MSI crams a GeForce RTX 2080 Ti into a slim and 'savage' gaming PC

MSI is figuring out how much high-end hardware it can stuff inside a 10-liter chassis, and with a new round of graphics cards from NVIDIA and processors from Intel, it's apparently quite a bit.

The new Trident X is the latest iteration of MSI's compact gaming desktop, and also the most powerful. It features processor options from Intel's newly minted 9th generation Core family, and specifically the two 8-core options, the Core i9-9900K with Hyper Threading and the Core i7-9700K without HT. Intel also released a 6-core/6-thread Core i5-9600K, though there's no mention if that's an option on the Trident X as well.

For gaming and graphics, MSI is offering the Trident X with Nvidia's recently announced GeForce RTX series, including the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, 2080, and 2070. All three cards wield dedicated RT cores for real-time ray tracing, though we won't know what kind of performance impact enabling RTX has until we're able to test the feature on RTX-supported games.

Interestingly, MSI has chosen to outfit its Trident X with a motherboard based on Intel's now-previous generation Z370 chipset instead of utilizing Z390 hardware, according to the spec sheet. This might be a cost saving measure, or simply due to timing. On the plus side, there isn't a big difference between the two chipsets. It mostly comes down to connectivity, with Z390 gaining native USB 3.1 Gen 2 and 802.11ac Wi-Fi support instead of offloading those chores to separate chips. Even so, the Trident X supports 802.11ac Wi-Fi out of the box.

For storage, the Trident X sports a single M.2 port supporting both SATA and PCIe SSDs, and two 2.5-inch hard drive bays. It's not clear what specific storage configurations MSI will offer.

The Trident X will be available in November starting at $2,299.

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).