It looks like MSI is showing multiple notebook models on their domestic U.S. site. It also looks like the 510C may have a new model number...?
post #41 of 43
1/12/05 at 7:27pm
Originally Posted by CoffeeShark
Twinhead N15RB and MSI 510C
Not a direct comparison or review, just some pics and notes. The twinhead has a great SXGA screen while the MSI has the XGA (it is the best XGA screen I've seen so far).
The Twinhead has the 9700 128mb while the MSI has the 9600 64mb (although you'll see the benchmarks are very close).
First appearance - the Twinhead is a little boxier, due to the semi-rugged exterior. The MSI does have an alloy exterior, with the lid reinforced by a clear hard plastic insert. A little odd, but it works as intended.
The left side of each - note the MSI has the circular DVD bezel and it's on the left side, which is preferred by me because I like using an external mouse on the right side. The MSI also shows the memory card reader and pcmcia. The Twinhead shows the audio, VGA, Lan/Modem, 1x USB and the pcmcia.
The right side shows the cpu fan output on the MSI and a single USB port for the mouse, also the indicator lights and the lid release catch. The Twinhead has 2x USB ports, S-video out and the DVD.
Note: The MSI is easily the quietest laptop I've ever had. You don't even hear the fan, even when the room is quiet.
Back of the units - Nothing on the Twinhead except a nice solid backbone. The MSI shows another cpu fan vent, the power input, S-video out, VGA, printer, 2x USB ports, firewire, LAN/modem, and headphone/mic jacks. Nice and full of ports.
Opened up, the Twinhead is sleek and smooth exterior, great security and no flex to the lid. The MSI reflects everything off the plastic insert, but the insert does make the lid very sturdy.
Closer up on the MSI, very cool look with the reflective black panel (indicator lights shine through it), perfect keyboard (getting used to that Fn key placement) and the alloy palm rest. Even better looking in person.
MSI keyboard is excellent, great feel, no flex at all. Nice cool palmrest, the entire unit barely heats up at all, only a very slight warmth under the arrow keys (hard drive). Chromed mouse key bezel is a nice look.
Twinhead keyboard is solid, similar to the MSI's but a little bit different finish on the keys. Stickers on the Twinhead kb seem a little thicker than the ones on the MSI. Good typing and feedback. Space bar is smaller.
Hard to get a good picture with the flash, obviously. Scroll bar is built into the right side of the touchpad, but you wouldn't know from looking at it. Integrated mouse buttons are a cool touch.
Twinhead's touchpad is very responsive, with separate buttons and scrolling.
Feels like it will last forever.
MSI buttons are good looking and easy to use. Power button lights up when pushed, although you don't really know how hard to press down on it. Wifi actually stays on once you turn it on, so if you hibernate or shut down, when you come back on it automatically gets back on the network without having to hit that button again.
Twinhead power button, and Wifi button lights up green. Indicator lights along the top. Wifi does shut down when hibernating and has to be pushed again.
If you look very closely above the F12 key, you can see the hard drive indicator light (there are others next to it), a cool look, sorry the pic sucks.
From the front, closed MSI, you can see the battery that is underneath the palmrest. The battery is slim and long and doesn't generate any heat through the palmrest.
Two side shots, one with the indicator lights on.
Stock settings, the MSI ran 2530 on 3dMark03 (Windows XP SP2), while the Twinhead ran at 2563. Since the MSI only carries the 64mb 9600 gpu, I thought this was pretty odd, but after running the test a few times, it varied little. I didn't have time to check clocks, but I will. I know the Twinhead has a lower clock than most 9700 gpus. I did OC the Twinhead a bit before and got over 2750 stable, so it does have some room for that.
The SXGA screen on the Twinhead is excellent, no dead pixels, great display, and I have now converted from XGA-only person to really liking the SXGA. But for work, I still prefer XGA.
Oh, the MSI is about a half pound lighter than the Twinhead, around 6.2 pounds vs 6.8 pounds on the Twinhead.
More pictures available if you want them, installation pics for both notebooks, etc.