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The Rat who is made of Stainless Steel


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MSI GX660R Laptop Review: 6 Weeks On
BB Piano
stainsteelrat
I thought it also worth doing a follow up review on my laptop, inspired by the one today for the Western Digital Live TV.

It's 6 weeks now since I bought the laptop, and wrote the original review, and generally speaking I'm happy with it; it's still mostly stable and quick, and was a good price.

I was aware when buying that it was the cheaper and cheerful option, as other brands were twice this price. It appears that buying cheap has resulted in a small handful of issues - it's always a trade off:

1. Suspend/Hibernate Screen Issue - When the laptop suspends or hibernates, and is then switched back on, typically the screen does not come on. This seems related to the length of time the suspend/hibernate is for, the longer it is the more likely it is to happen. If I suspend/hibernate again and immediately turn back on the screen is OK.

I contacted MSI about this issue, and was told to send the laptop back. Personally I don't believe this is hardware related, and I told MSI support as much. They said I could try a system restore. I can't be sure when it happened, and perhaps a Windows Update broke something.

For the moment I can live with it, it's a frustrating but minor issue.

2. BSODs - I've had 5 or so BSODs, which seems a bit unusual. Again, perhaps a Windows Update related issue. The latest BSOD (today) related to a file called AFD.SYS. A quick Google suggests this is network related, so perhaps a driver update will help.

The BSODs are infrequent, so again it's a frustrating but minor issue.

3. Touchpad Quality - I've got used to the touchpad, but over the last week the chrome effect is starting to scratch off the left button. This to me is a sign of cheap build quality, and to happen within 6 weeks of purchase is pretty bad. Presumably over the next few weeks/months it will deteriorate and look crap.

File under an average issue I suppose.
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If you get the post-suspend blank screen, can you activate the display by using the internal/external display button? I get this issue sometimes on my HP when I boot it up with the screen closed, and cycling through the display options usually sorts it.

The BSODs are likely to be driver issues, but could also be dodgy hardware. Worth tracking down the latest drivers for each thing that causes a BSOD, as a first step. Or, if you're already on the latest driver for that component, try a slightly older version. Don't necessarily rely on Windows Update to find the best driver for you.

You do get what you pay for (to an extent) but the poor finish on the plastic does sound particularly crappy.

Not tried the external display button. Good call! Will give it a go. I've got used to turning the computer off completely now, or just leaving it on.

I believe it's using bespoke network drivers, but not sure whether they're up-to-date. At the moment it's annoying, but not quite enough to drive me to search. I'll go do it now though.

Yep, the finish is annoying. Other parts of the laptop have clearly been carefully engineered.

Intel have some software which checks for updated drivers. Seems to work as well, and the only out-of-date driver is for wireless. Now to see if it works...

Well that's updated the driver from Mar 10 to Oct 10. Will be interesting to see what happens now.

Thanks for making me get off my bottom to do it :-D

No worries. The majority of machines use standard off-the-shelf chipsets from Intel, Atheros, Ralink, Realtek, etc and you can almost always find drivers on the chipset manufacturer's site, if not on the laptop manufacturer's site.

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