2022 MSI gaming, creator laptops revealed with 12th-gen Intel mobile CPUs

Like many other companies, MSI is showing up to CES 2022 with a bunch of new laptops in tow. Many of these laptops are gaming machines built around Intel's new 12th-gen H-series processors (announced earlier today) and NVIDIA's RTX 30-series GPUs. If you've been waiting for an update to the MSI Stealth, then today is your lucky day, because the company's portable gaming laptop is leading the day's announcements.

MSI GS77 and GS66 Stealth

MSI is updating its popular Stealth gaming laptop this year with some key upgrades. The 2022 Stealth will come in two varieties: the 17.3-inch GS77 and the smaller 15.6-inch GS66. Both will come with an array of configuration options that top out with the 12th-gen Intel Core i9-12900H on the CPU side and the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 Ti Laptop GPU.

There are, of course, plenty of gaming laptops that have RTX 30-series cards in them, and there will be plenty that use Intel's 12th-gen Core CPUs. However, the Stealth manages to stand out not in its hardware but in its display options and cooling technology. Regardless of the model you go with, it looks like you'll have three options when it comes to the display. You can get a 4K display with a refresh rate of 120 Hz, meet in the middle for a 1440p 240Hz display, or go heavy on the refresh rate with a 1080p 360Hz display.

Super-high refresh rate displays are becoming more and more common, and while 360Hz might be a bit overkill for most games, those who are fiercely competitive might want to consider that option when picking up the Stealth. At the very least, we'd be tempted to pick up a Stealth with that middle-of-the-road display that clocks in at 1440p240 because that strikes a good balance between refresh rate and resolution.

In any case, the GS77 specifically comes with a new cooling system MSI is calling the Phase-Change Liquid Metal Pad. Used in place of thermal paste, the metal pad is placed in between the thermal block and the CPU and melts when temperatures top 136 degrees Fahrenheit. According to MSI, using that melting metal pad instead of thermal paste or traditional liquid metal coolers can increase performance by as much as 10%, and when you're gaming at these resolutions and framerates, you need all the performance you can get.

MSI Raider GE76 and GE66

If you're looking for a more serious gaming PC and aren't as concerned about size or weight, the new Raider machines are worth a look. A fair amount heavier than the updated Stealth laptop – the GE76 clocks in at 8.8 lbs compared to the GS77's 5.7 lbs – the new Raider laptops are what most of us probably think of when we hear the phrase "gaming laptop."

The new Raider laptops actually have a lot in common with the new Stealth laptops from a hardware standpoint. The Raider laptops serve up 12th-gen Intel H-series CPUs, but while the options for the Stealth GS77 and GS66 top out at the Core i9-12900H, the Raider GE66 and GE76 offer the flagship Core i9-12900HK. GPU options once again start at the RTX 3060 Laptop card and range up to the RTX 3080 Ti Laptop. We've also got the same 1080p360, 1440p240, and 4K120 spread that we saw on the Stealth models, as well, though there is one Raider GE76 model that comes with an FHD 144Hz display, a Core i7-12700H, and an RTX 3060.

Both Raider models come with the same Phase-Change Liquid Metal Pad cooling system for the CPU found on the GS77 Stealth. They both also have 1TB M.2 drives, and nearly all Raider models will support WiFi 6E thanks to their 12th-gen Intel laptop CPUs. They also come with SteelSeries keyboards with per-key RGB lighting and a light bar that runs the width of the front of the device, just in case you didn't have enough RGB already. They're beastly machines, so if you want a full-sized gaming laptop and all of the bells and whistles that come along with it, the Raider laptops are worth a look.

Rainbow Six Extraction Crosshair 15 and more

While the Stealth and Raider laptops might be MSI's big-ticket items revealed at CES, the company announced many more gaming laptops beyond those two lineups. The Vector GP76 and GP66 (pictured above), for instance, cover similar CPU and GPU ranges, incorporating Core i7 CPUs all the way up to the flagship Core i9-12900HK and GPUs ranging from the RTX 3060 up to the RTX 3080 (no 3080 Ti for the Vector lineup, it seems). Many of the Vector models come with FHD, 360Hz displays as well, though there is one option for a QHD, 240Hz display on the GP76, and an FHD, 144Hz display on the GP66.

If there are mid-range options in MSI's new laptop lineup, they're found in the new Crosshair and Pulse laptops. While these laptops still feature high refresh rate displays, most models top out at 144Hz, though some top-line models in each family offer 360Hz displays as well. GPU options for both lines include the RTX 3050, 3060, and 3070 GPUs, with the Crosshair 15, in particular, offering 3070 Ti GPUs in some configurations.

One thing to note about the Crosshair laptops is that MSI will be offering a special edition Rainbow Six Extraction Crosshair 15 (seen above). This laptop comes with a 15.6-inch QHD display, a Core i7-12700H, and an RTX 3070 laptop GPU, making it a solid gaming machine that doesn't quite go all-in on the super expensive components. Perhaps the biggest selling point of the Rainbow Six Extraction Crosshair 15 is its special black and yellow chassis.

Finally, we have the Katana series laptops, which bring up the rear as the "low-end" models that MSI revealed today, if you can call them that. While Katana laptops max out with a Core i7-12700H and an RTX 3070 Ti GPU – making for a formidable gaming machine – the line goes down to the 15.6-inch Katana GF66 with a Core i5-12500H and the freshly-revealed RTX 3050. While that'll still make for a capable gaming machine, the fact that it costs $1,099 is indeed welcome when you consider that there are Stealth and Raider models that surpass $4,000.

MSI serves up new creator laptops, too

In addition to its gaming lineup, MSI also revealed new laptops for its Creator line today. Three series are getting new laptops in all: the Creator Z17, Z16P, and M16 series. Like the gaming laptops, the new Creator series machines use Intel's 12th-gen laptop CPUs, ranging from the Core i7-12700H in the base Creator M16 model to the Core i9-12900H on the high-end Creator Z17 model.

The Creator Z17 and Z16P laptops, as their names suggest, come with 17-inch and 16-inch displays, respectively, with QHD+ resolution (2560 x 1600), 165Hz refresh rates, and MSI Active Pen support. The exception to that is the base Creator Z16 model, which uses a QHD+ 120Hz touch display with no Active Pen support baked in. The GPUs in these laptops range from the RTX 3060 all the way up to the RTX 3080 Ti.

The top-of-the-line Creator Z17 is quite the machine, with a Core i9-12900H, an RTX 3080 Ti, and a whopping 64GB of RAM (DDR5 4800). Even the less expensive Creator M16 laptops are no slouches, with 16-inch QHD+ 60Hz displays, Core i7 CPUs, and either the RTX 3050 Ti or the 3060, depending on the model you choose.

Pricing and availability

MSI says that all of these laptops will go up for pre-order at its retail partners on January 25th. Then, on February 1st, these laptops will begin shipping out and will be available in-store.

Pricing, as you might imagine, covers a pretty wide range for all of these families. The Stealth laptops start at $1,799 for the GS77 and $2,499 for the GS66, while Raider laptops begin at $2,249 for the GE66 and $1,599 for the GE76. On the other hand, Vector laptops start at $1,899, while the Pulse series starts at $1,299. Rounding out MSI's gaming laptops, we have the Crosshair starting at $1,599 and the Katana laptops starting at $1,099.

On the Creator side of things, the M16 laptops start at $1,499, while the Z16 starts at $2,499 and the Z17 starts at a whopping $3,249. Make no mistake, the laptops on the upper end of this range are meant for professionals who need a top-of-the-line machine for work, and the prices reflect that, with the Z17 topping out at an eye-watering $4,599. Look for all of these laptops to go up for pre-order at the beginning of next month.