Editor’s rating: 3.65/5

Design

Display

Performance

Battery

Software

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Pros

  • Display quality
  • Lightning fast processor
  • Enough storage

Cons

  • Makes loud sounds
  • Monotonous keyboard backlight
  • High use of plastic

MSI has been one of the most prominent names in the gaming laptop segment all over the globe. In order to compete with the gaming range of Asus, HP, and other brands, MSI launched two laptops including Pulse GL66 12UEK and Pulse GL76 12UEK. While both laptops have a rigid design weighing more than most laptops with similar specifications, MSI has tried to change the game in the performance and productivity section.

I got to review the MSI Pulse GL66 12UEK which claims to be the most powerful gaming laptop available in a budget of around Rs 1,00,000. It features a 165Hz display that enhances the gaming experience. I tried my hands on the version that ships with Intel i7 12th Gen processor paired with NVIDIA RTX 2070 graphics processing unit. Here I am sharing the review of the laptop after using it for around 20 days and testing it on different aspects like gaming, video streaming, internet connectivity, and a lot more. This review will also help you in making sure your purchase decision is easy.

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MSI Pulse GL66 review: Price and availability

The MSI Pulse GL66 laptop is available in the Indian market at a price of Rs 1,14,990 with an Intel core i7 12th generation processor and a decent display with a high-quality refresh rate. The laptop can be purchased via Amazon India.

Asus Vivobook Pro 14 OLED Specs

SpecsMSI Pulse GL66
OS Windows 11 OS
Display15.6-inch QHD Display
CPUIntel core i9 12th Gen SoC
RAMup to 16GB
Storage512GB
ColoursSilver
Battery53.5Whr
Charging240W
Size359x259x23.9mm
Weight2.25kg
ConnectivityBluetooth 5.2, WiFi 6, headphone jack, USB ports, and more

MSI Pulse GL66 review: Unboxing

The MSI Pulse GL66 comes in a brown coloured cardboard box. The laptop retail box consists of a:

  • One unit of MSI Pulse GL66
  • A charging brick
  • Connector

MSI Pulse GL66 review: Design

Starting the review with the design, I just want to clarify one thing MSI is not participating in the race of producing slim and lightweight gaming laptops. The MSI Pulse GL666 shows the same as it is a bulky machine that weighs 2.25k and can be said to be one of the heaviest machines I tested in recent times. So, one thing which I want to clear right now is that it is not easy to travel while carrying a laptop as it can cause shoulder and back pain. Apart from that, the design of the laptop is crisp.

On the rear panel, the laptop has an aesthetic design along with the MSI dragon logo at the centre of the device. Nevertheless, a major turn-off with the laptop is the plastic used in its body due to which it lacks a metal finish. Now, after spending an amount over Rs 1,00,000, anyone would love to see a more durable body and a metal finish. The keyboard of the laptop is the full-size one with a blue coloured backlight. Moreover, the laptop also gets multiple ports on both the right and the left side of the lower body. The laptop also has a base in the notch that lets you open the laptop with a single hand.

MSI Pulse GL66 review: Display

The MSI Pulse GL66 laptop comes with a 16.59-inch display coupled with around 165Hz refresh rate and 1440 pixels resolution. Now, the laptop display offers crystal clear colours along with showing crisp details in videos and while playing games too. The display refresh rate of the laptop manages to run a high-level frame rate while playing games in which it is required. This clearly means that you will not witness any kind of lagging issues while playing the games on your laptop.

I also watched Jamtara’s new season on Netflix and the laptop offered accurate colours while doing the same. Furthermore, the photographs that I viewed on the laptop also seemed vibrant which was nothing but a boon. The colour accuracy of the laptop was a cause of issue as it has a little more inclination towards the blue colour. Another thing which we can say for the panel is that the machine has a dimmer display as compared to that of other alternatives. At the time of testing the laptop was only able to reach a peak brightness level of 286 nits.

MSI GL66 Pulse review: Keyboard, trackpad, and numpad

The MSI GL66 Pulse laptop has an old-school kind of keyboard with a Numpad placed on the right side. Now, as per my personal experience, the keyboard placement was apt as I felt no discomfort while typing for long hours on the laptop. The keyboard supports RGB lights which is again a highlight but there is a catch. In the laptop, you can only use one light at a time which means you can’t get the RGB backlight effect that you get in the high-end Asus ROG laptop series.

Talking about the numpad, it has all the keys and I feel that an individual numpad makes the experience more convenient. The trackpad of the laptop also has buttery speed and you can perform the operations without any issues. The speed of the trackpad can be adjusted while visiting the settings and adjusting it according to your preference.

MSI GL66 Pulse review: I/O ports and connectivity

The MSI GL66 laptop offers multiple ports including an HDMI port, RJ45 port, Type-A USB port, Type C USB 3.2 Gen 1 port, and two Type A USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports. The ports offered on the laptop are enough to enhance the connectivity and make sure you can use additional devices like mouse, card readers, pen drives and more. The device also has two speakers that deliver decent audio output. The webcam offered in the device can process up to 720 pixels in resolution and is perfect for video calls.

MSI Pulse GL66 review: Performance and Gaming

The MSI Pulse GL66 ships with an Intel core i7 12th Gen processor paired with 16GB RAM and 521GB SSD. This machine from MSI was one of the first to feature the Intel 12th-generation processor. Another thing to mention here is that the laptops also have a variant which ships with the Intel core i9 12th generation processor. In the graphics department, the laptop features the NVIDIA RTX 3060 with 105W maximum graphics power.

I played a couple of games on the laptop including God of War, Tekken 7 and more. The laptop seemed completely optimized for Tekken 7 as the game was running completely smooth on the machine. In addition, God of War was also playable on the laptop without any lagging issues. As for multitasking, I have no complaints with the laptop because it was able to handle around 50 Chrome tabs, YouTube video, image viewer and a couple more software at the same time without breaking a sweat.

MSI GL66 Pulse review: Battery

Well, you already know that one cannot expect a durable battery from a gaming laptop. But, the case is quite different in terms of the MSI Pulse GL66 laptop as once completely charged, the device can go on for around 6 hours when used moderately. It can be said that the laptop has one of the most powerful batteries in its price range. The battery, individually, can take all the limelight of the laptop. However, while gaming, the laptop lasted only an hour and 30 minutes. Thank god, I rushed to the charger as soon as I saw the low battery notification. While watching videos on high resolution, the laptop can go on for around 2 to 3 hours before you need to go for the charger.

MSI Pulse GL66 review: Should you buy it or not?

Here comes the main question and the time to conclude this review. The MSI GL66 laptop comes with a powerful processor ensuring high-speed performance and gaming capabilities. The laptop also has decent connectivity and ergonomics. You can purchase it if you are looking for a machine around under Rs 1,50,000 with the latest processor and graphics card. However, you can ditch the device if you want the Ryzen processor along with the RGB keyboard that supports multi-light functionality. The laptop also disappoints when it comes to a metallic finish considering the price point at which it is available.

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