ASUS vs MSI – Which Brand Makes the Best Laptops?

VERDICT: This decision was extremely close. ASUS takes the crown because it is a broader and more diverse company overall.

Check out our huge guide to get a detailed review on several laptops and why we chose one brand over the other.

If you click on links in this article, we may earn a commission, at no additional cost to you.

Skip to our Top Picks

A comparison that comes up often in the PC community is ASUS versus Micro-Star International (MSI). To the uninitiated, this might seem like a random comparison but there is a good reason for comparing these two.

Both ASUS and MSI are respectable laptop manufacturers based out of Taiwan and they both target laptop consumers who are looking to spend a little more on a quality product, often with a focus on gaming.

When it comes to overseas computer brands, this is the equivalent of Dell versus HP.

Since both of these companies target the same customer base, is one of them markedly better than the other? What should you look out for if you are torn between a quality MSI machine or an ASUS machine?

Let’s dive in.

MSI vs ASUS – Overview

PRICE

Both ASUS and MSI largely exist in the middle range for most laptops. They do not have a ton of options for the budget wary customer and both have expensive options that can really blow the ceiling off of most budgets.

Many of their laptops hover right around a grand which is the price point we used as a common ground for the sake of our comparisons. 

Generally, MSI is going to come in a little higher priced across the board.

This is because MSI has a greater focus on gaming grade products and components that are more expensive than components aimed at the general public.

BRAND RECOGNITION

When it comes to brand recognition, ASUS has a stronger performance, especially in the United States.

MSI does not have as far of a reach as ASUS when it comes to name recognition among standard computer users. Gamers might recognize MSI more than the average person but overall, ASUS has a stronger brand presence. 

MSI, however, is not some off-brand name that should be disregarded. They have a tighter, more niche, focus but they still have a good reputation worldwide within that niche.

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

After some research and outreach, we have come to the conclusion that ASUS has slightly better customer service than MSI.

Both have decent online customer support options including robust websites, FAQs, and online forms. However, when it comes to calling via phone for support MSI beats out ASUS slightly. 

Both scored average marks for over-the-phone support and neither one really impressed more than the other. According to consumer groups, MSI had a slightly shorter average phone call and helpfulness score than ASUS but neither was spectacular.

If you need customer support it is suggested that you try to use their ample web services before turning to the phone.

APPEARANCE

Appearance is largely subjective, however, it is clear that MSI puts extra care and attention into their designs.

Since MSI is primarily aimed at creating products for gamers they have a wide offering of Red Blue Green (RBG) LED accessories that come standard.

This gives their machines a more colorful and whimsical look that some people really prefer to the boring grey-toned metallic cases that most laptops come in. 

If you are looking for a more professional looking laptop, ASUS has cleaner more traditional designs for their machines compared to MSI. This really comes down to personal preference.

COMPONENTS

Both ASUS and MSI use high quality components.

MSI components are generally chosen with gamers in mind so they have better graphics options and beefier processors but those come at a cost.

Many of MSI’s machines use the latest Intel products which will serve most people’s needs without any issue.

ASUS has more options that use AMD components as well as Intel giving the average user a little more in terms of options but ASUS’s hardware is often toned down compared to MSI.

OPTIONS

In terms of overall options, ASUS has a better selection.

If you are not a gamer, you are going to be hard pressed to find MSI laptops that will fit your day-to-day laptop use without breaking your budget.

If you are a gamer, MSI has a ton of options to help you craft the exact gaming laptop you’ve always dreamed of.

However, if you are looking for a great work laptop or a 2-in-1 for your child, MSI is not going to have enough options to fit your needs.

ASUS is a more well rounded company overall in terms of their options.

GAMING

If you are in the market for a gaming laptop, MSI has a clear advantage in power and pedigree.

However, if you are someone who is looking for a general use laptop that can also do some gaming on the side, ASUS has some broader options to fit the average user better.

When it comes to pure gaming machines MSI has invested a lot of capital and effort in boosting their reputation and quality in the gaming community with excellent results.

Both companies have a history of making high quality gaming laptops and both have fantastic options depending on your individual needs. 

MANUFACTURING

Both ASUS and MSI are headquartered in Taiwan and therefore both companies do a large part of their manufacturing in Taiwan and China.

ASUS has factories in Taiwan, China, and Mexico. MSI has manufacturing centers in Taiwan and China.

Both are multinational corporations with a global footprint. If you are looking for something manufactured locally, neither company is going to be of service to you.

Top 10 ASUS vs MSI Laptops

This is our table of the Top 10 best ASUS and MSI Laptops you can currently find that you can quickly scour. If you are looking for a more in-depth review of the Top 6 Laptops then check out our comparison right below this table!

Top 6 ASUS vs MSI Laptops in Detail

BEST ASUS GAMING LAPTOP: ROG Zephyrus G15

15.6 INCHES

16GB DDR4

1TB SSD

WINDOWS 10 HOME

6 HOURS

4.85 LBS

The ROG Zephyrus G15 by ASUS is a mouthful but it also gives you a fistful of gaming power at a reasonable price.

This laptop is a respectable gaming machine that does everything well, is not too large, and won’t completely bust open your piggy bank. ASUS chose to run with AMD components with this machine and it works really well.

The Ryzen 7 processor is super fast, the 16GB of RAM is more than enough, and the GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q is a great fit. Taken together, this is a great group of components hand-chosen to craft a great gaming laptop for the average gamer

The laptop also features a high end cooling system to keep the bottom of the computer cooler during gameplay and upgraded speakers for better onboard sound quality.

Throw in a full terabyte of solid state storage and you have a top notch machine that is available at a price that will surprise you. Normally this computer runs around $1300 but recently it has been on sale closer to $1000 which is a steal.


KEY FEATURES
● AMD Ryzen 7 4800HS Processor
● NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Ti Graphics
● 15.6” (1920×1080) 144Hz IPS-Type Full HD Display


Pros
  • Lots of upgrades
  • Affordable
  • Large hard drive
Cons
  • Still runs a little hot
  • Lackluster keyboard

BEST MSI GAMING LAPTOP: MSI GS75 Stealth

17.3 INCHES

32GB DDR4

512GB SSD

WINDOWS 10 HOME

7 HOURS

5.29 LBS

If you are going to get a gaming laptop from MSI, you simply have to go big.

The fully loaded MSI GS75 Stealth is simply one of the most powerful and innovative gaming laptops available on the market today. This thing will run any game you want it to at crisp 60FPS and the highest settings.

That is because MSI has crammed the biggest and baddest gaming components they could find into this laptop and the results are stunning. 

The MSI GS75 Stealth features a whopping 32GB of RAM, a super fast next generation Intel processor, and an RTX2080 graphics set which is capable of running all of the best modern games without breaking a sweat.

The whole setup looks great and comes in a sleek black finish with ample RBG lighting options built in for your enjoyment. It is even capable of running this gen and next gen virtual reality games. 

All of this is phenomenal but it comes at a price. This laptop, rightfully, features a hefty price tag and if you are trying to game on a budget, this is probably going to be too much.

However, if you are trying to get the best of the best and really see what MSI has to offer, there is no better computer to do it with than the MSI GS75 Stealth.


KEY FEATURES
● Intel Core i7-10750HK Processor
● NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Super Graphics
● 17.3″ FHD (1920×1080) Display


Pros
  • Can run anything
  • Amazing specs
  • Looks fantastic
Cons
  • Expensive

BEST ASUS UTILITY LAPTOP: ASUS VivoBook 15

15.6 INCHES

8GB DDR4

512GB SSD

WINDOWS 10 HOME

5.5 HOURS

3.5 LBS

The ASUS VivoBook 15 brings us everything that is great about ASUS in one convenient package made for the average PC user. The ASUS VivoBook 15 is affordable, powerful, versatile, and highly regarded. For the average laptop buyer looking to get a portable computer that is powerful enough to handle work and school, you don’t get much better than this.

The computer is light, weighing only 3.75lbs, it has a long battery life, it features a handy fingerprint unlock in the trackpad. It comes with good specs including an i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a large 15.6” screen.

Best of all, all of this is available for just over $500 normally meaning it falls comfortably within most budgets. You don’t need to pay exorbitant amounts of money to get a utility computer that works well when you shop ASUS. 


KEY FEATURES
● 10th Gen Intel Core i5-1035G1 CPU (6M Cache, up to 3.6 GHz) Processor
● Intel UHD Graphics
● 15.6’’ Full HD (1920×1080) 4-way NanoEdge bezel Display


Pros
  • Works great
  • Super affordable
  • Solid design
Cons
  • Works great
  • Super affordable
  • Solid design

BEST MSI UTILITY LAPTOP: MSI Prestige 14

14.0 INCHES

16GB DDR4

512GB SSD

WINDOWS 10 PRO

6 HOURS

2.84 LBS

The MSI Prestige 14 is MSI’s take on a professional laptop aimed at working people rather than gamers and they do a really, really good job.

This computer looks sleek and smart and is available in bold non-traditional colors. The model featured here is in a vibrant white but it is also available in pink or grey.

On the inside, the MSI Prestige 14 features all of the high end components you have come to expect from MSI including an i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, and a GTX 1650 graphics card by NVIDIA. 

The result is a powerful computer that is ready to take on whatever task you have for it.

Whether you need to host a video call from your living room or need to do some presentation work on the fly, the MSI Prestige 14 has enough chops to get the job done. And, you get all of this for a price that is fair.


KEY FEATURES
● Intel Core i7-10510U Processor
● NVIDIA GeForce GTX1650 Graphics
● 14″ UHD (3840 x 2160) Display


Pros
  • Bold design
  • Powerful components
  • Fast
Cons
  • Okay trackpad
  • No innovative features

BEST ASUS BUDGET LAPTOP: VivoBook Flip 14 2-in-1 Laptop

14 INCHES

4GB DDR4

64GB eMMC

WINDOWS 10 HOME S MODE

8 HOURS

3.3 LBS

The ASUS VivoBook 15 brings us everything that is great about ASUS in one convenient package made for the average PC user.

The ASUS VivoBook 15 is affordable, powerful, versatile, and highly regarded. For the average laptop buyer looking to get a portable computer that is powerful enough to handle work and school, you don’t get much better than this.

The computer is light, weighing only 3.75lbs, it has a long battery life, it features a handy fingerprint unlock in the trackpad. It comes with good specs including an i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a large 15.6” screen.

Best of all, all of this is available for just over $500 normally meaning it falls comfortably within most budgets. You don’t need to pay exorbitant amounts of money to get a utility computer that works well when you shop ASUS.


KEY FEATURES
● Intel Celeron N4020 (up to 2.8 GHz) Processor
● Intel UHD Graphics 600
● 14’’ NanoEdge Full HD Touchscreen Display


Pros
  • Super affordable 2-in-1
  • Works great
  • Large responsive screen
Cons
  • Light on storage
  • Can’t handle large programs

BEST MSI BUDGET LAPTOP: MSI GF75 Gaming Laptop

17.3 INCHES

8GB DDR4

512GB SSD

WINDOWS 10

5 HOURS

4.85 LBS

When it comes to being considered low budget, MSI’s budget laptops are more expensive than ASUS’s on the whole. However, if you want to stick with MSI and try to sneak in under your budget then the 2020 MSI GF75 Thin Gaming Laptop is your best option.

With a full 17.3” high definition screen, 8GB of RAM, and an onboard NVIDIA GTX 1650, this computer is no slouch. If you are looking to get one of the best deals MSI has to offer, look no further.

While this computer is light on power compared to some of the other MSI machines on this list, this one has plenty of juice to keep you going through moderate gaming and day to day life and it comes in under a grand.

Aside from the red keys, this computer is also professional in its design so it can easily double as a work computer or gaming outfit.


KEY FEATURES
● 10th Gen Intel Core i5-10300H Processor
● NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 4GB Graphics
● 17.3″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) 120Hz Display


Pros
  • Affordable MSI machine
  • Large screen
  • Good graphics
Cons
  • Might be too gamey for some
  • Not super cheap

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

BENEFITS OF ASUS

ASUS has a few key benefits over that of MSI.

First, they have computers at a lower price than MSI. Most of MSI’s computers fall into the pricey category. Even their cheaper computers are still far more expensive than many budget laptops found online today.

ASUS has laptops available at every price point. 

Second, ASUS offers a multitude of different kinds of computer configurations. They have touchscreen models, advanced design computers, basic web browsing machines, and gaming laptops.

No matter what your preference is when it comes to computers, ASUS has a model that will fit your lifestyle without having to search around too much.

Lastly, ASUS is a well known brand that has a sizable market share in the United States making it more familiar to consumers. ASUS is also a company that is larger in terms of revenue and assets which is reflective of their larger array of options for consumers.

BENEFITS OF MSI

MSI’s benefits come directly from the gaming pedigree they are actively building.

All of their machines are lovingly designed with gamers in mind. From the RBG lighting that features prominently throughout their designs to the blistering speeds and sharp graphics options that are offered.

If you are someone looking for a powerful laptop capable of gaming or rendering in high quality you are going to want to look at what MSI has been building. 

There is no guessing if MSI’s laptops are gamer ready because they all are built with that expectation in mind.

MSI is also an older company that offers a few more years of experience and expertise over that of ASUS. MSI also features a slightly better customer service experience if you ever need to make use of those services.

Are MSI or ASUS Laptops better Gaming Laptops?

Overall, MSI laptops are better for gaming. This is because MSI has focused almost exclusively in its latest efforts to only create laptops for gaming.

Every effort in choosing components, designing their machines, and marketing them has all had the gamer in mind. MSI has eyes on becoming a competitor to brands such as Alienware and they are doing a great job.

They still have some ground to cover when it comes to name recognition but the quality of their products has been rising steadily.

MSI has made concentrated efforts to woo the gaming community through sponsorships and has been picked up by some professional eSports groups and other professional gamers which goes to show how far they’ve come in crafting a gaming-centric line of products.

Gamers can be notoriously fickle and picky but they are slowly starting to embrace the excellence that MSI is selling.  

From purely a gaming standpoint, MSI has a leg up, hands down.

Which Brand is Best for Budget Consumers?

If you are shopping for your next computer on a budget, ASUS has many more options for you.

MSI’s computers are often filled with upgraded components for gamers which slowly but surely raises their prices. ASUS has many more mid and low budget computers of all styles and configurations.

If you are on any kind of budget, ASUS is going to give you a lot more to think about. Many of MSI’s laptops simply aren’t made with a budget buyer in mind.

For example, the VivoBook Flip that we highlighted comes in just at a few hundred dollars while the cheapest MSI laptop we could find is easily north of five hundred. 

The budget buyer is going to have a lot more options with ASUS than MSI.

Which Brand is more Durable?

Luckily, both of these brands have a respectable level of credibility when it comes to durability.

Neither one is going to have a shorter life span than the other for general use. MSI, with their gaming chips and large screens, will be more prone to cracking or breaking if dropped.

However, in terms of component wear, those same components which don’t like being dropped will also last longer in day to day use. 

If you are someone who likes to take their laptop along for the ride, you might want to consider ASUS, which has some durable designs, over MSI.

If you are planning on keeping your laptop at home and don’t need to travel with it, MSI’s components will generally hold up better long term but both have a use case.

Which Brand Offers Better Customer Service?

In terms of online service, both ASUS and MSI perform admirably. When it comes to live over-the-phone service, MSI edges out ASUS by a hair.

Both had okay marks for phone service and phone calls that run around 15 minutes each. If you need customer service, stick to the online resources to start.

If stellar customer service is something you crave, you will want to lean towards MSI with their more specialized products which lends to a slightly better customer service experience.

THE VERDICT

This decision was extremely close. Both of these companies make great products for people of all stripes.

They have high quality machines across the board, offer great durability, and have a plethora of options from the writer to the gamer and back again. That being said, I have to hand the edge to ASUS but it wasn’t an easy decision to make.

ASUS takes the crown because it is a broader and more diverse company overall. It will appeal to a wider audience and has many different kinds of laptops which will fit many different kinds of people.

MSI is fantastic and what they do is great, however, they appeal to a very small niche compared to the wider laptop using world.

For that reason, for the average computer user, ASUS wins out.

If MSI had more work oriented computers or more options at the lower end of the spectrum in terms of price, maybe they could have overtaken their rival but they do not.

This leaves ASUS with the edge due to their wide variety of different computers from cheap 2-in-1s to high end laptops focused on digital design and remote work. ASUS also has the benefit of stronger brand recognition within the United States compared to MSI who is still trying to make itself more widely known. 

At the end of the day, this was a tough decision and you really can’t go wrong with either brand but in this case, ASUS takes top marks.

If you are not interested in either ASUS or MSI, check out our Laptop Finder and take a deep dive into the best available laptops in the market today such as our list of best gaming laptops under $500.

Happy Laptop Shopping!