PC & Hardware

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

Featuring 12th-gen Intel chips and Xe graphics, The MSI Modern 15 B12M is a sleek-looking laptop built for professional users and young individuals.

The MSI Modern 15 B12M is an upgraded version of the MSI Modern 15 A11SB which we reviewed in 2020.

The MSI Modern 15 still remains true to its purpose: a thin and light-weight budget-friendly laptop aimed at professionals and young individuals offering decent configurations capable of handling daily tasks.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

Weighing 1.7kg and with a size of 19.9 mm thickness, the Modern 15 B12Mis a compact laptop with a FullHD IPS display and can be configured with the latest 12th-Gen Intel Core i7, 16GB of DDR4-3200RAM, 512GB of NVMe SSD and Intel Xe Graphics.

Specifications

CPU12th Gen. Intel Core i7 1255U Processor
RAM16GB DDR4 3200MHz SDRAM on board
GPUIntel Iris Xe graphics
Storage512 GB NVMe PCIe SSD (Our review model)
Display15.6″ FHD (1920×1080), IPS-Level
Ports1x Type-C USB3.2 Gen2 with PD charging
1x Type-A USB3.2 Gen2
2x Type-A USB2.0
1x Micro SD Card Reader
1x (4K @ 30Hz) HDMI
1x Mic-in/Headphone-out Combo Jack
Connectivity802.11 ax Wi-Fi 6
Bluetooth v5.2
CameraHD type ([email protected])
Audio2x 2W Speaker
Battery39.3Wh battery
65W adapter
Dimensions359 x 241 x 19.9 mm (WxDxH)
Weight: 1.7 kg

The model we’ve received for this review is the MSI Modern 15 B12M

Packaging

The packaging comes in a standard brown cardboard box. Inside is another MSI-branded box which contains the following:

  • MSI Modern 15 laptop
  • Charger adapter set
  • MSI Wireless Mice
  • User guide and warranty

Design, Build Quality & Ports

The model we’ve received for review is the Modern 15 B12M in a matte black tone (Classic Black) and looks simple and elegant. The design and build quality are similar as the earlier versions. It is quite rigid considering both the body and the lid are made out of plastic

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

The exterior has a metallic finish, with a brushed texture that looks sleek and attractive and feels solid. The Modern 15 also undergoes MIL-STD-810G tests, a military-grade durability certification, that guarantees it reliable and durable against drops, vibrations and extreme weather.

The Modern 15 weighs just 1.7 kg all thanks to lightweight design. However, the device is a fingerprint magnet, even just holding it briefly can leave fingerprint marks.

The laptop is designed to be tilted up to 180 degrees, it can be opened and placed flat on a surface which makes it ideal for meetings as the display orientation can be rotated towards the viewer.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

The left side includes charging port, HDMI port, 1x Type-A USB3.2 Gen2, 1x Type-C USB3.2 Gen2 with PD charging and a 3.5mm audio combo and LED notifications.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

The right side has 2x Type-A USB2.0 ports and a micro-SD Card Reader slot.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

At the back of the device are the ventilation grilles to support heat dissipation. Located here are also two cutouts for the speakers.

Display

The display is a 15.6in Full HD (1920×1080) IPS-level panel with wide viewing angles and a standard refresh rate of 60Hz. The bezels are narrow and houses the HD Webcam on the top.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

The screen surface is matte, anti-glare coated and does not reflect light. The brightness is good enough for indoor use but does not work well outdoors and in spaces with sunlight. While the color reproduction is impressive, the display also does not have any color gamut ratings and is not recommended for creative professionals.

Keyboard & Trackpad

The MSI Modern 15’s has a chiclet-type keyboard with short key travel of 1.5 mm. The keyboard is also equipped with single color LED backlights (white) with 3 levels of adjustable brightness. There is good spacing between the keys making the typing experience pleasant.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

The touchpad is standard sized and offers a smooth gliding experience and the tracking is accurate. There is no integrated fingerprint scanner here.

Software

Most of the performance and display settings can be controlled via the MSI Center. You can monitor and optimize your system performance, change user profiles, adjust charging preferences and more.

Performance

MSI Modern 15 B12M is equipped with a 12th gen Intel Core i7-12557U chip, 16GB of DDR4-3200 RAM and Intel Xe Graphics. For storage, there is 512GB of NVMe SSD onboard. This configuration is perfect for office users and students who want more performance than the typical ultrabook.

CPU, GPU & RAM

The 12th gen Alder Lake chips features two sets of performance and efficiency cores, providing unprecedented boost in multitasking works .

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

The Core i7-1255U comes with 2 performance cores and 8 efficient cores for a total of 10 cores, 12 threads and 12 MB of cache. The P-cores are clocked at 1.7 GHz base and 4.7 GHz boost, while the E-cores get a 1.2GHz base and 3.5 GHz boost clock with a default TDP of 15W.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

Graphics is powered by the new Intel Xe graphics which is powerful enough for daily tasks, work and photo editing. However, gaming performance is really poor and most games fail to achieve playable frame rates in full resolution/quality.

In terms of RAM, The Modern 15 is equipped with 16 GB of RAM at a frequency of 3200MHz.

Benchmarks

In Cinebench R20 tests, the i7-1255U scored an impressive 646 in single-core benchmark and 3,145 in multi-core benchmark. In PCMark 10 Benchmark, the Modern 15 scored 4,923.

Since this isn’t a laptop built for gaming, we haven’t benchmarked any games with the MSI Modern 15 B12M. With the said the hardware can run games at low-res with low quality settings.

In terms of CPU power, the B12M variant is faster than the A11SB variant we’ve reviewed earlier but loses out in graphical performance due to lack of a dedicated GPU.

BENCHMARKSCORE
Cinebench R20 single core646
Cinebench R20 multi core3,145
PCMark 10 Benchmark4,923
3DMark Time Spy1,415
3DMark Fire Strike3,559
3DMark Sky Diver13,710

Storage

Our review unit came with a 512GB NVMe SSD. However, depending on the region, they may be different. The SSD offers average performance with read speeds of up to 2,462 MB/s and write of up to 1,207 MB/s.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

Temperature & Noise

Temperatures when idle are generally cool. When running intensive apps, the laptop gets hot in areas such as under the screen, sides of the keyboard and the bottom vents. Fortunately, the palm rests and the keyboard stays cool even under heavy usage. The laptop was never too loud, even under extreme loads.

Upgradability

In terms of upgradability, the Modern 15 B12M comes with one M.2 PCIe x4 slot which can be used to upgrade the SSD storage. As the RAM is soldered onto the motherboard, there is no option to upgrade.

Audio

The speakers are located on the bottom of the laptop, one on each side, with an output of 2 watts. The speakers are loud enough to fill small to medium-sized rooms, but they lack bass. The quality is good enough for calls or conferences, while media playback will be better with headphones.

Battery

Even though the laptop comes with a tiny 39.3Whr battery, the Modern 15 can last between five to seven hours depending on screen brightness and usage. When browsing the internet, you can expect around seven hours of battery time.

In terms of charging, it took 1 hour 30 minutes to charge back from 0% to 100%.

Conclusion

The MSI Modern 15 is ideal for business or casual users who are always on the go. It offers a Full HD display, good performance, respectable battery life, decent number of ports and a lightweight design.

MSI Modern 15 B12M Review
MSI Modern 15 B12M Review

Some of the drawbacks are lack of memory upgrades, thunderbolt port and a dedicated GPU which was present in the previous variant we reviewed.

The MSI Modern 15 B12M starts from AED 3,099 and is available on virginmegastore.ae.

8

MSI Modern 15 B12M

The MSI Modern 15 is ideal for business or casual users who are always on the go. It offers a Full HD display, good performance, respectable battery life, decent number of ports and a lightweight design. Some of the drawbacks are lack of upgradeability and a dedicated GPU which was present in the previous variant we reviewed.

THE GOOD
  • Sleek design
  • Good battery life
  • Good performance
  • Decent ports + MicroSD card reader
  • Affordable
THE BAD
  • No Thunderbolt
  • Only SSD is upgradeable
  • Display could have been better
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