MSI debuted some new laptops, expanding their Prestige 15 series collection last year. One of these is the A12UD-093, which was released in April 2022. With its GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics chip, Intel Alder Lake i7-1280P processor and up to 4K Adode RGB display, the Prestige 15 is useful in content creation and high-level image editing. A relatively lightweight laptop, it doesn’t suck too much power and is easy on the eyes. But how exactly does the Prestige 15 stack up, and is it worthwhile? Read on to find out.
MSI Prestige 15: Best Deal Today
- MSI Prestige 15 (New Egg) – $1353.78
- MSI Prestige 15 (Best Buy) – $1299.99
- MSI Prestige 15 (Amazon) - $1,283.38/li/ul !-- /wp:list -- !-- wp:heading -- h2
Release date and price
The Prestige 15 A12UD came out on April 25, 2022. The launch price for the i7 model was $1899, but prices have come down a lot in recent months. This model is now available for $1,283.38 from Amazon, with a 20% discount applied. Be on the lookout for discounts, as you can often purchase at a lower price.
There are three models in the 12th-gen Prestige 15 series, and these are:
- Prestige 15 A12UD
- Prestige 15 A12UC
- Prestige 15 A12SC
Essentially, these differ by processor type and graphics card. The A12UD is available with either the i7 or i5 processor and comes with the GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics card. The A12UC has a similar choice of processor but is equipped with the RTX 3050 card. The A12SC, on the other hand, comes with the RTX 1650 card and the i5 processor.
Specs Prestige 15 A12UD Size 356.8 x 233.7 x 18.9 mm Weight 1.69 kg Display 15.6” FHD (1920 x 1080px), or 15.6” UHD (3840 x 2160x) Webcam IR HD type (30 fps @ 720p) Audio output 2 x 2W speaker Operating system Windows 11 Home or Windows 11 Pro Memory 16 GB onboard LPDDR4X, max 32 GB Ports 2x Thunderbolt 4, 2x USB-A, 1 Micro SD card reader, 1x 4K HDMI Storage 512 GB Battery type 4-Cell Battery life 8 to 9 hours Adapter 100 W Warranty 1 year
MSI Prestige 15 A12UD: Review
MSI is known for creating competitive gaming systems, including desktops and laptops. However, they have a professional business series of systems, and their Prestige series is within this category. They make durable and stylish laptops, with high-quality components and impressive performance. Even though their Prestige laptops are designed for professional use, they’ve gotten better and can even run games.
Only one display size is available with the Prestige 15 A12UD, which is 15.6” with a 16:9 aspect ratio. Prestige 16, a newer model, has a 16” screen. Prestige 15 weighs 1.69 kg. As far as high-end laptops go, this is quite light. For comparison, the Vivobook Pro 16X OLED from ASUS weighs 1.95 kg. Chances are most laptops around this size will fit relatively easily into your backpack, but lighter is always better if you’re travelling with your laptop.
Switching to materials, the underside of the laptop is plastic and the main body and lid made of aluminum. The choice of colors is elegant and minimal; options are Carbon Gray or Urban Silver. Overall, the design is sleek and solid with diamond-cut edges, albeit not the most modern. Perhaps not as robust as a MacBook, but the hinges can be pushed back to 180 degrees to protect it from damage. MSI has also tested the laptop against MIL-STD-810 standards, meaning the laptop should withstand shock during handling, transportation and accidental drops.
Unfortunately, Prestige 15 has no numeric keypad. However, you do get Page Up and Page Down keys,, so this is a bonus. The Return key is also single-height rather than an L-shape, so desktop users will have to get used to this. The function key is found on the right as well, which is markedly different from a desktop, where the keys are along the top, and a MacBook, where the key is on the left.
The keys are illuminated and easy to press, making for a consistent and comfortable typing experience. The trackpad has a nice width and can read your fingerprint, but the design can be clunky. Some users report the trackpad is too sensitive at the bottom and rather difficult to click at the top. Overall, the keyboard is nothing special, but most users won’t have many quibbles with it.
With the Prestige 15, you get a 15.6” Full HD (FHD) or Ultra (UHD) display, with a 16:9 aspect ratio. The FHD version is certainly usable for most cases, although the color reproduction is somewhat inferior to the UHD display. Most users won’t notice a significant difference between an FHD and a 4K display, however. That said, the contrast is crisp as there’s virtually no screen bleeding along the edge. The only scenario where the colors will bleed is with a fully black screen and after a long time.
Unfortunately, brightness is not particularly impressive, with just over 300 nits of peak brightness. This makes Prestige 15 less suitable for outdoor use or in bright spaces. If you intend to use the Prestige 15 for professional image editing, you’re better off using an external monitor regardless. Gamers may be disappointed with the 60Hz refresh rate and relatively slow response time. You’ll also get around 91% coverage of sRGB, which isn’t particularly competitive in gaming laptops.
It’s wise not to get too excited about the 2 W speakers. While the speakers aren’t especially tinny, their volume isn’t impressive – expect a max volume of around 75 dB. The bass reproduction won’t blow you away, either. They’ll be adequate for casual use for music and movies, but aficionados won’t be impressed.
Ports and Connectivity
The Prestige 15 is generous with its ports and doesn’t leave much lacking. There are two USB Thunderbolt ports on the left-hand side, and an HDMI 2.0 output and audio jack. Two USB-A ports and a slot for a Micro SD card are on the right. Face recognition is also supported, which is a nice touch, along with fingerprint recognition. Lock slot is missing, sso those looking for a laptop with that first-line defense won’t find it here. The 720p webcam isn’t much to shout about either but it will do the job if your lighting is excellent.
Processor and Graphics
The Prestige 15 is available with either the i5 or i7 Intel processor and a GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics card. Essentially, the RTX 3050 Ti performs better than the RTX 3050 and RTX 1650 cards available with other Prestige models, but the margins between the 3050 Ti and the 3050 aren’t that significant. Clock speeds of the 3050 are higher than the 3050 Ti by around 100 Mhz at base speeds and boosted speeds, but the 3050 Ti has many more CUDA cores; the 3050 Ti has 2560 cores, whereas the 3050 has 2048. The 3050 Ti has a higher frame rate of around 8 to 10% and 50% more memory.
All in all, 3050 Ti’s improvement over the 3050 isn’t substantial, so it’s not worth upgrading. While usable for less intensive online and single-player games, the performance won’t reach competitive levels for intensive gaming. This isn’t a surprise, as the laptop is intended for creative use, such as image and video editing. The i7-1280p processor helps in this regard, making complex tasks smooth and fast. If you’re not planning to edit images and videos, however, the i5 processor should be more than suitable for daily use. Power consumption is also very economical, and while there is a Silent mode, you won’t experience much noise running these tasks on Balanced mode.
RAM and Storage
The Prestige 15 can be specced with either 16 or 32 GB LPDDR4X memory. If you can, go for the 32 GB memory, as this has the bonus of running at a faster frequency. The downside is the memory is soldered into the motherboard, and isn’t upgradable after purchase. So, make sure the memory you choose fulfill your needs.
As for storage, 512 GB is suitable for many people, except gamers. Modern games can take up a lot of storage, so you’ll probably only get a few games out of this until your storage is maxed out. There are two M.2 SSD slots. While this laptop isn’t great for gaming, there are ways to add extra storage.
Battery Life and charging
As far as work laptops go, the battery life doesn’t fall short. The 4-cell battery helps to extend runtimes, and users have reported almost 12 hours of use with a VLC video on repeat. This is a vast improvement over the previous Prestige 14, which only achieved 6 and a half hours under the same testing conditions. As such, the Prestige 15 should make it through a whole day away from a charging point under most use cases.
Concerning charging, this is very competitive too. The 100 W charger does an excellent job, producing a full charge in around 2 hours and a third of a full charge in around half an hour. This is very useful, particularly if you’re strapped for time and only need a few hours of usage.
MSI Prestige 15: Pros and Cons
- Durable build with good connectivity options
- The battery life is very impressive
- High-quality display with versatile viewing angles
- Poor speaker quality
- Lack of upgrade capabilities
- Not suitable for high-end gaming
MSI Prestige 15: Is It a Buy?
Ultimately, the decision to buy Prestige 15 largely depends on how you intend to use your new laptop.
Buy it if…
You edit images and videos frequently
Photo/video editors and content creators, will fall in love with Prestige 15, as it’s essentially designed for creative use. The sharp display will do in a pinch, but an external monitor is recommended for the best experience. The graphics card and processor will handle high-end editing with ease.
You want a laptop that’s economical with great battery life
The efficient power consumption of the Prestige 15 is one of its biggest selling points, along with its impressive battery life. You can be sure that the battery will last a full day outside of the house, whether you’re streaming, browsing, messaging or working.
Don’t buy it if…
You use your laptops mostly for gaming
When it comes to gaming, Prestige 15 just isn’t that competitive. The internal storage leaves a lot to be desired, meaning you’ll have to buy an external drive at some point. But even in this case, the RTX 3050 Ti card isn’t spectacular and pales compared to the RTX 3060. The display’s refresh rate and response times are great for intense gaming sessions. Some games will run adequately, but recent titles, particularly AAA games, will struggle to run at anything above the lowest graphics settings. Coupled with this, you can expect a lot of heat production, which the Prestige 15 isn’t designed to deal with effectively.
Check out the Prestige 15 on Amazon.
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