 15.6-inch IPS LCD show operating at a 1,920 x 1,080 pixel decision, and with a 144Hz refresh fee. It does the job properly – whether or not you are gaming, spreadsheeting, streaming motion pictures or anything – and whereas there are actually higher panels on the market, that is ok for the value you are paying. There is a thick chin on the backside, however the facet and high bezels are respectably skinny, and also you get an built-in webcam above the display screen.
When it comes to total design, this is likely one of the extra understated gaming laptops that you will come throughout, with black plastic dominating and little in the best way of lighting or any aesthetic prospers. The keyboard solely glows one color – crimson – so when you’re after one thing that you would be able to actually dig into by way of customisation (and that can sync together with your different gaming equipment by way of illumination) you then would possibly wish to look elsewhere in your subsequent laptop computer.
Measuring 359 mm x 259 mm x 24.9 mm (14.1 inches x 10.2 inches x 0.98 inches) and weighing in at 2.25 kg (almost 5 kilos), that is extra transportable than quite a lot of gaming laptops, and we are able to think about carrying this round in a rucksack fairly comfortably. Maybe essentially the most flamboyant design contact is the usage of raised grilles beneath to assist with airflow, however you then’re not going to be seeing them quite a lot of the time. There are additional air vents across the sides and on the again.
In relation to ports and connections, the laptop computer comes with a wide variety of them: an Ethernet port, a 3.5 mm mixture headphone and mic jack, one USB-C port (USB 3.2 Gen 1), one USB-A port (USB 2.0), two USB-A ports (USB 3.2 Gen 1), and an HDMI output that maxes out at a 4K decision and 60Hz refresh fee. That ought to maintain all of your peripheral and accent necessities, although we’d have additionally appreciated to see a fingerprint sensor to make it simpler to log into Home windows.
MSI Katana GF66 assessment: efficiency and options
The MSI Katana GF66 comes with some spectacular internals: three configurations can be found, and our assessment unit got here with an Eleventh-gen Intel Core i7-11800H, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti, 8GB of RAM and an 512GB NVMe PCIe SSD. RTX 3050 and RTX 3060 choices are additionally obtainable, however any GPU choice provides you the newest ray tracing tech and the DLSS (Deep Studying Tremendous Sampling) characteristic from Nvidia that makes use of synthetic intelligence to enhance body charges.
This laptop computer can play one of the best video games comfortably at a 1080p decision, although not on the identical body charges that costlier and extra succesful laptops will. With Crimson Lifeless Redemption 2 arrange to make use of virtually the entire 4GB graphics RAM, for instance, we had been getting round 40-60 frames per second. For all however essentially the most demanding avid gamers, it is acquired greater than sufficient oomph beneath the hood, and the stereo 2W audio system do an okay job of including audio as nicely.
Within the well-known Time Spy 3DMark benchmark, the laptop computer reached a rating of 5,440, which is slightly below the gaming laptop computer common of 5,730 – not blistering efficiency then, however you are not paying for blistering efficiency. You do get excellent efficiency, and at an excellent worth, along with among the newest Nvidia graphics tech for easy and sharp gameplay. Add in that the laptop computer stays comparatively cool and quiet whereas gaming too, and it is an interesting bundle total.
When you’re by no means going to purchase a gaming laptop computer for its battery life, the MSI Katana GF66 would not do too badly on this division, dropping by about 30 p.c an hour when streaming video at most brightness – so you will get about three hours of films and reveals in whole, although that’s clearly going to drop sharply if you begin operating some high-end video games on it. We would not plan to be away from an influence socket for too lengthy with this explicit laptop computer.
MSI Katana GF66 assessment: worth and verdict
Examine the widgets on this web page for the newest costs for the MSI Katana GF66, however on the time of writing the mannequin that we reviewed will price you just below £1,000 – for a laptop computer with some top-end silicon from Intel and Nvidia inside it, and one which’s able to taking part in even essentially the most demanding titles easily, we might say that is a really respectable worth certainly. Sure, different laptops are extra highly effective and can get you quicker body charges, however they’re additionally going to present your financial institution stability extra of a success.
MSI has made some compromises to get to that worth level although, which you have to be conscious of earlier than you make the leap and buy this explicit mannequin: nothing in regards to the design or the audio or the display screen significantly stands out right here, and it’s a little bit of a lacklustre pc in sure areas. Completely comprehensible, contemplating how reasonably priced the MSI Katana GF66 is, however that you must weigh up every thing collectively when deciding in your subsequent laptop computer.
Keep in mind too that the MSI Katana GF66 does a succesful job as a common function laptop computer too – and when you’re taking it into the workplace or lecture halls then that ho-hum design instantly turns into a bonus, since you’re not going to attract an excessive amount of consideration to your self. The typing and trackpad expertise are each superb, although when you’re solely doing fundamental computing in your laptop computer, you most likely need one thing thinner and lighter.
It is the mixture of a comparatively low worth and spectacular gaming efficiency that might make somebody contemplate the MSI Katana GF66 over anything on the market. In case you just like the appears of the laptop computer and also you’re eager to get some new Intel and Nvidia expertise to mess around with, then we predict this is likely one of the finest choices obtainable for the time being on the decrease finish of the value scale.