MSI GT72 Dominator-019 Gaming Laptop Review

May 30, 2016
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Stimulating your brain through PC gaming is what you like, eh? Not a bad thing at all, you just need a proper tool for that: a gaming notebook. Today, we’re taking a look at one of those, the MSI GT72 Dominator-019, and determine if it’s capable for smooth frame rates and high settings…

How good for gaming?

GeForce GTX970M (3GB GDDR5) is the graphics engine inside this thing. That unit is one of the fastest graphics processors for laptops; hence you can get good FPS even when plenty (or all) eye candy is on. One example is GTA 5, you’re able to use high in-game settings with Full HD resolution, and the FPS will be a steady ~60. Another popular game they like these days is Fallout 4, it would get closer to 60 frames per second as well.

Keep in mind that you can also upgrade the graphics engine if you want. For example, GTX980M fits in here.

General performance

Naturally, a gaming laptop can be used for all kinds of things, easily. MSI GT72 Dominator-019 has a processor called Intel Core i7-6820HK, a less common quad-core model offering 2.7GHz clock speed and 3.6GHz turbo. Despite it’s not being popular, the unit is still very powerful: CPU Mark gives it around 9000 points. Couple that with the 16GB DDR4 (2133MHz) memory installed and you have a multitasking powerhouse at your fingertips. You can even upgrade the memory, there are two free slots available (max RAM 64GB).

Storage drive is rather old-school, a spinning 1000GB 7200RPM hard drive. However, there are plenty of upgrading options: one empty PCI-e NVMe slot and two empty M.2 SATA 3 slots for a solid-state drive.

What ports and connections are included?

MSI GT72 Dominator-019 has six USB 3.0 ports and one USB SuperPort (the USB-C 3.1 standard), so a lot of peripherals can be plugged in. There are also HDMI-out and miniDisplayPort connectors in case you want to hook up an external monitor.

For networking both wired and wireless adapters are included: 1000Mbps RJ-45 port and 802.11 AC-type WiFi with Bluetooth 4.1.

There’s a DVD burner in the unit; you can install games and software from discs. You can also transfer data to & from memory cards, SD(HC/XC) reader is available.

Other features you might find interesting

MSI GT72 Dominator-019 includes a large 17.3-inch non-touch, matte display. It has Full HD resolution and IPS panel which, in practice, means wide viewing angles from sides (close to 180 degree). G-Sync is sadly not supported. The webcam records 1080p video at 30FPS.

The 9-cell battery is an internal one, it requires disassembling parts of the laptop to upgrade it. The battery life will be around 4 hours non-gaming and 1.5 hours under gameplay.

The keyboard has a full-color backlit feature.

Final thoughts

MSI GT72 Dominator-019 is – obviously – an expensive laptop, but at the same time it offers a lot for your money. The heavyweight graphics engine, 6th Generation i7 processor and DDR4 RAM are a heaven for players, and using high/ultra settings even on new demanding games like Fallout 4 will result in smooth frame rates. People have also mentioned it’s overclock-friendly, you can do that to CPU and the graphics card. All in all, I can certainly recommend this MSI if you take your gaming hobby seriously!

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