Desktop-Power Gaming in a Laptop: MSI Scores With Ghost

Making plans for a summer vacation? Time to take some time off the have a little fun in the sun, hit the beach, get a tan, and forget about your worries. And just in time, there’s a gaming laptop that’s actually powerful enough to make you say, “I’ll never need a desktop again. Ever.” What better way to enjoy that mojito. Gaming laptops have a sad past. They’ve never been powerful enough to want to play on, but the only way to play anything more exciting than Solitaire was with a $2,000 box that never fit in a bag right and weighed like an elephant. SEE ALSO: 10 Hot Indie Games to Watch This year that all changes. The first for gaming: the MSI GS60 Ghost, a 15-inch stunner with a 1080p display, a brand new smoking-hot graphics card, and enough raw power for you to forget about anything else. Xbox? PlayStation? The outdoors? Ha. Power for anywhere The Ghost comes complete with top-of-the-line parts: a 2.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 4700HQ chip, a NVIDIA 860M 2GB graphics processor, a 15.6-inch full HD display, and a Killer E2200 network card to optimize your online play. I tested a model with 16GB of high-speed DDR 3 RAM, courtesy of MSI; this bad boy retails for $1,799. The company also offers a $1,699 model with 12GB of RAM. This laptop is one of the fastest on the market today, and for the price, good luck finding a better deal. This laptop is one of the fastest on the market today, and for the price, good luck finding a better deal. As if the specs-price combination weren’t enough, MSI teamed up with game peripheral-maker SteelSeries to bring the most customizable keyboard on a laptop ever. Thanks to some nifty software, every single key can be programmed to do whatever you want, in general and per application. Setting up shortcuts for Chrome or Office? Just a few taps and done. SteelSeries even built the keyboard with customizable LED backlighting so you can color the light any way you like. Pick one of some 16 million colors, have the colors change like a wave, or turn on strobe-lighting that responds to ambient noise. And that’s all on top of being one of the best laptop keyboards I’ve ever tested: It has perfectly spaced, low-profile keys that feel very comfortable. Then there’s the bucket of extras: a huge Dynaudio speaker that blasts crisp sound loud enough for the whole room to hear; high-speed Wi-Fi with 802.11ac support; a ton of specialized software, like battery presets — with settings like Movie, Game and Office — that can be changed through a dedicated keypress; the Dragon Gaming Center, a second-by-second account of where computer resources are going; and XSplit Gamecaster streams your gameplay straight to the web for free. There’s very little the Ghost can’t do. Every single component is ridiculously powerful. And the whole thing is less than five pounds.