MSI’s Stealth 15M is a gaming laptop for human being who’d like to keep their gaming habit a secret. The metal architecture looks striking, and, as well as the single-zone RGB backlit keyboard, over there isn’t lot else around the 15M that’ll offer away what you’re more than likely using it because that — as well as its loud fans. Uneven you’re running the simplest tasks on battery saver mode, its fans are nearly always audibly whirring, and the whining only gets louder with demanding applications and games. You could not an alert it if friend wear headphones or a headset most of the time, but others around you most likely will.
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It deserve to be noisy since it’s constantly warm and trying to keep cool. A thin laptop crammed with an effective components deserve to lead to higher temperatures, especially during gaming. It has an aluminum chassis that helps to diffuse several of that heat, yet it tho can come to be uncomfortably warmth to touch in ~ times, in spite of its fans’ finest (and loudest) efforts.
MSI STEALTH 15M SPECS (AS TESTED)Model number: A11UEK-0103.3GHz Intel main point i7-11375H processor (up come 5.16GHz, four cores)32GB DDR4 3200MHzNvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU v 6GB GDDR6 VRAM (1,357MHz rise clock speed, 65W best power)1TB NVMe SSD15.6-inch FHD 1920 x 1080 IPS display, 144Hz refresh rate720p webcam14.10 x 9.76 x 0.63 inches, 3.73 poundsThree-cell, 52Wh battery150W power brickTwo Type-A USB 3.2 Gen 1, one Thunderbolt 4 port with PD outgoing charging, one Type-C USB 3.1 Gen 2 with DisplayPort, one audio combo jack, one HDMI 2.0 (4K at 60Hz), circular harbor for chargerSingle-zone RGB keyboardWi-Fi 6Bluetooth 5.1
But that’s no your only option in this price range. You will do it get an excellent performance in a comparable price selection with the Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 that has an Nvidia RTX 3070 and also a QHD screen. However if you have the deluxe of time to wait until beforehand May, it’s worth seeing just how Dell’s $900 G15 Ryzen Edition v the RTX 3060 will fare. Dell’s choice is bigger, thicker, and likely heavier (though Dell hasn’t common the official weight) than any kind of of these thin gaming laptops, however there’s a big upside: it’ll be just $900 because that the starting configuration. Whereas MSI’s laptop has much more constraints on its power, however those limitations aid it look and feel favor a deluxe laptop that you can lug around more easily.
For gaming alone, the Stealth 15M isn’t an effective enough to introduce to everyone. It deserve to reach the ideal 60 frames per second threshold with some demanding titles that ns threw in ~ it, but it wasn’t specifically smooth till I made a few minor compromises come the intuitive quality. Likely due to the fact that of the Stealth 15M’s thin design, MSI set the maximum power attract of the RTX 3060 within of that to simply 65W, which is virtually the lowest-possible power necessity the spec allows. (The contempt thicker Predator Triton 300 SE is at 75W, however the aforementioned G15 Ryzen Edition coming in may runs in ~ 115W.) Performance will certainly be good enough for part people, yet unless girlfriend play enlarge or less demanding gamings than the ones ns tested below, friend won’t take it full benefit of the 144Hz refresh rate matte screen that MSI placed in this model.
Running Red Dead Redemption 2 top top the 15M through the 3060 yields roughly 57 frames per second with the graphics collection to ultra settings. In one more open-world game, Horizon Zero Dawn, you will do it get around 68 frames per second with settings collection to your maximum. Because that a check of the RTX 3060’s ray-tracing capabilities, Shadow the the dig Raider with DLSS and ray-tracing shadows set to ultra ran in ~ 57 frames every second. Gaming pushes the 15M to the edge, together its loud fans suggest every step of the way. Ns didn’t notification any obvious bottlenecks in performance because of the heat, which is good.
Not all Nvidia RTX 30-series graphics chips are the same. If its desktop computer GPUs offer continual performance, the power of, say, an RTX 3060 or a 3080 is collection by the laptop manufacturer. Performance have the right to vary wildly native one laptop come the next, however generally, thicker laptops will most likely be more powerful. Yet you’ll only understand for certain by looking at the specs. Nvidia initially allowed companies to hide those crucial specs the tell how an effective (or not) your graphics chips were, but it reversed that is position complying with backlash. Nvidia currently requires manufacturers come be much more transparent around a laptop’s GPU limitations.
If you’re comparing this numbers to few of our various other reviews, you most likely noticed how likewise this laptop performed to the likes that the Asus TUF Dash F15 that has an RTX 3070. That’s due to their comparable clock speed and wattage requirements. The encouraging that the RTX 3060 deserve to keep up, yet I’m skeptical that it’ll have the ability to maintain speed over the next couple of years, as games end up being even an ext graphically demanding to run. Even if part RTX 3070 and 3080 chips run at comparable clock speeds and comparable wattages together an RTX 3060 best now, they’ll always have an ext CUDA cores and also VRAM to spare, i beg your pardon should offer them a sturdier backbone come weather next-gen games in the future.
This deluxe configuration (which MSI claims is accessible at Costco) comes through the quad-core Intel core i7-11375H processor and also Nvidia’s RTX 3060, just like Acer’s 14-inch Predator Triton 300 SE. The huge advantages internally, aside from its bigger 15.6-inch FHD screen, room its 32GB that RAM and 1TB the NVMe storage. It’s an ext than sufficient for handling simple tasks like browsing the web, and I didn’t record it chugging through a myriad that Chrome tabs running. Doing other day-to-day tasks prefer hopping into a Zoom call, making use of Slack, and also running Spotify worked as well as they have to (and the speakers are better than ones i have heard in many gaming laptop computers recently however are quiet not particularly great). All said, the moment-to-moment usage of the Stealth 15M feels likewise speedy to that of other laptops in this price range.
Everything from gamings to videos look great on this matte display. It has generous viewing angles, slim bezels, and also the colors look at accurate. I wish that is bottom chin wasn’t as thick. Perhaps MSI could have managed to fit in a 16:10 element ratio display, offered how large it is. The webcam has an indicator light the flashes on and also off endlessly when it’s active instead of simply remaining lit, like most other laptops do. MSI claims it deliberately designed that this method “to remind the user the the webcam is being used by the software application (such together Zoom) that has the accessibility to the webcam.” At the very least you’ll never accidentally forget that the camera is on, however it is annoying if you’re no the forgetful type.
The key-board layout might take some obtaining used come (every laptop appears to have a various idea of where to placed the function key and exactly how to arrange the volume and also screen brightness keys), yet the secrets themselves are large and unique spaced out, with a satisfying amount of crucial travel. The trackpad functions well, yet I would have liked to check out MSI stick its practically comically huge trackpad discovered in both the GS66 Stealth and Prestige 14 Evo in here. Yes room here, so why not? I would certainly have also welcomed the fingerprint sensor developed into the call 14 Evo’s trackpad.
The Stealth 15M i will not ~ pass as the slim ultrabook that the prestige 14 Evo is, yet it’s quiet surprisingly thin for passing as a gaming laptop. The 15M is 16mm thick (its closest competition, the Razer tongue 15 Base, is around 19mm), and also it weighs 3.7 pounds. This provides it one of the lightest 15.6-inch gaming laptops I’ve had actually the chance to test yet.
The choice of ports roughly the 15M includes one Thunderbolt 4 port v power distribution (PD) support for recharging other devices (but not the laptop itself) and another USB-C port that supports connecting come an exterior display. All configurations also include a UHS-III microSD map slot, two USB Type-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports, one audio combo jack, and also an HDMI 2.0 harbor with support for increase 4K resolution at 60Hz.
As for longevity, the Stealth 15M’s three-cell 52Wh battery is good for a handful of hrs with moderately extensive use. V one hour-long Zoom contact tossed into the mix of some otherwise normal Chrome and Slack usage, that lasted about four and also a fifty percent hours. If every you’re doing is typing, I might imagine it lasting because that close come six.
MSI includes a slim 150W strength brick that’s a little smaller in the length and width department than my Pixel 3, yet it’s about as special as three of them stacked. It’s substantially smaller than the bricks had with much more powerful gaming laptops, however this one had actually no trouble keeping the 15M’s battery topped increase while gaming. That have the right to be a trouble with part models, which periodically come paired v a power adapter the can’t keep sufficient wattage going in to match what’s being invested by the hardware throughout gaming. Additionally, this 150W charger recharges the 15M quickly, acquisition just around an hour and fifteen minutes throughout my testing.
The Stealth 15M is a well-designed laptop without plenty of glaring issues, however for the price that this configuration (and even the much less costly ones, which room still reasonably costly), you won’t be obtaining a ton that bang for your buck if you a gamer that wants great performance. MSI went v a thinner, more subtle architecture than some various other gaming laptop designs, and also that’s one of the best things around the Stealth 15M. However if you’re eager to invest this lot on a gaming laptop, either spend a couple of hundred an ext to acquire one that has a QHD display screen with a much better GPU or wait till Dell’s much more affordable G15 Ryzen edition releases in May.
Update, 7:40AM, April 16th, 2021: MSI shown that the flashing webcam irradiate is not a bug, but intentional design. The review has actually been updated to reflect that.
Photography by Cameron Faulkner / The Verge
AGREE come CONTINUE: MSI STEALTH 15M (2021)
Every smart an equipment now calls for you to agree to a collection of terms and also conditions prior to you have the right to use the — contracts the no one actually reads. It’s impossible for us to read and analyze every single one of this agreements. But we started counting specifically how countless times you need to hit “agree” to use tools when we testimonial them, because these are agreements most human being don’t read and definitely can’t negotiate.
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To start using the Stealth 15M, you’ll have to agree come the following:A request for her languageA inquiry for your regionA request for your keyboard layoutWindows 10 patent agreementCreate a PIN
You can also say yes or no come the following:Connect to Wi-FiSign in v a Microsoft accountSeven privacy setups (location, uncover My Device, share diagnostic data, inking and typing, tailored experience, heralding ID)Customize her device’s proposal for tools and services because that gaming, schoolwork, creativity, entertainment, family, or businessLink an Android call to front notificationsOneDrive backupMicrosoft 365 sign-upAllow Microsoft to collect information (including her location and location history, contacts, voice input, speech and also handwriting patterns, keying history, find history, calendar details, content and also communication history from Microsoft services, messages and also apps, and Microsoft Edge looking history) to let Cortana carry out personalized experiences and also relevant suggestions
That’s five mandatory agreements and 14 optional agreements to use the Stealth 15M.