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Framework Laptop computer 13 evaluate: cracking modular PC will get all-round improve | Laptops

Framework Laptop computer 13 evaluate: cracking modular PC will get all-round improve | Laptops

2023-05-17 04:30:13

The fixable and upgradeable premium Framework Laptop computer 13 has been improved all spherical for 2023 and is full of small adjustments which might be backwards appropriate with older fashions, making an amazing laptop computer even higher.

The unique Framework broke new ground last year as a laptop computer designed to be taken aside and upgraded, and with a modular choice of ports, too. Crucially, the corporate adopted by means of on guarantees to offer components and upgrades for current machines – first with Twelfth-gen Intel chips and now new Thirteenth-gen Intel processors, with AMD Ryzen 7040 collection chip choices coming later this yr.

The DIY edition of the Framework Laptop 13 with parts ready for assembly.
DIY variations begin at £849, the place you put in your individual RAM, storage and working system. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

However for many who don’t have already got a Framework 13 sitting on their desks, these improved components have been rolled into new pre-built choices, with Windows 11 beginning at £1,049 ($1,049).

Bodily, little has modified, in order that the brand new components are appropriate with older machines. The laptop computer is skinny, mild and manufactured from recycled aluminium. It seems and feels premium.

The display screen is similar crisp and shiny panel as earlier than, however now has a matt relatively than gloss coating, which considerably reduces glare and reflections. The brand new, extra robust-feeling display screen hinges nonetheless open to a full 180 levels, which may be very helpful for utilizing the laptop computer in a stand.

The keyboard and trackpad of the Framework Laptop 13.
The keyboard is sweet, with loads of key journey for a satisfying typing expertise, whereas the massive glass trackpad is clean and exact. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

The laptop computer has new, louder stereo audio system, that are nonetheless pretty tinny in contrast with the very best, however effective for watching YouTube or taking conferences. A superb 1080p webcam is on the prime of the display screen, with a bodily change for privateness. For those who don’t just like the black display screen bezel, you possibly can swap it for varied colors, too.


  • Display screen: 13.5in LCD 2256 x 1504 (60Hz; 201 PPI)

  • Processor: Intel Core i5 or i7 (Thirteenth era)

  • RAM: 8, 16, 32 or 64GB

  • Storage: 256, 512GB, 1, 2 or 4TB

  • Working system: Home windows 11 Residence or Professional

  • Digital camera: 1080p front-facing

  • Connectivity: wifi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3, headphones, fingerprint scanner + selection of 4 ports: USB-C (USB4/Thunderbolt 4), USB-A, HDMI, DisplayPort, ethernet, microSD

  • Dimensions: 296.6 x 229.0 x 15.9mm

  • Weight: 1.3kg

Ports and energy

The modular port slot of the Framework Laptop 13.
Press the button on the underside of the laptop computer to unlock the module and swap the port to whichever variation you want. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

The Laptop computer 13’s modular ports are nonetheless an amazing thought. Select between any mixture of USB-4/Thunderbolt 4, USB-A, HDMI, DisplayPort, ethernet, microSD and expandable storage drives, and swap them as you want. With most costing lower than £20 every, they’re low cost sufficient to maintain a group for various duties.

The Thirteenth-gen Intel Core i7, as examined within the “efficiency” model of the laptop computer with 16GB of RAM, was all spherical an enchancment on the Eleventh-gen chips examined final yr.

It was actually quick sufficient to deal with any normal computing process, maintaining with rivals for energy. It received’t deal with high-end gaming, however managed a little bit of Command & Conquer Remastered and varied different older or lighter titles simply effective.

It additionally ran loads cooler than the earlier model, with the followers usually staying silent whereas searching and normal computing, which was most welcome.

Framework additionally launched a higher-capacity battery that shops 11% extra vitality in the identical bodily measurement and ships in all however the most cost-effective fashions. It nonetheless received’t win any longevity awards, however the laptop computer managed a great eight to 9 hours of productiveness work in Chrome, Home windows Mail, Evernote and varied different mild apps. That’s no less than an hour longer than the earlier model.


The side of the Framework Laptop 13 showing two port modules and a headphones socket.
There’s a everlasting headphones socket within the aspect of the laptop computer, whereas the remainder of the ports are swappable. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

Framework charges the battery to take care of no less than 80% of its unique capability for no less than 1,000 full cost cycles. It may possibly easily be replaced together with all of the rest of the components, together with the RAM and SSD. The primary-gen laptop computer was awarded 10 out of 10 for repairability and the 2023 model praised by the specialists iFixit for its ease of improve.

See Also

Framework sells substitute components and upgrades by means of its market, but additionally helps third-party components. The laptop computer comprises recycled aluminium and plastic in most elements.


The Framework Laptop computer 13 is on the market as a pre-built, ready-to-use machine or in a DIY version.

Pre-built “base” machines with Home windows 11, an Intel Core i5-1340P, 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage begin at £1,049 ($1,049). The efficiency mannequin as examined with an i7-1360P prices £1,469 ($1,469) with 16GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. DIY editions begin at £849.

For comparability, the Dell XPS 13 Plus begins at £1,348.99, the Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 begins at £999 and the Apple MacBook Air M2 begins at £1,249


Framework has delivered on its promise of upgrades for its current machines which, when put collectively, create a extra refined machine within the Laptop computer 13.

The Thirteenth-gen Intel chips run cooler, serving to the laptop computer to remain quieter and providing loads of efficiency. However the different refinements to the hinges, audio system, battery and display screen enhance the expertise simply as a lot. The swappable ports stay a superb thought.

The battery life continues to be far in need of the very best within the enterprise, however is now lengthy sufficient for a piece day. A touchscreen could be good however isn’t important. And you may actually get better-looking mainstream rivals.

However the 2023 Framework Laptop computer 13 is a superb, adaptable and upgradable marvel appropriate for extra than simply PC fans.

Execs: swappable ports, repairable and upgradeable design, nice efficiency, first rate battery life, comprises recycled aluminium and plastic, well-made, good fingerprint scanner, good display screen, nice webcam, good keyboard and trackpad.

Cons: no touchscreen, lid slightly flimsier than the remainder of the physique, quick availability, with wait time for buying new machines.

The aluminium lid of the Framework Laptop 13.
The aluminium lid seems and feels nice, however is barely extra versatile than some premium rivals. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Guardian

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