Saturday, April 23, 2016

2016-04-23 Saturday - MSI GT72 6QE Dominator Pro G Notebook Review

I've been working with a new notebook since January, an MSI GT72 6QE Dominator Pro G-034 (GTX 980M) with the 6th Generation Intel Core i7-6700HQ Skylake processor - running Windows 10.

I chose this particular model based on price, performance, features, and local store availability. 

I've had enough experience working with this new notebook to have reached some observations / conclusions that I'm willing to share...
  • This seems like a rock-solid development machine
  • I've been very pleased with the performance of the machine
  • The keyboard is comfortable, although the position of the Insert, Delete, Home, and End keys has taken a bit getting used to...
  • The screen is well lit - and resolution is fine
  • The wireless/network connectivity is good - I'm lucky to have a 1GB internet connection through Wave G Fiber
  • Disk access speeds are quite good
  • Running various Linux distributions in Oracle's VirtualBox has been snappy
  • Boot-up time is excellent
  • It is much heavier than I expected - and quite bulky - and doesn't quite fit into most of my backpacks - but 'just' fits into a rolling bag
  • The power unit is quite bulky and heavy
  • The various MSI utilities / add-ons are quite handy / nice
Given that my work often requires me to travel - the size and weight of this machine is a definite drawback. However, given that much of my software engineering interest is focused on container- based distributed architectures - this platform gives me enough horsepower to run multiple virtual machines - and is an excellent platform for GPU parallel programming experimentation (1536 CUDA Cores).  If you are interested in the software that I have installed, click here.

Udacity offers a free NVIDIA created course, Intro to Parallel Programming, Using CUDA to Harness the Power of GPUs

Available On Amazon
(although I picked mine up at a local
  • Intel® Core™ i7-6700HQ Processor(6M Cache, 2.6 GHz  - up to 3.50 GHz)
  • 4 processors
  • 24 GB SO-DIMM, GDDR5
  • 256GB M.2 SATA 
  • 1TB 7200 RPM
  • 17.3 display, 1920 x 1080 
  • NVIDIA Geforce GTX980M
  • 6 USB 3.0 ports 
  • DVD
  • 8.4 pounds 
  • 16.85 x 11.57 x 1.89 inches 

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