MSI GT780DXR: Pretty Keyboard, but Everything Else Is Just Average


MSI's KLM keyboard-setting software lets you change the colors endlessly. You can choose 28 distinctly different LED colors over such settings as dual-color, tri-color, pulsing, waving, and fading. KLM's Gaming mode lights up only the section containing your main control keys (W, A, S, and D).

The GT7280's ports are located all around the machine. On the sides you get two USB 3.0 ports, three USB 2.0 ports, a seven-in-one memory card reader, and headphone and microphone jacks--as well as a stereo line-in jack and a center surround speaker jack. On the back are the connection ports--VGA, HDMI-out, gigabit ethernet, and eSATA--plus a Kensington lock slot and the power out.

The 17.3-inch screen features an extremely bright, full-HD, nonglossy display that suffered from the "soft" look typical of nonglossy screens: Images were not as crisp and edges were not as defined. HD streaming video looked very good on the screen, as did DVD video--but our system lacked a Blu-ray disc player. Audio quality was excellent, thanks to the THX TruStudio Pro technology and the built-in subwoofer.

MSI's GT780DXR isn't the most powerful or the most attractive desktop replacement we've tested, but it's an all-around solid machine. And the keyboard is so pretty.