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MSI's aggressive design language with a generous sprinkling of RGB gives its hardware an unmistakable gamer aesthetic. This also stands true for the company's latest pre-built desktops that likely have a tough job ahead of luring in gamers eagerly awaiting AMD and Nvidia's upcoming hardware.
Nevertheless, these new machines are adequately equipped for playing modern-day titles and should still be able to handle games released several years down the line. Comfort yourself with this argument if you end up buying one, impulsively, or otherwise.
Starting with the cheapest model, the $799 Aegis SE comes with an Intel 10th-gen Core i5-10400F six-core CPU, a GTX 1660 Super, and 8GB of RAM. Storage consists of a 240GB SSD and 1TB SATA HDD. It also features Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax on-board, which MSI says reduces latency by 75% over the previous generation and is 3x times faster than Ethernet LAN.
Despite its modest specs, the Aegis SE offers plenty of connectivity options due to its desktop form-factor. These include 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, alongside a mic in and headphone jack on the front. The rear offers 4 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, 2 x USB 2.0, 1 x HDMI-out, 3 x DP out, and a PS/2 combo port.
The Aegis SE will be exclusively available from Walmart when it goes on sale next month.
MPG Trident 3
Next up is the wedgy, console-sized MPG Trident 3. It uses a Core i5-10400F/GTX 1660 Super combo and 8GB of RAM in the base model, which can be upgraded to an eight-core i7-10700F. The maxed-out version combines this i7 with Nvidia's RTX 2060 Super, 16GB of RAM, and a bigger 330W PSU as opposed to 230W in the lower-end versions.
Storage, identical across all tiers, consists of a 512GB SSD and a 1TB SATA HDD. In terms of I/O, this compact PC features 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C, 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, and a mic in/ headphone jack on the front. The rear houses 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C, 4 x USB 2.0, 1 x HDMI-out, 3 x OFC audio jacks, an RJ45 port and DC power input.
The MPG Trident 3 comes in a 4.7-liter case, which MSI says should fit in most conventional backpacks, allowing for better mobility given its weight of just under 7 lbs (~3.1kgs). It launches later this month with an $879 starting price.
MSI's third offering coming under $1,000 is the Codex R. This micro-ATX PC uses similar CPU/GPU combos as its aforementioned sibling, with the maxed-out i7/GTX 2060 16GB version coming with an additional 1TB of SATA HDD storage, complementing the existing 512GB SSD of its base models. A 500W PSU is used across all variants.
The system features an RGB CPU Cooler, three 120mm fans, and a magnetic dust filter. Its B460 motherboard supports 4 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 2 x USB 2.0, 1 x HDMI-out, 3 x DP out and PS/2 combo port on the rear, while front I/O is made up of 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports and a mic in/headphone jack.
The Codex R also comes with gaming peripherals, which include MSI's Vigor GK30 Keyboard and Clutch GM11 Mouse. It's set to go on sale next month, starting at $899.
Aegis R and Aegis RS
Further up the ladder is MSI's bigger, more powerful Aegis series. The 'R' version starts with an eight-core i7-10700F/RTX 2060 Super combo along with 16GB 3000MHz RAM. It maxes out with an RTX 2070 Super, 1TB SSD, and a bigger 650W PSU. The PC's B460M PRO-VDH motherboard features 2 x PCI-E 16x expansion slots.
Other ports of the tempered glass PC include 4 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1 x HDMI-out, 3 x DP out, and a PS/2 jack on the rear, while the front has 2 X USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C and a mic in/headphone jack.
The Aegis also has a more expensive 'RS' model, which uses a higher-end Z490-A Pro motherboard for supporting up to a ten-core i9-10900KF/GTX 2080 Super combo. This version comes with a 1TB NVMe SSD and a bigger 750W 80 Plus Gold PSU. The front I/O is identical to the 'R' model, while the rear adds an extra USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C and Type-A port.
MSI's Aegis lineup also comes with the aforementioned gaming keyboard and mouse. Both the $1,499 Aegis R and $1,549 Aegis RS will go on sale next month.
MEG Trident X
MSI's latest flagship model is the MEG Trident X. A 10L compact case, which can be specced with up to a Core i9-10900K/RTX 2080 Ti, 64GB of RAM, and an extra 1TB of SATA storage on top of the existing 1TB SSD.
It uses MSI's 'proprietary' Z490 chipset-based motherboard and offers generous I/O connectivity. The rear features 2 x USB 2.0, 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 3 x DP out (1.2), 1 x HDMI-out (1.4), 1 x Thunderbolt 3 USB Type C (USB 3.2 Gen 2, DP) with PD charging, 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A, 5 x audio jacks, along with an Optical S/PDIF out and Ethernet port. The front, meanwhile, consists of 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C, 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1 x USB 2.0 and a mic in/headphone jack.
This model uses a 650W PSU across all variants and features MSI's Mystic LED Lighting to compliment the tempered glass design. The MEG Trident X is set to go on sale later this month, priced from $2,299.