MSI AG270: a rare PC gaming all-in-one desktop

MSI AG270: a rare PC gaming all-in-one desktop

MSI AG270 All-in-One

MSI AG270 All-in-One Review

The MSI AG270 combines high-end gaming parts with a large matte-finish touchscreen, tons of storage, and a Blu-ray drive.

MSI AG270

With all the gaming laptops and desktops we review, it’s surprising that we don’t see many all-in-one desktops (computers with built-in big-screen displays, such as Apple’s iMac) geared toward PC game-playing. After all, you’ve got a built-in screen, and often a large 27-inch one at that, plus a space-saving design, adjustable kickstand or neck for optimal viewing angles, and a desktop-sized keyboard and mouse. In short, a gaming all-in-one could potentially combine the best qualities of a gaming laptop and a gaming desktop.

But, on closer examination, there are a few holes in our theory. As one of our colleagues put it, you’re basically buying a gaming desktop that you can never upgrade. And, despite the hulking desktop footprint, most all-in-ones default to mobile parts for their processors, graphics cards, and storage. That’s especially important for gaming, as there’s a world of difference between the laptop version, say an Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M, and the desktop version, the GTX 980 (without the “M”) in terms of performance.

This may explain why the MSI AG270 is the first gaming all-in-one we’ve tested in years. In one sense, this is essentially a high-end gaming laptop crammed behind a 27-inch monitor, with a laptop-level Nvidia 980M graphics card, at a premium price. But even taking the quirky mashup of categories into account, the AG270 comes off surprisingly well in our hands-on testing, acting as a kind of big-screen personal gaming station with more a bit more portability than lugging a desktop and monitor around.

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Image Source: Nicholas John