MSI Leopard Pro laptops sprint for the kill

The current generation of chips fabricated on 14-nm and 16-nm processes have allowed for previously-unattainable levels of performance in thin-and-light laptops. MSI's Leopard Pro series of 15.6" and 17.3" laptops capitalize on the capabilities of Intel and Nvidia's latest silicon to offer capable gaming performance in thin form factors.

The Leopard Pros can be outfitted with Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050, GTX 1050 Ti, or GTX 1060 3 GB graphics cards to go along with Intel seventh-generation Core i7 processors. A pair of SO-DIMM slots let the machines take in as much as 32 GB of DDR4 memory. MSI says the laptops come with a single 16 GB DDR4 SO-DIMM installed, so those in need of maximum memory bandwidth might want to plan on installing a matching stick right away for dual-channel goodness.

Networking connectivity comes by way of a Killer Gigabit Ethernet controller paired with an Intel 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.2 combo card. MSI didn't say much about storage options, other than mentioning that the machines have a single M.2 slot and a 2.5" drive bay. Some Leopard Pro models sport a SteelSeries-branded keyboard with per-key programmable RGB LED backlighting. The machines come with 1920x1080 displays, and there are options for 120-Hz panels.

Regardless of hardware selection, the 15.6" models cram everything into a chassis measuring 15.1" x 10.2" x 1.1" (or 38 cm x 26 cm x 2.9 cm) and weighing 4.8 lbs (2.2 kg). The 17.3" models are bigger but almost as thin, at 16.5" x 10.6" x 1.2" (42 cm x 27 cm x 2.9 cm), and tilt the scales at 6 lbs (or 2.7 kg).

The Leopard Pros have already been let out of the bag, and their prices range from $1230 to $1600 depending on the configuration.

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