MSI X460DX 14" Core i5 Notebook Review

Article Index

Gaming Benchmarks and Battery Life

FarCry 2
DirectX Gaming Performance

FarCry 2

Like the original, FarCry 2 is one of the more visually impressive games to be released on the PC to date. Courtesy of the Dunia game engine developed by Ubisoft, FarCry 2's game-play is enhanced by advanced environment physics, destructible terrain, high resolution textures, complex shaders, realistic dynamic lighting, and motion-captured animations. We benchmarked the test systems in this article with the FarCry 2 benchmark tool using one of the built-in demo runs recorded in the "Ranch" map.

MSI doesn't make any outlandish claims about the X460DX being a genuine gaming laptop, but based on these numbers, it could certainly handle some moderate gaming. It won't break any records, but these FPS figures led to a very playable game at lower resolutions.

Metro 2033
DirectX11 Gaming Performance

Metro 2033 

Metro 2033 is your basic post-apocalyptic first person shooter game with a few rather unconventional twists. Unlike most FPS titles, there is no health meter to measure your level of ailment, but rather you’re left to deal with life, or lack there-of more akin to the real world with blood spatter on your visor and your heart rate and respiration level as indicators. The game is loosely based on a novel by Russian Author Dmitry Glukhovsky. Metro 2003 boasts some of the best 3D visuals on the PC platform currently including a DX11 rendering mode that makes use of advanced depth of field effects and character model tessellation for increased realism. We tested the game engine using the Metro 2033 benchmark tool.

Not bad. This title puts a serious strain on mobile systems, and the $850 X460DX managed to hold its own. We found the game quite playable at 1280x720 and below, though things began to lag a bit more than we'd be comfortable with at any higher resolutions than that.
Battery Life
Power Performance

As we've said on numerous occasions, our BatterEater Pro benchmark is absolutely brutal, and so is the way we run it. To represent an absolute worst case scenario. BEPro proceeds to the tax the system's CPU and GPU nonstop until it runs out of juice, which for the X460DX came out to 113 minutes (just under 2 hours).

Aside from the machine getting a bit toasty at times, battery life is the area where we found ourselves most disappointed with the X460DX. MSI somehow claims that the 6 cell battery included here can get up to 8 hours of battery life. We don't think that's a realistic possibility with any kind of real-world workloads. Our conventional BatteryEater Pro test, which runs a high demand graphical animation in the background and hammers on the CPU until the machine croaks, is certainly an intense one. We left the screen brightness at about 60%, Wi-Fi on, and let it run down. After 113 minutes, the X460DX forced itself into hibernation. Needless to say, that's nowhere near the claimed 8 hours.

To be fair, this test really takes a toll on machines. If you were to disable Wi-Fi, crank the screen brightness down, and generally do much of anything with your machine, you may be able to hit 5 hours in an ideal situation. But even that seems like a stretch. Either way, we wouldn't bank on getting anywhere close to 8 hours in real world use.

Related content