Ultra-modular and salvageable, is this the future of the laptop?

Laptop frame is coming! We take the opportunity to find out the latest details about it as well as the first tests for the American press.

laptop frame

laptop frame

In May 2021, we’re talking to you for the premiere of laptop frame. The team behind this project is trying to create what Google can’t do with ARA . project. The whole ambition of the framework is to demonstrate against the born trend From the success of the MacBook AirCreating a modular, repairable laptop is possible without sacrificing a lot of thickness, ergonomics, performance, or weight.

Considered a pioneer, this laptop is part of the “Right to Repair” core trend. Movement goes much furtherindicator for repair, whose computation is complex and opaque. The European Union and many countries are working their brains to put in place bills to force manufacturers to provide tools, parts and information to all repairers, “certified” or not. For large manufacturers, the issue of spare parts is a problem.

The Framework’s approach is in this direction, unlike Apple’s, which focuses on iPhone and MacBooks repairs at Apple Stores and some authorized distributors.

Everything can be changed, it is very fixable

As you see in our testsManufacturers usually offer to let us change SSD and RAM on very special occasions. These two components are usually soldered to the motherboard.

Here inside the laptop

Here it is inside the laptop // Source: Linux Tech Tips

With the laptop framework, these options are taken to the extreme: you can not only expand or replace these components, but it is also possible to replace the motherboard to update the processor generation, for example. So you can keep your laptop frame and screen while turning it into a new generation.

You can order AZERTY keyboard

You can order AZERTY keyboard

You can also change the battery, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth module. Only a few components seem irreplaceable, such as speakers and microphones. The keyboard is easily removable, you can even choose a backlit keyboard. The same goes for the trackpad, it is replaceable.

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As you can see in the pictures, the connectors are actually expansion cards that can be changed. There are four locations where you can connect the modules of your choice. USB-C, HDMI, DisplayPort, USB 4 … and even modules to expand SSD storage via small formats.

All components contain a QR code

All components contain a QR code // Source: Linus Tech Tips

Each component of the laptop framework has a QR code that can be scanned to identify and obtain customized documentation, repair manuals, or replacement parts. Also note that you will have the choice of the color of your laptop, and you can even create custom groups.

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One would have expected mediocre specifications, but that is not the case. The Framework laptop has a 13.5-inch IPS LCD display with a 3:2 aspect ratio and a resolution of 2,256 x 1,504 pixels. You don’t currently have a screen option, but it’s a good screen on paper: 8-bit, 100% sRGB and brightness can exceed 400 nits.

No options yet with AMD, you have the choice between Intel Core i5-1135G7 up to Core i7-1186G7. There are three pre-assembled configurations, which you can upgrade later. They are all equipped with Windows 10 and compatible with Windows 11. The 55W battery should allow for good autonomy.

The webcam supports 1080p video recording at 60 frames per second. It is an OmniVision OV2740 webcam with 1/6 inch, f/2.0 aperture as well as an 80 degree viewing angle. It even has a built-in cache for privacy.

It is pre-assembled or customized, many configurations are available

As shown above, the three pre-assembled configurations sell for between $999 and $1,999 not inclusive. The most expensive version integrates a Core i7-1185G7, 32 GB of RAM and 1 TB of SSD. You can also choose the DIY version (for do it yourself) from $749. Unfortunately, at this time, the laptop frame is limited to the US and Canadian markets.

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We recommend this Linus Tech Tips video who had the opportunity to test one of the first models of Framework Laptop. The Verge media also had the opportunity to take a testThey found the whole a bit shaky, Linus Tech Tips showed. The US media is disappointed, at the moment, with the potential choice of CPU/GPU configurations. They would have liked to be able to integrate a dGPU to improve in-game performance.

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As we can analyze, the advantage of a laptop framework is not only its ability to evolve. It depends on the company’s ability to move forward with this structure, which will ensure that new units are found in several years and what will give real meaning to this product. For now, this is just a decent laptop. Only time will prove…

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