MSI GT660 Gaming Notebook - Gaming Frenzy


Performance Benchmarking

Performance Benchmarking

With all the high octane hardware packed in, we’re expecting performance to be one of the main highlights for the notebook. Luckily for us, we have a range of previously reviewed notebooks that have similar or equivalent specs that we can compare against to find out how the GT660 notebook stacks up.

Specifications / Notebook MSI GT660 Sager NP8690 Toshiba QOSMIO X500
Processor

Intel Core i7-740QM

(1.73GHz, quad-core with 6MB L3 cache)

Intel Core i7-720QM
(1.60GHz, quad-core with 6MB L3 cache)

Intel Core i7-720QM

(1.60GHz, quad-core with 6MB L3 cache)

Chipset intel PM55 Intel PM55 Intel PM55
Memory 12GB DDR3 4GB DDR3 4GB DDR3
HDD 2 x 500GB SATA (7200 RPM) 1 x 320GB SATA (7200 RPM) 1 x 640GB SATA
Video NVIDIA GeForce GTX 285M ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870 NVIDIA GeForce GTS 250M

 

Note: It seems that retail models will come equipped with an Intel Core i7-720QM instead of what our review set came with. Apparently, MSI in Taiwan had ran out of the Intel Core i7-740QM stocks when local distributor Corbell Technology placed the orders. Expect to see slightly lower performance, but we’ve also included the Sager NP8690 using the Core i7-720QM which should give a good idea on how the retail GT660 models will perform. In the event that Intel Core i7-740QM based variants do come in, then it’s probably a good idea to opt for this if you’re looking to maximize the notebook's performance potential.

PCMark Vantage

Our usual PCMark Vantage test shows us just how quick the MSI notebook is, especially against an almost similarly specced Sager NP8690. While most of the scores were similar, the GT660 emerged victorious thanks to a better Productivity score, which gave it a much higher final score. It also beat the Toshiba QOSMIO X500 by just nudging past it. MSI’s Turbo Drive Engine Plus (TDE+) feature also helps with increasing the score by auto overclocking, and if you’re plugged in to the wall socket for your power, you may as well leave this feature enabled for that extra boost.

3DMark06

3DMark06 is our usual test for graphical superiority, more so because we can't run the newer Vantage edition given the notebook's lower screen resolution. Despite that, the scores are usually a good indicator on how the unit will perform in an actual game like our Far Cry 2 test benchmark. The result are pretty interesting, as the MSI GT660 with its NVIDIA GeForce GTX 285M is pretty much on par with the Sager NP8690’s ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870. Since both notebooks have almost similar CPUs (with the GT660 having a slightly faster CPU), the scores seem to add up. Also, MSI's Turbo Drive Engine shows its boosting abilities with a slight score increase with the TDE enabled. Lastly, bear in mind that the GeForce GTX 285M does not support Directx 11, while the Radeon HD 5870 does.

Far Cry 2

The lower resolution screen of the MSI GT660 did throw our testing off somewhat, seeing as how we usually test our gaming notebooks (which come with higher resolution screens) at 1280 x 1024 and 1920 x 1080 resolution. As such, we’re forced to test it instead at the max highest resolution of 1366 x 768 against the 1280 x 1024 resolution of our gaming notebooks. The results aren’t exactly comparative, but from the looks of it, it seems like the ATI Radeon HD 5870 of the Sager notebook holds up better for real world gaming tests. Also, when the TDE+ is turned on, strangely enough, frame rates fell very slightly, so you can either choose to leave it on or turn it off if you’re worried.

8.5
Design
8
Features
9
Performance
9.5
Value
8.5
Mobility
8
The Good
Great performance
Good audio
The Bad
Keyboard flex is very noticeable
Not Full HD screen