MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review: Incredible power for an incredible wallet

If you can’t afford a new car, you can’t afford this

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review
Editor's Choice
(Image: © Future)

Laptop Mag Verdict

The MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) is a powerhouse, an A-lister, the machine with a mean look in its eye, a straight-up monster ready to devour your wallet and stun you with the power of Mini LED magic.


  • +

    Intense display

  • +

    Mechanical Cherry keyboard

  • +

    Killer performance


  • -

    Over $5,000

  • -

    Short battery life

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Are you looking for the champ? Well, the MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) is here. Do you want ultimate power and stunning beauty? You’re going to have to take out a second mortgage because this machine will cost you $5,399.

Good with the price? Let me tell you what this baby can do. Packed with the shiny new 14th Gen Core i9 processor and a beefcake RTX 4090 GPU, the Titan destroyed its competition in almost every benchmark. Then I saw it square up with its 18-inch, 4K+ Mini LED display and it blew me away with a fever dream of colors. Finally, when I laid my hands on it, its dazzling Cherry keys swooped me up and showed me a whole new world.

I love the MSI Titan 18 HX (2024), and it makes for one of the best gaming laptops out there, if you can afford it.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) specs

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CPUIntel Core i9-14900HX
GPUNvidia GeForce RTX 4090 16GB
Storage4TB NVMe SSD
Display18-inch, 4K, 120Hz Mini LED
Size15.9 x 12.1 x 1.3 inches
Weight7.9 pounds

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) price and configurations

If you’re reading this review, you must have a wallet bigger than my bank account, so I don’t think you need to worry about how our model costs $5,399. It comes with a chunky Intel Core i9-14900HX processor and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 GPU, 128GB of RAM, a 4TB NVMe SSD, and an 18-inch, 4K, 120Hz Mini LED display.

If, for some reason, you want to save $400, you can drop to the $4,999 version, which gives you only 64GB of RAM. Imagine?

Now, if you found your way here by mistake, take a left turn towards the best cheap gaming laptops or best gaming laptops under $1,500, and you can hang out with me.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) design

Will I complain about black laptops until the end of my days? Yes. But that doesn’t mean black can’t be sexy. The MSI Titan 18 HX flaunts an anodized aluminum black lid with a glossy monochrome MSI logo embedded within raised glass (RGB-capable). It has a dump truck of a hinge that’s coated in silver paint, giving it that machine look. But it’s off-set by the blue slashes along the hinge and underside that make it look too much like an Acer Predator.


♬ Elevator Music - Bohoman

The interior was shocking. The bottom half of the deck is all touchpad — well, kind of. It’s like that side of the deck was meant to feel like a touchpad until you turn the machine on and see the RGB-lit area that will receive your feedback. Then you have that gorgeous Cherry keyboard above flanked by heat vents. The display sports thin bezels and a webcam up top with a privacy shutter.

At 7.9 pounds and 15.9 x 12.1 x 1.3 inches, I can’t make any excuses for this chunky monkey. The previous MSI Titan GT77 HX was considerably lighter and thinner (7.3 pounds, 15.6 x 13 x 0.9 inches). They are still bigger than the Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024) (6.8 pounds, 15.7 x 11.6 x 0.9 inches) and Alienware m16 R2 (5.8 pounds, 14.3 x 9.8 x 0.9 inches)

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MSI Titan 18 HX 202415.9 x 12.1 x 1.3 inches7.9 pounds
Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024)15.7 x 11.6 x 0.9 inches6.8 pounds
Alienware m16 R214.33 x 9.81 x 0.93 inches5.75 pounds

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) ports

Ports everywhere.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

Look to the left and you’ll find the security lock slot, two USB Type-A ports, and an SD card slot, while the right holds room for two Thunderbolt 4 ports, one USB Type-A port, and a headphone jack.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

Check out the trunk! It’s got the power jack, HDMI port, and an RJ45 Ethernet port.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

Do you find yourself in need of more ports? Check out our best USB Type-C hubs and best laptop docking stations pages.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) display

Are you ready for jaw-dropping excellence? Witness the Titan’s 18-inch, 3,840 x 2,400 Mini LED display, clocked in at 120Hz. This is the sharpest and smoothest gaming experience you could ask for.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

When I explored the neon-lit Night City in “Cyberpunk 2077,” the vibrant lights glowed in the reflections of the rain puddles around me. Riding through the city, every detail from my motorcycle’s windshield to the traffic lights above was crisp. Diving into dark alleys didn’t make it any less immersive, as the display was bright enough to shine a light on the grime that the city left behind.

I watched a clip of “Ted,” and the titular bear’s beige-brown coat looked more lifelike than ever before, driving the premise of the show further. I could even see the sharp strands of fuzz coming out of his tummy. The night shots were well-lit, especially where Ted fell off the roof.

According to our colorimeter, the Titan covered 112.4% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, which is intense compared with the average premium gaming laptop (94.1%). The previous model was slightly more colorful (114.5%), but it still took the spotlight from the Strix (84.3%) and Alienware m16 (69.9%).

At 559 nits of brightness, the Titan outshined everything. Take the average premium gaming laptop (448 nits) and throw it out the window. Toss the previous Titan (511 nits), the Strix (427 nits), and Alienware (288 nits) alongside it.

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LaptopDisplay average brightness (nits)DCI-P3 color gamut (%)Delta-E color accuracy (smaller number is better)
MSI Titan 18 HX 2024559112.40%0.29
Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024)42784.30%0.23
Alienware m16 R228869.90%0.3

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) keyboard and touchpad

Kiss me and twirl me at the school dance — this Cherry keyboard is making my fingertips flutter with joy. It’s rare to house a mechanical keyboard in a laptop, but I am happy to sacrifice some height to make this happen more often.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

I crushed the typing test with 91 words per minute, which not only beats my 78-wpm average, but it’s also one of my fastest times. The click and bounce of each key sends my fingers flying into the next with ease. I’d type out my complete novel on this keyboard.

With per-key RGB lighting and an RGB-lit keyboard, you can blast yourself with rainbows as long as you go through the SteelSeries GG app.

I’m not the biggest fan of the touchpad. The 3.3 x 5.3 inches is enough room, but the resistance on the touchpad and deck is a bit excessive. And there’s no clicker — it’s all haptic feedback. However, there’s not a Windows setting to adjust the amount of feedback delivered — which is odd because I’ve seen it in laptops like the HP Spectre x360 14. I do love the way the deck is stylized to blend in with the touchpad itself. If you add haptic feedback settings and make the deck smoother, I could get used to it.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) audio

The bottom-firing speakers housed within the MSI Titan are shallow and too quiet. I recommend listening with the best gaming headsets or best Bluetooth speakers.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

In “Cyberpunk 2077,” the dialogue between V and Judy echoed in the stairwell we were in and it felt like I was actually in that space with them. When I jumped into combat, the bullets fired from my gun and the sounds it made when I reloaded were sharp and metallic. It was somewhat satisfying, but missing the bass to round out the experience. Driving around the city produced a low, shallow rumble — I want my ears to explode when I rev the engine, so this was disappointing.

I listened to Daisy Grenade’s cover of “King For A Day,” and the opening guitar riff was lower and even further in the background than it’s intended to be. The percussion couldn’t hit those thick bass drops. The vocals were clear, but it’s not as well-rounded as it could have been.

You can adjust the audio in the Nahimic app, which offers presets and equalizers, but changing the range that you experience the audio won’t fix the hardware limitations.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) gaming, graphics and VR

Duck behind cover because the MSI Titan 18 HX is firing away an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 GPU with 16GB of VRAM. I raced down the streets of Night City in “Cyberpunk 2077” at 69 frames per second on the highest settings at 1080p. That’s pretty damn impressive when you think about how chunky “Cyberpunk”’s graphics are.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

On the “Assassin’s Creed Valhalla” benchmark (Ultra, 1080p), the Titan nailed 169 fps, dominating the pack average (134 fps). Even with the same RTX 4090 GPUs, the previous Titan (124 fps) and the Strix (154 fps) were no match. The RTX 4070 in the Alienware (112 fps) didn’t do too bad considering its competition. At 2400p, the Titan averaged 73 fps.

The MSI Titan 18 HX smacked around the “Far Cry 6” benchmark (Ultra, 1080p) at 120 fps, doing 20 over the category average (100 fps). No surprise — the Titan beat itself (102 fps) as well as the Strix (116 fps) and Alienware (89 fps). At 2400p, the Titan averaged 71 fps.

When we’re talking about “Borderlands 3” (Badass, 1080p), the Titan came swinging at 181 fps, knocking out the average premium gaming laptop (135 fps). It was a rough day for the older Titan (177 fps), the Strix (141 fps), and the Alienware (102 fps). At 2400p, the Titan averaged 64 fps.

For the finale, the Titan took on the “Red Dead Redemption 2” benchmark (Medium, 1080p). If you’ve been paying attention to the trend, you’ll know where this is going. The Titan came out on top with 135 fps, skidding past the Strix (121 fps), the old Titan (127 fps), and the Alienware (65 fps). At 2400p, the Titan averaged 42 fps.

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Gaming benchmarkResolutionMSI Titan 18 HX (2400p)Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (1600p)Alienware m16 R2 (1600p)
Assassin's Creed Valhalla1080p169 FPS154 FPS112 FPS
Row 1 - Cell 0 Native73 FPSRow 1 - Cell 3 74 FPS
Far Cry 61080p120 FPS116 FPS89 FPS
Row 3 - Cell 0 Native71 FPSRow 3 - Cell 3 71 FPS
Red Dead Redemption 21080p135 FPS121 FPS65 FPS
Row 5 - Cell 0 Native42 FPSRow 5 - Cell 3 41 FPS

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) performance

It's the year of 14 — that's right, the MSI Titan 18 HX is packing the 14th-Gen Intel Core i9-14900HX processor with a whopping 128GB of RAM. No matter how many Google Chrome tabs and YouTube videos I threw at it, the Titan did not flinch or waver.

On the Geekbench 6.1 overall performance test, the Titan scored 16,501, sailing past the average premium gaming laptop (11,859). The Strix’s own Core i9-14900HX (17,300) mildly outpaced it. However, the Alienware’s Core Ultra 7 155H didn’t come close, with 12,784.

The Titan transcoded a 4K video to 1080p in just 2 minutes and 33 seconds on our HandBrake benchmark, speeding past the category average (3:42). It also made short work of the previous model (3:24; Core i9-13950HX), the Strix (2:48), and the Alienware (3:46).

MSI’s two 2TB SSDs feature a transfer rate of 2,664 megabytes per second, crushing the average premium gaming laptop (1,816 MBps). That’s MacBook-territory fast. The SSDs in the previous Titan (2,299 MBps), Strix (2,259 MBps), and Alienware (2,015 MBps) were left in the dust.

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LaptopGeekbench 6 single-coreGeekbench 6 multicoreHandbrake time25GB file copy timeTransfer rate (MBps)
MSI Titan 18 HX 20242882165012:33102,664.34
Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024)301617,30002:4811.92,259
Alienware m16 R2241912,78403:46132,015

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) battery life

Don’t think you’re getting all this power without sacrificing something. On the Laptop Mag battery test, the Titan lasted only 2 hours and 40 minutes, which is nearly two hours shorter than the average premium gaming laptop (4:19). The previous Titan (3:48) as well as the Strix (4:23) and Alienware (6:13) all lasted significantly longer.

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LaptopBattery life (web surfing hh:mm)Battery life (Gaming PCMark 10 hh:mm)
MSI Titan 18 HX 202402:4001:36
Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024)04:231:20
Alienware m16 R206:1300:53

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) webcam

The 1080p webcam could be worse, but it should be better.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) review

(Image credit: Future)

It made the image a bit over-saturated. My skin was very rosy, and the orange-red dress of the character poster behind me was just straight-up red. There was so much grain in the image — noisier than my child at 2 A.M. However, the contrast was decent — the window behind me and the light above didn’t overexpose their surroundings. But if you’re streaming, you should probably check out the best webcams.

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) heat

If being a Titan had one advantage, it would be remaining remarkably cool (in most areas). After gaming for 15 minutes, the underside reached 100 degrees Fahrenheit, which is just over our 95-degree comfort threshold. The center of the keyboard and touchpad hit 102 and 79 degrees, respectively. However, the hottest the machine got was 125.8 degrees, which was located on the upper-left corner of the “arrow” vent. When it’s not gaming, we saw the hottest temperature reach 106 degrees.

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LaptopTemperature (Touchpad)Temperature (G/H keys)Hottest surface & temperature
MSI Titan 18 HX 202478.8 degrees101.8 degrees125.8 degrees (upper-left corner of the “arrow” vent)
Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024)76 degrees93 degrees131 degrees (lower-left corner of the underside right next to the gray riser)
Alienware m16 R276.3 degrees108 degrees150 degrees (far rear underside)

MSI Titan 18 HX (2024) software and warranty

Like most MSI laptops, the Titan features the MSI Center as its all-in-one app for monitoring and controlling the CPU, GPU, and memory usage. You can apply performance settings to specific games and apps, alongside applying bios updates. 

The Titan 18 HX comes with a one-year limited warranty. See how MSI performed on our Tech Support Showdown ranking.

Bottom line

If you’re looking for the best, you’re going to have to get over the price somehow. If you’re still here, then why should you choose the Titan over the other competitors? Well, it’s more powerful and it features a better display and a mechanical keyboard.

However, if you’re looking for more battery life in a lighter and thinner product, try the Asus ROG Strix Scar 18 (2024). It’ll also save you over $1K. But if you really want to save money, go with the Alienware m16 R2.

If you’re still set on the most powerful gaming laptop there is — it’s the MSI Titan 18 HX (2024).

Rami Tabari

Rami Tabari is an Editor for Laptop Mag. He reviews every shape and form of a laptop as well as all sorts of cool tech. You can find him sitting at his desk surrounded by a hoarder's dream of laptops, and when he navigates his way out to civilization, you can catch him watching really bad anime or playing some kind of painfully difficult game. He’s the best at every game and he just doesn’t lose. That’s why you’ll occasionally catch his byline attached to the latest Souls-like challenge.