Jan 9, 2024 3 min read

Everything we know about the MSI Claw

The MSI Claw has officially been announced, rocking an Intel Core Ultra. Here is everything we know.

Everything we know about the MSI Claw

The MSI Claw has officially been announced, rocking an Intel Core Ultra. Here is everything we know.

Now it's official. After leaks earlier last week, we've got the confirmation announcement at CES: the MSI Claw is the latest Steam Deck competitor by a major tech brand (following Asus and Lenovo).

It is, however, the first such device to rock an Intel-based chip, thanks to Intel's Meteor Lake and the Intel Core Ultra. Before this announcement, AMD was pretty much the de-facto supplier of chips for these handheld Gaming PCs.

On first look, the MSI Claw strongly resembles an ASUS ROG Ally, but in black. It has a similar shape, nearly the same button placement, a similar 7-inch 120Hz 1080p screen with Variable Refresh Rate, and from the looks of it, also a microSD slot right next to a vent (reminder, on the ROG Ally, the microSD slot can potentially overheat).

Top View of the MSI Claw

However, there are some key differences beyond just the different chip infrastructure. According to Sean Hollister at The Verge, who went hands-on with a non-final engineering sample, the Claw has comfier and bigger grips. It also has a beefier battery at 53Wh, compared to the 40Wh in the Ally – which should hold up to two hours for demanding games. It even has Hall Effect joysticks.

As for the software, the MSI Claw will use 'MSI Center M', a new version of the similarly named tool for PCs and laptops, but with an adapted UI for handheld devices.

Here is the complete spec sheet:

Feature Specification
Processor Up to Intel Core Ultra 7 processor 155H
Operating System Windows 11 Home (MSI recommends Windows 11 Pro for business.), Windows 11 Pro
Chipset Integrated SoC
Memory LPDDR5 onboard, 16GB, dual channel
Display 7" FHD (1920 x 1080), 120 Hz Refresh Rate, Touch Screen, 120 Hz Refresh Rate, 100% sRGB (Typical), 500nits (Typical), IPS-Level panel
Graphics Intel Arc Graphics
Storage Slot 1 x NVMe M.2 2230 SSD by PCIe Gen 4 x4
Sensor 6-Axis IMU Vibration Motor
Communication Intel Killer Wi-Fi 7 BE1750, Bluetooth v5.4
Audio 2 × 2W Speakers / 1× Audio combo jack / Hi-Res Audio ready
I/O Port 1 x Thunderbolt 4 / DP/ USB Type-C (w/ PD 3.0 Charging), 1 x microSD Card Reader, 1 x Audio combo jack, 1x Power button with Finger Print Sensor
Battery/Adapter 6-Cell, Li-Polymer, 53Whr / 65W USB Type-C PD 3.0
Dimension 294 (W) x 117 (D) x 21.2 (H) mm
Weight 675g
Color Black

The MSI Claw is expected to be released by the end of Q2 2024 for $699 – though there will be three versions of the device, two with an Intel Core 7 and a starter SKU with an Intel Core 5 (at that $699 price point), and up to $800 for the most expensive version.

Intel Inside the MSI Claw.

But MSI is still actively working on this device, their first handheld. From the first reports from people who went hands-on with the device, it looks like some tuning is needed for the MSI Claw to compete against the other brands, especially the software and the performance output.

Also, here is YouTuber Dave2D's video on the Claw:

How the first Intel-based handheld will perform remains to be seen. I will definitely have a look at it, so stay tuned!

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