CES 2020: MSI's world-first mini-LED laptop screen is the best we've ever seen

Meanwhile, its latest gaming laptops get 300Hz displays, which is just ridiculous

MSI Creator 17
(Image credit: MSI)

MSI has unveiled a wave of new laptops at CES 2020, including the first ever laptop to include a display powered by mini-LED tech, and it's absolutely stunning.

The Creator 17 is, as the name suggests, focused on creative types, hence why it has such a revolutionary 17-inch 4K screen.

Mini-LEDs are used for the backlight, sitting behind the panel (thanks to being mini) rather than around the edge. This direct backlighting means the display is powerfully bright, and qualifies as HDR1000, meaning it can hit a peak of 1,000 nits of brightness – this is considered the level of 'true' HDR for actual TVs, let alone small laptop displays.

The best bit, though, is that the parts of the backlight can be individually dimmed, so you also get fantastic rich blacks, rather than light leaking through and turning them to grey.

If you're into TV tech, this will all sound familiar: it's basically how high-end Samsung QLED TVs (such as its new 8K models) work.

The results are absolutely stunning: videos that make the most of the 4K resolution and full-fat HDR look unbelievably good.

Add to all this the fact that the screen supports 100% of the P3 colour gamut, and you've got maybe the best laptop for video and photo work imaginable.

Especially since it includes a newest-gen Intel Core i9 processor, which is combined with MSI's clever Creator Center software, which enables the user to choose which apps should have the most system resources prioritised to them (so you could make sure that creating a video thumbnail image in Photoshop doesn't doesn't slow down your Premiere render times, for example).

MSI GS66 Stealth

(Image credit: MSI)

Of course, MSI being MSI, there are also gaming laptops coming with cutting-edge screens of their own. The new GE66 Raider and GS66 Stealth laptops both have 300Hz screens, which are the fastest currently known to man.

Made for discerning esports enthusiast, this means the minimum possible lag from when you move your cursor to when you see the results on-screen. They can also be configured without the 300Hz screens, if you prefer higher-resolution instead.

The GS66 Stealth is especially interesting to us of the two: it also includes the world's thinnest fan blades (just 0.1mm), which has enabled MSI to fit 67 of them in, which means 10% more air flow, so performance is less likely to be throttled by rising temperatures. It also has speakers from Danish audio experts Dynaudio, including bass radiators for proper oomph.

MSI GE66 Raider

(Image credit: MSI)

The GE66 Raider is more of a flashy gamer's laptop, and includes an LED strip around the base, which can be programmed from MSI's control software.

Both laptops include a 99.9 watt-hour battery, which is basically the maximum you can have (because any larger and you wouldn't be allowed on a plane with it).

Newest-gen Intel i7 and i9 processors will be available inside, as will the latest Nvidia RTX graphics chips, but we aren't able to confirm exactly which models just yet.

We're waiting on prices and release dates for all these laptops, but don't expect the versions with the top screen tech to come cheap.

Matthew Bolton

Matt is T3's former AV and Smart Home Editor (UK), master of all things audiovisual, overseeing our TV, speakers and headphones coverage. He also covered smart home products and large appliances, as well as our toys and games articles. He's can explain both what Dolby Vision IQ is and why the Lego you're building doesn't fit together the way the instructions say, so is truly invaluable. Matt has worked for tech publications for over 10 years, in print and online, including running T3's print magazine and launching its most recent redesign. He's also contributed to a huge number of tech and gaming titles over the years. Say hello if you see him roaming the halls at CES, IFA or Toy Fair. Matt now works for our sister title TechRadar.