The MSI GE75 is the first gaming laptop I’ve had with Nvidia’s new RTX 2080 Super, and this is NOT Max-Q as it’s able to run right up to 150 watts, so let’s check out how well it performs in 20 different games and also compare it against some other laptops.
I’ve pretty much got the highest specs possible in the GE75, but it is also available with lower tier hardware for less money. The MSI Dragon Center software lets you select between different performance modes. I’ve used the highest extreme performance option for best results, though I didn’t find this to apply any overclocking or undervolting by default.
Unfortunately it’s not possible to disable Optimus to get a speed boost, which was the case with the GS66 We’ll only be covering gaming performance in this review. We’ll start out by going through all games at all setting levels, then afterwards we’ll see how other laptops stack up against the 2080 Super graphics. Red Dead Redemption 2 was tested using the game’s built in benchmark tool, no other laptop in recent memory has been able to surpass 60 FPS in this test at ultra settings, so straight away we’re seeing what this GPU power can do. Battlefield 5 was tested in campaign mode, and the result at ultra settings was again one of the best I’ve ever seen in this game, but we’ll take a look at how other laptops compare in this game later. Control was tested with and without RTX enabled. I’ve got the results with RTX off in purple, RTX on in the green bars which was actually still pretty playable, then RTX on with DLSS enabled as shown by the red bars, which was running much better while also looking good. Shadow of the Tomb Raider was tested with the built-in benchmark, and once more we’re seeing excellent results at the higher levels for a laptop, but again we’ll see how others compare soon. Apex Legends was tested with either all settings at maximum, or all settings on the lowest possible values, as it doesn’t have predefined setting presets. Absolutely no issues at all running the game maxed out, even the 1% low was above 100 FPS. Call of Duty Modern Warfare was tested in campaign mode with either max or min settings for the same reason, and although there was less of a difference between the levels here, still no problems playing maxed out. Fortnite was tested with the replay feature, and the low setting preset was able to make use of the 300Hz screen. Just for brief comparison, a recent 2070 Super laptop I tested could pass 300 FPS at medium, but wasn’t doing as well at epic settings, which I think is a result of the GE75 not allowing us to disable the integrated graphics. Overwatch is another less demanding game and was tested in the practice range, no issues hitting the 300 FPS frame cap at low and medium, for the most part even ultra settings would still be using the 300Hz screen well. CS:GO was tested using the Ulletical FPS benchmark, although the results are good, as is basically always the case here, better performance is typical from cheaper laptops with lower specs that give us the option of disabling optimus. Dota 2 was tested playing in the middle lane, and the results weren’t really much different compared to far lower specced and cheaper machines.Rainbow Six Siege was tested with the built-in benchmark using Vulkan, there was minimal difference between ultra and high settings, while the average FPS from low was near the screens refresh rate. Metro Exodus was tested using the built-in benchmark, most parts of the game perform a fair bit better than this, so don’t take these results as a good indication of what to expect throughout the entire game, it’s more of a worst case. The Division 2 was also tested with the built-in benchmark, like some others the results at lower settings aren’t impressive, but at higher levels where the GPU can get to work we’re seeing great results. Monster Hunter World was tested running through the main town, and similar deal here too, I’ve had lower specced laptops do better at lower levels, but passing 100 FPS at max settings is next level for a laptop. Borderlands 3 was tested using the game’s built in benchmark, again fairly good results at the higher setting levels, as you’d expect from 2080 Super graphics paired with i9 CPU. Ghost Recon Breakpoint was also tested with the benchmark tool, again excellent results compared to other laptops tested, I don’t think I’ve ever seen above 80 FPS at max settings in this test on a laptop. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is another that was tested with the games benchmark, and interestingly the results were lower than expected given the hardware we’re dealing with. Far Cry New Dawn was also tested with the games benchmark, again not quite as good results as I was expecting. This game and the last do rely a bit more on CPU power than others at higher settings, so perhaps there’s something holding it back there. The Witcher 3 was running fine at max settings, I don’t think you need a mega high frame rate, but there were some fair gains from running with high settings instead. F1 2019 usually sees similar behaviour, however on the GE75 there’s not really too much of a difference between ultra high and high settings.
Now let’s take a look at how the 150 watt 2080 Super compares with other laptops, use these results as a rough guide only, as they were tested at different times with different drivers.
In Battlefield 5 I’ve got the GE75 highlighted in red. It’s giving one of the best results I’ve seen in this game, only behind the more powerful 200 watt 2080 in the thicker GT76 just above it, though the 1% low was a bit lower compared to some of the others just below it.
These are the results from Far Cry 5 with ultra settings in the built-in benchmark. The GE75 is down a little this time, I have found processor power to matter more in this test compared to GPU so that may be why, I’ll take a look into CPU performance in the upcoming review, but either way still an excellent result.
In Shadow of the Tomb Raider the GE75 is back near the top though only a few frames ahead of other options that are a fair bit thinner such as MSI’s GS66, and the GT76’s lead is a bit further in this GPU heavy test.
Overall the gaming performance is excellent, as you’d expect from the 2080 Super with 150 watt power limit, however there was an overall trend of performance being a bit lower compared to alternatives at lower setting levels.
In many cases I believe this is due to the GE75’s inability to disable the iGPU, as this typically offers a nice boost in gaming performance. If MSI had offered this option here, the GE75 would probably see some nice gains. The 300Hz screen was useful in esports titles, but given we still needed lower settings to get optimal frame rates, I think this further illustrates how important being able to run games only on the discrete graphics becomes to get the most out of high-end hardware like this. Higher settings were needed to actually take advantage of the GPU power, but if you’re considering something this high end I’d hope that you’re planning on playing at higher settings anyway.
Here are the screen response time results for the 1080p 300Hz screen in my unit. By default, MSI have overdrive mode enabled through the dragon center software, and this gives us a 3.2 ms grey-to-grey response time.
If we look at how this compares against other laptops well, it’s the best result I’ve tested since I bought my testing hardware, a very impressive result. MSI gives us the option to disable overdrive, which will increase the response time a bit to 6.8ms however it does remove the overshoot and undershoot in some transitions.
Let me know what you thought of the gaming performance from the 150 watt RTX 2080 Super in MSI’s GE75 gaming laptop down in the comments.