MSI Pro AP242: One Minute Review
The MSI Pro AP242 is an all-in-one PC for users who need a simple and inexpensive desktop. Beyond a simple general task, from secretarial support to media consumption or web browsing, the all-in-one doesn’t do much else.
As far as specs go, the Pro AP242 doesn’t have much going for it, and everything about the all-in-one is completely no-frills, including the plastic build itself. Those who aren’t interested in playing complex games remotely or using something like Adobe Suite and plan to spend more time checking emails and using Google Docs will get something out of this PC .
Those who even try to push it remotely will find sluggish performance that sometimes causes even certain software to crash, and it lags behind many of the best all-in-one computers on several performance fronts, including some that are more competitive in price.
The full-HD display features Tobii software for privacy alongside MSI’s Eye Care technology to reduce eye strain, but that’s about it. Even the speakers sound subpar, so headphones become a better option. Fortunately, the 1080p webcam (with decent lighting) and microphone work well enough for video conferencing.
In addition to affordability, setting up the Pro AP242 is a relatively straightforward experience, and the solid wireless keyboard and mouse combo gets the job done, too. Add to that a three-year warranty and the MSI Pro AP242 has some value for those who can live up to expectations.
MSI Pro AP242: Pricing and Availability
- Only available in the United States for now
- From $843 through Office Depot
MSI Pro AP242 Key specs
Here is the MSI Pro AP242 configuration sent to Ditching for review:
PROCESSOR: Intel Core i5-12400
Graphic: Intel UHD graphics
RAM: 8GB DDR4
Screen: 23.8″ FHD IPS Quality 1920×1080, LED, Matte
Storage: 250GB M.2 NVMe SSD
Ports: 2x USB-A 2.0 / 2X USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 / USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 / USB-C 3.2 / HDMI out 2.0 / DP out 1.4 / RJ45 / Mic-in / Line-out / Kensington lock / DC- connection
Connectivity: WiFi 6 (802.11ax) 2.4Gbps, Dual Band 2.4GHz, 5GHz / Bluetooth 5.2
Camera: Built-in 1080p (FHD) with dual-array microphone
Weight: 10.21 lb (4.63 kg)
Mate: 21.34 x 8.97 x 16.79 in (541.93 x 227.93 x 426.45 mm)
The MSI Pro AP242 is now available exclusively through Office Debot in six configurations, with more retailers coming soon. At $943, the configuration offered for review (specifications on the right) only comes in a black livery.
Interestingly, the same specs with 500GB of SSD storage come in at a lower $843 in both black and white, but with only a one-year warranty.
Potential buyers looking for something more powerful can get the all-in-one with an Intel Core i7, 16GB RAM, 250GB SSD and a three-year warranty for $1,192, in black only.
There is also a similar package with 500 GB SSD and one year warranty in white for $1092.99. According to the MSI site, a black version is coming soon.
Citizens of both the UK and Australia will have to wait a while for the PRO AP242. When we spoke to an MSI representative, we were told that the all-in-one will be available “down the line” in both markets since the previous AP241 was released there.
MSI Pro AP242: Design
- Bland with low quality speakers
- Display is just as boring, but doesn’t wear out the eyes
- Decent number of ports
Functionality at all costs is the best way to describe the MSI Pro AP242. A drab plastic black design that seems made for public high school libraries and reception desks, but it’s easy enough to put together. Just snap the base to the neck of the stand and connect some small clamps to the back of the all-in-one.
The included keyboard and mouse are wirelessly connected via a USB-A transmitter, so getting to the first Windows 11 boot screen isn’t much of a problem. Keyboard and mouse input is nothing special, but gets the job done. Expect crisp enough keyboard strokes for Mavis Beacon sessions and smooth cursor work when navigating Google maps.
There are also a respectable number of input ports. Two USB-A ports are located on the right side of the back of the display, with the rest facing downwards. The other three USB-A ports hang down for cable management from the round desk holes.
Since two 3W external speakers have a fairly low volume in even a quiet room and sound a bit hollow, users will be better off with headphones through the Mic-in/Line-out ports.
Multitaskers can also connect to multiple displays via HDMI and Display Port 1.4, but that will likely strain the integrated graphics here. Screen adjustment is a problem because the screen can only be lifted up and down. Don’t expect to spin up and down or anything like that. Connectivity is also fairly standard with the RJ45 Ethernet port, Wifi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2.
The matte LED HD screen won’t surprise cinephiles or content curators, but it’s comfortable to look at for a long time.
MSI Pro AP242: Performance
- Performance is good enough for general computing tasks
- Don’t expect moderately intensive content creation here
- Definitely don’t expect to play on this computer
Here’s how the MSI Pro AP242 performed in our series of benchmark tests:
Cinebench R23 Multicore: 8793
3DMark Time Spy: 695 Fire Attack: 1954 Night robbery: 9037
Geek Bench 5: 1677 (single core) 6193 (multi core)
PCMark 10 (Home Test): 2766
The standard 1080p display on the MSI PRO AP242 is decent because it can only handle so much. If you use it for word processing and checking emails with the occasional Twitter rant, you’ll be fine. That said, this is an expensive machine for what is basically the performance level of a cheap Ultrabook.
Opening standard Windows apps like Microsoft Store and Office was a breeze. Just pay a little attention to the number of Google Chrome tabs that open at once.
About the most anyone can do creatively is edit short 1080p videos or snap up medium-resolution photos, and watching standard HD videos on YouTube was no problem either.
Between the Intel UHD graphics and the low RAM, it’s definitely a no-no to play the best PC games of the past five to ten years. Outside of some simpler CPU-focused games that don’t have high visual fidelity, anything remotely demanding will work horribly, if at all.
We couldn’t even benchmark something like Total War: Warhammer III on the lowest settings without the game just crashing to the desktop.
Should you buy an MSI Pro AP242?
Buy it if…
Don’t buy it if…
MSI Pro AP242: Report Card
|Where the||At under $1000 range, this all in one gets the job done and comes with a good warranty.||3 / 5|
|Design||It has lots of ports, but the overall look gives local DMV office vibes.||2.5 / 5|
|Performance||There’s not much it can do outside of simple tasks like surfing the web, streaming music, watching YouTube videos, or basic productivity tasks.||2.5 / 5|
|Total (average)||An absolutely mediocre all-in-one PC, you can at least get this one fairly cheap, but it also looks good.||2.8 / 5|
- First reviewed in August 2022
We pride ourselves on our independence and our rigorous review-testing process, paying long-term attention to the products we review and making sure our reviews are updated and maintained – regardless of when a device is released, if you can still buy it, it’s on our radar.
Read more about how we test