Framework Laptop DIY Edition Review

When tech startup Framework unveiled its Framework Laptop DIY Edition, it talked to tinkerers and enthusiasts by giving them something unique: a modular laptop. The unassumingly simple-looking Framework laptop is enjoyable to customize and surprisingly simple to put together. After receiving the device, my son Matthew and I quickly prepared to upload Windows 10 to test its performance.

Can a homemade laptop replace or compete head-to-head with a conventional device from one of the IT behemoths we typically buy from? Find out by reading on.

Framework laptop DIY Edition pricing and configurations

The Framework Laptop DIY is offered in three variations. I put together the Professional system, which starts at $1,999 and includes a 13.5-inch, 512GB PCIe SSD, an integrated Iris Xp GPU, an 11th Gen 4.8-GHz Intel Core i7-1185G7 processor, 32GB of RAM, and

QHD display with 2256 x 1504 pixels. Moreover, it contains a Wi-Fi 6 card with Windows 10 Pro and vPro. Also, our equipment had a number of interchangeable module ports. Our device was equipped with a micro SD card slot, two USB-C ports, a USB-A port, HDMI, and other connectors.

A 2.4 GHz Intel Core i5-1135G7 CPU, 8GB of Memory, a 256GB SSD, an Iris Xp GPU, a Wi-Fi 6 card, and Windows 10 Home are included in the $749 base model.

The 2.8-GHz Intel Core i7-1165G7 CPU, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, an Iris Xp GPU, a Wi-Fi 6 card, and Windows 10 Home are all upgraded in the $1,399 Performance variant.

Yet, there’s still more! Framework also sells a DIY model with an Intel Core i5-1135G7 Processor that starts at $799. You can customize the operating system, Wi-Fi (Intel Wi-Fi 6E AX210 vPro or non-vPro), storage (up to 4TB), and RAM (up to 64GB) (Windows 10 Pro or Home).

Framework laptop DIY Edition design

The Framework’s metal chassis contains 50% recycled aluminum, while the bezel, keys, and hinge cover are comprised of 80% recycled plastic. The Framework laptop’s sleek, understated design, including the chromed-out gear emblem on the back of the lid, appeals to me. Even for someone with huge hands like myself who has a little laptop, the silver-colored all-metal deck is roomy. You may even compare it to the 13-inch MacBook Pro or the Dell XPS 13.

When you open the laptop, the 16:10 aspect ratio display is enclosed in a little black plastic bezel. The 4.5 x 3.1-inch touchpad is positioned directly below the backlit Chiclet-style keyboard and is lovely and clicky.

Speaking of the XPS 13 and MacBook Pro, the Framework weighs 3 pounds and measures 11.6 x 9 x 0.6 inches. The XPS 13 weighs 2.8 pounds and measures 11.6 x 7.8 inches, while the MacBook Pro weighs 3 pounds and measures 12 x 8.4 inches. The HP Spectre x 360 13 weighs 2.8 pounds and has dimensions of 12.1 x 7.6 x 0.6.

Framework laptop DIY Edition setup

The opportunity to collaborate with my son on a DIY project has been the finest aspect of using the Framework laptop. When you open the box, you will see a box on the center left side that holds the chassis, and a smaller box on the right that includes the power adapter. The box containing the RAM, SSD, port modules, and WiFi 6 card is located underneath.

We removed the five screws from the bottom after spreading everything out on the table. After that, the deck just lifted, revealing the interior of the unit to us. We discovered where to insert the two 16GB memory cards and the Wi-Fi card slot on the right. We located the SSD card slot on the left-center of the device, inserted it, and secured it with screws.

Once we had finished, we pushed the keyboard deck back into position and tightened the bottom screws. We gave it a once-over, turned it over, and plugged it in. We inserted the included USB-C dongle with Windows 10 on it and switched it on, and we didn’t notice any sparks. The assembly took less than ten minutes to complete, and Windows installation took between ten and twelve minutes. It resembled playing with a set of Legos since it was so straightforward.

Framework laptop DIY Edition security

The fingerprint reader for the Framework laptop’s power button ensures the protection of your files and data since it takes security seriously. The actual camera shutter and mute button are additional security precautions to ward off prying eyes and ears.

Lastly, the Wi-Fi 6 card comes standard with Intel vPro technology which adds a higher level of encryption to keep you protected while using Wi-Fi networks at home, in the office, or at your local coffee shop.

Framework laptop DIY Edition ports

With its several port modules, the Framework DIY laptop offers you a lot of freedom. We choose to use one USB-C port and an HDMI port on the right. We decided to place a USB-A port and a second USB-C port on the left, along with the integrated 3.5 combo audio port. The modules click firmly into their housings when they do so. Simply press the release button and pull them out to replace them. The components are kept firmly in place, so it takes a while to become used to the mechanism and considerable physical effort is needed.

I appreciate the concept of interchangeable ports so you can prevent running out of USB-C or Mini DisplayPort ports.Another nice feature is that Framework will generate a module for any additional ports that are created so that your system is future-proof and you can order it afterwards. Although there are always four port options available, the unit must be charged via a USB-C port.

Framework laptop DIY Edition display

A 13.5-inch, 2256 x 1504 (QHD) display that is vivid, vibrant, and clear is included with the Framework laptop DIY edition. I saw the Fast and Furious 9 trailer, and I thought it was wonderful. The device’s color saturation is precise, richly recreating great skin tones. The reddish double-decker bus jumps off the screen while Dom and his brother are fighting and Dom ends up on it.

I watched the James Bond No Time To Die video as well, and Daniel Craig’s lovely blue eyes were so alluring that they made me want to put on my old blue-tinted contacts and talk with a terrible British accent in an effort to win over my fiancĂ©e. The explosion of the boat scene in orange, black, and grey appeared to be richly colored. Our colorimeter measurements showed that the Frameworks display covered 77.7% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, placing it exactly in the middle of the premium laptop average of 77.3%. With 81.3% of the vote, the Dell XPS 13 was in first place, followed by the 13-inch Apple MacBook Pro with 78.3%. At 67.7%, the HP Spectre x360 finished first.

The Framework outperformed the rest of our group and the average brightness of 397 nits on our test of brightness, averaging a brightness of 443 nits. The MacBook had a brightness of 435 nits, the Dell XPS 13 ranked next with 417 nits, and the Spectre x360 had the lowest brightness at 391 nits.

Framework laptop DIY Edition audio

I wasn’t sure what to anticipate when I read about the dual two-watt speakers. Dual speakers are typically subpar and disappointing, but not in this instance. – and a.No matter how loud we turned up the volume, the bass was crystal clear and undistorted.

I could hear the early scratchiness of Busta Rhymes’ “Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See” while listening to it. The thumping baseline then emerged with nice depth, reproducing Busta’s gritty tone with the appropriate respect.

Later, I listened to the Uneven Floors CD by Lyle Divinski. The outstanding depth and wallop from these laptop speakers helped the recording get loud as the tune “Disaster” began with its pounding drums and potent trumpets. My workspace was filled with the clear, crisp, and soulful R&B voice of Lyle.

Bottom line

The Framework Laptop DIY Edition might be thought of as a great answer, with Right to Repair becoming as a big global rallying cry. My son and I put the computer together and began installing Windows 10 in less than 15 minutes. The Framework has a lot going for it, including its stunning display, first-rate speakers, and amazing 1080p webcam. Another benefit is the option to use a Linux operating system rather than a Windows one, which enables users to create very customized systems and get the best results for their requirements.

To customize your Framework, however, might get pricey, just like with most laptops. Before you begin acquiring every high-end module, make sure to do your homework and consider your demands in order to keep prices under control. Yet, the Framework deserves recognition for having an upgradeable mainboard that enables you to swap it out and equip the laptop with a more potent Processor as a form of future-proofing.

Finally, the Framework Laptop DIY edition is a fun and functional laptop that has the potential to one day alter the way they are made.

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