Framework Laptop 16 High-End GPUs?

Game Dev here. Can we expect High-End GPUs in the future?
How about nvidia GPUs?

Being able to swap between AMD and Nvidia will greatly help in my line of work.

11 Likes

Great question, same issue

1 Like

The physical connector is unfortunately only rated for 50 swaps, so if your goal is to hot swap between AMD and Nvidia I don’t think the expansion bay will be the solution you’re looking for. If someone builds a PCI-E converter that lets you dock a full desktop GPU though… now that might work.

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.

11 Likes

I’m didn’t know that about the expansion bay connector! Is this documented somewhere?

It is documented somewhere, I’ve seen it. I believe it’s part of the open source hardware specs, I found it via another thread on this forum a while back. Unfortunately idk where any of those links are anymore.

My plan was to hot swap between dGPU and extended battery, I was also bummed when I found out.

Gotcha. That’s something that would be really good to have pinned or otherwise prominently linked somewhere. Is there a wiki or something it could be saved in? I just ordered today so I’m very new.

Doesn’t that kind of defeat the purpose of having the expansion port if it’s only rated for 50 changes? Hopefully the actual connector can be replaced without too much trouble.

It’s not meant to be hot-swappable, its meant to be upgradable and repairable. You have to remove the keyboard and unscrew the FXBeam connector to disconnect the card, plus rebooting because PCIe isn’t generally hot-swappable.

The Expansion bay also has the system cooling in it, so removing it while the system is running would cause issues anyway.

9 Likes

Oh I see, 50 swaps isnt too bad. I Could always just get a laptop for AMD and another for Nvidia. Upgrading to newer generations GPUs is the more important feature.

I do need something equivalent to a 4080 or faster though, I was really hoping there would be faster GPU modules available at launch. Or at the very least a time frame when one would be available.

4 Likes

If the motivation is to provide a way to make generational changes, then no. Assuming you buy a new GPU every year, that’s (theoretically) 50 years of GPU upgrades.

Is it the full hot-swap we’d like to see? No. But it is definitely a massive leap forward compared to the standard fixed GPU solution. Not to mention it’ll let non-gpu devices be plugged in as well.

2 Likes

Yeah, I was surprised to see no nvidia gpu’s on launch, or the battery expansion system. I’m guessing this is a product of AMD jumping on board with this projection enthusiastically, vs. nvidia’s tendencies to bully manufacturers around.

2 Likes

I’m not expecting hot-swap, but 50 does feel too small considering the expansion port is for a range of possible options. Someone who wants to swap between the gpu when gaming, and extra storage when editing video for example, will very quickly burn through 50 swaps and set themselves up for glitches and intermitent connection.

But it is true this is better than anything else so far and a great start.

2 Likes

I completely agree, I was personally very interested in a similar use case and am also disappointed. Perhaps in time additional solutions will present themselves.

1 Like

Who knows, maybe this is going to be upgraded in later revisions? I agree that 50 swaps feel a bit less, but then again, I don’t believe I’ve seen a system yet that even allows for so many swaps.

Can you guys please guide me to where you’ve read the “50 swaps” only? I have not seen that on neither the product page nor on the market place itself.

1 Like

Considering the fact that you need to partially disassemble things to even remove the expansion bay, it’s naturally going to really slow someone down. Swapping back and forth just won’t be practical.

1 Like

From the datasheet for the connector. FX Beam incorporates the X beam connector, it just uses different alignment pins.

1 Like

@MJ1 how are you not a community moderator by now? lol

Thanks, isn’t that only the connector though? I could see Framework both upgrading it in the future and also selling those seperately for people in need of such.

I think it would have been good/honest to include this information on either the product page or even the module details on the market site …

1 Like

I don’t understand what you mean here.

Changing the connector will kill compatibility for future upgrades. I think Framework would really try to avoid that. I believe others can already use both the connector and Framework’s implementation of it. Framework would like others to create compatible devices. They post nearly everything to their github.

Sorry if I wasn’t clear. I am not a native english speaker.

I was talking about “You can probably easily replace the connector if it breaks”.
And also a future upgrade on the connector (not a different design) could make it longer-lasting.

2 Likes