Integrated graphics cards usually don't offer high 3D performance.
As the StreetFighter IV Benchmark shows, it's not up to the heavy 3D loads of the newer games.
For 3D games that don't require a lot of power however like Chinese Paladin Online however, the X400 is quite good enough.
The 4-cell battery lasted 01:39:10.
Battery Eater Pro (Wireless networking and Bluetooth switched off, 50% LCD brightness.)
During the Battery Eater Pro test the CPU was under full load with 3D graphics turned up so the battery life was a little shorter.
If set to cinema mode, the X400 runs for around 2 hours and 35 minutes, so battery life is above average.
While MSI claims that the X400 offers up to 8 hours of battery life, that's with an 8-cell battery.
Many of the Notebook makers now claim battery life as long as 8~9 hours, but that's probably based on the lowest power consumption possible.
Under normal use, 6/8-cell batteries deliver around 5~7 hours of run-time.
So, don't take the numbers too seriously.
MSI X-Slim X400 Summary.
1. With a 14.1" LCD and weighing just 1.55kg, this should be the lightest notebook in its size class now available.
2. The matt finish on the underside, the cut-out design inside and thin form-factor gives a good overall impression.
3. A lot of thought went into the protective packaging. The carry bag is of good quality as well.
4. D-SUB and HDMI outputs are both supported so the IO can be upgraded.
5. The DDR2 RAM runs at 800MHz for high performance while the WD 5400RPM 320GB 2.5 HDD delivers both performance and little noise.
6. The wireless card is the Intel WiFI Link 5100 with support for 802.11 a/g/n. It can also be upgraded to support WinMax.
7. Has a better cooling system than the X340.
There's no obvious noise and the machine temperature is kept under firm control.
1. Keyboard could do with more feedback.
2. Only 2 USB ports leaves less room for USB devices.
3. The 4-cell battery should offer more than 3 hours of stand-by time.
4. The screen bezel is a little large.
Cost vs. Performance ★★★★★★★★★☆
Recently I've seen other users say that the single core of the CULV means low CPU performance
and this drags down the overall system performance as well.
I have experience with high-end notebook CPUs like the P8700, T9500, T9600, P9700 or QX9300 (quad-core)
but since I don't run video or file encoding software that support multi-core setups I find the X400 suits me well.
As long as the system boots up smoothly, the actual CPU performance or number of cores have little effect when browsing the web,
doing word processing, or running JAVA and SQL applications.
Personally, I think a high-performance HDD or SSD is more important
if you want a clear speed boost when running this type of software.
I feel that notebooks are designed to be practical and unlike desktop PCs, raw performance is not the only benchmark. Right now,
the notebooks on the market can be divided into the following groups:
Value models: 12"~16", 1.8~3.3kg, dual-core, discrete graphics card, priced around US$700 ~ 1000.
High-end business models: 12~13.3", 1.3~1.6kg, dual-core, priced around US$1500 ~ 2500.
High-end performance models: 14"~16", 2.3~3.3kg, high-end dual-core, discrete graphics card, priced around US$1300 ~ 1800.
In the past two years, new products have appeared on the market.
Entry-level Atom platform: 8.9 ~ 10", 1.2 ~ 1.4kg. Usually referred to as netbooks, these are priced around US$400 ~ 500.
Value CULV platform: 12 ~ 16", 1.33kg ~ 2.4kg, priced around US$700 ~ 900.
The release of these two product types means business users no longer have to pay a high price for slim and compact notebooks.
While these two platforms can't match the dual-core models in performance,
if you have good enough DRAM and HDD they are still more than adequate for most tasks.
Let's get back on topic.
The MSI X-Slim X400 doesn't have a discrete graphics card version
so it's probably not suitable for users that have moderate to high 3D performance requirements.
If you are on the move a lot, want a bigger screen without extra weight, the X400 does offer a new choice.
Standard 14" notebooks might offer dual-core and discrete graphics cards, but they usually weigh 2.1~2.5kg as well.
That's a little heavy for people who spend a lot of time outdoors or on the move.
The X400's casing is not made of the magnesium alloy used on the X340 but the special matt finish makes it look just as good.
The cut-out and blue-white color scheme gives a very good first impression as well.
The latest wave of compact CULV notebooks means the rule for business notebooks that you pay more for less weight is now well and truly broken.
For business users, there is finally have a choice when it comes to looking for an inexpensive, slim and easy to carry notebook.
In the past, if you wanted a slim notebook you had to settle for 12~13.3" products.
The MSI X-Slim X400 with a 4-cell battery weighs just 1.55kg, so these users can now have a compact 14" model to choose from as well.
The price of the X400 at launch was about US$740 (24,300 NTD) so the C/P ratio is quite good overall.
If a version with a discrete graphics card or the SU9400 dual-core CPU is released in the future,
it will make this 14" slim notebook all the more attractive.
I hope MSI will put more effort into its product lineup as well
and release more notebooks that offer great C/P ratios for the consumers to choose from.
Once again, I've used my Spyder 2 calibrator to come up with a color calibration file for all X400 users.
windwithme MSI X-Slim X400