The Nvidia GeForce GTX 460M–which seems to have become something of a standard issue graphics card in gaming laptops 15 inches or larger–is about to be replaced by an updated GTX 560M with higher clocks and some other minor upgrades. While ASUS’ Republic of Gamers 15-inch and 17-inch G53SX and G74SX are still not available on store shelves, MSI is already shipping the GT683, which they claim is the “worldwide leader in notebook performance”. This claim is based on a PCMark Vantage score of an impressive 18,162. Although this score has been achieved with an SSD, which is not a part of the standard configuration and overclocking is also used, so you could argue that some “cheating” is involved. Nevertheless, there’s no denying that MSI has a powerful and highly versatile laptop in the GT683R.
The GT683R-242US model currently sold by Amazon for $1,499 includes a 2nd-gen quad-core Intel CPU (same one as in the M14x we recently reviewed), a Full HD display (1920×1080), dual 500GB hard drives running in RAID 0, 12GB of DDR3 RAM, USB 3.0 ports and of course the brand new GTX 560M GPU.
Those specs aside, the real highlight in the GT683R (and a few other laptops from MSI) is the TDE+ (2nd generation Turbo Drive Engine)–a feature that lets you overclock both the CPU and GPU in the laptop with the simple push of a button.
Your humble correspondent used to own an MSI GT-series laptop with this feature, but the first generation just overclocked the CPU by 30%, which was quite impressive in itself (it also did so with no adverse effect on stability whatsoever). In the new generation, however, the GPU also gets an automatic boost, which is considerably more important for the frame rates in your games. MSI says that the amount of overclocking is in the 30-45 percentage range.
You could of course overclock your system manually, but this simple push-button solution is a lot more convenient, especially if it keeps the machine perfectly stable like in the previous generation. There are also no concerns about warranty issues, since the manufacturer actually encourages overclocking in this case.