MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux) – Top 5 Pros and Cons

While MSI has already expanded pretty well into the business and Creator sector, it will forever be known as a gaming-first brand. It is also good that they haven’t abandoned the niche that made them successful, and what is more, they are actively trying to improve and push themselves further and further. Last year, we saw a total redesign of their portfolio, yielding laptops like the Katana, Sword, Pulse, Vector, Leopard, and more. Today, we have the second year of the Katana GF66, which comes with Alder Lake 12th Gen processors, and RTX 30-series graphics, which come with low TGPs that are common for more budget offerings.

Today we present you with LaptopMedia’s top 5 picks about the MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux).

MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux): Full Specs / In-depth Review

3 reasons to BUY the MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux)

1. Design and build quality

While not employing any premium materials, as the whole laptop is crafted from plastic, that doesn’t stop it from being every bit as durable and rigid as its bigger brothers. There is a bit of flex from the lid, which is to be expected, but the base is tough enough to give no major flexing when applying a large force, so even during harsh typing sessions, you can expect little to no deck flex. This comes in a portable package that weighs only 2.25 kg and has a profile of 24.9 mm.

2. Upgradeability

The laptop arrives with two SODIMM slots and two M.2 PCIe x4 slots. The RAM slots can fit up to 64GB of DDR4 RAM, which is fine considering the budget nature of the device. The two M.2 slots also support Gen 4 drives, leading to even faster read and write speeds.

Here is our detailed teardown video, which shows how to access both the RAM and SSD slots.

3. Display quality

The display has its kinks, but will generally do fine in gaming, with its comfortable viewing angles, high 144Hz refresh rate, and lack of PWM usage, which means that it’s generally safe to use the laptop for prolonged periods of time. At this price point, you shouldn’t expect good color coverage or accuracy, with the panel giving us about 53% sRGB coverage. The pixel response time is also a little slow, but still okay for what the laptop is.

Here are our color accuracy tests using both the stock settings (left) and our Design and Gaming profile applied (right).

Buy our profiles

Since our profiles are tailored for each individual display model, this article and its respective profile package are meant for MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux) configurations with 15.6″ FHD IPS AUO B156HAN08.4 (AUOAF90).

*Should you have problems with downloading the purchased file, try using a different browser to open the link you’ll receive via e-mail. If the download target is a .php file instead of an archive, change the file extension to .zip or contact us at [email protected].

Read more about the profiles HERE.

In addition to receiving efficient and health-friendly profiles, by buying LaptopMedia's products you also support the development of our labs, where we test devices in order to produce the most objective reviews possible.

Office Work

Office Work should be used mostly by users who spend most of the time looking at pieces of text, tables or just surfing. This profile aims to deliver better distinctness and clarity by keeping a flat gamma curve (2.20), native color temperature and perceptually accurate colors.

Design and Gaming

This profile is aimed at designers who work with colors professionally, and for games and movies as well. Design and Gaming takes display panels to their limits, making them as accurate as possible in the sRGB IEC61966-2-1 standard for Web and HDTV, at white point D65.


Health-Guard eliminates the harmful Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and reduces the negative Blue Light which affects our eyes and body. Since it’s custom tailored for every panel, it manages to keep the colors perceptually accurate. Health-Guard simulates paper so the pressure on the eyes is greatly reduced.

Get all 3 profiles with 33% discount

2 reasons NOT to buy the MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux)

1. Battery life

Budget laptop, budget battery, as this device sports a measly 53.5 Wh unit that can’t hold up with the demands of the Core i7-12700H, despite the best efforts of the Efficiency cores inside. The thing lasts for 5 hours and 44 minutes of Web browsing, or 5 hours and 31 minutes of video playback. As always we do our battery tests with the Windows Better performance setting turned on, screen brightness adjusted to 120 nits, and all other programs turned off except for the one we are testing the notebook with.

2. Cooling

The cooling here seems to be an issue, which is weird since, at first glance, the setup looks competent with two heat pipes for the CPU, three pipes for the GPU, and a single pipe for the VRMs.

Max CPU load

Intel Core i7-12700H (45W TDP)0:02 – 0:10 sec0:15 – 0:30 sec10:00 – 15:00 min
MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux)3.24 GHz @ 2.68 GHz @ 82°C @ 98W3.17 GHz @ 2.65 GHz @ 88°C @ 94W2.97 GHz @ 2.55 GHz @ 86°C @ 83W

The Core i7 hits similar speeds as most of its budget competitors, while also hovering around the 80-90°C mark.

Real-life gaming

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 TiGPU frequency/ Core temp (after 2 min)GPU frequency/ Core temp (after 30 min)GPU frequency/ Core temp (Max Fan)
MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux)1226 MHz @ 74°C @ 87W1225 MHz @ 75°C @ 87W1260 MHz @ 69°C @ 88W

The RTX 3070 Ti with a 105W TGP seems like a waste of silicon, delivering low clock speeds and low temperatures, to be fair.

Gaming comfort

The outer shell of the device gets quite hot, reaching a hotspot of 54.7°C.

All MSI Katana GF66 (12Ux) configurations:

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