MSI has started to ship its ultrathin Prestige-series laptops that it introduced in early June. The new PS42 models feature a 14-inch display, a quad-core CPU, and a discrete GPU in select models. MSI positions the new notebooks primarily for business users who need maximum portability, which is why the laptops are thinner and lighter than most 13.3-inch mobile PCs.

The MSI Prestige PS42 notebooks feature a 14-inch IPS Full HD display and are based on Intel’s quad-core Core i5-8250U or Core i7-8550U processors. Depending on exact model, the notebooks may be outfitted with 8 or 16 GB of single-channel DDR4-2400 memory, a 256 to 1 TB SSD featuring a PCIe 3.0 x4 interface, and NVIDIA’s GeForce MX150 dGPU (PS42 8RB SKUs only). The latter certainly offers better performance in games than Intel’s UHD 630 iGPU, but do not expect it to run modern games at high FPS using this chip.

Apart from its 14-inch display and a discrete GPU, two key selling points of MSI’s Prestige PS42 are its weight and thickness. The laptop weighs around 1.19 kg (2.623 lbs), which is in line with Lenovo’s latest X1 Carbon. Meanwhile, the notebook has a z-height of 15.9 mm (0.62 inches), which is 1 mm thicker than Apple’s latest MacBook Pro 13.3-inch. Considering the fact that the PS42 comes in a brushed aluminum chassis, it is logical to expect the notebook to feature a solid build and be fairly durable too. Meanwhile, to minimize dimensions and weight, MSI has to stick to a 50 Wh battery that provides up to 10 hours of operation on one charge, enough for a day, but not exactly long by today's standards.

On the connectivity side of things, the MSI Prestige PS42 offers a pretty standard configuration for business laptops. For wireless comms, the notebook has an Intel Wireless-AC 3168 1×1 802.11ac Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 4.2 controller. When it comes to physical ports, the laptop is outfitted with four USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A and Type-C headers, an HDMI 1.4 output (so, 4Kp30 only), an SD card reader, and a TRRS audio connector. Naturally, a 720p webcam (albeit located beneath the display), a microphone array, and stereo speakers are also present.

General Specifications of MSI's Prestige PS42
  PS42 8RB PS42 8M
Display Diagonal 14"
Resolution 1920×1080
Type IPS
CPU Intel Core i5-8250U (4C/8T, 1.6 - 3.4 GHz, 6 MB cache)
Intel Core i7-8550U (4C/8T, 1.8 - 4 GHz, 8 MB cache)
PCH integrated
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce MX150 with 2 GB GDDR5
GP108, 384 SPs
Intel UHD 630
RAM 8 - 16 GB DDR4 (single channel, 1 SO-DIMM slot)
Storage M.2 SSD 256 GB
512 GB
1 TB
Interface PCIe 3.0/NVMe
Wi-Fi Intel Wireless-AC 3168 1×1 802.11ac Wi-Fi
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.2
USB 2 × USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A
2 × USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C
Display Outputs 1 × HDMI 1.4
Audio 2 × 2 W speakers
3.5-mm audio jack for headset
Nahimic 3 software enhancements
Fingerprint Reader Yes
Other I/O 720p HD webcam, SD card reader
Battery 50 Wh
Dimensions Width 32.2 cm | 12.67 inches
Depth 22.2 cm | 8.74 inches
Thickness 15.9 mm | 0.62 inches
Weight 1.19 kg | 2.623 lbs 1.18 kg | 2.601 lbs

MSI this month started to sell its Prestige PS42 laptops worldwide. The notebooks are available in different configurations depending on the region and reseller. For example, Amazon currently offers three configs from $899 for the most simplistic version and $1,349 for the most advanced one.

MSI's Prestige PS42 Laptops Available at Amazon
  PS42 8M-064 PS42 8RB-060 PS42 8RB-059
CPU Intel Core i5-8250U
1.6 - 3.4 GHz
6 MB cache
Intel Core i7-8550U 4C/8T
1.8 - 4 GHz
8 MB cache
GPU Intel UHD 630 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 with 2 GB GDDR5
Storage 256 GB SSD 512 GB SSD
Price $899 $1,099 $1,349

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Source: MSI

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  • timecop1818 - Friday, August 17, 2018 - link

    Garbage 1080p screen. Why no shots of keyboard? From side view looks like they maybe did the home/pgup down keys correctly on the right side.
  • Gc - Friday, August 17, 2018 - link

    Bigger keyboard photo: followed "Source: MSI", clicked gallery tab, clicked a photo to open slideshow, third pic is

    Right-side editing cluster looks great: full-size arrow keys; shift-home and shift-end are both comfortable one-handed for editing while holding a phone or other instrument.

    Positions of the alt-keys are not for people who frequently press alt-keys with their thumbs. (I find thumbs are stronger for frequent use than pinkies, but frequently reaching far under the palm causes repetitive stress pain, so I prefer alt-keys closer to the center.)
  • PixyMisa - Friday, August 17, 2018 - link

    That layout (or something similar) needs to become the standard.
  • chrnochime - Monday, August 20, 2018 - link

    Not everyone needs a 1440p screen on a 14". So speak for yourself.
  • shabby - Friday, August 17, 2018 - link

    Any laptop with a nostril cam should be shamed.
  • Gunbuster - Monday, August 20, 2018 - link

    Indeed. It's near impossible to get business people to use a camera on Skype in the first place, and that's a well placed one.
  • chrnochime - Monday, August 20, 2018 - link

    Or just plug in your own cam and place it on top. Not like the built-in ones are that great anyway.
  • edgineer - Friday, August 17, 2018 - link

    What's wrong with the screen? Just the resolution? 1080 would be fine at this size...

    What irks me (and I hope is just a reporting mistake) is the TWO gimped type-C ports. While MSI's habit of including a single type-C port which can do nothing but gen1 data was annoying, putting two such ports on their ultrabook feels like an insult.

    My next portable, lightweight laptop MUST support USB-PD charging and DisplayPort Alternate mode on its (preferably 2x) type-C ports.
  • oRAirwolf - Saturday, August 18, 2018 - link

    Not really sure why anybody would but this over a Dell XPS 13 or 15 for what they are asking. Crappy WiFi, no Thunderbolt or USB 3.1 Gen 2, fairly small battery, run-of-the-mill screen, single channel memory, and what is pretty much a worthless GPU. There is nothing about this laptop that makes it a compelling choice with the other options on the market.
  • heffeque - Saturday, August 18, 2018 - link

    I don't have anything USB Gen2 that can't run just as well as Gen1 (still frustratingly using USB 2.0 on my current laptop), nor do I use USB ports for charging, nor have any use for DisplayPort (I use HDMI on my TV and other screens), nor does my unit come with crappy wireless (my PS42 comes with Intel 9462 + BT5), and last but not least: 16GB of RAM + 512 GB of SSD + MX150 + thin + light + small-edged 14" screen for 1200€ (21% VAT included) when other brands are asking for +1800€.

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