Today we have an all AMD laptop, which is a rare occurrence in today’s world. The MSI Alpha 15 (B5Ex) comes powered by the Zen 3-based Ryzen 5000H-series and RDNA2 graphics, which are bound to spice up the currently NVIDIA-dominated mobile GPU market.
The GPU that is inside this laptop is the RX6600M, which should be around the level of an RTX 3060. With this laptop trying to go for the budget and mid-range consumers, it has to deliver big time, because the competition is most fierce here.
Today we present you with LaptopMedia’s top 5 picks about the MSI Alpha 15 (B5Ex).
4 reasons to BUY the MSI Alpha 15 (B5Ex)
1. Design and build quality
With supposedly all-metal construction, the laptop is quite sturdy. To be fair the case could have probably been the same even if the laptop was made of plastic, due to its sheer heft and thickness, which sit at 2.35 kg and 24mm, respectively. The design is very minimal, with simple shapes, some lines on the lid, and an MSI Alpha logo, which has a circular shape and displays an eagle or another type of predatory bird.
Its lid opens easily with a single hand, revealing a good set of input devices, with a keyboard with long key travel and clicky feedback, as well as either a Red or an RGB backlight. The keyboard also has decently large keycaps, which make the unit more comfortable overall. The touchpad also has some good qualities, such as accurate tracking and good gliding, but the clicking mechanism has a dead zone, which can be annoying.
The laptop has two SODIMM RAM slots and two M.2 PCIe x4 slots. The laptop can fit up to 64GB of DDR4 memory, running in dual-channel mode.
Here is our teardown video, which shows how to access both the RAM and SSD slots.
3. Display quality
Surprisingly, the display here can be used for professional work. The 15.6-inch Full HD IPS panel has a refresh rate of 144Hz, comfortable viewing angles, a max brightness of 305 nits in the middle of the screen, 310 nits as an average for the entire display area, and a maximum deviation of 8%. The contrast ratio is good – 1270:1. The panel also covers 93% of the sRGB color gamut, bringing vibrant and punchy colors.
Regarding the color accuracy, it was way off with the stock settings, but after we calibrated it with our Design and Gaming profile, the dE value went down to 1.7.
Buy our profiles
Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for MSI Alpha 15 (B5Ex) configurations with 15.6″ 144Hz FHD IPS AUO B156HAN08.0 (AUO80ED).
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Read more about the profiles HERE.
In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia's products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.
Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.
Design and Gaming
This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.
Health-Guard eliminates the harmful Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and reduces the negative Blue Light which affects our eyes and body. Since it’s custom tailored for every panel, it manages to keep the colors perceptually accurate. Health-Guard simulates paper so the pressure on the eyes is greatly reduced.
The laptop comes with a single CPU and GPU option: the Ryzen 7 5800H and the Radeon RX6600M. Below are benchmark results including the MSI Alpha 15 along with several of its competitors.
Results are from the Cinebench 20 CPU test (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Fritz chess benchmark (the higher the score, the better)
Results are from the 3DMark: Fire Strike (Graphics) benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 3.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Heaven 4.0 benchmark (higher the score, the better)
Results are from the Unigine Superposition benchmark (higher the score, the better)
1 reason NOT to buy the MSI Alpha 15 (B5Ex)
The laptop’s I/O is definitely wide in terms of quantity, but it lacks some stuff, some of which are completely excusable, such as Thunderbolt ports, which have been monopolized by Intel. You get a total of three USB Type-A (one 2.0 and two 3.2 Gen. 1) ports, a single USB Type-A 3.2 (Gen. 1) port, an HDMI connector, an Ethernet port, and a 3.5mm audio jack. Sadly, we find no MicroSD card reader, which would have been great for photographers to quickly transfer photos from their camera to the laptop.