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MSI GF63 8RD gaming laptop review: Power in a light chassis

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MSI GF63 8RD gaming laptop review: It is something consumers have been asking for a while and finally, we are seeing thin-and-light gaming laptops make their way into the market. Nearly every major company, including MSI, has realised that a super thin gaming laptop will drive volumes though the market segment is limited to serious and professional gamers.

MSI GF63 8RD is positioned as a lightweight gaming laptop with decent graphics and latest processor inside. But then quite a few gamers might not mind paying the Rs 99,990 price for portability. Here’s is what I like, and don’t, about the MSI GF 63 8RD.

MSI GF63 8RD specifications: 15.6-inch FHD (1920×1080) display|Intel Core i7 processor (8th gen)| Windows 10 Home|Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti with Max-Q design, 4GB GDDR5|DD4 8GB RAM/128GB SSD+1TB SATA storage|1.86kg|2-year warranty

 

MSI GF63 8RD price in India: Rs 99,990

MSI GF63 8RD review: Design, build

If you have already visited MSI’s website and seen the laptop, you already know that the GF63 8RD is a beautiful machine. The notebook has a black brushed aluminum lid with a familiar dragon emblem logo embossed on near the top. In fact, the notebook’s chassis is made from metal, including the lid and keyboard deck. The bottom part of the laptop has a mix of plastic and metal. Personally, I think it looks sophisticated, but with a fun factor to it.

Though what makes this laptop different from other gaming laptops is its portable nature. The MSI GF63 8RD weighs 1.86kg with the thickness of 0.85-inches. It fits in my laptop bag with ease, and it never feels heavy. I wish all gaming laptops would feel the same.

MSI GF63 8RD review: Connectivity, ports

While slimming down the laptop, MSI has not forgotten to add plenty of ports. On the right-hand side, you get two USB 3.0 ports, a USB Type-C port, Ethernet, jacks for a microphone and a 3.5mm headphone jack and a security lock slot. On the left-hand side of the MSI GF63 8RD, you will find another USB 3.0 port, the power input, and a battery gauge which shows the charge level. And on the rear of the notebook, you get to see an HDMI port. Unfortunately, the notebook does not feature the standard microSD card. Also, missing is another USB Type-C port.

MSI GF63 8RD review: Display

The MSI GF63 8RD’s 15.6-inch Full HD (1920×1080 pixel) IPS screen (non-touch) has an 82 per cent screen-to-body ratio with 4.9nm ultra-thin bezels. The screen offers impressive brightness and is colorful and capable of producing sharp details. When I watched Mission: Impossible – Fallout, the colours impressed me. I could see fine details, such as the wrinkles on the face of Tom Cruise. What I didn’t like about the 15.6-inch display is that it only has a refresh rate of 60Hz. This is pretty disappointing in my opinion. Given that we are talking about a gaming laptop, I think most gamers would expect a panel with a 120Hz refresh rate but that is something missing out here. Also, the 15.6-inch display used in this laptop is not Nvidia G-Sync compatible for smooth gaming.

MSI GF63 8RD review: Performance, battery

Performance-wise, the MSI GF63 8RD is a perfectly capable machine. Our review had the highest configuration: a Core i7-8570H CPU,8GB of RAM, Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti GPU, 128GB SSD, and 1TB SATA drive. Be it surfing the web, watching movies, or writing and editing stories or intensive gaming, I had never faced any issue during the course of my time spent with the laptop. With the integrated Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti GPU coupled with Intel Core i7 processor, the laptop can handle any AAA-title you can think of. I tested this year’s high-profile Far Cry 5 in 1080p on the highest setting, it managed a decent 51 frames per second. If you need to do some video editing, or coding this laptop can certainly get the job done.

My review unit stayed cool throughout the testing. After a long session of FarCry 5 and an hour of movie streaming, the laptop does get warm. Not to worry, though, it’s fine gaming laptops do get warm after an intensive usage.

We found the laptop’s speakers powerful enough to fill any mid-sized room. What’s good about them is that they work well whatever you are doing – a long gaming session, streaming a movie on Netflix, or listening to music on Saavn. Our review unit also came equipped with a 720p webcam, which works well for attending skype calls.

Most gaming laptops have one big issue: the terrible battery life. However, I am happy to report that this laptop isn’t one of them. MSI claims the GF63 8RD lasts more than seven hours of battery life on a single charge. Well, in my testing battery on this laptop lasted about 4 and a half hours. That’s pretty decent battery life for a 15.6-inch gaming laptop and a good reason to consider MSI’s GF63 8RD. Keep in mind that when you game on the go, the battery life will take a hit.

Speaking of software, MSI has introduced a revamped version of Dragon Center. The software shows most of the important elements of the laptop such as the CPU, GPU, RAM, HDD, and Internet usage. As you might expect, the GF63 8RD runs on Windows 10 Home. It’s a standard affair and does not need any explanation.

MSI GF63 8RD review: Keyboard, touchpad

The full-sized keyboard is a pleasure to type on. Just to make it clear: I’m writing this review on it. While it works well enough for most users, it can’t be customised. Simply saying, the RGB lighting effect is missing, but the keyboard comes complete with red LED backlighting. The touchpad is good, though I found it cramped. Thankfully, the left and right click areas provided just the right amount of tactile feedback.

MSI GF63 8RD review: Conclusion

There’s a lot to love about the MSI GF63 8RD. Perhaps what makes this gaming laptop shine is the way it has been packaged. It can both be used a general purpose laptop and a dedicated gaming machine. The combination of portability, performance, long battery life and classic design, makes the MSI GF63 8RD worth checking out. And that should be seen as an achievement and the credit goes to MSI. All this does come at a cost though, with the MSI GF63 8RD costing a cool Rs 99,990.


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Canon EOS RP Budget Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera Launched, Fujifilm Announces X-T30 APS-C Camera

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Canon and Fujifilm have added new cameras to its respective lineups. Canon has officially unveiled the EOS RP, which is its second full-frame mirrorless camera after the EOS R. This budget model will go on sale in March for $1,300 (roughly Rs. 92,400) for just the body or $2,399 (roughly Rs. 1,70,600) with the RF 24-105mm F4 L IS USM lens.

Meanwhile, Fujifilm has announced a new APS-C camera called the X-T30, which succeeds the X-T20. This will be available in March in black and silver trims at a price of $899 (roughly Rs. 63,900) for the body, $999 (roughly Rs. 71,000) with XC15-45mm lens, and $1,299 (roughly Rs. 92,400) with the XF18-55mm lens. The camera and kit lenses will also be available in a new charcoal silver colour, which will arrive in June 2019.

Canon EOS RP specifications and features

 

It seems as if the leak we got a week ago about Canon’s EOS RP was pretty much spot on. According to Canon, the EOS RP is designed for amateur and advanced amateur photographers looking to step up from its APS-C models and will sit below its flagship EOS R full-frame mirrorless camera. Canon is emphasising the lightness of the camera, which weighs 490 grams and the body is said to be smaller than Canon’s EOS 800D mid-range APS-C camera. The EOS RP will be compatible with all of Canon’s RF lenses as well as EF and EF-S lenses with the help of adapters.

The EOS RP boasts of a 26.2-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor and is powered by the company’s DIGIC 8 image processor. The camera also has Dual Pixel autofocus (AF) with 4,779 manually selectable AF points. Using an f/1.2 lens, it is also capable of extreme low-light focusing at up to -5EV. Since its designed for amateurs, the EOS RP also features Canon’s Visual Guide mode, which gives you a graphical representation of how the various shooting modes (Shutter, Aperture, etc) will affect your final picture. This was first introduced with the Canon EOS 77D .

The camera also has a native ISO range of 100-25,600, a 2.36 million dot electronic viewfinder (EVF), a fully articulating touchscreen, burst shooting of up to 5fps, built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, 4K video recording at 24fps, and 1080p recording at 60fps. Canon has also officially announced that it’s currently developing six new lenses for its RF full-frame mount. These will be available sometime later in 2019 and will include:

RF 85mm F1.2 L USM RF 85mm F1.2 L USM DS RF 24-70mm F2.8 L IS USM RF 15-35mm F2.8 L IS USM RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM RF 24-240mm F4-6.3 IS USM

Fujifilm X-T30 specifications and features

Switching companies, we now come to Fujifilm’s announcement, which has added the X-T30 to its APS-C camera lineup. The follow-up to the X-T20 features an improved 26.1-megapixel APS-C sensor with the X-Processor 4 quad-core CPU for image processing. Other features include a hybrid AF system with 425 phase detection autofocus (PDAF) points, which cover 100 percent of the entire frame, EyeAF, and a new Face Selection option. Further, you will get a 2.36 million dot resolution OLED EVF, a 3-inch tilting touchscreen display, 4K recording up to 30fps or 1080p recoding up to 120fps, a single SD card slot, and built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Fujifilm also announced a new lens for its X series cameras called the FUJINON XF16mmF2.8 R WR. This lens features a stepping motor for quieter AF and goes on sale in March for $400 (roughly Rs. 28,400). There’s good news for Fujifilm X-T3 owners as come April, Fujifilm will be releasing a new firmware (v3.0), which is said bring improvements to face and eye detection AF, a new Face Select function that debuted with the X-T30, improved AF speed, and additional settings to the cameras interface. The company will also release a new firmware for the X-T100 and X-A5, which adds a new ‘Bright Mode’, ‘Portrait Enhancer’ mode, and a new ‘Night+’ setting.

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Mi 9 to Sport a Triple Rear Camera, Explorer Edition May Have Quad Camera

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Xiaomi is set to launch its latest flagship smartphone, the Mi 9, on February 20 in China. With its launch in the build-up to Mobile World Congress 2019, the Chinese smartphone maker will be among the first manufacturers to unveil its flagship for the year, even as other manufacturers will be preparing for summer launches. Thanks to some official images posted on Weibo, we now have an early look at the new device, while the images also give away some key features of the new phone. Separately, a blogger has posted a leaked image of what is claimed to be the Xiaomi Mi 9 Explorer Edition.

A handful of images and a short video have been posted to Chinese social media website Weibo by the verified account of Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun, thereby lending legitimacy to the renders. The images give us a good look at what to expect from the new phone; of particular note is the triple camera setup at the rear. The front of the phone isn’t shown in the renders, and the rear shows an interesting gradient blue and green colour, with the rough translation from the post reading as ‘holographic illusion blue’. The post further describes a “nano-scale laser holography process, plus double layer coating” as responsible for the “rainbow colours” and “faintly […] metallic lustre”.

The Xiaomi Mi 9 is set to be launched on February 20, which is the same day as the launch event for the Samsung Galaxy S10 series. According to rumours, the Mi 9 Explorer Edition could also be launched on the same day. This variant of the phone is said to sport a quad-camera setup at the rear. An unofficial render of this has surfaced as well, but we’ll wait till the official launch before confirming this.

 

The phone is likely to be powered by the flagship Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chipset, and is also rumoured to come with 27W fast charging. The Xiaomi Mi 9 could come with MIUI 10 out of the box, based on Android 9 Pie. The primary camera at the rear is likely to be a 48-megapixel shooter, while a second 12-megapixel camera and third ToF 3D sensor will also be part of the setup.

Coming to the Xiaomi Mi 9 Explorer Edition’s leaked image, posted on Weibo by a blogger, we see a quad rear camera, and a ‘transparent’ back panel like its predecessor. The post adds that the smartphone will have more memory than the Xiaomi Mi 9, though it’s uncertain if both RAM and storage are being referred to. The Mi 9 Explorer Edition price is said to range between CNY 3,499 (roughly Rs. 36,900) to CNY 4,999 (roughly Rs. 52,600).

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Energizer Power Max P18K Pop With 18,000mAh Battery, Dual Pop-Up Selfie Cameras to Launch at MWC 2019

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Avenir Telecom, the licensing partner of Energizer Mobile, is set to launch as many as 26 new phones at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019. One of these upcoming smartphones is the Power Max P18K Pop, the company on Thursday revealed. The smartphone will feature a huge 18,000mAh battery, dual-selfie pop-up cameras, triple rear cameras, and will be powered by the MediaTek Helio P70 processor. Avenir will officially unveil the phone at MWC 2019. The company says that it will take orders at the show for delivery sometime in summer this year.
The Energizer Power Max P18K Pop will be introduced at MWC 2019, and the company has announced that the smartphone will sport a 6.2-inch Full HD+ display. It will be powered by the MediaTek Helio P70 SoC and pack 6GB of RAM with 128GB of internal storage.
Among other specifications, the smartphone will sport five cameras in total, with dual front sensors that will pop-up from the top. The two front cameras will sport 16-megapixel and 2-megapixel senses. There’s also a triple camera setup at the back aligned vertically with 12-megapixel, 5-megapixel, and 2-megapixel sensors.
The most interesting bit about the phone is its whopping 18,000mAh battery. The company claims that this massive battery will enable the phone to make up to 90 hours of calls, listen to 100 hours of music and watch around 2 days of video on a single charge. In the standby mode, the battery is said to last up to 50 days.
In its ‘Ultimate series, the company is also expected to launch the Energizer Ultimate U620S Pop and the Energizer Ultimate U630S Pop at MWC 2019. Both phones feature dual pop-up selfie cameras. The company will also unveil the Energizer Ultimate U650S, Energizer Ultimate U620S, and the Energizer Ultimate U570S, with all three featuring a teardrop notch with a V-shaped and U-shaped design.

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