MSI Optix MAG241CR Review

Is the MSI Optix MAG241CR good?

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MSI Optix MAG241CR review
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MSI Optix MAG241CR Review

Is the MSI Optix MAG241CR good?

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MSI Optix MAG241CR review
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We rate the MSI Optix MAG241CR a 9/10

9/10

Quick Summary

The MSI Optix MAG241CR is an all-round amazing gaming monitor which we can easily recommend. Not only is it an ideal size of 23.6-inch and supports a refresh rate of up to 144Hz, but it also features a 1500R curvature, all of which results in a much more immersive gaming experience. In addition, the frameless design makes this MSI monitor ideal for a multi-monitor setup.

Pros

  • Frameless design, great for multi-monitor setups
  • 1ms response time
  • 144Hz refresh rate

Cons

  • Only 1080p

Rating

MSI Optix MAG241CR specifications

Screen size: 23.6-inch
Resolution: 1920 x 1080 (FHD)
Refresh rate: 144Hz
Response time: 1ms
Screen curvature:
1500R
Aspect ratio: 16:9 (widescreen)
Colours: 16.7 million
Brightness:
300 nits
Contrast ratio: 3000:1
Anti-glare: Yes
Mountable: VESA (100mm x 100mm)
Ports:
 DisplayPort 1.2, 2x HDMI 1.4, 2x USB 2.0, headphone jack
Power consumption: 28W
Weight:
5.1kg

MSI Optix MAG241CR review

The MSI Optix MAG241CR is a 24-inch curved gaming monitor with a super-fast 1ms response time. In this MSI Optix MAG241CR review, we’ll be taking a look at the pros and cons of this gaming monitor and deciding whether or not this monitor is worth buying. There are a total of four variants of this monitor, all of which you can find below:

MSI Optix MAG241CR review: Design

The MSI Optix MAG241CR is a 23.6-inch gaming monitor which features a thin, sleek, curved, and anti-glare design making it an ideal choice for gamers. Alongside its 1500R curvature, the MSI Optix MAG241CR also includes a super narrow bezel, making for an incredibly seamless experience in a multi-monitor setup. On top of this, the MSI Optix MAG241CR also features a built-in headset hanger and has an anti-glare screen coating.

MSI Optix MAG241CR review
MSI Optix MAG241CR - Credit: MSI

When it comes to the stand, the MSI Optix MAG241CR has an adjustable tilt of -5° to 20°, and an adjustable height of 0-130mm. The adjustable height is a great addition over the MSI Optix MAG241C which only had an adjustable tilt. Alongside this, the MSI Optix MAG241CR is also VESA mount compatible, making it super easy to mount onto a wall or a desk stand. The MSI Optix MAG241CR also features MSI’s Mystic Light, RGB lighting that can be synced with other MSI Mystic Light products.

MSI Optix MAG241CR back
MSI's Mystic Light on the MSI Optix MAG241CR - Credit: MSI

The MSI Optix MAG241CR also includes many different connectivity options. On the back of the gaming monitor, you’ll find connections for a DisplayPort (1.2), 2x HDMI (1.4), 2x USB (2.0), and a headphone jack. Additionally, you’ll also find a very useful headset hanger.

MSI Optix MAG241C headset hanger
Headset hanger on the MSI Optix MAG241CR - Credit: MSI

MSI Optix MAG241CR review: Image Quality

The MSI Optix MAG241CR gaming monitor is based on a VA (Vertical Alignment) panel. VA panels are known for having the best contrast and image depth when compared to other panel types, such as TN (Twisted Nematic) and IPS (In-Plane Switching), although VA panels usually fall short with some of the longest response times. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however, as VA panels are often seen as a great middle-ground and are common in the best gaming monitors.

MSI Optix MAG241CR display
MSI Optix MAG241CR multi-monitor setup - Credit: MSI

The contrast ratio is a figure used to measure the luminance difference between the brightest white and the darkest black. Contrast ratios are listed as x:y where ‘x’ is the brightest white and ‘y’ is the darkest black, the higher the contrast ratio, the better. The MSI Optix MAG241CR gaming monitor has a 3000:1 contrast ratio which is a common ground for gaming monitors and allows for greater shadow details.

In addition to this, the MSI Optix MAG241CR gaming monitor also offers an extended colour gamut covering 90% DCI-P3 and 115% sRGB colour space. Simply put, the colours on the MSI Optix MAG241CR gaming monitor result in a captive and immersive image, ideal for gaming and watching movies.

The 23.6-inch MSI Optix MAG241CR features the common-ground 1080p resolution which provides a solid viewing experience. The MSI Optix MAG241CR also comes with 93.34 PPI (Pixels Per Inch) which is pretty average for a monitor of this size. Generally speaking, the higher the PPI, the more detail you can see on the display.

MSI Optix MAG241CR review: Performance

The MSI Optix MAG241CR brings very strong overall performance which makes this monitor ideal for all purposes but is an especially good choice for gaming. This MSI gaming monitor has a solid resolution of 1080p and a refresh rate of up to 144Hz. The refresh rate is the number of times per second that the monitor refreshes its image. The most common refresh rate is 60Hz, but a 144Hz refresh rate will look and feel very smooth. If you’re looking to use this monitor for gaming, a 144Hz refresh rate is very important as it gives you a slight edge over opponents with a lower refresh rate such as 60Hz as your monitor will refresh more than twice as fast. Simply put, the higher the refresh rate, the smoother your monitor will look and feel.

Along with this, the MSI Optix MAG241CR also comes with a tiny 1ms response time making this MSI monitor amazing for gaming, especially when playing FPS (First Person Shooter) games where every split second counts. In addition to this, the 178-degree viewing angles ensure a great picture even if you’re not sitting directly in front of the monitor, this is especially helpful if you often have someone watching you when you play.

Yet another great feature the MSI Optix MAG241CR brings is a reduced blue light filter and flicker-free technology, these dramatically reduce the potential strain on your eyes and reduce the chances of you getting a headache when looking at this monitor for long periods of time.

MSI Optix MAG241C anti-flicker technology comparison
MSI Optix MAG241CR anti-flicker technology comparison - Credit: MSI

The MSI Optix MAG241CR also includes AMD FreeSync support, a feature that reduces tears, stutters, and ensures a fluid gaming experience. However, it’s worth checking your graphics card is compatible with AMD’s FreeSync technology to make use of this feature. AMD’s FreeSync technology changes your refresh rate dynamically to match the framerate of your GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) which will prevent tearing or stuttering.

Screen tearing example
Example of screen tearing - Credit: MSI

The FreeSync range for this MSI Optix MAG241CR gaming monitor is 48-144Hz/FPS (Frames Per Second), but even if your FPS drops below 48, LFC (Low Framerate Compensation) technology will multiply your display’s refresh rate by three times to help compensate and maintain a smooth gaming experience. For example, if you’re getting 30fps, thanks to AMD’s FreeSync technology, your refresh rate will be increased to 90Hz to compensate for the low framerate.

MSI Optix MAG241CR review: Features

On top of everything already previously mentioned, the MSI Optix MAG241CR also includes a bunch of additional features to enhance your experience using this monitor, whether that’s whilst playing games or just casual work.

One of the main features of the MSI Optix MAG241CR is the OSD (On-Screen Display). This OSD is a user-friendly interface which contains many useful features and settings. By default, you can control this OSD using the joystick found at the back of the gaming monitor, or alternatively, you can download the desktop or mobile applications.

Within this OSD, you can change many different settings that will affect the way your MSI Optix MAG241CR will look and function. When you open the OSD, you will see that there are six main tabs: Gaming, Professional, Image, Input Source, Navi Key, and Settings.

Gaming tab

Starting from the top, the ‘Gaming’ tab includes eight different settings: Game Mode, Black Tuner, Response Time, Anti Motion Blur, Refresh Rate, Alarm Clock, Screen Assistance, and FreeSync. The first setting, ‘Game Mode’, lists five different profiles, each of which alters the way your monitor looks, aimed to give you the best experience for each situation. These five profiles are User, FPS, Racing, RTS, and RPG.

Moving on, the second setting within the ‘Gaming’ tab is called ‘Black Tuner’. As the name suggests, this setting allows you to adjust for inky blacks or great dark detail, becoming especially useful for dark environments when playing games. A great example of how the Black Tuner setting can benefit you, check out MSI’s YouTube video below which shows a side-by-side view of the effects of black tuning.

The third setting found under the ‘Gaming’ tab is called ‘Response Time’, this one is pretty self-explanatory. The ‘Response Time’ setting gives you three selections to choose from, Normal, Fast, and Fastest. If you’d like the fastest response time, simply select the ‘Fastest’ option. It’s worth noting, however, if you select ‘Fastest’, it will automatically enable anti-motion blur and lower the brightness, both of which can’t be changed whilst having the ‘Fastest’ response time selected. In order to disable anti-motion blur or to change the brightness, you’ll need to select either ‘Normal’ or ‘Fast’ response times.

The next five settings under the ‘Gaming’ tab you won’t use as much as the other settings, but they’re still good to know. The fourth setting is ‘Anti Motion Blur’, which is a simple toggle switch to enable or disable the anti-motion blur feature. The fifth setting is ‘Refresh Rate’, this setting allows you to showcase your current refresh rate. The sixth setting is ‘Alarm Clock’, which is pretty unusual for a monitor. As the name suggests, this setting allows you to add an alarm clock to your monitor. The seventh setting is ‘Screen Assistance’, this is also pretty interesting as it allows you to add a gaming crosshair to your monitor in the rare case you need one when the game you’re playing doesn’t already have one. And finally, the eighth setting is FreeSync, which is another simple toggle switch to enable or disable the FreeSync technology.

Professional tab

Underneath the ‘Gaming’ tab you’ll find the ‘Professional’ tab, which includes five different settings: Pro Mode, Eye Saver, HDCR, Anti Motion Blur, and Image Enhancement. The first setting, ‘Pro Mode’, lists four different profiles, all of which change your viewing experience to best fit the four profile scenarios, appropriately named User, Reader, Cinema, and Designer. For example, selecting the ‘Reader’ profile will dramatically reduce the amount of blue light, making it easier on your eyes to help you read.

The next three settings under the ‘Professional’ tab are Eye Saver, HDCR, and Anti Motion Blur, all of these are simple toggle switches to enable or disable said features. When enabled, the ‘Eye Saver’ feature will significantly reduce the amount of blue light, making it easier on your eyes. When enabled, the HDCR (High Dynamic Contrast Range) feature will automatically set your monitor to the correct contrast to ensure you can see clearly at all times. The fourth setting is ‘Anti Motion Blur’, which is a simple toggle switch to enable or disable the anti-motion blur feature. The final setting under the ‘Professional’ tab is ‘Image Enhancement’, this setting enhances image edges to improve their sharpness. When this setting is enabled, you can also choose from five different strengths: Off, Weak, Medium, Strong, and Strongest.

Image tab

The third tab in the MSI OSD is called ‘Image’. Inside this tab are five different settings: Brightness, Contrast, Sharpness, Colour Temperature, and Screen Size. These are all pretty simple, but we’ll go over them nonetheless. The first setting, ‘Brightness’, allows you to increase or decrease the brightness of the display on a scale of 0-100. Similarly, the next setting is ‘Contrast’, just like the previous setting, you can change the contrast levels of the display on a scale of 0-100. The third setting is ‘Sharpness’, following a similar pattern to the previous two settings, the ‘Sharpness’ setting allows you to adjust the display’s sharpness levels on a scale of 0-5.

The fourth setting from the ‘Image’ tab is a little different from the previous settings. The setting ‘Color Temperature’ allows you to choose from four different profiles that will change how the monitor looks, the four options you can choose from are Cool, Normal, Warm, and Customization. Each profile has its own look, so pick whichever you like the look of best, or select ‘Customization’ to manually change the settings yourself.

And finally, the fifth and final setting is called ‘Screen Size’, and this setting allows you to change the monitor’s aspect ratio between 4:3 or 16:9.

Input Source tab

The fourth tab in the MSI OSD is called ‘Input Source’, and the clue about this is in the name. Within this tab you can choose your input source, selecting from either HDMI 1, HDMI 2, or DP (DisplayPort).

Navi Key tab

This ‘Navi Key’ tab is where you can bind certain actions within the OSD to the joystick directions for up, down, left, and right. By default, pushing the joystick upwards on the back of the MSI Optix MAG241CR will bring up the ‘Game Mode’ selection, pushing the joystick downwards will bring up the ‘Screen Assistance’ selection, pushing the joystick to the left will bring up the ‘Alarm Clock’ selection, and pushing the joystick to the right will bring up the ‘Input Source’ selection.

Settings tab

The final tab in the MSI OSD is called ‘Settings’. Within this tab, you’ll be able to change the language of the monitor, change the transparency of the OSD, adjust the timeout duration for the OSD, and finally, be able to reset the monitor to the default values.

MSI Optix MAG241CR review: Pricing

The MSI Optix MAG241CR costs around £200. You can check out the MSI Optix MAG241CR on Amazon, or alternatively, you can check where you can buy the MSI Optix MAG241CR from MSI’s website.

MSI Optix MAG241CR review: Conclusion

Overall, the MSI Optix MAG241CR is an all-round amazing gaming monitor which we can easily recommend. Not only is it an ideal size of 23.6-inch and supports up to a refresh rate of 144Hz, but it also features a 1500R curvature, all of which results in a much more immersive gaming experience. In addition, the frameless design makes this MSI monitor ideal for a multi-monitor setup.

Rating

Visually Reviewed Rated 9

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