See, a powerhouse! MSI’s newest Titan, the GT75 is here to prove that bigger is definitely better. Under the huge frame is a Core i9 processor and one of Nvidia’s new RTX GPUs. That means that there is very little that this laptop cannot handle. But before you are swallowed by all that power, let’s not forget that beautiful 4K screen and sublime audio system. The Titan is the ultimate multimedia machine, which is why we have placed it on our Best VR-Ready laptops page. Here is our MSI GT75 Titan Review.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Design
Aside from its glowing customizable keyboard, the Titan is in no way a flashy laptop. It does just enough to attract the eye. The pair of shiny metallic bright red accents on either side of the lid evoke images of blood-drained swords waving with a black-black sky. And the red background with a red and white dragon in the middle leaves no doubt about who made this unapologetic beast. The rear vents are covered with almost pearly ruby red fins. In the center, you will find the word Titan written in white flanked by two red screws with a red border underneath, as emphatic underlining.
The interior of the Titan reveals an ink-black keyboard that feels soft. The palm rest is raised a little higher to make typing on that sticky keyboard even more fun. To the right of the numpad, you will find power buttons, MSI’s Dragon Center, fan speed, Windows Media Center and the SteelSeries Engine software. Theoretically, you can put the show of the Titan on the proverbial path. I actually succeeded in putting it in a backpack and dragging it home with the metro without causing any damage to my back. But the laptop is powered by not one, but two fat power bricks connected by a single adapter. The most viable option is to move it from room to room, but if you take the notebook to LAN parties, lift up with your knees.
Although I wish there were still a few Thunderbolt 3 ports or at least one USB Type-C port on the GT75, it’s hard to use all the ports along the Titan’s frame. On the right side, there are two USB 3.1 ports, a 3-in-1 card reader and a security slot. On the left is a trio of USB 3.1 ports and headphone jacks, a microphone and S/PDIF for listening to high fidelity tracks. At the back, you get a Thunderbolt 3 port, mini DisplayPort, HDMI 2.0 and Gigabit Ethernet.
An impressive frame carved from glossy black aluminum? It just has to be a Titan. The massive chassis of 10 pounds, 16.9 x 12.4 x 1.2 ~ 2.3 inches lifts your attention and claims its dominance with steely security. The GT75 is larger than most competing desktop replacements, including the Aorus X9 (8.1 pounds, 16.9 x 12.4 x 1.2 inches), Alienware Area-51 m (8.5 pounds, 16.1 x 15 inches) , 9 x 1.2 ~ 1.7 inches) and the Origin Eon 17-X (8.6 pounds, 16.4 x 11.6 x 1.6 inches).
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Keyboard and TouchPad
Why can’t all laptop keyboards be like this? This version of the Titan is the latest version with a mechanical keyboard. Unlike previous Titans, however, the keys are positioned toward the top of the keyboard deck rather than the front lip. The other big change? Instead of the bulky, curved keycaps that you would find on most mechanical keyboards, the Titan has flat Chiclet-like caps like those on a typical laptop keyboard.
Measuring an incredible 2.5-millimeter key movement with 80 grams of activation force (1.5 mm and 60 g are our minimum), the keys feel better than a laptop keyboard loaded with scissors membrane switches. In practice, the keys are spicy and fast. And unlike your average laptop keyboard, there was no chance to come out. Those uber-resilient switches helped me improve my typing on 10fastfingers from 70 words per minute to 80.
The 4.2 x 2.3-inch touchpad is really fast and accurate. Calling Cortana, scrolling between open apps and zooming in on an image was almost instantaneous. The pair of discrete mouse buttons are almost as resilient as the keyboard.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Display
MSI has some of the best screens in the industry. Whether I was gaming, watching movies or even typing this review, the Titan’s 17.3-inch 4K screen produced sharp details and stunning colors on a seriously clear screen. Watching the Little trailer was one of my favorite experiences. Details were so clear that I could see the individual curls of Issa Rae’s dark brown hair and the deliberate blue and green paint strokes in her purple-blue UFO sweater. The flawless chocolate color of the actress was further accentuated by her pumpkin-colored earrings and ceramic walls in the background.
You never really think about mud, but I had quite a bit of time to think about it when I climbed the enemy territory in Battlefield V. The burnt red clay glistened while the soft stream that I crawled through small pieces of gray sediment, taking it for the ride. And when I looked exactly in the right place, I saw small gold veins. The cloudy sky played the bold, yet low earthy colors as I bent toward my final destination.
A screen that is so beautiful should not be marred by ugly screen tears. To prevent unevenness and the like, the screen has Nvidia’s G-Sync technology, which synchronizes the display with the GPU for smoother images. The panel has a refresh rate of 60 Hertz, which is not nearly as fast as the 1080p screen configuration with its 144Hz refresh and 3 millisecond response time, but it will do the job in a big way.
When we measured color reproduction, the Titan delivered an amazing 178 percent of the sRGB range. That is higher than the average of 138 percent for premium gaming laptops, as well as the results of the X9 (122 percent) and Eon 17-X (104 percent).
The competition could not prevent the clarity of the Titan. With an average of 271 nits, the notebook panel surpasses the Eon 17-X and X9, which scored 252 and 243 nits respectively. Yet the Titan was a few shortcomings of the 278-nit average for laptops in this class.
MSI has pre-installed its True Color software, which offers six presets (Gamer, Anti-Blue, Movie, Adobe RGB, sRGB and Office), so you can always have the best possible viewing experience. I didn’t think it was necessary to go beyond Adobe RGB, but it is definitely your preference. With the True Color app, you can also perform your own color calibration and create desktop partitions.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Audio
MSI, Dynaudio, and Nahimic remain a match made in the auditory heaven. Positioned along the front lip of the laptop, the four speakers with their sub-mounted subwoofer sent wave after wave of audio that is loud, clean and rich. Are they going to replace external speakers? No, but they are exceptional for laptop speakers.
Playing Kevin Ross against the “Prototype” of Outkast, I was treated to a full harmony led by an angelic tenor. The mid tones and highs were nice and clear, which is very important on a course like this: it is almost completely acapella except the snare drum accompaniment. The wealth went on when I transferred to J. Cole’s “Middle Child” and my bedroom was flooded with trumpets and tight puns. In contrast to most laptop subwoofers, this one has been a bit to the bottom.
The blasts were so loud during my Battlefield V playthrough, it scared my dog out of a good night’s sleep. The booms and the accompanying sound of gravel and shrapnel underlined my journey to an enemy airbase. The voices of my countrymen were so clear and so present that I sometimes felt like I was really in the game.
I remain impressed by Nahimic – especially the surround sound technology. By switching from the music preset to Movie of Gaming, the audio has gone from a warm but somewhat one-dimensional performance to an immersive 360-degree quality. You can even adjust the vocals to make them sound closer or further, depending on your preference. At max volume, you can lose some of the accuracies, despite the Smart Amp from Dynaudio that works to maintain levels, but it remains a great feature.
Nahimic’s SoundTracking technology remains one of the best I’ve ever used. It certainly came in handy during Battlefield V. It prevented enemy soldiers from swallowing me up. And for streamers, static noise reduction is a favorite, especially when recording in a noisier environment.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Graphics and Gaming
The new king of mobile GPUs has arrived and his name is GeForce RTX 2080 GPU. In combination with its 8 GB video memory, the card is a certified animal. During my attack on a hostile base in Battlefield V, I sent three soldiers throwing through the grenade to find a grenade. When it blew up, it got a fine dust cloud, leaving me some time to sprint to my next position at 72 frames per minute at 4K on Ultra settings. The frame rate increased to 91 fps when I switched to 1920 x 1080.
The Titan also had a strong show during our synthetic 76 fps benchmarks on the Rise of the Tomb Raider, defeating the 63 fps premium gaming laptop average. The GTX 1080 equipped with AXX9 and Origin PC had a notch of 73 and 69 fps respectively. But the Alienware Area-51m with its own RTX 2080 reached 92 fps.
When we performed the Hitman benchmark, the Titan received no less than 140 fps, achieving the 96 fps achieved by the Eon 17-X and X9, fitting the category average. However, the Area-51m achieved the win with 143 fps.
During the Grand Theft Auto V test, the Titan delivered a strong 90 fps, practically defeating the 75 fps category average as well as the 85 fps and 55 fps supplied by the X9 and the Eon 17-X. Yet it was not enough to bring down the Area-51m, which hit 105 fps.
On the Middle-Earth: Shadow of War benchmark, the Titan reached 112 fps and had the 86-fps average and 99 fps of the X9. The Area-51m was even better with 132 fps.
The Titan is ready, willing and able to take you to a virtual reality wonderland. The laptop passed the SteamVR performance test with flying colors and reached the maximum score of 11.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Performance
In those cases where you really need to do some work, know that the 2.9 GHz Intel Core i9-8950HK processor from the Titan with 32 GB RAM is ready for action. I opened 32 tabs in Google Chrome, some streaming Twitch, others with Tweetdeck and some streaming YouTube, while I watched Voltron: Legendary Defender on Netflix. I could not detect a delay when I went from tab to tab. In fact, I only started seeing latency when I launched Battlefield V in a separate window. And although the processor is already quite powerful, you can overclock it, in case you need more power.
The Titan faced a competitive system that was worse by wear. It scored 22,765 on Geekbench 4, which measures the overall performance. It sailed past the desktop Core i7 CPU of the Eon 17-X (21,273) and the average of gaming laptops of 21,118. However, the X9 with its own i9-8950HK chip delivered 25,915 while the Area-51m with its i9-9900K CPU hit 29,989.
When we ran the Excel Spreadsheet test, the Titan matched 65,000 names and addresses in 36 seconds and beat the 0:40 category average. The X9 was only a few seconds faster at 0:31 AM.
Despite its large dimensions, the Titan is fleet-footed in certain areas. The notebook’s 512 GB NVMe PCIe SSD duplicated 4.97GB of multimedia files in 6 seconds. That is a transfer rate of 848.2 megabytes per second. It torpedoed the 558.2 MBps average, and also beat the Eon 17-X (512GB NVMe PCIe SSD) and X9 (1TB m.2 PCIe SSD) that achieved 566 and 424 MBps respectively. But it was no match for the Area-51m’s dual-1TB PCIe M.2 SSDs in RAID 0 configuration that reached a smoke-free 1,272.3 MBps.
During the Handbrake test, the Titan took 8 minutes to transcode a 4K video to 1080p, faster than the X9 (8:15) and the average (9:44). But it was nowhere near 6:00 am that the Area-51m was clocked.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Heat
Thanks to the Cooler Boost technology from MSI this is a cool, albeit a bit loud, Titan. With a pair of dual fans with 11 strategically placed heat pipes, the laptop can dissipate most of the heat before it reaches scorching levels. I fought 15 battles in Battlefield V. After which I measured the touchpad and got a temperature of 86 degrees Fahrenheit. The center of the keyboard hit 94 degrees while the undercarriage blew out a warm 103 degrees.
The last measurement is above our 95-degree comfort threshold, but since you will rarely have the system on your lap, it is not a major concern. After we have allowed the system to cool down sufficiently, we perform the test again, this time performing a full-screen HD video for 15 minutes. The touchpad, the middle and the bottom of the laptop measure 88, 94 and 95 degrees.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Battery Life
Stacked with so much power, I am not surprised to see that the Titan met with endurance. The laptop lasted only 2 hours and 20 minutes on our battery test (which includes continuous web surfing via WiFi at 150 nits brightness). That result corresponded to the X9, but it is shorter than the 3:15 premium gaming laptop average and the Area 51m’s 2:36. Still, it outperformed the Eon 17-X 1:95 time.
MSI GT75 Titan Review – Conclusion
I love a gaming laptop with a countertop. MSI threw just about everything under the sun in the GT75 Titan and it works beautifully. From its stately, impressive figure, to its unparalleled display, audience-friendly audio, and powerful Core i9 processor and Nvidia RTX 2080, this Titan is simply a great game. However, the price of $4,199 will keep this powerhouse out of the reach of many gamers.
If you’re looking for something that is a little more affordable (and I mean a bit), check out the Aorus X9. For $3,899 you get a system that is extremely lightweight for a desktop replacement and powerful in itself. But if you are looking for a complete multimedia animal, the MSI GT75 Titan should be at the top of your list.
That’s is it for our MSI GT75 Titan Review. Let us know your thoughts on this laptop.
MSI GT75 Titan Review Rating – 9.2/10
The MSI GT75 Titan is large and in charge and offers excellent performance with its Core i9 processor and Nvidia RTX graphics.
- Great overall and graphic performance
- Excellent audio
- Vivid, bright 4K panel
- Super comfortable mechanical keyboard
- Extremely expensive