The MSI FX600 is shipped with a protective sheet between the keyboard and the screen.
The machine is an attractive, simple design which we like. The keyboard is raised and feels good although due to my large hands I always have issues with a single depth return key.
The MSI panel is an LED design with a high gloss finish which is surprisingly good, considering the price budget of the machine. Gaming proved trouble free with very little motion bluring or artifacting. I did notice a slight bluring with a few fast motion based first person shooters however when I asked a colleague to view the screen he said it looked fine to him. Those with sensitive eyes may therefore notice some rapid movement blur.
High definition movies were maintained to a high standard, although to enjoy 1080p movies in their full glory you would need to run via HDMI out to a television. 720p content is rendered in a realistic manner with high levels of sharpness although there was evident black level shift and bleeding.
The palm rest area is slightly textured, almost like a crocodile skin effect. and this carries over to the tracking pad. There is a small button above the tracking pad which can be toggled to disable it completely. A nice feature to protect against accidental movement.
Underneath the tracking pad button is a list of icons which light when active, showing battery status, caps and num lock status, and other functionality such as bluetooth mode and hard drive activity.
Connectivity is reasonably strong with a card slot, 3 USB ports, 1 HDMI port, Bluetooth and B/g/n wireless/WiFi. The front fascia has the same textured surface which makes it very easy to grip from a variety of angles. The silver accented strip heightens the appearance.
Initially we couldn’t get the wireless to work on our review sample, but there is a row of buttons under the screen and one of these toggles wireless on/off. A handy feature for an airplane. Volume controls and power buttons are also in this row.
The MSI FX600 has an onboard certified THX sound system which delivers a reasonably high level of sound – dual speakers are seen behind black grills on either end of the machine below the screen area. Two more speakers are placed near the wrist rests. I wouldn’t want to mislead anyone by saying it was producing groundbreaking levels of audio reproduction, but for a 15 inch laptop it is one of the better systems we have heard. Mid tones are surprisingly strong which means watching movies and listening to dialogue content is a pleasure.
The underside of the machine is almost perfectly flat, with several vented areas to allow heat to escape. The battery slides into the back.