MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Gaming Laptop Review

A few trade-offs for a lower price
% Very Good

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Review

The MSI GL62M 7RD-056 is a budget entry level gaming that traces its roots back to the GL62M 7RD series. MSI is a legendary pioneer in the gaming industry and the premium laptops it produces are a tad higher in specs and pricing. So, as the price and classification of this MSI line-up suggest there are a couple of trade-offs that have been made to make this laptop affordable to a budget clientèle. Read the complete MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Review


Pros

  • Large screen estate – 15.6 inches
  • Full HD capability display
  • Fast Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor
  • Ample storage 1TB HDD
  • Dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics

Cons

  • Lacks an internal optical drive.
  • Poor battery life (3 hours 43 minutes)
  • Problem with display
  • Has no backlit keyboard
  • Lacks SSD storage

Verdict

The MSI GL62M 7RD-056 | Amazon is yet another extraordinary machine by MSI in efforts to cover the budget gaming laptop space. While it is spectacular in more ways than one, it does not appeal to a hardcore gaming audience. Nevertheless, the specifications it comes it comes with are respectable in every sense of the word. The Full HD display advantage, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti graphics, 4GB DDR4 RAM, Core i5 processor make it a very recommendable gaming laptop. However, its TN display, poor battery life, and Wi-Fi connectivity are not as impressive as would be desirable, these being apparent trade-offs that come with the price.

DESIGN AND FEATURES


The design and general feel of the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 is rather modest, that is if you’ve seen or used MSI gaming laptops. I must say, this laptop was deprived of the inspiration that is known for MSI gaming laptops probably for reasons of cutting down on the price. The case is made entirely of matte plastic which makes it a resounding image of the MSI GL62 6QF and the MSI GL62M 7RD-077 laptops.

The red color accents commonly found on the rear grill and edges on MSI gaming laptops like the MSI GT62VR Dominator Pro-005 are not featured here; it comes rather simple. The trackpad and a small section of the grill are the only red accented section visible on the laptop. Additionally, the design while good lacks a maintenance hatch. This means you have to manually unscrew the laptop’s underside to gain access to the inner components.

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Gaming Laptop

Full HD Display

On-screen matters, the display is adorned with 1920 x 1080 resolution and the screen estate is amazingly large at 15.6 inches (is an ePD LED-backlit screen). The MSI GL62M 7RD-056 enjoys 94% NTSC wide viewing angle panel display. To be precise, the viewing angles are 170 degrees which is middling in short.

However, we noticed the display isn’t exactly perfect as the color saturation is within the center of the screen; naturally where every user concentrates on. But the color fades as you move away from the center which can be very annoying. Since the screen is a TN panel, it would be difficult to use it outdoors under direct sunlight – nothing short of a bummer

But if you prefer an entry gaming laptop with better display, the Razor Blade Stealth 2016 certainly appeals here than most.

Display aside, the MSI measures 15.1 x 10.2 x 1.1 inches (5.29 lbs) which comes close to the Acer Aspire VX5-591G-75RM (10.45 x 15.31 x 1.14 inches, 5.51 lbs). The Dell Inspiron i7559-2512BLK is a similar spec laptop but is fairly cheaper and lighter weighing in at 4.6 pounds (measures 15.08 x 15.08 x 10.43 inches).

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Gaming Laptop

Cooling is essential for every gaming laptop and without it, the natural element will cause havoc to your battery within a short span of time. To solve this, the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 is fitted with the exclusive MSI Cooler Boost 4 technology to step the heat down. The heat pipes work to get rid of excessive heat before it piles up at the GPU and CPU, and pushes it out through the front vents located next to hinges. That makes sure the palm rest remains chill and a pleasant surface to lean your hands on when gaming.

Speakers

As for audio, there is the Nahamic Audio Speakers that work towards getting you the best immersive audio. There are four speakers located on the underside tacked behind speaker grills. During the gaming test, we tried out the speakers and noticed the voice transmission while gaming was pretty reliable. The sound is loud enough but the base is a bit on the poor side. We recommend getting a headphone or external speakers for an all-rounded sound experience.

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Gaming Laptop

PORTS


The port selection on the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 | Amazon is pretty decent too. Fortunately, it brags of some of the latest generations of component selection, such as the USB Type-C. The left side of the laptop features: a Kensington lock, Gigabit-Ethernet, USB 3.0 (Type A), HDMI port which supports 4K resolution, mini-Display port, USB 3.0 (Type A) port, USB 3.1 Gen1 (Type C) and headphone-out and microphone-in jack.

The right side houses: the SD card (which we found is a little bit slower with a maximum transfer speed of 27.7MB/s copying large files of data) to help transfer data with, USB 2.0 port (Type A) and power in. We loved the fact that you can enjoy multitasking on different attached monitors thanks to innovative matrix display that supports two external displays at a go during game-play (through the HDMI and Mini Display ports).

  • 1 x USB 3.0 Type-C
  • 2 x USB 3.0
  • 1 x USB 2.0
  • A single HDMI
  • 1 x Mini-Display
  • One RJ-45 port
  • 1 x COMBO audio jack
  • Single SD/XC/HC card reader

For wireless connectivity, the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 comes geared with Wi-Fi 802.11/ac and Bluetooth 4.0

PERFORMANCE


The GL62M brags of a feature packed system which should appeal to mainstream gamers who don’t particularly aim to play at necessarily high settings. It features a quad-core Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor with 2.8GHz speed, 6MB Cache and 3.8GHz speed while on Turbo. 8GB DDR4 2400MHz is not much to go by but it works reliably for home/office use (can be used for 3D rendering, and on some intensive software) and light gaming.

Hardcore gamers might not find a home here and would probably be best suited with a higher RAM size. There is an additional M.2 slot available for upgrading should you need to step performance notch. It’s worth noting that the existing slot supports SATA-3 and PCIe/NVMe models. You can opt for an 8GB DDR4 2400MHz module or just replace with a 2x16GB module to unlock the MSI’s beastly powers.

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Gaming Laptop

As for storage, the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 sports a decent pack of 1TB 7,200rpm hard drive. This is less than the GT72 Dominator Pro which only sports a 1TB HDD &128GB SSD. The MSI hard drive storage is plenty for storage of movies, music and data files.

Among all major brands, the MSI GL62M stands out among the first gaming laptops to adopt the latest Nvidia GeForce GPU. It comes with the Nvidia GTX 1050 GPU that brags better 3D performance and more than 30% improved performance. That is far much advanced than the previous GeForce® GTX 960M. Ideally, that translates to better frame rates, control and generally gaming experience. On our gaming test, the GPU performed smoothly in most games running on maximum quality settings.

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Gaming Laptop

However, some major gaming titles did have significant frame drops. This was especially while running on 4K resolution which the GPU is not particularly suited for. Tomb Raider (2013), Battlefield 4 (2013), GTA 5 (2015) and Hitman (2016) all ran at ultra-high resolution getting 80.6 fps, 52 fps, 17.9 fps, and 41.1 fps respectively. They all performed above 50 fps on medium settings though.

MSI GL62M Battery life

Like most gaming rigs, battery life leans on the low side and the MSI GL62M isn’t any much different with a total runtime of 3 hours 45 minutes. MSI incorporates a 41Wh battery which is a low battery capacity battery, hence the poor battery runtimes. Still, compared to its predecessor with similar battery capacity, MSI did improve the battery performance for this model. Even so, you would have to stay very close to the plug, just in case.

MSI GL62 Keyboard

Aside from impeccable components and performance, the MSI GL62 proves its versatility with its SteelSeries keyboard. The keyboard is good and has a presentable layout. Although for new users it might be a little confusing it shouldn’t take long to learn it. MSI uses a different format for some of its keys, for example, the # key and Windows key are placed in a position you would have to get used to. Even so, the keyboard is decent; has great rough texture, medium key travel for easy typing that’s best for home users and light gaming.

Meanwhile, the trackpad is wide, spanning at about 10.8 x 6.1 cm (~4.3 x 2.4 in) therefore leaving sufficient space for hand gestures and palm rest too. It is a little rough in texture but that doesn’t get in the way of its glide and responsiveness. There are two buttons on the mouse pad with great pressure points and short travel. They were pleasing to use and came in handy when I tried them on for size writing this review.

Heating

Cooling is essential for every gaming laptop and without it, the natural element will cause havoc to your battery. To solve this, the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 is fitted with the exclusive MSI Cooler Boost 4 technology to step the heat down. The heat pipes work to get rid of excessive heat before it piles up at the GPU and CPU. The excess heat is pushed out through the front vents located next to hinges. That makes sure the palm rest remains chill and a pleasant surface to lean your hands on when gaming. On stress test, the laptop maintains a 40 °C (~104 °F) underside, which means it doesn’t get too warm. For better temperature control, the Dragon Centre allows you to adjust the fan rotation speed. The “Cooler Boost” option works best to take down the heat when in idle or under load.

CONFIGURATIONS


The MSI GL62M comes in four configurations: First the MSI GL62M 7RD-265 | Amazon with Intel Core i5-7300HQ GTX 1050 1TB. Secondly, the MSI GL62M 7RE-407 | Amazon with slight more specs such as Intel Core i5-7300HQ GTX 1050Ti 8GB 256GB. The third unit is the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 | Amazon, our reviewed unit with Intel Core i7-7700HQ/GTX 1050/ 1TB 7200 rpm. And the last unit which is the most expensive, but has best specs: the MSI GL72 7RD-028 |Amazon with Core i7-7700HQ GTX 1050 16GB 128GB SSD + 1TB.

MSI GL62M 7RD-056 Specs


  • Screen Size 15.6 inches
  • Max Screen Resolution 1920×1080 pixels
  • Processor 2.8 GHz Intel Core i7-7700HQ
  • Processor performance 6MB cache and 2.8GHZ, Up to 3.8GHz
  • RAM 16GB DDR4 2400MHz
  • Hard Drive 1 TB HDD 7200RPM
  • Chipset Brand nvidia
  • Card Description Dedicated
  • Graphics Card Ram Size 4 GB GDDR5
  • Number of USB 2.0 Ports 1
  • Number of USB 3.0 Ports 2
  • Brand Name MSI
  • Item model number GL62D 7RD-056
  • Hardware Platform PC
  • Operating System Windows 10
  • Item Weight 5.3 pounds
  • Product Dimensions 15.1 x 10.2 x 1.1 inches
  • Color Black/Red
  • Processor Brand Intel
  • Processor Count 1
  • Hard Drive Interface Serial ATA
  • Optical Drive Type None
  • Operating system Windows 10 Home
  • Connectivity Bluetooth 4.0, 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet LAN
  • Battery 6 cell

CONCLUSION


The MSI GL62M 7RD-056 | Amazon is an entry level gaming laptop with almost all the right specifications to fit the bill. It has new specifications suited for a premium laptop, but its tradeoffs greatly undermine its qualification as a hardcore gaming rig. Its 15.6-inch Full HD display, Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1050 graphics card and a fast Core i7 processor are among its main strengths. However, despite being quite impressive, the MSI GL62M 7RD-056 fall a little short of making it a top notch rig.

The MSI also incorporates a low contrast TN panel with poor viewing angles and the battery life is low too. Overall, MSI made too many shortcuts to buy the laptop an entry-level ticket. There are several models that would offer better and balanced options, for instance, the HP Omen 15 which brags of similar specs and IPS display, backlit keyboard, and lethal SSD/HDD combination.

The MSI GL72 7RD-028 | Amazon is also a more versatile configuration with slightly better specs; i7-7700HQ | GTX 1050 | 128GB SSD + 1TB. But, if you do decide to go with the MSI GL62M 7RD-056, consider that we recommend it only for entry-level gaming if not home/office use which for now suits it best.

  • Buy the MSI GL72 7RD-028 Gaming Laptop at Amazon

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Edwin M

Professionally a Mechanical Engineer and a Tech Nerd at heart, Edwin is above all a passionate hobby guitar player and proud gospel music listener. He writes reviews of gadgets he would love to buy and recommend.