MSI Raider GE78 HX Review – As Powerful As It Is Big

MSI Raider GE78 HX Review

As the PC gaming market continues to grow, more and more players are looking for reasons to game on the go. To do that properly, however, you likely want a powerful laptop to make sure you can do what you want, when you want, and how you want. The MSI Raider GE78 HX laptop is one of MSI’s premium gaming laptops that packs the punch you want for high-end performance.

Retailing at $3,000, it’s a pricey computer but comes loaded with everything you’d need to make sure it’s something that will satisfy you for years before needing to upgrade. The MSI Raider GE78 HX laptop I reviewed comes with an Intel Core i9-14900HX processor, an Nvidia RTX 4090 GPU, 32GB of DDR5-5600 memory, and a 2TB NVMe SSD.

I’ve used the laptop as my daily driver for the better part of three months to get a feel for how it works under regular and heavy use. So is the MSI Raider GE78 HX laptop one worth picking up, even today, to be your PC solution?

SpecificationDetails
CPUIntel Core i9-14900HX
GraphicsNvidia RTX 4090
Display17-inch at 2560×1600, 240hz IPS
RAM32GB DDR5-5600
Storage2TB NVMe SSD
PortsThunderbolt 4, 2x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C
2x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A, HDMI 2.1, Ethernet,
SD card slot, and 3.5 mm audio jack
Battery99.9 WHr
NetworkWired: Killer E3100G (2.5Gbps)
Wireless: Killer WiFi 7 BE1750, Bluetooth 5.4
Size14.97 x 11.73 x 1.13 inches at 6.61 lbs
Price$2,999.99

MSI Raider GE78 HX Review

Day-to-Day Usage

While everyone loves synthetic benchmark numbers, they aren’t usually indicative of how people will actually use their machine. So, to test this laptop, the focus was on playing games, capturing content, and editing videos. What is it like if the MSI Raider GE78 HX was going to be your primary computer?

Let’s start with games. The games played for the purpose of testing the laptop were Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition, XDefiant, Cyberpunk 2077, and Doom Eternal.

Whatever you want to play, this laptop can handle it. Doom Eternal regularly hit 250-300 frames per second (FPS). CyberPunk 2077, a more resource-intensive game, peaked around 85 FPS while stayed at 61-66 FPS on average. Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition, during the most intense in-game action with military on scree, averaged around 115 FPS. Lastly, XDefiant — the newest game on this list — was averaging over 300 FPS. All in all, it’s a great experience when gaming.

Video rendering was fast with five-minute, 1440p videos rendering in less than two minutes. That same video in 4K was done in less than four. Obviously the more transitions, cuts, and edits you have, the longer it might take. But for the average content creator, you will have no issues working on this.

Should you just want to watch movies and videos, the 17-inch 2560×1600 240hz screen is pretty good. The blacks could be better on high brightness, but you shouldn’t find too much to be upset about with the IPS display.

MSI Raider GE78 HX Review

Some Concerns

It’s not all roses with the MSI Raider GE78 HX, though. One problem I do have is just how loud the fans get when using it. No matter what you do, the fans will, at times, sound like they are getting ready to send the machine to the sky. Still, even with the high fan usage and volume, I noticed that it did get quite warm to the touch. It’s not a machine you’ll want to sit on your lap without a cooling pad or lap desk underneath it. It also can become a tad bit uncomfortable to the touch, especially at the top end of the keyboard, when using it for extended periods. If gaming, I highly recommend a controller or using an external mouse and keyboard if the games being played are intensive.

Another concern is battery life. It’s too inconsistent to know just how good the life is. Sometimes, it would last over five hours. Other times, I was lucky to get over two hours on a full charge. If you want to just spend your time in a game without being plugged in, expect your time to be closer to the two hour-mark, if not less. Playing games like XDefiant or even Diablo 4 at the highest settings say the battery last just over an hour before needing to be plugged in. So while you can definitely game on the go with this machine, it’s still best to keep your power brick handy and ready just in case.

READ MORE: MSI Announces a Mid-Gen Refresh for The Claw

Verdict

Overall, there’s no doubt that the MSI Raider GE78 HX is a powerful computer. It does pretty much everything you’d want from a machine like this. However, when people are looking at gaming laptops, portability might be at the top of their list. The MSI Raider GE78 HX, despite it’s great performance when gaming, creating, or really anything, is a bulky machine that doesn’t really scream “on-the-go gaming”.

That said, if you either travel a lot where you can’t drag a desktop PC with you or you have limited real estate at home where a laptop fits perfectly, then this laptop makes sense even at it’s high price point. It really is going to come down to your specific use case. There’s also a chance you can get one at a lower price point as it’s been on the market for a little while now.


Note: The MSI Raider GE78 HX was provided by Intel for the purposes of this review. As with any computer hardware, your experience may differ from the reviewer.