PC Manufacturers have been trying to bring to reality the dream of a console sized PC that didn’t seem out of place in the living-room.  Improved power and thermal efficiency over the past few years has allowed Intel, Nvidia, and AMD some success in this daunting task.

This is where the MSI Trident 3 Review comes into play.  It comes packed with a mid range GTX 1060, an Intel Core I7-7700HQ and 16GB of RAM.  The original price tag of $1300 made many consumers turn away, and rightfully so, but at the new price of $899, Can this system justify the price tag?

MSI Trident 3 Review MSI Trident 3 ReviewMSI Trident 3 Review MSI Trident 3 Review

MSI Trident 3 Review

The MSI Trident 3 Review has stayed away from the usual red and black color scheme that has become known as the “official unofficial” color for gaming computers.  Instead it has decided to use RGBLEDs on the systems corners which give it a very nice and clean look.  The small form console PC should have no problems hiding among your other home theater components, such as your cable box.

Many Different Ports

The Trident 3 doesn’t skimp on connectivity. The front panel houses three USB 3.1 ports — two Type-A and one Type-C — 3.5mm audio in and out, and an HDMI port for virtual reality, which we’ll discuss in more detail in a moment. Around back there’s gigabit Ethernet, another Type-A USB 3.1 port, four USB 2.0 ports, HDMI for the internal GPU, and the VR link HDMI port.

Out of the box, both the internal GPU HDMI port, and the VR Link HDMI port, are plugged with plastic stoppers. The VR Link requires an included HDMI jumper from the GPU into the port on the back. The system then passes that signal to the port on the front for a VR headset.

It’s a nice thought with some practical problems, the most obvious being the GPU, which only sports one HDMI, one DisplayPort, and one DVI. That means there’s no easy way to simultaneously plug in a VR headset and a HDTV (a DisplayPort to HDMI adapter could do the trick). Also, the HDMI pass-through only brings the port up about 10 inches, and an Oculus Rift will have to plug into the USB 3.1 port on the back anyway, with the Oculus trackers plugged into the front. That rather minimizes the advantage of the HDMI port on the front.

Like many small form factor systems with ITX motherboards, the Trident 3 sports 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2. If we’re just counting ports, the Trident 3 punches up a weight class, but its graphical outputs keep it limited to home theater or living room applications. It seems like an avoidable problem, considering the system sports an MSI GPU.

Upgrade-ability

The ram is easily accessible on this system and there is also a space for a 2.5 inch SSD or HDD on the back of the Unit.  You can basically upgrade or replace any and all of the internal component, with the exception of the power supply because it is an external unit.

Processor

The Intel Core i7-7700 holds its own against other comparable systems in its price range, such as the Dell XPS 8910 SE.  The CPU in the MSI Trident 3 is the simply slower cousin of the enthusiast Core i7-7700K and will provide excellent performance

Warranty

MSI warranty for the Trident 3 only covers the system and internal components for a year.  While this seems like a short time, it stays in the same range as other mid tier systems from major manufacturers. Also MSI allows you to open up the Trident and upgrade its components without voiding the warranty.  They do state that they will not cover damage due to user error so please work carefully when upgrading your system.

MSI Trident 3 Review

The Verdict

MSI has made the Trident 3 a true competitor in the race to win over the PC Living room discussion.  While we soured on the system at the original $1300 price point, the new pricing of $899 makes this a great buy!  We hope you found our MSI Trident 3 Review informative and hope it helped you in making your purchase decision.

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