The MSI Raider GE77 (officially known as the GE77HX 12UHS) is one of the most impressive and ambitious gaming laptops available. On the inside, it has the hardware to terrify any game, while on the outside, it has a screen that makes any game look stunning. That means MSI’s ambitions are even more lofty than many of its rivals, matching its costs; in this field, which includes machines from Alienware and Razer, that’s really saying something.
Three full-size USB ports, plus Type-C and Thunderbolt 4 connectors, make it practical as a portable, while the HDMI 2.1 output is future-proof with support for 4K gaming at 120Hz and 8K gaming at 60Hz. MSI has also placed a handy dandy SD card reader elsewhere. Inside you’ll find ultra-fast 2.5Gbps Ethernet, dual-band Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.2. It has more extensive connectivity than any of its rivals – it’s a shame that the USB port doesn’t offer power delivery, although biometrics such as a fingerprint reader or facial recognition would have been nice.
The backlit chiclet keyboard has flat, slightly rough keys with reasonable travel and clear actuation points. Feedback on the keyboard is good. The keyboard hardly shakes while typing and, as per MSI’s usual design, the ‘Fn’ key is located in a place that is unthinkable on other laptops. The keyboard backlight has three brightness settings, controlled by two function keys. Overall, MSI offers a keyboard suitable for everyday use.
The brightness (371.2 nits) of the matte 17.3-inch display (3840 x 2160 pixels) exceeds the desirable minimum (over 300 nits), but contrast is poor (733:1) and we would expect more from a €5200 laptop. For reference, we consider values above 1000:1 to be good; 120 Hz panels have a short response time. We also did not detect any PWM flicker.
MSI went all the way to the top of the Nvidia and Intel stack to find the Raider GE77 hardware; the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti (read our detailed review) runs with a peak power limit of 175W on this laptop. This is a big limit for accessing 16GB of memory and 7,424 stream processors.