Ability to purchase DIY Framework laptop without mainboard

Is it possible to purchase the Framework laptop without a mainboard? My problem is that I wish to purchase a laptop, however, my Visa card has a limit of approximately 640 USD so being able to buy the DIY edition laptop without the board would be nice. Buying the necessary parts individually to assemble a laptop is out of the question as that costs a lot more than just buying a complete unit…

Not possible. You might find someone with a broken laptop that is willing to salvage some expense by selling you the shell. I actually did that a month ago. Or you can wait until 12th gen refurbs drop. The 11th gen models sold for around $600 for the i5, I can’t imagine FW not selling refurbs of the 12th gen eventually, especially since they sold out so quick.

Can I ask why you want a shell? It won’t do anything without the mainboard after all

My guess, based on the mention of a card limit, is that OP wants to purchase the laptop in chunks to stay under said limit. Unfortunately, the cheapest you can go includes a motherboard if you’re purchasing directly from Framework.

Best bet is probably to keep an eye on eBay for someone selling a used 11th gen for a good price and upgrading that over time, unless 12th gen refurbs go up for sale.

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You can buy parts off of marketplace, keep the buys under your limit, but there is no way it will be cheaper than buying a bundle. Still could meet your limit requirements.

A janky idea I had was to purchase the Framework without the mainboard (and maybe without the webcam too), is to try to fit some RK3588 baseboard or something like a Steam deck mainboard and connect them all up using the input adapter/screen to HDMI.

A Franken-Framework laptop.

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@O_M Well wasn’t I prescient. Now is your chance OP, buy a refurb NOW before they sell out!

EDIT: Well, nevermind, the pricing is lower but not as low as the 11th gen was. It starts at $719.

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Well, this is unfortunate to read. I recently did the AMD upgrade on my 11th gen Framework 13. I was planning on picking up a separate case for the old mainboard, but before I could find a use for it my son ended up in a situation where he could really use a new laptop for school.

I was hoping I could pick up a DIY sans mainboard (and memory) for a reasonable price to get him started on one of these wonderful laptops.

Suppose it’s time to crawl ebay.

So a pinebook pro with a bit better case XD

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Yea that was my thoughts, plus the RK3588 is more powerful. Wished the RPi 5 had a better GPU but oh well.

I do have a orange pi 5 plus with that chip and hardware wise it is really something but the software support is what I would call not fun. Both with the mangled oem kernel and with mainline most thing only kinda work. Wanted to use it as my new media-pc cause of the propper hdmi 2.1 ports and the on paper baller hardware decoders. I just wasn’t able to have both function at the same time. I does actually do 4k 120hz, a thing most more expensive x86 chips still can’t without taking a detour over an active dp to hdmi converter. Ended up caving and just getting a fanless intel n100 pc and an active dp to hdmi adabter for that application instead.

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