USB chipset in MSI

Hello, we have been looking into this machine for a 3 sensor capture. I am trying to get more info about the USB chipset to ensure that this computer would be suitable. So far I was directed to this page with specs
I am not sure if that helps me or provides new information + none of these have the graphics card I am looking at… can anyone help make the final decision?


Hi Ziv,

That machine certainly looks capable from the CPU/GPU specs, but you’re right to question whether or not the USB chipsets are compatible. I took a look at the links you provided as well as the manual, but no where does it specify the USB chipset manufacturers. Some vendors will publish this information, and some do not. The only way to know for sure is to get access to the machine and test it out.

We’re in the process of updating our 3 sensor laptop recommendation, and while I do not have a new verified recommendation to share yet, I can share with you the process of identifying a good test candidate.

The main issue we face is indeed USB compatibility with the Azure Kinects. According to Microsoft the know compatible chipsets are from the following manufacturers:

For the Azure Kinect DK on Windows, Intel , Texas Instruments (TI) , and Renesas are the only host controllers that are supported.

If a laptop manufacturer does not specify the chipset, then there are some additional clues we may have. Here’s a few generalizations

  • Many laptops will have some USB ports powered by the CPU chipset directly, meaning that if the CPU is an Intel CPU, there is a chance (but not a guarantee) that it could be supported.
  • Similarly, if the CPU is AMD, there is a lower likelihood of the ports being compatible, as the AMD chipset USB ports are not compatible, and you you would need to rely on a 3rd party controller for support, which may or may not be present on the laptop.
  • If however, one of the ports is listed as a Thunderbolt 3 or Thunderbolt 4 USB-C port, this means it is almost certainly an Intel chipset, as I am not aware of any other manufacturers making Thunderbolt chipsets yet.

Many modern Windows laptops have started to adopt the minimalist port configuration that started with the Macbook Pro, offering exclusively USB-C ports, for all connectivity and sometimes even for charging. Sometimes all of these ports are Thunderbolt, and sometimes there is a mix of Thunderbolt, and non-Thunderbolt USB 3.2 Gen 2 USB-C ports, but at least this information is usually more readily available than precisely which chipset is powering each port

One such laptop we’ve identified for testing is the New Dell XPS 17. It specifies that all 4 USB-C ports are Thunderbolt 4, meaning they should be intel chipsets, and therefore should be compatible. We’ll be getting our hands on it soon to test (Note, we’re getting the linked configuration, but with the 32GB Memory upgrade).

That being said, without testing there is still not a guarantee that the XPS 17 mentioned above will work perfectly. There are numerous factors that could lead to unexpectedly low performance, and these can only be discovered during testing.

The XPS 15 also has 3 Thunderbolt ports, but alas has no dedicated charging port meaning one of the USB-C ports would need to be taken up by the charger. Pass through charging adapters do exist, but this just introduces another variable that could end up being incompatible.

I hope this is helpful or at least illuminating as to why it takes time for us to update our recommended spec once the existing one gets discontinued. Each time we need to start the hunt over essentially from scratch as so much changes between product generations. I regret that I can’t give you an in-production verified system at the moment, but with luck we will identify one soon and update our documentation and this thread with our findings.

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