MSI In­fi­nite X

To in­fin­ity, and... ac­tu­ally, no, just to in­fin­ity.

APC Australia - - Contents -

Re­mem­ber when buy­ing a PC used to mean go­ing to an ac­tual store, walk­ing around a long dis­play of fas­ci­nat­ing beige boxes adorned with func­tional jew­elry, such as print­ers and desk­top mi­cro­phones, speak­ing to an over­bear­ing man in a short-sleeved shirt, then wait­ing sev­eral days for a dif­fer­ent man, this one less over­bear­ing, to ar­rive, and put it to­gether in your home? Mod­ern sys­tem builders like MSI can’t hope to re­place the hand­drench­ing thrill of that 1990s ex­pe­ri­ence, but they do bring a few bonuses of moder­nity to the ta­ble.

This In­fi­nite X doesn’t have an ounce of bloat on its spec sheet. Our test unit came with a GTX 1080 Ti, Core i7-8700K, and 16GB of RAM — although in AU, the near­est equiv­a­lent has a GTX 1080 and 32GB of RAM. Both are fairly close to the sweet spot for high-end gam­ing right now, be­fore the laws of di­min­ish­ing re­turns re­ally kick in and ren­der any fur­ther per­for­mance gains point­less in the wake of es­ca­lat­ing cost. And to­gether, those parts riped through our 1080p bench­marks with pre­dictable vigour, although for 4K gam­ing at a sta­ble 60fps, you’ll need yet more fire­power. MSI’s own Z370M Gam­ing Pro AC mother­board pro­vides the beat­ing heart of the whole op­er­a­tion, while stor­age op­tions rang­ing from SSD plus HDD to two M.2 SSDs are also avail­able. So far, so good.

This be­ing a high-end sys­tem, there’s a fair amount of show­boat­ing go­ing on with the case and com­po­nen­try. The GPU is mounted ver­ti­cally in line with side panel cut­aways on the case, so you can see the 0dB fan tech­nol­ogy in ac­tion and, like us, briefly panic that some­thing’s come loose in­side and is fry­ing your sil­i­con. The op­tion of a tem­pered glass side panel is there for those who want it, re­veal­ing a lit­tle more RGB flair. We’d hardly say our test sam­ple was re­strained, how­ever: There’s still an enor­mous back­lit de­sign on the front panel, and more sharp edges on the case as a whole than an Nvidia Founder’s Edi­tion blower. Shout out to the front panel full of handy ports: an HDMI for VR head­sets, a USB-C for newer de­vices, two USB 2.0s, and one 3.0. They could have been im­ple­mented more el­e­gantly, but that’s per­haps in the eye of the be­holder.

But there are a few case is­sues that go more than skin deep. The enor­mous power but­ton is po­si­tioned in a haz­ardously easy-toac­ci­den­tally-nudge po­si­tion, while the rear han­dle and DVD drive cover (yep, it ac­tu­ally has a phys­i­cal me­dia drive in 2018) feel wor­ry­ingly flimsy.

Look­ing in­side, it’s clear that mi­nor prob­lems have reached there, too. MSI’s sys­tem builders have ob­vi­ously done the best job pos­si­ble to cre­ate a neat and tidy, air­flow-friendly rig, but there are a few ca­bles dragged across the mother­board and re­main­ing in plain sight as a re­sult of the RGB LED fanci­ness go­ing on at the front, and a slightly cramped in­te­rior.

But let’s be clear: all our gripes so far ex­tend only as far as the case, and when you’re talk­ing about a GTX 1080 sys­tem, that’s small fry. The im­por­tant thing is that per­for­mance is where we’d ex­pect it to be, and the price is bang on the mark. With the GTX 2080 al­most here, the whole bang-for­buck par­a­digm is about to shift dra­mat­i­cally, so this isn’t the ideal time to in­vest in a new sys­tem. How­ever, if you’re re­ally into the In­fi­nite X’s strik­ing look, and want to blitz games at 1080p, this is an at­trac­tive prospect.


Our Labs test PC con­sists of an AMD Ryzen 5 1600, 16GB of Cru­cial Bal­lis­tix Sport LT @ 2666, an EVGA GeForce GTX 1060 3GB, and a 250GB Sam­sung 960 Evo M. 2 PCIe SSD. All tests per­formed at 1080p at high­est graph­i­cal pro­file.

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