If you need a compact form-factor gaming PC that will fit right in with your TV and consoles, the MSI Trident 3 10th is an amazing deal. However, if you’re used to SSD living, the entry-level model’s hard disk may be inconvenient.
Gaming PCs are quite wonderful, aren’t they? They come in various forms and sizes, and they may be some of the most powerful pieces of technology on the market, or they can barely get by with the bare necessities. The fact that you can buy an entry-level prebuilt gaming PC like the MSI Trident 3 10th and subsequently upgrade it with more powerful hardware means that you can always stay current – but sometimes “entry level” is a little too low.
MSI Trident 3 10th Overview
The MSI Trident 3 10th that TechRadar received for testing has the absolute minimum of specifications, including an Intel Core i5-10400F, an Nvidia GTX 1650 Super, and a 1TB hard drive. We can’t find this model advertised anywhere, but when it does arrive in shops, it will cost $879 (about £690, AU$1,240). Given that the model with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super, the same CPU, but combined with a far quicker 512GB SSD would cost you back $999 (about £780, AU$1,406), it’s the one we’d suggest. It costs $120 (about £90, AU$170) extra, but the experience will be far superior with that SSD.
Fortunately, this is one of the tiniest gaming PCs we’ve ever seen. When you lay the PC on its side, like a console, it’s just slightly higher than the PS4 Pro, not as deep, and somewhat broader. It’s only 2.83 inches tall and has a similar footprint to any other system save the Nintendo Switch. With the MSI Trident 3 10th, you no longer need a massive tower to enjoy some PC gaming.
The computer features an all-black, angular appearance that is far less edgy and “gamer-y” than what we would anticipate from an entry-level gaming PC. The only lighting in this room is a red LED near the power button, which shows that the device is switched on.
There are two USB-A ports, one USB-C port, and separate 3.5mm audio jacks for audio in and out on the front of the device.
However, with such a tiny form factor, you sacrifice one of the finest aspects of PC gaming: upgradeability. Technically, you can open this chassis, but it’s not the easiest thing in the world. You can access the internals after removing the bottom panel, removing the screws, and sliding the top of the chassis off.
However, given how complicated and small the MSI Trident 3 10th chassis is, we wouldn’t suggest it to inexperienced PC users – making the entry level model even more difficult to recommend. That variant with a 1660 Super and a 512GB SSD is becoming very appealing.
This, of course, brings us to performance. If you buy the MSI Trident 3 10th’s entry-level model, you’re in for a bit of a wait. At this point, Windows 10 is definitely designed with SSDs in mind, as flash-based drives appear to be getting cheaper by the day. As a result, after you boot into Windows, you’ll have to sit and wait for a few minutes while the starting activities complete in the background. We discover that the disk is stuck at 100% for the first two minutes or so after the machine boots up.
That’s simply hard drive life, but it’s something to keep in mind, especially if you’re used to using something like a new laptop.
However, once the machine has warmed up a little, the desktop works precisely as we would anticipate. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Super in this device is ideal for medium-high settings in the most recent AAA games, but it truly shines in esports. This graphics card will easily handle Overwatch, Valorant, League of Legends, or whatever your multiplayer poison is – just don’t expect amazing frame rates in Call of Duty: Warzone or Battlefield V.
Our gaming benchmarks mostly line up with the Surface Book 3, with the MSI Trident 3 10th coming in with a Time Spy score of 4,815 to the Surface Book 3’s 4,840. Microsoft’s pro-level laptop is similarly intended mostly for 1080p casual and competitive games, so that tracks.
The Intel Core i5-10400F is just slightly less powerful than the full-fat Core i5-10600K. In Cinebench R20, you obtain 3,131 points compared to the 10600K’s 3,548. When combined with the Geekbench 5 single-core score of 1,140, you’re losing around 10-15% performance but experiencing far lower temperatures and fan noise than a fully overclockable processor would.
Essentially, the MSI Trident 3 10th is great if your idea of a good time is kicking back and playing League of Legends or World of Warcraft with pals, and you’re not worried with maxing up all of the graphical settings. And, given the popularity of esports, that’s most likely a large number of individuals – for whom the MSI Trident 3 10th will perform wonders.
You may also use it as a media PC because the GPU can readily handle 4K video and the capacious hard drive is significantly larger than what the Apple TV provides.
Why should you buy MSI Trident 3 10th?
You’re into esports
There are a large number of gamers that simply want to play League of Legends or Counter-Strike. For folks like these, the hardware on offer will be more than sufficient to provide a good experience without emptying your budget.
You’re trying to save some cash
Other gaming PCs with a comparable size — MSI produces one – are far more costly for the hardware on offer. This is due in large part to the lack of showy RGB lighting and liquid cooling on this workstation. If you’re searching for the most bang for your buck, this is it.