I was eager to get the 2nd generation hinges since I read that they helped with screen wobble, which has been my biggest complaint about the laptop since I got it 2 years ago. In comparison to my other laptops, the wobble on the Framework screen is awful and made it difficult for me to use in my environment.
I upgraded to the CNC lid when it came out, but the wobble was unchanged. I just received the new 2nd generation hinges and installed them, and I thought I would make a quick video demonstrating the difference between the 1st and 2nd generation hinges.
In short, there doesn’t seem to be much improvement at all. I did the same typing tests with my X1 Nano and MacBook Air at the end of the video for comparison.
Would you try the 4kg hinge?
The 3.5kg “2nd gen” hinges just don’t sound like a significance increase from the 3.3kg original hinges. If the wobble is an issue for you, you’d probably want to go up to the 4.0kg hinges.
Thank you for the video. That pretty much confirmed what others have said about the 2nd gen hinges…minimal to no notable improvement (especially when compared to some of the better engineered laptops out there).
I was really looking forward to having the new hinges solving the resonance issue.
Framework have said the 4kg hinge does little-to-nothing to address resonance.
Thank you for making this comparison. I was thinking of getting the 2nd gen hinges, I’m not so sure I want to buy them unless current hinges break or go bad.
I personally don’t mind the wobble much, I’m coming to FW13 from a 6 year old laptop, that was a lot more floppy so this is an improvement for me.
Unless on a wobbly table I really don’t see that problem often. Although the wobble is quite bad compared to other laptops. From what I see the way to improve this is to either move the resonance frequency higher (both thinkpad and macbook wobble much faster) and/or to introduce damping somehow. Stiffer hinges might move the resonance frequency up but only if it is the hinge and not the chassis/screen that actually wobbles.
Another thing I wanted to try out but never got to was to use different rubber feet, especially softer ones. That might be a way to get some more decay into the oscillation.
Overall while typing this on a solid desk the screen does not wobble at all. Also while using the laptop on my lap it does not wobble and oscillations decay fairly quickly since the legs are providing good damping.
I thought it would be good to compare all of them since you have done such a good job comparing the two.
How do the different hinges affect the screen staying upright when moving the laptop around? My biggest issue is when I pick up the laptop the screen falls flat back. I’d like to upgrade to a newer hinge (3.5 or 4 kg) but I’d like to get some input on other’s experience before making a purchase.
My 2 2nd gen hinges (for 2 separate FW 12th gen) are in shipping. I will know more soon.
In my experience the 2nd generation hinges nearly completely solve this issue. The only way I can get the hinge to fall flat is if I perform a very deliberate movement (i.e. lowering the laptop and then snapping it pitchwise toward me). Walking around the screen stays stable even if I move my arms around a bit.
For me, the 2nd generation hinge has completely solved the issue of the screen not keeping its position, the amplitude of the wobble has also been reduced
So having had my FW with the gen2 hinges directly next to another with the gen1 hinges, just before I upgraded that one too (both 12th gen, so CNC lids):
Yes, the gen2 hinges stop wobbling a tiny bit faster then the old ones, but the timespan this shortens the wobble by is far smaller than the timespan it still wobbles (and only close to the end. The starting swings seem just as big. And also still a bit longer than my XPS 15 9500, which I would consider my benchmark as far as hinges go. Looking at this while tearing it down, I cannot imagine that the hinges alone can improve this further and believe the remaining wobble mainly comes from the actual case and lid bending ever so slightly.
The new hinges feel much stiffer, so much so, that while opening and getting close to 90°, the front of the FW lifts up a few cm, before its own weight will usually slowly pull it down again. This seems to be stiff enough, to fix the display lid, while moving the FW around (steps, swinging it around while only holding the base, etc.).
Actually stiff enough, that when you now “flick” the lid, the hole device can rock on the table, with audible bumps from ever so slightly lifting up the feet.
This is more than stiff enough. The only thing better than that, I think, would be a variable tension hinge, like my XPS 15 has, where you can tell that the stiffness increases the more you open the device, which solves the problem of the notebook being lifted up partially by opening the display or the hinge not being stiff enough when opened more than 90°.
Overall I’d call that an easily noticeable and worthwhile improvement. But of course there is still more room for improvement, also perhaps not that much while still keeping the case and lid as they are now.