MSI Vector GP76 Review – Simplistic Powerhouse
Looking for a gaming laptop with a focus on high performance gaming? The MSI Vector GP76 could be the one for you, with 360Hz refresh rate. Is it worth your money? Let's find out.
+ Good performance
+ 360Hz refresh rate
+ Sturdy build quality
+ Good array of ports
+ Comfortable per-key RGB keyboard
- Slower SSD
- Below average battery life
- Loud fans
- Subpar speakers
Unboxing the MSI Vector GP76
Let’s kick off the MSI Vector GP76 review with the unboxing. The packaging is your run-of-the-mill brown cardboard box with the MSI logo and visuals on it, with nothing much else. Inside the box for our review unit, there isn’t much stuff but we do expect more in the final retail unit. Regardless, this is what we found inside:
- 330W power brick
- Power cable
- The MSI Vector GP76 itself
|CPU:||Intel Core i7-12700H @ 3.5GHz (up to 4.7 GHz Boost), 14C (6P + 8E) / 20T, 45W TDP, Intel 7|
|RAM:||16GB (2 x 8GB) 3200MHz DDR4|
|GPU:||GeForce NVIDIA RTX 3060 GDDR6 6GB|
|Storage:||1TB NVMe PCIe SSD (Micron 2450)|
|Software:||Microsoft Windows 11 Home
MSI App Player
802.11ax Wi-Fi 6E
1 x USB 3.2 Gen2 Type-C
3 x USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-A
1 x RJ45 LAN
|Display:||17.3″ FHD (1920 x 1080) IPS-level, 240Hz
1 x HDMI 2.1 (8K@60Hz)
1 x miniDisplayPort 1.4
|Audio:||2 x 2W speakers
1 x 3.5mm combo audio jack
|Power:||330W power adapter
|Dimensions:||397 x 284 x 25.9 mm|
Kicking off our benchmark suite with CrystalDiskMark, the SSD on the MSI Vector GP76 is on the slower side but there are certainly much faster ones out there. Regardless, you should still be able to enjoy fast speeds overall, especially when booting it up. In case you’re wondering, it’s using the 1TB Micron 2450 SSD.
Moving on to Cinebench R20, the MSI Vector GP76 managed to get a strong showing with its Intel Core i7-12700H. It managed to easily get within the top five highest scoring devices in our list of benchmarked laptops in this test.
When you add graphical performance into the equation, it’s not as great but it’s still pretty good with the RTX 3060 GPU. It managed to get a score of 7,280 in Unigine SuperPosition’s 4K Optimized benchmark. This is a sign that you might not want to do anything in 4K resolution with this laptop, but 1440p should still be fine.
In 3DMark Time Spy on the other hand, the MSI Vector GP76 performed admirably well, though it is a little short of breaking the 10,000 mark. Regardless, the CPU and GPU combo used in the laptop is certainly shaping up to be a good combination.
Adding ray tracing to the mix since this is an RTX graphics card after all, the MSI Vector GP76 seemed to fare relatively well, especially comparing it to other laptops running the same GPU. Regardless, it’s still not performing at a level where we feel it can do ray tracing comfortably so I would recommend disabling it unless the game also has DLSS.
Lastly on PCMark 10, the MSI Vector GP76 is showing to be a well-rounded laptop, capable of doing pretty much anything and everything pretty well. Of course, do keep in mind that this is purely from a performance standpoint, and even then, it’s on a synthetic benchmark.
Of course, no gaming laptop review would be complete without a gaming benchmark and in the case of the MSI Vector GP76, it’s a pretty strong machine. Granted it might just be Full HD resolution but you can pretty much play anything at the highest settings and enjoy at least buttery smooth 60FPS. As I theorized earlier, enabling ray tracing might not be a good idea.
As expected from a gaming laptop, battery life is the MSI Vector GP76’s weakest point. It only managed to last a mere 2 hours and 42 minutes (162 minutes) in PCMark’s Modern Office endurance test and is in the bottom five list of benchmarked laptops in this test. In the gaming endurance test, it only managed to last 51 minutes, but that’s to be expected given how resource-intensive it gets.
The MSI Vector GP76 is a relatively simple, straightforward gaming laptop. For starters, it has a pretty sturdy build quality with the lid and keyboard area being made out of aluminum. The lid itself can be easily opened with one hand, and you can open it up to about 135°, which is adequate.
Next up, the keyboard is certainly one of the most comfortable ones on a gaming laptop, at least from the ones I’ve tested thus far. You get short travel distance, just needs a little pressure to actuate, and is relatively quiet. You may need a bit of time to get used to the arrow keys but this shouldn’t take too long. Of course, you still have that per-key RGB goodness to enjoy as well.
You also get a good array of ports here, including three USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A port, a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port, a miniDisplayPort, an HDMI 2.1 port, an RJ45 LAN port, and a combo audio jack. It doesn’t have any form of an SD card reader but given what you’re getting, it’s not a big loss.
Lastly, you have a 360Hz refresh rate display with 4ms GTG response time. This is ideal for those who play fast-paced games, especially shooters like Valorant and Apex Legends, where every bit of time counts. Granted, not many games are able to push the necessary frames up to make full use of that 360Hz but sacrificing some quality for it is still possible to get close. Images are sharp with nice colours provided that you don’t plant your face right in front of the screen.
For a good number of people out there, the MSI Vector GP76 will be treated more like a mobile desktop rather than a laptop. This is not just because of the battery life but also due to how hefty it is. After all, it’s a 17-inch laptop that weighs close to 3kg, making it a bit hard to bring around often. I’m personally okay with the size but it would be nice to see some weight being shaved off.
In terms of thermals, the running temperature of the GPU is pretty cool while the CPU is generally running good with no thermal throttling whatsoever. However, the fans do get rather loud which can be annoying to you and your surroundings. I would recommend using headphones / earphones while you’re gaming to avoid the noise. Speaking of GPU, do keep in mind that this doesn’t have G-SYNC.
Lastly, the speakers are rather subpar. Mids and highs are reproduced relatively decent with bass being practically non-existent here. That’s to be expected from built-in speakers but I would have personally preferred if the volume was a tad bit louder than what we get here.
MSI Vector GP76 Verdict
If you’re looking for a gaming laptop with a focus on performance, the MSI Vector GP76 could serve you well. If you need something that can push the frames up to make full use of the 360Hz refresh rate, then best to get a variant with beefier hardware. If you need something more mobile and versatile, then you may need to look for something else, perhaps one that is smaller in size.
At the end of our MSI Vector GP76 review, I award this gaming laptop with our Bronze Pokdeward.
Big thanks to MSI Malaysia for sending us this laptop for the purpose of this review.