Gaming on a notebook can often be “meh”, in that laptops don’t always have the appropriate performance, resulting in subpar frame rates. What you actually need is a proper gaming notebook which, almost every time, costs money. However, this MSI GP62 Leopard Pro-042 is one of the cheaper laptops meant for players… Let’s see if it’s actually a good choice or not.
Does it work for gaming?
The thing with MSI GP62 Leopard Pro-042 is, it has the GeForce GTX950M (2GB GDDR3) graphics card inside. It’s much faster than integrated units, yet not on par with the great GTX970 or 980M. As a result, you can play any game you like, but not all of them on ultra settings. For example, the popular GTA 5 will give around 30 frames per second if settings are high and resolution Full HD. On similar settings, Fallout 4 would hardly reach 30FPS. So you see, medium settings might be a better idea with those new and demanding titles. On the other hand, Counter-Strike: Go will run smooth as a silk on high settings.
Other components under the hood
MSI GP62 Leopard Pro-042 comes with a bit older 4th generation processor, the Intel Core i5-4210H. You’ll find two cores in it and a 2.9GHz clock frequency (which ups to 3.5GHz with the help of turbo). CPU Mark score is around 4500, decent for gaming and good for software of all types: web browser, programming or even image editing. So even though it’s a 2014 processor you’ll find the i5-4210H sufficient for most uses for sure.
Other important things include 8GB DDR3L 1600Mhz memory. It’s installed on one stick – another slot is open, with maximum memory being 16GB. The storage section consists of a 1TB SATA hard drive (5400RPM). It’s not really a snappy drive, but fortunately there is one M.2 slot inside. You can install solid-state drive there and enjoy a faster system.
How about ports and connections?
In total, there are four USB ports in MSI GP62 Leopard Pro-042. Two of them are USB 2.0, two USB 3.0. They accept peripherals like gaming mouse, printer or external hard/optical drive. Video output is the usual HDMI, connecting a monitor to that is possible.
There should not be problems with networking, a Gigabit RJ-45 port can be used with cable and there’s also AC-supporting Wireless card inside. Bluetooth 4.0 works, too.
The laptop sports a DVD burner as well as a card reader for the common SD(XC/HC) formats.
What other interesting things are there?
The screen, yes. This MSI features a 15.6-inch Full HD display, quite perfect for gaming. It has anti-glare (matte) coating. Touch is not supported. The webcam embedded in the top bezel supports 720p resolution.
The battery operates on 6 cells, expect the usual 1.5-2 hours battery life if playing a game and 3-4 hours if not.
There’s no backlit feature on the keyboard.
MSI GP62 Leopard Pro-042 is about the cheapest laptop labeled as a gaming unit. Indeed, it will run any game of today (and past), it’s just a matter of right settings and resolution selection to get good frame rates: some newer titles require medium settings. And if you’re more into software, the notebook will easily handle all programs without slowing down – the CPU and RAM here are quite a good combo. You can install M.2 SSD to make this thing even faster. So, if you’re into gaming, have tight budget and can compromise on settings, I could recommend this affordable MSI for you.