We tested the MSI panel with a range of 1080p movies, bluray discs and games. We also used a La Cie measurement gun for some of the reading analysis.
The panel with this particular laptop is very good and it shows a particular strength with high definition 1080p. The colour image and grayscale testing highlighted a great detail response, even able to display some subtle changes with media saturation and colour. Banding as expected can be noticeable but is better than many panels we have tested recently. It is on a par with the Alienware M17x R3 screen which we tested earlier this year. Focusing quality is also high but we noticed some backlighting inconsistencies at the edges of the panel, and in the corners. Many people might not notice this, but it is there and our measurement tool was able to record some minor fluctuation. Text is clear and sharp, right down to a very small size.
Offset viewing is very good although with the gloss finish on the screen, backlight glare is noticeable and may annoy some of the prospective audience. It can be distracting, with a light behind the viewer, although we all expect this with a glossy style screen finish anyway. It is a compromise for bright, rich and vibrant media. There was no noticeable artifacting or ghosting when playing games such as Dirt 3 or Shogun 2 or when watching bluray discs such as Batman and Avatar.
We used Displaymate to analyse the panel and found the overall image quality to be well above average for this specific market. The Gamut range in Gamutvision was also impressive, much as we expected with our visual tests beforehand. Colour reproduction is also strong although we noticed a very minor blue shift to neutral gray, we were able to tune this out with software settings.
White purity shows a minor shift between 5% and 18% across the full area of the screen with a little more pronouncement at the lower corners. This is a good result and generally the images look clean and pure when watching high definition media. Before calibration we noticed a minor amount of blue corruption with the white purity tests, but hardly noticeable under real world conditions.
Black definition is good, although there is noticeable leak at the corners which degrades a little from the overall result. It does look worse in the technical image above however under real world conditions it is only noticeable with a very dark image, such as a few scenes in Batman. There is a leak also from the bottom of the screen, which trails upwards by around 10-15%. It is a good result however.