In recent years, one niche of laptop computers went from “Wait, what is that for?” – to “I can’t live without it!”. This is the market of the content creators. At first, a lot of people interested in any sort of content making needed to have extremely powerful PCs with numerous amounts of extra gadgets. And the biggest drawback of that was – you can’t take it with you. However, when mobile computing started to catch up on the big boy gaming machines, people wanted thin, light, and powerful notebooks.

Today’s device will certainly try to deliver. This is the MSI Prestige 15 A10SC, and it features a decent amount of features, including the Max-Q version of the GTX 1650, up to the Intel Core i7-10710U processors and two display options – a 1080p and a 4K IPS models. If you are really into image processing, the latter one is what MSI calls it the “True Pixel” display, with a supposed 100% Adobe RGB coverage, an Average dE of <2.0 out of the box, and they state all of their notebooks are calibrated before they leave the factory.

Sure, this sounds like a good thing, but honestly, the 4K scaling on a 15-inch monitor is horrendous. So we picked the 1080p panel which has surprisingly good characteristics as well – you’ll read about it in a second.

You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/msi-prestige-15/

Contents


Specs Sheet

MSI Prestige 15 – Specs


OS


Windows 10 Pro, Windows 10 Home


Dimensions


356.8 x 233.7 x 15.9 mm (14.05″ x 9.20″ x 0.63″)

Ports and connectivity

  • 2x USB Type-C 3.1 (3.1 Gen 2), Thunderbolt 3, Power Delivery (PD), DisplayPort
  • 2x USB Type-A 3.1 (3.1 Gen 2)
  • HDMI
  • Card reader Micro SD
  • Wi-Fi 802.11ax
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Audio jack 3.5 mm combo

Features

  • Fingerprint reader
  • Web camera HD
  • Backlit keyboard optional
  • Speakers 2x 2W Speakers
  • Optical drive
  • Security Lock slot

What’s in the box?

Inside the super sleek white package, we found a 90W USB Type-C power brick, some paper manuals, and the laptop itself. Additionally, MSI has included a sticker and a brochure, which shows off the partnership between the brand, and the Discovery Channel.

Design and construction

MSI Prestige 15’s body is made out of aluminum and it’s extremely portable. Its weight is 1.60 kg and the profile measures at 15.9mm, making it one of the thinnest and lightest notebooks that pack a dedicated graphics card. Ultimately, the feel is premium with an anodized finish and attracts a surprisingly low amount of fingerprints.

Interestingly, the lid opens easily with a single hand, and the hinges feel extremely balanced, throughout their entire travel. Due to the thin profile of the display, the lid bends when you twist it. However, we’ve definitely seen more flex than what we saw here, so there is nothing to worry about.

Next in line, there is the base. First, let’s start with the rigidity, which is not great, and the keyboard deck flexes a bit. Additionally, this device’s chassis doesn’t like being flexed, and it produces a squeaking sound when you do so. As of the keyboard, itself, it is a decent unit, which is relatively comfortable for typing. While its key travel is a little short, there is a satisfying click on tap and the keycaps are pretty big. Not only that, but it features a backlight and the arrow keys are surprisingly big in size.

Further down below, there is the star of the show – the touchpad. It is extremely huge and has a very wide aspect ratio. Needless to say, it is comfortable to use, with its glass cover, smooth gliding, and accurate tracking. In addition to that, there is a fingerprint reader embedded in the top left corner of the touchpad area. It’s good but unfortunately, it blocks the touch responsiveness on its left and above it.

Ports

This laptop features two USB Type-C ports with Thunderbolt 3 support and both of them (one at a time) can be used to charge the machine. They are both located on the left side of the machine. There, you can also find an HDMI connector and an audio jack. On the other side, you’ll find two USB Type-A 3.1 (Gen. 2) ports and a MicroSD card slot.

Display quality

MSI Prestige 15 has a Full HD IPS panel with a model number Innolux N156HCE-EN1 (CMN15E8). Its diagonal is 15.6″ (39.62 cm), and the resolution 1920 х 1080 pixels. The screen ratio is 16:9, and we are looking at a pixel density of – 142 ppi, and a pitch of 0.18 х 0.18 mm. The screen turns into Retina when viewed at distance equal to or greater than 60cm (24″) (from this distance one’s eye stops differentiating the separate pixels, and it is normal for looking at a laptop).

Viewing angles are comfortable. We offer images at 45° to evaluate image quality.

We measured a maximum brightness of 365 nits in the middle of the screen and 342 nits as an average for the whole area, with a maximum deviation of 10%. The Correlated Color Temperature on a white screen is 6980K – slightly colder than the optimal for the sRGB standard of 6500K. The average color temperature through the grey scale before profiling is 6840K.
In the illustration below you can see how the display performs from a uniformity perspective. In other words, the leakage of light from the light source.

Values of dE2000 over 4.0 should not occur, and this parameter is one of the first you should check if you intend to use the laptop for color-sensitive work. The contrast ratio is good – 1200:1 (850:1 after profiling).

To make sure we are on the same page, we would like to give you a little introduction to the sRGB color gamut and the Adobe RGB. To start, there’s the CIE 1976 Uniform Chromaticity Diagram that represents the visible specter of colors by the human eye, giving you a better perception of the color gamut coverage and the color accuracy.

Inside the black triangle, you will see the standard color gamut (sRGB) that is being used by millions of people in HDTV and on the web. As for the Adobe RGB, this is used in professional cameras, monitors, etc for printing. Basically, colors inside the black triangle are used by everyone and this is the essential part of the color quality and color accuracy of a mainstream notebook.

Still, we’ve included other color spaces like the famous DCI-P3 standard used by movie studios, as well as the digital UHD Rec.2020 standard. Rec.2020, however, is still a thing of the future and it’s difficult for today’s displays to cover that well. We’ve also included the so-called Michael Pointer gamut, or Pointer’s gamut, which represents the colors that naturally occur around us every day.

The yellow dotted line shows MSI Prestige 15’s color gamut coverage.

Its display covers 92% of the sRGB/ITU-R BT.709 (web/HDTV standard) in CIE1976.

Our “Design and Gaming” profile delivers optimal color temperature (6500K) at 140 cd/m2 luminance and sRGB gamma mode.

We tested the accuracy of the display with 24 commonly used colors like light and dark human skin, blue sky, green grass, orange, etc. You can check out the results at factory condition and also, with the “Design and Gaming” profile.

Below you can compare the scores of MSI Prestige 15 with the default settings (left), and with the “Gaming and Web design” profile (right).

The next figure shows how well the display is able to reproduce really dark parts of an image, which is essential when watching movies or playing games in low ambient light.

The left side of the image represents the display with stock settings, while the right one is with the “Gaming and Web Design” profile activated. On the horizontal axis, you will find the grayscale and on the vertical axis – the luminance of the display. On the two graphs below you can easily check for yourself how your display handles the darkest nuances but keep in mind that this also depends on the settings of your current display, the calibration, the viewing angle, and the surrounding light conditions.

Response time (Gaming capabilities)

We test the reaction time of the pixels with the usual “black-to-white” and “white-to-black” method from 10% to 90% and vice versa.

We recorded Fall Time + Rise Time = 23 ms.

PWM (Screen flickering)

Pulse-width modulation (PWM) is an easy way to control monitor brightness. When you lower the brightness, the light intensity of the backlight is not lowered, but instead turned off and on by the electronics with a frequency indistinguishable to the human eye. In these light impulses, the light/no-light time ratio varies, while brightness remains unchanged, which is harmful to your eyes. You can read more about that in our dedicated article on PWM.

MSI Prestige 15’s display uses PWM to adjust its brightness up until 95 nits. However, the flickering is with a high enough frequency, making it relatively comfortable for extended periods of use, without the excessive strain of the eyes in this aspect.

Blue light emissions

Installing our Health-Guard profile not only eliminates PWM but also reduces the harmful Blue Light emissions while keeping the colors of the screen perceptually accurate. If you’re not familiar with the Blue light, the TL;DR version is – emissions that negatively affect your eyes, skin, and your whole body. You can find more information about that in our dedicated article on Blue Light.

Conclusion

MSI Prestige 15’s display has an IPS panel with a Full HD resolution, comfortable viewing angles, and a good contrast ratio. It also covers 92% of the sRGB color gamut and its backlight doesn’t flicker above 95 nits of brightness (while below this value, the frequency of the flickers is high enough to be considered safe). Now, in the beginning, we said that this notebook can be purchased with a 4K panel with a lot of goodies. From what we found out, its 1080p sibling doesn’t go through the same quality control, as the color accuracy is far from the standard. However, our Gaming and Web design profile greatly improves the color representation, and we got an Average dE of 1.5, which is great for color-sensitive work.

Buy our profiles

Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for MSI Prestige 15 configurations with 15.6″ FHD IPS Innolux N156HCE-EN1 (CMN15E8).

*Should you have problems with downloading the purchased file, try using a different browser to open the link you’ll receive via e-mail. If the download target is a .php file instead of an archive, change the file extension to .zip or contact us at [email protected]

Read more about the profiles HERE.

In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia’s products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.

Office Work - screen profile

Office Work

Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.

Design and Gaming - screen profile

Design and Gaming

This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.

Health-Guard - screen profile

Health-Guard

THealth-Guard eliminates the harmful Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and reduces the negative Blue Light which affects our eyes and body. Since it’s custom tailored for every panel, it manages to keep the colors perceptually accurate. Health-Guard simulates paper so the pressure on the eyes is greatly reduced.

All

Drivers

All of the latest drivers and utilities for this notebook can be found here: https://www.msi.com/Laptop/support/Prestige-15-A10SC

Battery

Now, we conduct the battery tests with Windows Better performance setting turned on, screen brightness adjusted to 120 nits, and all other programs turned off except for the one we are testing the notebook with. This unit has an 82Wh battery, which delivers 11 hours and 40 minutes of Web browsing and 10 minutes less of watching HD video content.

CPU options

The top of the line processor, this laptop comes with, is the Core i7-10710U – the first six-core U-series CPU from Intel.


GPU options

On the GPU side, however, you get a pretty respectable GTX 1650 Max-Q, equipped with 4GB of GDDR5 memory.


Gaming tests

rise-of-the-tomb-raider

Temperatures and comfort

Max CPU load

In this test we use 100% on the CPU cores, monitoring their frequencies and chip temperature. The first column shows a computer’s reaction to a short load (2-10 seconds), the second column simulates a serious task (between 15 and 30 seconds), and the third column is a good indicator of how good the laptop is for long loads such as video rendering.

Average core frequency (base frequency + X); CPU temp.

Intel Core-i7-10710U (15W TDP) 0:02 – 0:10 sec 0:15 – 0:30 sec 10:00 – 15:00 min
MSI Prestige 15 3.09 GHz (B+181%) @ 81°C 3.06 GHz (B+178%) @ 91°C 2.57 GHz (B+134%) @ 91°C
Toshiba-Dynabook Satellite Pro L50-G 2.78 GHz (B+153%) @ 78°C 1.53 GHz (B+39%) @ 62°C 1.59 GHz (B+45%) @ 63°C

In the “Performance” mode, we monitored a very respectable clock speed. The maximum power input was 51W the cooling happens to struggle a little bit. As you can see the temperatures at the end was 91C, while the fan were giving their best.

Real-life gaming

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Max-Q GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 2 min) GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 30 min)
MSI Prestige 15 1408 MHz @ 70°C 1388 MHz @ 74°C
MSI GF63 10SCXR 1230 MHz @ 77°C 1250 MHz @ 78°C
Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen 2 1345 MHz @ 69°C 1343 MHz @ 72°C
ASUS ZenBook 15 UX534 1229 MHz @ 77°C 1221 MHz @ 78°C

However, during gaming, in “Balanced” mode (since there is no actual difference between “Performance” and “Balanced” modes), the laptop was able to maintain more than a decent frequency, and the temperatures never exceeded 74C.

Comfort during combined load

Quite frankly, the laptop gets pretty warm under combined load.

Verdict

This is a laptop that brings a lot of value to the table. Not only does it offer quite some performance, thanks to the “Performance” mode from the dedicated menu in the software, but you can also comfortably play AAA titles on it. Well, yes, on low-medium settings and quite honestly, the laptop heats a lot during long gaming sessions but this is inevitable, given the 15.9mm chassis.

Additionally, the laptop supports up to 64GB of DDR4 memory, has NVMe drive support and it has Wi-Fi 6 certification. Moreover, there are two Thunderbolt 3 ports, which can be used for charging, data, connecting a monitor, and probably an eGPU, although the purpose behind the GTX 1650 Max-Q is that you get everything you need inside the chassis.

So, a few sentences ago we mentioned something called the “Performance” mode. Well, this laptop offers you four different presets, you can configure it to work with – the aforementioned one, “Balanced” mode, “Silent” mode and “Battery Saver”. Pretty much everything throttles the processor down, so you get less noise or better battery life. Interestingly enough, we didn’t find a big difference between the Balanced one and the Performance one in gaming, however, when it comes to CPU-intensive workload, the latter can perform up to 50% faster, which is … quite a big margin to be honest.

And the ambient result is pretty straightforward – the laptop becomes extremely loud, and the temperatures go sky-high, meaning that the “Performance” mode removes a lot of restrains and the Core i7-10710U is unleashed like a hound in the woods.

MSI Prestige 15’s display has an IPS panel (Innolux N156HCE-EN1) with a Full HD resolution, comfortable viewing angles, and a good contrast ratio. It also covers 92% of the sRGB color gamut and its backlight doesn’t flicker above 95 nits of brightness (while below this value, the frequency of the flickers is high enough to be considered safe). Now, in the beginning, we said that this notebook can be purchased with a 4K panel with a lot of goodies. From what we found out, its 1080p sibling doesn’t go through the same quality control, as the color accuracy is far from the standard. However, our Gaming and Web design profile greatly improves the color representation, and we got an Average dE of 1.5, which is great for color-sensitive work.

So this laptop would be a great competitor to something like the ZenBook 15 UX534, and even the XPS 15 in some areas. Especially, thanks to the fact that you have a reasonably powerful notebook, which can be both fast and quiet (not at the same time), and a battery lasting for more than 11 hours of Web browsing.

Pros

  • Two Thunderbolt 3 ports (both can charge the laptop) and a MicroSD card reader
  • A backlit keyboard with big keycaps, and a huge touchpad
  • Supports up to 64GB of DDR4 memory in dual channel, as well as M.2 NVMe drives
  • Doesn’t use aggressive PWM for brightness adjustment (Innolux N156HCE-EN1)
  • Has a good contrast ratio and comfortable viewing angles (Innolux N156HCE-EN1)
  • 92% sRGB coverage and great color accuracy thanks to our Gaming and Web design profile (Innolux N156HCE-EN1)
  • Thin and light aluminum body
  • 11+ hours of Web browsing on battery and a fingerprint reader

Cons

  • Gets pretty warm when gaming
  • Quiet speakers
  • Shallow key travel

You can check the prices and configurations in our Specs System: https://laptopmedia.com/series/msi-prestige-15/





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