MSI Modern 14

Laptop review
MSI Modern 14: A powerful laptop in an old-fashioned package

MSI's computer has a powerful processor, plenty of memory and good performance, but the specifications alone are not enough - the body of the computer is made of plastic that feels cheap, the screen provides an anemic display and the speakers are of poor quality

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מחשב MSI Modern 14
מחשב MSI Modern 14
MSI Modern 14
(Photo: MSI)
Top line
The MSI Modern 14 demonstrates why specs aren't everything - the basics are good, with a powerful processor, a decent amount of memory, a large storage drive and low weight. All of these look good on paper, but when you look at the whole package you find that it is simply not good enough - from the plastic in the computer body, through the low quality speakers to the screen.
Sometimes it seems like there isn't much (or any) difference between computers, smartphones, and other devices. It doesn't matter what the brand name is, all the manufacturers use the same components, more of less, and sometimes produce parts for one another.
After all, there are also "sticker companies" - brands that are attached to hardware assembled by a company that works behind the scenes. There is a difference between processor generations and the amount of memory, but in smartphones it's usually Qualcomm or MediaTek processors and in computers the choice is between Intel or AMD, so it's all the same, isn't it?
When you go between several models of several different companies, you find that it is really not the same and there are noticeable differences. MSI's Modern 14 model exemplifies them.
In fact, MSI itself is supposed to demonstrate the idea that everything is essentially the same - in the beginning it focused on the production of various computer parts, later it moved to produce computers for other companies and then decided to move to the front and offer its own computers as well.
And yet, despite the extensive experience, there is a gap between its new computer and the competitors, and not in favor of MSI.
Hardware: Basics are good, media performance is less so
Underneath the plastic is a powerful computer - with a 13th generation Intel i7 processor, 16 gigabytes of memory and a 1 terabyte drive. The video card is Iris Xe, which comes with the processor, which means that the computer is not intended for gamers and heavy graphic tasks. It can handle some of them, but it will require effort from the computer and even during light work, a bit of web surfing and writing a text document, you could hear the fan working in the background. In MSI's settings software, it is possible to set, among other things, different work modes and one of them includes quiet operation of the fan, which helps to solve this issue.
Despite the impressive specifications, turning on the computer feels a bit long, and at first I thought the computer was stuck, but you just need a little patience and after the initial start-up it is actually fast and efficient - windows open quickly, the content loads without delay and every click translates immediately into action
The speakers are not particularly loud and the sound is anything but impressive - it is not deep and there is no surround sound effect. It is also a bit jarring at times due to excess treble and not enough bass. I did not find in the MSI software an option to change the settings of the speakers and I was left with sounds that was not good enough.
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מחשב MSI Modern 14
מחשב MSI Modern 14
MSI Modern 14, lighting under the keyboard
The screen provides a medium to good display: it is an IPS screen and not OLED or mini LED, so the display is not impressive and looks anemic. At the maximum brightness level it is possible to work with it even under direct sunlight. The camera at the top of the screen also needs to be upgraded - in low light the image is grainy and in better lighting conditions the result is better, but still basic.
The battery lasts for 8-9 hours of continuous work, depending on the brightness level of the screen, and more demanding tasks will drain the battery faster. And when it is empty, the charging is fast - in about 20 minutes it already reached 45% and after 45 minutes the charging level was at 75%.