MSI Modern 14 A10RB Review: a skinny and lightweight Productivity Powerhouse
I have reviewed a good number of laptops over the last months and most of those are gaming laptops that accompany powerful hardware in really big, bulky packages with massive charging bricks and a back-breaking weight. So when MSI sent over the productivity-oriented MSI Modern 14 A10RB (Rs. 74,990) laptop to us, everything about it attracted me. I’ve used this laptop for everything I usually do on my very own laptop, and a few things I even have never done on my laptop, and that i think the Modern 14 may be a solid, bang-for-buck offering from MSI. Let’s take a deeper look.
Design and Build
Starting off with the design , like I said, everything about this laptop is stunning. The silver-white colour, the aluminium body, the sleek design. All of it’s perfect and very eye-catching. I’ll be honest with you, I usually prefer laptops in darker colors, but MSI has done a flawless job designing the Modern 14, to the purpose where I’m trying to seek out issues with the planning with great care I even have something to speak about.
On the surface , there’s really nothing to dislike. The lid looks gorgeous, the laptop is thin and really light at just 1.2kgs. There are all the ports you’d want; heck, it even exposes with one hand.
However, the one and only issue I even have with this design are some things I spotted once I first opened the lid. you almost certainly guessed it — the webcam. It’s placed on rock bottom bezel, like laptops just like the XPS 13 from Dell, and with all of an equivalent problems as that one including the very fact that folks are often looking into your nostrils while you video conference with them. this is often also a reasonably big deal on behalf of me immediately since I even have been performing from home tons thanks to the coronavirus scare, which suggests I find myself video conferencing a couple of times within the day and it’s just embarrassing. I had no idea my nostrils seemed like that from below.
Apart from that single issue however, this laptop looks and feels awesome. The build is sturdy and powerful , and it does appear as if the laptop can take successful . Full disclosure, I did not, in fact, test whether the laptop can take successful , but it does look strong enough.
Speaking of things that I saw once I opened the lid, let’s take a glance at this display. the Modern 14 packs during a 14-inch FullHD IPS display and it’s pretty nice. It’s not the brightest panel I’ve seen on a laptop, but it’s definitely quite bright enough, and sunlight visibility shouldn’t be a drag because of the matte finish on the screen that reduces glare considerably.
I also really appreciate companies reducing bezels round the display, and therefore the Modern 14 does more of an equivalent . As a result, the display looks more immersive, and therefore the laptop can fit a 14-inch screen within a footprint that’s impressively small.
What I don’t adore about this laptop is that the 16:9 ratio of the screen. It just feels too wide for no reason, and is weird on behalf of me personally, since I consume tons of written content on the online , and a taller screen is more helpful to my workflow than a wider one. Although, if you’re a content creator, a wider screen may or might not be more useful to you.
Other than that, this display gets all the items you’d expect from it. It’s nice and sharp, the colours look good, albeit they don’t feel contrasty enough, and it also has good viewing angles — all of which is awesome. Plus, the screen doesn’t flex an excessive amount of like another laptops during this price range, and that’s something i actually appreciate.
Alright, let’s mention the performance. The MSI Modern 14 is not any slouch on paper. The laptop packs during a 10th-gen Core i7-10510U processor paired with 8GB RAM, and a 500GB SSD. There’s also MX250 graphics here from Nvidia to assist along side any GPU-heavy tasks. These are solid specs for a mid-range ultrabook-like laptop, which shows within the quite world performance this laptop can push.
As i discussed at the very beginning, I’ve been using this laptop to try to to everything I do on my daily driver and a few things I don’t do on my daily driver, and I’m happy to report that the MSI Modern 14 takes it all and breezes through it.
Obviously, the standard Chrome with around 15 tabs open, playing YouTube Music within the background quite work is handled pretty easily by the laptop, but even with slightly more demanding tasks like handling large photoshop files, the Modern 14 performs rather well .
MSI also mentioned to us that the laptop is great for software like AutoCAD, so I downloaded an attempt for AutoCAD and since I even have absolutely zero idea about the way to use the software, handed the laptop to my girlfriend who is an architect to see it out. She went ahead and designed a bunch of detailed architectural plans on the laptop and was very impressed with how the laptop performed even with an enormous number of plans open at an equivalent time. There was no lag, or any quite delay in executing commands that I can’t really remember the names of, but that’s an entire other story.
I also put the laptop through 3DMark and PCMark benchmarks to ascertain how it performed, especially because the Modern 14 comes with the newest 10th-gen Core i7. As you’ll see from the screenshots below, the laptop’s scores in both of those benchmarks are pretty decent and on par with what you’d expect from an ultrabook with these specs.
I didn’t test out games on the laptop, partly because this isn’t a gaming laptop, and partly because the type of games you’d play on a laptop like this include CS:GO and PUBG Lite, and both those games will certainly run flawlessly on this hardware.
Keyboard and Trackpad
Of the various things I absolutely adore about this laptop, the keyboard has got to be somewhere right the highest of the list. MSI has slapped on a Steelseries keyboard on the Modern 14 and it’s great.
Look, I spend most of my time typing on a laptop, that’s just what I do for a living, and a nasty keyboard can really ruin my life. the Modern 14, however, has a tremendous keyboard. The keys are big, so there’s a less chance of pressing the incorrect ones, and there’s ample key-travel also , which isn’t something I’m wont to any longer courtesy of Apple’s butterfly switches on the MacBook Pro, but I still appreciate it.
The keyboard is additionally backlit, which is another thing I feel is an absolute must on laptops, especially those aimed toward creative professionals, because believe it or not, we do tend to spend late nights working, and a backlit keyboard may be a godsend.
That said, the trackpad on this laptop evokes mixed feelings in me. it’s a Windows Precision trackpad, so technically all the gestures and therefore the simple use are there, but it’s tiny which makes it quite difficult to truly use this trackpad consistently throughout the OS. If you’re wont to trackpad-based gesture navigation on your laptop, as i’m on my MacBook, you’ll be hard pressed to truly get much use out of this one here. What I’m trying to mention , is you would like a mouse with the Modern 14 to truly enjoy using it, and that’s not something i prefer saying a few laptop.
Also annoying is that the incontrovertible fact that the trackpad kicks the OCD in me, big time. the form here is awful. it’s curved corners on the highest , and sharp ones at rock bottom , which is simply a jarring look.
Overall though, albeit I’m not a lover of the trackpad on this laptop, the Steelseries keyboard here quite makes up for it, so that’s good.
Ports and I/O
The Modern 14 A10RB also comes with a good selection of ports and I/O options so you’ll probably not run out of connectivity choices for your peripherals. The laptop has an HDMI port with support for 4K@30FPS video out, 2x USB Type C ports, and 2x USB A ports. Plus, there’s an SD card reader here, because tons of content creators, especially videographers and photographers do need that port to truly transfer data between their cameras and their laptop.
Personally, I mostly only found myself using the USB-A ports, and, once in a while , the SD card reader, but it’s great to understand the opposite options are available if you would like them.
For Audio, albeit the MSI Modern 14 might appear as if it’s speakers right up top, that’s an enormous fat lie. The speakers are literally on rock bottom here which isn’t great.
The laptop doesn’t have the simplest speakers I’ve heard within the price range. the quantity is low, even at the very best levels, and there’s absolutely no bass within the sound so if you’re wont to watching movies or taking note of songs directly from your laptop’s speakers, the Modern 14 isn’t getting to cut it for you.
The speakers can still do an okay job during a video call if you’re during a pinch for speakers or good earphones, but i might recommend investing during a pair of excellent Bluetooth speakers for this laptop.
Lastly, there’s the battery, and this is often another thing where the MSI Modern 14 excels. The laptop comes with a 50Whr battery, which isn’t the most important within the segment, but it does last long.
MSI says the laptop can last up to 10 hours on a charge, which, for somebody like me, is great because I tend to maneuver around tons at work when I’m writing a piece of writing and carrying the charger around isn’t the simplest option most of the time.
In my usage, which involves using Microsoft Edge with around 12 tabs open in the least times, a session of Photoshop running alongside, and sometimes YouTube Music or Amazon Prime Music playing within the background, the laptop does last around 8ish hours, which is great. I’m sure with slightly more casual usage, the ten hour claim will hold true, except for the foremost part, expect somewhere within the ballpark of seven to 9 hours on a charge.
The charger that MSI ships along side this laptop may be a 65W brick which charges the laptop from 0 to 100% in around 2 hours. So yeah, the battery performance on the laptop are pretty decent.
Pros and Cons
As it is with almost everything, the Modern 14 also comes with its own set of pros and cons.
• Lightweight and portable
• Great battery life
• Really impressive performance
• Speakers are disappointing
• Trackpad are often finicky
MSI Modern 14 A10RB: a tremendous Laptop with Minor Issues
Everything said and done, the MSI Modern 14 A10RB may be a solid laptop for its selling price of Rs. 74,990. The laptop comes with a powerful design and build, and is extremely lightweight which makes portability easy. It also packs in pretty solid specs, including the newest 10th-gen Intel Core i7 processor, so it’s fairly future proof.
That said, there are other options you’ll consider also . If you’re trying to find something which will allow you to play the newest games during this bracket , consider going with the MSI Alpha 15, which, at Rs. 74,990 brings the Ryzen 7 processor, 16GB RAM, 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD, and an AMD Radeon RX 5500 M GPU. you’ll also inspect the Asus Vivobook F571GT which brings a 9th-gen Core i7, but ramps up the RAM to 16GB, along side an Nvidia GTX1650 GPU for Rs. 72,990. otherwise you can just accompany the 10th-gen Core i5 packing variant of the MSI Modern 14 that’s priced at ₹52,990.
So yeah, there are tons of choices out there, even during this bracket . However, the MSI Modern 14 seems to bring the simplest amalgamation of price, performance, and portability that I even have seen thus far . If you’re trying to find a laptop that won’t break the bank or your back, and can still allow you to do all of your creative tasks with ease, the MSI Modern 14 should get on your watchlist.