• Our team is working to address issues posting quotes or media to the forums. Please bear with us as we get this sorted out.

News Framework Laptop DIY Edition Review: A Real Fixer Upper

I don't see how this is any better than say my ASUS G14 (well, aside that the G14 has 8GB of RAM soldered on). The I/O modules are a novel idea but they still use what looks like a proprietary formfactor and at the end of the day it's USB-C, so I don't see how it's different than buying say a USB-C based dock/hub and calling it a day. The CPU is still soldered on so replacing the CPU or mainboard means replacing both. And since it's still proprietary to them, there's the issue of supply.

Sure it might score a couple of points higher on iFixit's repairability score, but unless every component in a laptop is standardized and adopted as such, we're only catching up to the baseline of laptops from before the mid 2000s.
 

warezme

Distinguished
Dec 18, 2006
2,403
27
19,840
20
I don't see how this is any better than say my ASUS G14 (well, aside that the G14 has 8GB of RAM soldered on). The I/O modules are a novel idea but they still use what looks like a proprietary formfactor and at the end of the day it's USB-C, so I don't see how it's different than buying say a USB-C based dock/hub and calling it a day. The CPU is still soldered on so replacing the CPU or mainboard means replacing both. And since it's still proprietary to them, there's the issue of supply.

Sure it might score a couple of points higher on iFixit's repairability score, but unless every component in a laptop is standardized and adopted as such, we're only catching up to the baseline of laptops from before the mid 2000s.
You have to be realistic. It's not like every other laptop manufacturer in the planet has a laptop standard for manufactering they just don't want to use. It doesn't exist. It's on purpose so you have to keep upgrading laptops with every model year because they are no longer parts compatible. This is the first attempt to create at least one line of laptops that is. You have to start somewhere. Besides most of the easily user serviceable parts are standard and easily replaceable like memory, hard drives and CPU mobo combo was a compromise looking at the future when the next CPU is no longer compatible with the motherboard. That's the CPU's manufacturer's way of making you buy new stuff also.

You have to start somewhere. Maybe this is not for you but it may be for a lot of other people.
 

A Stoner

Distinguished
Jan 19, 2009
249
4
18,685
0
Really surprised that something like this would not have been done with AMD rather than my generally preferred Intel. AMD is willing to use the same socket for several generations while Intel updates every single generation regardless forcing new motherboards. If they used AMD their base motherboard design would be functional for several generations. As it is now, next generation Intel will force them to make brand new PCBs.
Timing is fortunate however, as it does seem there will be forced changes coming soon with the new DDR5 memory coming out soon.
 
Reactions: King_V
You have to be realistic. It's not like every other laptop manufacturer in the planet has a laptop standard for manufactering they just don't want to use. It doesn't exist. It's on purpose so you have to keep upgrading laptops with every model year because they are no longer parts compatible. This is the first attempt to create at least one line of laptops that is. You have to start somewhere. Besides most of the easily user serviceable parts are standard and easily replaceable like memory, hard drives and CPU mobo combo was a compromise looking at the future when the next CPU is no longer compatible with the motherboard. That's the CPU's manufacturer's way of making you buy new stuff also.

You have to start somewhere. Maybe this is not for you but it may be for a lot of other people.
Except most laptops until the late 2000s had easily serviceable components, with some of them having socketed CPUs. This isn't anything new, it's an attempt to bring things back to what they were. I mean, check out this Dell laptop from the mid-2000s
And even compared to my ASUS G14, aside from having 8GB of its 16 GB of RAM soldered on, there's almost no real advantage this laptop has over with regards to serviceability or customization. Maybe it has a leg up on I/O customizability if all of the USB-C ports have the same alt-mode support, but I/O features haven't really been a problem for me. And it's not any different than Macbook Pros, just that you don't have to deal with a danging dongle.

If you're coming from the land of ultrabooks and Macbooks, sure, I can see where you're coming from. But plenty of laptops have still kept some semblance of user servicability at or near the same level as this laptop.

Really surprised that something like this would not have been done with AMD rather than my generally preferred Intel. AMD is willing to use the same socket for several generations while Intel updates every single generation regardless forcing new motherboards. If they used AMD their base motherboard design would be functional for several generations. As it is now, next generation Intel will force them to make brand new PCBs.
Timing is fortunate however, as it does seem there will be forced changes coming soon with the new DDR5 memory coming out soon.
It wouldn't have mattered anyway since there hasn't been a push for socketed laptop CPUs.
 
Jan 12, 2021
43
13
35
0
I'm very hopeful for the general idea they're going for. I don't know that they will succeed much themselves. But it would be great if this can help to push other larger companies from at least implementing some of this themselves. I have been very happy with our ThinkPad laptops for the most part. Many of them are extremely similar in the general layout and size of the laptops. But yet they all use completely different parts and how they fit together. If they could just standardize more of their parts, then it could be possible to have more standard parts that could be replaced and/or upgraded similar to this. But there seems to be no desire in the business to do so. Laptops are generally viewed as an appliance that is used and then done. Even if the general public isn't doing these things themselves, a system where parts are more compatible means you could have individuals and companies that could take that on. As it is, you would have to have a huge inventory of parts for all the different systems that are out there. So instead, things get trashed because it's not worth it.

And while a socketed CPU would be nice, that can be difficult to fit in the now normal slim ultrabook style of laptops. And for me, I have almost always upgraded both my CPU and motherboard together. And usually memory as well. But since memory does fail, more so than CPUs, soldered memory to me seems a much larger issue that soldered CPUs. Doing what they are doing here with a standard motherboard means that at least there is an upgrade/repair option even if it does mean doing both CPU and motherboard.
 

Howardohyea

Proper
May 13, 2021
205
48
120
2
I honestly like the framework laptop, and they'll earn a customer when it's time my old laptop needs to be replaced.

And like the article said, Framework needs to survive for a couple of years before their upgradability actually presents itself (especially when it comes to CPU). Meanwhile easily taking the SSD, RAM, and stuff is a really nice bonus to me, since I'm really attracted to this.
 

Shirley Marquez

Prominent
Sep 2, 2019
4
0
510
0
The company had originally planned to ship the DIY edition more completely disassembled. But they discovered that complete laptops and the major user replaceable components (RAM, SSD, WiFi) are tariff-free, but if they had packaged the other components separately they would have been hit with a tariff. That's why the system has to come with the motherboard, display, keyboard, and trackpad pre-installed. If you really want the full DIY experience you can follow the guides on their site and remove all of those things, and then put it back together -- it won't void the warranty!
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS