MSI, perhaps better known lately as the manufacturer of the Wind netbook, announced an update to its GX gaming series laptops on Monday. The 15.4-inch GX620 and 17.1-inch GX720 both incorporate Intel's new Centrino 2 platform, Nvidia's midrange 9600M GTS graphics, and up to 4GB of 800MHz RAM.
MSI has mellowed out the design of the GX series since we reviewed the flame-themed GX600 late last year. However, the GX620 and GX720 do keep the black alloy case and red accents of earlier editions. Like their predecessors, the new models also include MSI's Turbo Drive Engine, which can be activated by pressing the large round Turbo button above the keyboard. MSI claims that Turbo mode will increase the CPU's speed up to 15 percent and help the machine run more smoothly. (On the GX600 we did measure modest gains in performance when Turbo mode was engaged.)
New to these models is MSI's Eco Engine, which lets you choose among five different operating modes--Gaming, Movie, Presentation, Office, or Turbo Battery--to conserve battery life. Battery management programs like this are fairly standard on smaller laptops, which spend more time away from a wall socket, and we welcome the feature even on larger systems like these.
MSI has yet to reveal pricing or availability for the new laptops, but we expect to see that info on the company site soon.