We have covered Framework and their custom laptops before in our Upgrading Laptops blog as the company has revolutionized the mobile PC market. Many if not most laptops can be upgraded with our memory and internal storage, sure, but the original Framework laptops allowed for more customizability with their modules. The ability to change ports on the fly, which includes Thunderbolt capabilities, is great for many more accessories. Hubs, card readers, and SSD/HDD accessories can greatly expand what you can do with your laptop, which is particularly useful if it's your primary work machine.
Framework has recently starting taking pre-orders for its Framework Laptop 16, so named because it has a 16" screen. This has some exciting features and it brings improvements to Framework's original modular design. For one, this laptop can optionally take a Graphics Module which allows you to use a discrete GPU solution rather than the default integrated graphics. By default the laptop uses the Ryzen 7040's IGP (780M), but with this module you can get a dedicated 8GB of GDDR6 VRAM with an AMD Radeon RX 77000S graphics card. This will help you get in some gaming on the side.
Customize with M.2 storage and DRAM. Source: Framework.
Another often-requested module is the numpad or "tenkey" which refers to the numeric pad to the side of a standard keyboard layout. This array of keys is useful for some operations like accounting and other work, but is generally optional on both external and integrated keyboards. It's often omitted on laptops to save on real estate as keys and a trackpad can be made larger with the extra space. The Laptop 16 is large enough to accommodate a tenkey but it is still optional and, further, the keyboard and trackpad can be arranged to your liking. The offsets also come in multiple colors!
The Laptop 16 still has Framework's modular system, or the Framework Expansion Card system, which lets you plug-and-play individual modules for additional functionality. The Laptop 16 has 6 locations or slots for these and this lets you add USB-A and USB-C ports, HDMI and DisplayPort, microSD and extra storage, Ethernet, audio, and more, which includes high-end power delivery for the very fastest devices. The laptop itself is based around USB4 technology for maximum bandwidth, which works well with many of our existing and upcoming USB4 and TB4 products, too.
Framework's modular system. Source: Framework.
This makes for a very powerful system built on either the Ryzen 7 7840HS or the Ryzen 9 7940HS, both 8-core/16-thread parts, and Framework has designed in exceptional CPU cooling to make sure the system stays cool even with the optional Graphics Module. The overall design is kept as thin and lightweight as possible, but this is a powerful machine that can use a 100W or 180W power supply. Luckily, it's relatively easy to replace parts and the care taken on the internal design makes it simpler to repair, too. Improvements have been made to address concerns with the original design, as described by Louis Rossman.
The display is good for work and play with the accurate and high-refresh rate screen. 100% DCI-P3 2560x1600 at up to 165Hz with a super-high 500 nit brightness. Whether your gaming or not, the OS is of course up to you. The hardware works great on both Windows and Linux of any flavor. Our portable SSDs can make this a cinch. The Framework can be purchased without the full hardware, of course, with dual M.2 and up to 64GB of DDR5 (two sticks), so grab some memory and storage from Sabrent and have a go of it. Throw in a few accessories while you're at it.
Framework DIY in action. Source: Framework.
The Framework has a lot more going for it, too, including the fact it's "green." We here at Sabrent also make an effort to stay green in production, transport, and recycling e-waste returns. We also support the open source mindset as we test our products on Linux. We also test on macOS and love our MacBooks, but the tinkerer inside us just thinks the Framework Laptop is cool. Visit their website to learn more and to configure your machine, and DIY for the best experience possible, with the help of Sabrent hardware.
Thumbnail courtesy Framework. For more information on the Framework Laptop 16, please see this video review.