MSI briefly set the world ablaze ahead of CES 2024 yesterday when it teased an upcoming announcement of a handheld gaming PC of its own. In a short video appearing on Instagram, we were treated to brief glimpses of the device up close and a shot of the RGB rainbow illumination of its thumbsticks.
However, the teaser (by design) failed to give us a clear shot of the unit leaving us with little else to go on ahead of its expected CES announcement. Until the internet went about exposing it regardless, that is.
The MSI Claw:
Firstly, the MSI handheld would be exposed in a tweet by Twitter/X user @wxnod, who posted a promotional image meant for the Chinese market. The image not only shows MSI's handheld console in full, but it also reveals its name: the MSI Claw.
The MSI Claw, bears a striking resemblance to the ROG Ally — if you took a bit of sandpaper to the latter's crisp lines and gave it a fresh coat of black paint. Everything from button placement, branding, and general shape would appear to show MSI copying Asus' homework on this one. However, there is one key difference that would be unearthed just hours later.
The MSI Claw: Powered by Intel
Owing to the previous leak's naming of MSI's new handheld gaming console, some people (such as Twitter/X user, @Olrak29_) were able to dig up Geekbench results linked to the Claw, which revealed what the device is packing under its hood. As suspected by Intel's appearance in the Twitter replies of MSI's teaser post, the MSI Claw won't make use of AMD's Ryzen Z1 Extreme, but will instead come outfitted with an Intel Core Ultra 7 155H CPU and up to 32GB of LPDDR5x RAM.
The adoption of the Meteor Lake processor would also indicate that MSI's Claw will feature integrated Intel Arc Xe-LPG graphics offering raytracing support and frame-boosting Xe Super Sampling.
The Core Ultra 7 CPU scores results similar to that of Asus' ROG Ally in the leaked benchmarks, further painting it as an Intel clone of ROG's popular AMD-powered portable. However, until we get a clearer word from MSI on the final specs of this device, we can't say for sure if there are any further benefits to MSI's console.
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Rael Hornby, potentially influenced by far too many LucasArts titles at an early age, once thought he’d grow up to be a mighty pirate. However, after several interventions with close friends and family members, you’re now much more likely to see his name attached to the bylines of tech articles. While not maintaining a double life as an aspiring writer by day and indie game dev by night, you’ll find him sat in a corner somewhere muttering to himself about microtransactions or hunting down promising indie games on Twitter.