The Bottom Line
- Solid Performance From Core i3 Processor
- Thinner Than Most Budget 15-inch Laptops
- Well Priced
- Build Quality Feel Not As Good As Competition
- Narrow Viewing Angles On Display
- Hard To Find
- Intel Core i3-330M Dual Core Mobile Processor
- 4GB PC3-8500 DDR3 Memory
- 320GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 8x DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Burner
- 15.6" WXGA (1366x768) LED Backlit Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
- Intel GMA 4500MHD Integrated Graphics
- Fast Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n Wireless
- Three USB 2.0, HDMI, VGA, 4-in-1 Card Reader
- 14.7" x 9.7" x 1.2" @ 5.5 lbs.
- Windows 7 Home Premium
Guide Review - MSI A6200-038US 15.6-inch Budget Laptop PC
Apr 12 2010 - MSI's A6200 is a part of their classic laptop lineup and the first to incorporate the new Intel Core 2010 processors into their budget priced models. It uses the Core i3-330M dual core processor that is a major step forward in budget mobile processors. Performance from it combined with the 4GB of DDR3 memory let it run just about every type of application. Multitasking is also not an issue unlike the less expensive netbooks.
Storage features on the MSI A6200-038US are standard fare for a budget laptop. It features a 320GB hard drive that provides a fair amount of storage for applications and data. A dual layer DVD burner handles all playback and recording of CD and DVD media.
The display panel uses the fairly typical 15.6-inch size found on just about every budget laptop on the market using a 1366x768 display resolution. Backlighting is handled by LEDs which provide a bright and colorful display but not one that a graphics professional would want to use. Viewing angles are also fairly typical of a lower cost panel that restrict the viewing to very tight angles. Moving slightly off the vertical or horizontal axis will generate darker colors and a loss of detail.
Like many budget laptops, the MSI A6200-038US uses a smaller six cell battery pack. This means the system is going to have more limited running time compared to more expensive systems. In my DVD playback test, the system was able to run for roughly two and a half hours before it went into standby mode. Expect this to produce around three and a half hours of more traditional usage.
One thing that does set the MSI A6200 apart from other budget laptops is its size. The majority of low cost laptops are very thick at the hinge. Typical measurements are around one and a half inches thick. MSI has slimmed up the profile of the A6200 to be under one and a quarter inches thick at its thickest point. Weight is also on the lighter side at just a five and a half pounds.
While the system is smaller than the average budget laptop, the A6200 does not have the same fit and finish that some other companies have. An example would be the chiclet style keyboard that many laptops now use. While they typical have a very comfortable feel, the keyboard on this laptop has a very soft feel compared to the likes of ASUS, Acer, HP and others.
Pricing on the MSI A6200 is very reasonable. While the base price is around $650, models can be found at some retailers for roughly one hundred less. It should be noted that the test model was a A6200-038US but many models will have identical specs but a different version number.