The MSI Cyborg 15 is a beautiful trying machine. After I pulled it out of the field I had hoped its spectacular specs record would see it rise to the highest of the charts, too. However after a while utilizing the Cyborg it is gone down in my estimations. Sharply down. It is a gaming laptop computer targeted on low temperatures and quiet operation, but it surely lags behind massively in most different metrics to try to obtain that.
The Cyborg 15 is one in all two RTX 4060 laptops I’ve had in for testing this previous week, the opposite being Gigabyte’s G5 (2023). They’re each priced fairly competitively across the $1,100 mark, although within the UK (the precise market by which these two precise fashions are meant to be bought) the MSI is the cheaper of the 2 at £1,099. The Gigabyte is £1,200. The US and UK fashions do differ barely, with the US getting the unhealthy deal right here with solely 8GB of RAM. The 2 I’ve examined each come provisioned with 16GB.
On the floor, the Cyborg is the extra impressive-looking system with surprisingly interesting translucent highlights and a solid-feeling design. A big trackpad and simple to navigate keyboard with numpad put it instantly in my good books, too. By comparability, the Gigabyte appears to be like extra bland. However appears to be like aren’t the whole lot, as you may see right here.
The Cyborg 15 is powered by one in all Nvidia’s newest GPUs, the RTX 4060. This packs the Ada Lovelace structure with improved RT Cores, Tensor Cores, and a lot extra cache than the earlier Ampere technology. It is not an all-round improve over the RTX 3060 in each sense—it has fewer CUDA cores at 3,072 to the RTX 3060’s 3,840 and fewer TMUs and ROPs—however usually the RTX 4060 stacks up as a sooner gaming GPU in follow.
CPU: Intel Core i7 12650H
Cores/threads: 10/16 | (6+4)
Enhance clock: 4.7GHz
GPU: Nvidia RTX 4060 (45W)
System reminiscence: 16GB DDR5-4800
Storage: 512GB NVMe SSD
Decision: 1080p 144Hz
Value: ~$1,100 (precise mannequin not obtainable within the US) | £1,099
My difficulty with the Cyborg is not within the alternative of GPU however quite how MSI’s chosen to set it up. Trendy cell GPUs can run in quite a lot of totally different energy envelopes to higher swimsuit the scale of laptop computer chassis, and MSI has chosen to restrict the RTX 4060 throughout the Cyborg 15 to a paltry 45W. That is considerably lower than the Gigabyte G5 KF, which runs its RTX 4060 chip at 75W.
That 30W makes an enormous distinction to gaming efficiency.
The Cyborg 15 was anyplace from 13–22% slower than the G5 KF throughout our benchmarking suite. That is regardless of operating each laptops of their highest efficiency modes. That type of efficiency deficit is smart whenever you take a look at the typical GPU clock speeds throughout each laptops throughout three consecutive runs of Metro Exodus Enhanced Version: the Cyborg 15 hit 1,788MHz whereas the G5 KF managed 2,123MHz—practically a 16% deficit.
The one upside of the Cyborg’s modest operation is that it runs very quietly beneath load. It is robust to see that as a lot of a constructive, nevertheless, because the Gigabyte additionally presents decrease wattage modes that additionally dramatically drop noise (and efficiency) for those who so want, but the MSI has no choice to take away its restrictive energy restrict. It does not even last more on battery for that discount in energy, both, as its 52Wh battery drained sooner than some other laptop computer we have examined so removed from this laptop computer technology.
One potential rationalization for why MSI has restricted the RTX 4060 throughout the Cyborg 15 is to maintain the laptop computer’s cooling answer minimal. Whenever you peel off the again of the laptop computer chassis and have a look beneath, the MSI has a single-fan cooling answer with three heatpipes for the CPU and GPU, one being shared and operating throughout each parts. The Gigabyte, nevertheless, has a two-fan cooling answer with 4 heatpipes. Once more, with one heatpipe collectively cooling each CPU and GPU.
❌ You need essentially the most out of your RTX 4060: With a big discount in energy to the GPU within the Cyborg 15, it is unable to match greater energy RTX 4060 gaming laptops in efficiency.
❌ You need extra space for storing: With its solely slot for an NVMe SSD already crammed with a 512GB drive, you may want to completely exchange it to improve the storage.
✅ You completely require a quiet laptop computer: No gaming laptop computer is quiet, however the MSI Cyborg 15 is quite a bit quieter than most others I’ve examined. It sacrifices efficiency to run so calmly, nevertheless, and it isn’t going to be value it for many customers.
The MSI’s cooling answer is not in itself an issue. In truth, its CPU and GPU run quite a bit cooler than the Gigabyte’s and it is noticeably quieter. However it’s ready to do this by considerably limiting efficiency. A measure that I really feel has been too drastic.
The humorous factor is the MSI has each a greater CPU and a greater RAM configuration than the Gigabyte, however they’re largely wasted for gaming with the pared again RTX 4060 in tow. I would a lot want the 10-core Intel Core i7 12650H contained in the Cyborg 15 to the 12-core Core i5 12500H within the Gigabyte. And earlier than you query me within the feedback, that is as a result of the Core i7 comes with six Efficiency-cores (P-cores) and 4 Environment friendly-cores (E-core), whereas the Core i5 comes with 4 P-cores and eight E-cores. Us players will usually make higher use of extra P-cores, and simply 4 might turn into a little bit of a limitation for the Gigabyte down the road.
It is not a lot of a limitation at present, nevertheless. These two totally different CPU configurations hardly make a little bit of distinction. When it comes to gaming efficiency, these additional P-cores did not assist the Cyborg 15, even within the CPU-heavy Hitman Dartmoor take a look at. The Gigabyte nonetheless got here out on high. The Cyborg did carry out just a little higher in 3DMark, Cinebench, and Blender, however solely very marginal positive aspects that do not actually translate to noticeably higher efficiency in follow.
A laptop computer is a holistic buy and I am not that impressed with how MSI has provisioned this Cyborg 15 for storage, both. It comes with a single PCIe 4.0 M.2 drive from Samsung, famous because the MZVL4512HBLU, and is rated to round 3,500MB/s seq. learn and a couple of,500MB/s seq. write. The efficiency is okay, it is one of many slower drives we have examined for load instances in Ultimate Fantasy but it surely’s not far off the tempo.
The problem is that it solely has a 512GB capability and there is not any room for a secondary M.2 drive. Or quite there may be room contained in the chassis, and even an area marked ‘SSD2’ provisioned for an additional M.2 connection on the PCB, however the bodily M.2 port is lacking.
Care to solder one on and see if it really works? To not beat a lifeless horse, however the Gigabyte G5 KF does include a spare M.2 port. And two USB Kind-C ports to the Cyborg’s one for additional measure. And a MicroSD card reader.
And sadly my qualms do not finish there. The MSI comes loaded with Norton pre-installed, which I swiftly uninstalled utilizing the official Norton Take away and Reinstall instrument. However that does not cease it attempting to reinstall itself and including folders to the desktop each time you restart the machine. It is mind-blowing how irritating this expertise is for the tip consumer. And I needed to restart the machine usually, as a result of the MSI Heart software that controls the laptop computer’s efficiency profiles, amongst different system features, was failing to put in correctly and requested I restart the machine each boot to complete putting in.
Ultimately I solved the MSI Heart downside by eradicating all traces of the MSI Heart app and the MSI Heart SDK from my system and reinstalling the app from the laptop computer’s help web page. Norton additionally required diving into your system folders and eradicating all point out of the app to stop it from rearing its ugly, annoying head.
Sure, it has been a irritating expertise with the MSI Cyborg 15. I do suppose that with one other M.2 slot and fewer poor high quality apps pre-installed a few of my points with this particular mannequin might be solved, however I can not sq. up the dearth of gaming efficiency on what’s at the beginning a gaming laptop computer. And the Cyborg 15 simply is not low-cost sufficient to persuade me it is in any method value it over the Gigabyte G5 KF.