MSI GS30 Shadow Review: Fast but an awkward docking station needed for serious gaming

MSI GS30 Shadow is a unique combination of ultra mobile laptop with a docking station equipped with a desktop graphics card.  This Laptop is equipped with an extremely powerful processor Intel Core i7 4870HQ , and efficient layout. It is a ultra mobile PC, has a screen size of 13.3 and a resolution of 1920×1080. Laptop offers a good equipment and additional features.

The MSI GS30 Shadow comes loaded with an Intel Core i7 4870HQ clocked at 2.5 GHz, 3.7 GHz Turbo, 6MB cache, 4 cores / 8 threads,
22 nm technology, TDP 47W. You get 16 GB, DDR3 1600 MHz

MSI GS30 Shadow  has 13.3 matte 920×1080 IPS LED Screen has a maximum deflection angle of the screen – 130 degrees

MSI GS30 Shadow comes shipped with an Intel Iris Pro 5200GPU integrated into the processor, support for DirectX11,
shared graphics memory with RAM. With the docking station an Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 is used.

Hard disk: 2x 128 GB SSDModel: Kingston RBU-SNS8100S3128GD1

And of course comes with Windows 8.1.

Best suited for:  Those who frequent travel , 3D gaming , office work , entertainment.

Pros: Good overall performance, bad performance of the integrated Intel Iris Pro 5200, a fast SSD, low weight, compact size, extremely high performance when connected to the Gaming Dock, matte screen.
Cons: Could have been built better, very noisy fan, housing heats up, suffers CPU throttling, inability to use the laptop screen when connected to the dock, the price.

Who we recommend it for: Those looking for a mobile gaming laptop that can also be used as a desktop for PC gaming.

However with the docking station, the MSI Shadow GS30 turns out to be very unusual. If we were to judge it as a standalone laptop it certainly would have gotten praise for its small size + power combination, it is low weight and has some very high-performance components. After all, not everyone can boast Intel Core i7 processor, 16 GB of RAM and two SSDs in RAID. These characteristics make it a good choice for less demanding games, and even newer games (after lowering the resolution and detail of the image) will work quite well.

However, we feel the true power kicks in only when you connect it to the dock where we find an Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 that has enough performance power to cope with every game.

It seems designed for someone who goes to work or school with this laptop and when he gets back home, just plugs it into the docking station to play some games.

We can not forget that you need a separate monitor this, not to mention a keyboard and mouse.  Pricing starts at around $2,000 and with the docking station it can reach around $2,400, so its not exactly cheap.


 MSI GS30 Shadow Benchmarks

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MSI GS30 Shadow Gallery

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