REVIEW: MSI Summit E15 – For The Professionals
Though its manufacturer is best known for gaming, MSI’s svelte 15.6” Summit E15, now with the latest Intel 11th-generation processor, is one for the professionals – and it shows.
Right from the outset, it’s clear who the Summit E15 is for. No RGB lighting, no elaborate designs like on some other MSI machines like the GE76 Raider Dragon Edition Tiamat – just sleek black and gold, with an illuminated keyboard in plain white lighting, thank you very much. This is a professional notebook for professional users, and it shows – it wouldn’t look at all out of place in any boardroom or office setting.
It’s slim and lightweight as well, at just 16.9mm thick and weighing in at 1.65kg, making it a good option for anyone who needs a laptop they can travel with easily. One bugbear I had with the slim and minimalist design, however, is that it can be a bit tricky to open – there’s a skinny notch that you’re meant to grip onto, but it’s so thin that my hands had trouble finding purchase.
The E15 has a respectable array of ports, including two Thunderbolt (either of which can be used to charge the laptop), two USB-A, a full-sized HDMI port, and a MicroSD card slot along with a combination 3.5mm jack, which should be plenty for on-the-go connectivity. The sturdy hinge on the device can also fold completely flat, if you feel that’s something you want it to do.
Display and Sound
The 4K IPS display on the model we reviewed is beautiful – crisp and clear with vibrant colours covering 100 per cent of the AdobeRGB spectrum. It’s not a touchscreen, though one model with 1080p display is. Strange that it wasn’t included on the UHD model, even if I didn’t actually need it.
Sound is decent enough for a laptop, though won’t be winning any awards – I’m never a fan of bottom-mounted speakers that fire all the audio right into the desk. It arguably doesn’t need good sound as much as a gaming notebook would, though; if you’re using it for Netflix, Zoom meetings, and possibly video editing, it’ll serve you just fine.
Performance and Features
The Summit E15 comes equipped with an 11th-generation Intel Core i7 processor and a whopping 32GB of RAM, which makes it a fast and responsive machine, and the accompanying workhorse that is its Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650Ti graphics card should make it a decent pick for work such as graphics and light video editing (it also would likely serve well for gaming, though I didn’t test its chops in that department). There’s a respectable amount of space on its SSD as well.
Battery life is adequate – I managed to get through about a full day of work on the battery without it dying, and that was with keyboard illumination on and a wireless mouse dongle attached. You’ll want to plug it in quick-smart after that, though, as it hit battery saver mode after around six hours, and I was getting alerts at the 7.5-hour mark.
The built-in webcam is… well, it’s a built-in webcam. It’s fine. It records in 720p, which is about the standard, though with the production value put in on the rest of the Summit E15, MSI should really have considered upgrading it to a full-HD 1080p webcam. Nonetheless, it’ll get you through a Zoom meeting without making you look like a suspect on Cops, which I suppose is all you can ask for.
With the Summit E15, MSI has proven that it’s not to be trifled with when it comes to notebooks in the business space – not just in gaming. This is a stylish notebook for professionals on the move, and has the power to back up its looks. It’s a device I’d recommend to anyone who wants a notebook that can be taken seriously.
MSI is currently offering free one-year warranty extensions on its business notebooks. See https://au.msi.com/Promotion/extra_warranty_redemption_2021/nb for details.
• Stylish slimline design
• High performance 11th-gen Intel processor
• Decent battery life
• Great connectivity
• Lid can be difficult to open
• Bottom-firing speakers