I’m super excited about the latest announcements, first for the AMD CPUs, and second the Framework 16 GPU extension, the two main reasons why I was holding back from buying a Framework Laptop.
My last concern however is about dimensions. I move around a lot with my gear and have backpacks which say they only support up to 15 inch laptops. I am scared the 16 inch model won’t fit in my backpacks, which would sadly be a deal-breaker. I searched around a bit and read that the new 2021 Macbook Pro 16 inch fitted backpacks where the previous 15 inch models would, so I’m hoping this will also apply to Framework’s new model as well. I’m pretty sure 16 inch laptops only marginally increase in size because of thinner bezels, but I would love to hear from the team about envisioned dimensions.
For reference, I currently own an XPS 15 9570 with the Boundary Supply Errant backpack.
I am in the same boat as you. I would love a have a screen somewhat larger than 13.5", but then again, 16" seems quite a lot in terms of portability. I had kind of hoped for a 15" screen but I understand that a body of a 16" laptop is much easier to accomodate space for a GPU. Let’s hope they are able to keep the body size as small as possible or maybe there will be a 15" released next year? But let’s way until they release the dimensions
Screen = 8cm x 5cm ~ 9.5 cm
Top panel = 8.2cm x 6cm ~ 10.1 cm
Assuming the screen is indeed 16 inches, this translates to the following:
Screen = 8.45" x 13.5" ~ 16"
Top panel = 10.1" x 13.8" ~ 17"
In comparison, the 16in MacBook’s dimensions are publically known at 9.68" x 14.09"
That being said, the GPU will add additional size. You can see in t=423 that the GPU will slot in about 2cm and extends out about 0.5cm. From t=610, we can see that the slot is about 2.2cm/7cm, which translates to extending out about 0.8", giving a total length just under 11". That being said, since Linus never actually puts the GPU slot into the laptop in the demo, I’m guessing the GPU is still in development and subject to change.
Personally, it seems that it should be able to fit into any laptop bag that can carry a 15.6" laptop, and in the worst case the GPU can be removed, although that would be a pain.
@Tony_Gao Thanks for running the numbers ! I hope we will get dimensions at the time of pre-order.
I would not mind if the GPU module make it so that the laptop does not fit in my backpack. What would be incredible is if we could have a transport case to remove it and safely carry it around. When leaving home, it would take 30 seconds to remove the module, put the default module in to prevent dust from coming in, stick the GPU module in the transport case, then put it all in a backpack and re-assemble when arrived at destination.
We know that the size and weight will depend on what you install in the expansion bay, for example a GPU or an additional battery will be heavier and thicker than an “empty” bay, so while you could estimate the top panel dimensions based on the (known) screen size, there’s still a large possible variability.
I think it may be ever so slightly bigger. In Framework’s own promo video, they show it against one of those ruled grid desk mats (heck are they called?) where the outermost scale appears to be inches. There’s some perspective to be reconciled, but it looks to me like it gets all of 14" across and maybe as much as 10.5" to the back (t=0:17-0:21), with an additional 0.5"+ for whatever chonky-butt GPU module they’re using there (t=0:24).
More than fair, if you ask me. I’d consider this quite portable for a full keyboard (yes to the numpad, please), big work-friendly screen, and modular GPU. Honestly I find it rather impressive given the inherent size penalty with making anything modular and serviceable.
And yes, I do feel silly for having spent several minutes staring at YouTube stills. I should probably get back to work now. And so should you, Framework. Get that preorder up!
I wonder for how many connection cycles the expansion bay module connector is rated. If these are just thinly gold plated pads, they probably get scratched after many connection and disconnection cycles. Standard PC PCIe connectors are only rated for around 50 cycles. So I’d be careful and not swap them daily or even more often, at least until Framework tells us that it’s okay to do so and we get some long term experience.
Edit: it looks like changing the expansion bay requires disassembling the laptop and at least removing and reassembling two screws:
So I don’t think you’d want to do that regularly.
I also found a data sheet of these connectors, that says that they’re also only rated for 50 cycles:
Edit by Framework team:
There continues to be a lot of incorrect information echoing around the Expansion Bay connector.
We’re developing our own semi-custom connector with the supplier specifically to make it better for end-user handling. The datasheet that people are referencing that states 50 cycles is for an off the shelf connector that Framework Laptop 16 doesn’t ship with.
Unfortunately, given the outdated chin design below the laptop screen, the FW16 is going to be far from portable for what it offers in terms of screen size. I assume you can get a bigger screen in a smaller laptop ;). For better portability you could consider the XPS 15 or XPS 17 laptops, or newest generation of Razer.
Well, I used to think so, but if I am not mistaken, the XMG Fusion is dead in the water, no? Last time I checked, they were selling an RTX 3070 in 2023 in a gaming notebook, which is an insult, considering other companies have 4080s/4090s in their comparable laptops (e.g. Razer)…