I like to keep up with the threads here, and often see troubleshooting and discussions of what folks wish were different. Forums tend to bias towards these topics; I’ve been mostly silent because it’s been smooth sailing. After a year of usage, I’m really happy with my 13" Framework Laptop. Here’s a quick appreciation thread!
I still love this machine! I appreciate my Framework laptop in many ways: as a beautiful design object, an excellent tool, and an expression of values around user repair. As a professional software engineer, I don’t want to compromise on performance or productivity for my daily driver. I am very satisfied with this laptop for my needs (mostly desktop usage, though I have traveled with it).
It’s my favorite laptop I’ve ever owned. For the decade prior to the Framework I primarily used a couple generations of X1 Carbon, which is an amazing laptop, but the Framework is even better. I even screen swapped my first gen X1 Carbon once in 2014, and it was an absolute nightmare lol.
In contrast, I’ve done a screen reinstall twice on the Framework, for the updated lid and 4.0kg hinge. I didn’t need to do these upgrades, but they were enjoyable and offered me the choice to change or improve my rig as I saw fit.
I run a bog standard Ubuntu desktop, and each 21.10 → 22.04 → 22.10 upgrade brought nice power consumption and desktop stability improvements. The Ubuntu setup guide was excellent for getting started. This is the first Linux laptop I’ve ever owned where the fingerprint reader worked out of box. I swapped in a 12th gen mainboard and didn’t get bit by any of the i915 driver issues, thankfully. Recently I decided to set up a home NVR, and instead of building a new machine, I realized it was a perfect opportunity to repurpose my 11th gen mainboard.
Overall, very happy with my laptop and excited about the future of Framework hardware!
I second that, 11th Gen, batch one.
Have had no hardware issues. Windows 10 pro has worked from day one.
Dual booting Ubuntu and Fedora has been fine, only software issues trying to get the fingerprint reader going in Ubuntu, since it was early.
Not using heavy, but it’s handled all I’ve asked of it, except for MS Flight Simulator, but without a discreet GPU, that’s not happening. I have two other computers for that.
Yikes… The first gen X1 Carbon (from 2012) was one of the earlier non-Apple thin & light for business (after the X1). Nothing else mattered other than trying to be thin to catch up to the MacBook Air reputation, and customer expectation. One of the worst ‘serviceable’ ThinkPads of that generation…if not the worst. Couldn’t have picked a worse ThinkPad to provide this contrast.
Goes to show how much progress Framework made in 9 years! From my perspective at the time, the X1 Carbon had a lot going for it. It was a wonderfully light laptop to commute with, with great cooling for its class. Repairability was a pipe dream for ultrabooks of this era. The carbon fiber case was super rigid and light compared to other ultrabooks, and it had some nice details like keyboard fluid channels for spills, and the 180° lid. Great Linux out of box experience too. Personal preference, but for a while, for me and several friends, it was the absolute best option by a long shot. I’m very pleased that it was dethroned by Framework.
“Dethroned”…You’re comparing the tech of today against tech from 9 years ago… If you buy anything today, anything…it better dethrone its earlier unit from 9 years ago…be it a toaster or a car. Like…you wouldn’t logically / reasonably be buying a ‘downgrade’.
And the 9 years progress isn’t made by Framework. Framework has only been in existence since 2020. (i.e. the “progress Framework made in 9 years” is not a thing that exist).
Logic aside. I’m happy that you’re loving the Framework laptop. It’s a great unit, when it works.
Do you use any eGPU or Thunderbolt accessories? Which expansion cards do you normally have plugged in?
Also, now that you’re on the 12th gen board, how are you finding the processor speed improvement? What’s your battery life like when not plugged in? (OP didn’t state from which 11th gen processor to which 12th gen processor)
Oh, I meant it in the sense that I’d choose a Framework over an X1C of today.
I use a Stone Pro TB4 dock with a 2K DisplayPort display (144Hz works beautifully), Focusrite DAC, etc. Because my dock handles the display, I settled on 2x USB-C and 2x USB-A expansion cards. My original mainboard was an 1165G7, the new one is a 1280P.
New processor is lovely. Not a huge change to the overall experience, but noticeable when running VMs and browsers simultaneously. Powertop reports between 7.5-10W while writing this post, so over 4 hours. Sleep battery drain was noticeably improved in the 12th gen board. Good enough for me, looking forward to seeing the kernel 6.2 numbers!
If I were to do it again, I would strongly look at the 1260P. The price / performance for the 1260P looks much better than the 1280P in benchmarks, as I’m sure you’re aware!
The Caldigit TS4 is the gold standard imo. Notably it has 2.5Gbe and more USB ports than my Brydge dock. I liked the Brydge form factor better for my desk, but the Caldigit’s Intel NIC and 98W power is really attractive (not gonna matter for the Framework 60W, but helps with a MBP). Here’s a great breakdown with both docks conveniently next to each other in the spec table.
Oh! I forgot to mention how much I like the Framework power adapter. That lil guy is so portable, way better than the Lenovo bricks I used to carry around. GaN is a nice advance!