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MSI MEG Aegis Ti5 Review

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Did the opening, first, second, and third impressions of MSI Aegis Ti5 spread throughout the PC lab? 1987 movie Robocop. Seen straight from the cheesy cyborg thriller, this tower is unlike any other tower. MSI’s Aegis gaming desktop line is known for its quirky design, so Ti5 is “normal” in that regard. And its guts are certainly terminator grade. Its formidable components include the Intel Core i9-10900K CPU and the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 graphics card for pushing 3-digit frame rates at 4K resolution. Practicality can also be achieved by properly selecting the port.

Of course, RoboCop’s most striking line is from maniac TV host Bixby Snyder. “Buy for $ 1!” You’ll need 3,399 units to get a test model, but apart from its huge futuristic chassis and its own front panel dial controls, this Aegis justifies all these costs. It provides few additional features to make it. For less extreme science fiction, see Alienware Aurora R11, and for a lifeline to reality, see the Editor’s Choice award-winning Corsair Vengeancei 7200. Citizen.

“Dead or Alive, you’re coming with me”

Robocop. Terminator 2: Judgment Day. IRobot. The list goes on, but the MSI design team did binge-watching dystopian AI-themed flicks before planning for MEG Aegis Ti5. Its robot head-like design is even more radical than the 2017 Aegis Ti3.

Objectively, the chassis stands out. Subjectively, well, beauty is in the eyes of a robot that sees everything in the viewer. There is no doubt that it will attract attention. There is also a 33 lb bulk, or carrying handle for moving the Hulk. (Maybe in a nearby closet in case someone visits you?)

The Ti5 is bulky for a mid tower, 20 x 9.4 x 21.7 inches (HWD). The cylinder, which supports the tower with a metal stand, holds a 750 watt SFX-style power supply. Unfortunately, the cylinder does not rotate or move. It’s just for the show.

Most of the RGB ring lights rotate on both sides of the cylinder. Additional RGB lighting zones are lined up on the front and side panels. It will be difficult to find a tower with more and more prominent RGB lighting.

All lighting for this tower can be configured within the MSI DragonCenter app.

Please wait while dialing the future

The most interesting feature of the MEG Aegis Ti5 is the front-mounted gaming dial. This is an LCD screen knob that controls all kinds of functions.

Press the dial to change the mode. Rotate to switch the setting of each mode. It can be used for volume control, lighting, cycling power profiles, displaying statistics such as CPU frequency and temperature, and counting down to Skynet’s self-awareness. (Well, everything except the last one.)

Best of all, its modes and settings can be configured by the user with the included DragonCenter app. This involves creating your own shortcuts. The dial can also display selected images, including animations. While computer usage is unlikely to change, gaming dials add uniqueness, a key attribute in the price of the MEG Aegis Ti5. Flip-out headphone hangers aren’t another nifty essential.

On the top, the MEG Aegis Ti5 displays the GeForce RTX 3080, specifically the MSI Ventus 3X OC card (see review for a similar MSI GeForce RTX 3080 Gaming X Trio) under a see-through window like a supercar. RGB lighting.

The port selection just in front of the window includes a pair of USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A (5Gbps) ports, one USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C (10Gbps) port, and a headphone and microphone jack.

Meanwhile, the MSI Z490 MicroATX motherboard offers four additional USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports (three Type-A and one Type-C), a Thunderbolt 3 port (which is rare on high-end desktops), and a pair of legacy USB 2.0. .. Ports, and PS / 2 ports. Audio selections include surround jacks, line inputs, line outputs, microphone inputs, and S / PDIF digital audio outputs. The HDMI port is disabled, and the GeForce RTX 3080’s single HDMI and three DisplayPort video outputs take precedence.

There are both 1Gbps and 2.5Gbps Ethernet jacks for wired networks. The built-in Intel AX201 card provides Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5 wireless. I like that the antenna is built into the case rather than sticking out. Overall, MEG Aegis Ti5 provides a secure connection.

Unfortunately, build quality is one of the tower’s weaknesses. Its plastic exterior panels, especially the gray ones, feel cheap. The shiny black plastic part works better, but it’s a fingerprint and dust magnet. This expensive tower requires the use of higher quality materials such as aluminum and tempered glass. (Given the price, I was expecting half the T-1000 imitation polyalloy.)

The side panel slides backwards after removing the two screws one by one. (You need a Philips screwdriver. There are no thumbscrews here.) The panels are connected by wires that connect the RGB lights, so be careful not to pull the panels too far apart.

The 240mm CPU water-cooled radiator dominates the left side. You must remove the radiator to access the four DDR4 memory slots or two M.2 SSDs on the motherboard. It can be more than that. I didn’t try to dig deeper and MSI doesn’t provide a service manual. However, it looks like a process that is not simple enough to complicate the upgrade.

The upgrade outlook is slightly better for the two 2.5-inch bays behind the right panel. It’s relatively easy to access, but there are no tool-free caddies, SATA, or power cables nearby. You need access to the motherboard to route the cables. In other words, you just have to remove the radiator.

One of the components that is relatively easy to upgrade is a single 3.5-inch hard drive. It is located in its own bay under the bottom panel of a single screw.

In that regard, the MEG Aegis Ti5, with up to five drives, provides the mid tower with acceptable storage expansion. It may be easier to upgrade, but it’s not impossible. There is an extra charge for SFX power supplies, but there is no proprietary one except in this case.

MEG Aegis Ti5 Benchmark: “You are a terminator, right?”

The Cyberdyne Systems model 101 I’m reviewing (that is, the MEG Aegis Ti5) is closely related to the US top shelf configuration, the $ 3,399 Aegis Ti5 model 10TE-036US. It features a 10-core Core i9-10900K processor, a 10GB GeForce RTX 3080 graphics card, and 32GB of DDR4-2933 dual-channel memory. The warranty period is only one year. My review unit didn’t include any peripherals, but the model 10TE-036US comes with a keyboard and mouse.

For storage, my unit has been upgraded to a 2TB NVMe solid state drive for the Windows 10 Pro operating system (actually two 1TB SSDs striped with RAID 0) and a 3TB hard drive for storage. In contrast, the model 10TE-036US has a 1TB SSD with Windows 10 Home and a 2TB hard drive.

Hardware alone can save you hundreds of dollars. MSI’s compact MEG Trident X (model 10TE-1467US) cost $ 2,799, which was about the same component as when I entered it. Among the larger towers, the Asus ROG Strix G35CZ (G35CZ-XH988) was $ 2,799, the HP Omen 30L was about $ 2,949 on Amazon, and the Alienware Aurora R11 was $ 3,254 on Dell.com.

Features such as the MEG Aegis Ti5 design and game dial are what you need for extra fabric. But even if the design is objectively good, it’s still quite a premium. Very missing is the Core i9-10900K’s built-in CPU overclocking. This sets it apart from almost any competitor. (Of course, you can also manually overclock your system using the Dragon Center app.) The liquid cooling system actually requires it.

Let’s move on to the benchmark test. We compared the MEG Aegis Ti5 with four powerful gaming desktops powered by the Falcon Northwest Talon and its 16-core AMD Ryzen 9 5950X processor ($ 4,956 in testing). Note that the Alienware model uses a GeForce RTX 3090 card as opposed to the rest of the RTX 3080.

The MEG Aegis Ti5 cooling fan worked throughout the benchmark. The tower isn’t quiet, but its sound level is low enough to mix with background noise in most environments.

Storage, media, and CPU testing

The first test is UL’s PCMark 10. This is a comprehensive performance suite that simulates a variety of real productivity and content creation workflows. Use it to assess system-wide performance for office-centric tasks such as word processing, spreadsheet jockey, web browsing, and video conferencing. A score of 4,000 points indicates overkill for Microsoft Office or Google Docs. MEG Aegis Ti5 scored 7,566 points and Falcon Northwest Tower scored 8,454 points. Only two PCs with ultra-high-end or rarely seen hardware completed the test, so I omitted the comparison table. (See details on how to test your desktop.)

Next is a pair of CPU crunch tests. CinebenchR15 stresses all available processor cores and threads when rendering complex images. The handbrake test, on the other hand, transcodes 4/12 K video to 1080p.

The MEG Aegis Ti5 was, of course, consistent with other Core i9 machines. Falcon Northwest dominated with 16-core Ryzen. In addition, 6 cores and 12 available processing threads are not a small advantage.

The final test in this section is photo editing. Use Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud in early 2018 to apply 10 complex filters and effects to standard JPEG images and time each operation to sum them up. This test is less CPU-focused than Cinema bench or Handbrake, so it delivers the performance of the storage subsystem, memory, and GPU.

MSI continued to function like any other Core i9 unit.

Graphics and game testing

The first two benchmarks in this section measure the potential for PC game performance. UL’s 3DMark runs two DirectX 11 tests, Sky Diver (lightweight, runnable with integrated graphics) and Fire Strike (for more demanding, high-end game rigs). Unigine Corp. Superposition is another game simulation. Use a different rendering engine to generate complex 3D scenes.

Both tests maintained the status quo of Aegis Ti5, but it’s not a knock. This high number is only possible since the GeForce RTX 3080 debuted.

Now for the real game. It uses the built-in benchmarks of Far Cry 5 (normal and ultra quality presets) and Rise of the Tomb Raider (medium and very high presets) in three different screen resolutions. Far Cry 5 uses DirectX 11, but switches the Rise of the Tomb Raider to DirectX 12.

MEG Aegis Ti5 has spawned many for 4K games. Alienware was slightly better on the GeForce RTX 3090, but it wasn’t enough to justify the stratospheric price of that card.

“I can’t negotiate”

Thanks to the powerful Core i9 and GeForce RTX 3080 combination, MEG Aegis Ti 5 has achieved its basic goal of becoming a great 4K gaming platform. You’ll also earn points with the Thunderbolt 3 port and a unique game dial that doesn’t change the game. (And don’t forget that flip-out headphone hanger.)

The Ti5 is more expensive than its similarly equipped competitors, but its unlimited sci-fi look certainly plays a bigger role in purchasing decisions than its finances. The Alienware Aurora R11 and Corsair Vengeance i7200 are expensive, easy to upgrade, and high level, unless that style tickles your futuristic fantasies, or John Connor demands that your machine go back in time. Suitable for high-end games. -Head appeal.

Advantages

Powerful 4K game performance

Unique front panel gaming dial

Rare inclusion of desktop Thunderbolt 3

Conclusion

MSI’s MEGA egis Ti5 easily pushes 4K frame rates, but its huge cyborg design allows family members rather than enemies to run for cover.

MSI MEG Aegis Ti5 Specification Desktop Class Gaming Processor Intel Core i9-10900K Processor Speed ​​3.7GHz RAM (Tested) 32 GB Boot Drive Type SSD Boot Drive Capacity (Tested) 2 TB Secondary Drive Type Hard Drive Secondary Drive Capacity (Tested) 3TB Graphics Card Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Operating System Windows 10 Pro Best Desktop PC Read More

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