From Framework Gen 2 to Broken Dell 9370: A Tale of Quality and Hopes

Today, I received my Gen 11 mainboard, which I had ordered alongside new hinges for my Gen 12. The hinges were extremely disappointing. One was even defective; it was loose even in the closed position.

I’m currently writing this from a Dell 9370 I recently bought as a “broken” device off eBay just a week ago. After some personal repairs, including unsoldering and reflashing the BIOS, it’s now running perfectly. The reason I turned to the Dell is because of the unreliability of my Framework Gen 12—it often fails to start. I suspect there might be a cold solder “blob” somewhere, especially since the issue mainly arises after I’ve carried it outside in my backpack. The weather has been getting colder lately. I’ve already contacted the support team about this and am patiently waiting for their response.

Regarding the Gen 11 mainboard and the hinges I ordered, I was impressed by the speedy delivery to Germany. Upon inspecting the new mainboard, I noticed the CMOS battery was quite prominently positioned on the board. Out of hope that the Gen 12 issues might be BIOS-related, I decided to use the CMOS battery from the new board. However, when I tried to carefully remove the battery, I realized the holder was not securely attached. The soldering on the negative pad was fractured. Upon closer inspection, I figured I might attempt a repair with my JBC iron later. Since childhood, I’ve had the habit of testing 9V batteries, CR2025, and similar types with my tongue for a quick check. I was surprised to find that the CMOS from the new board was completely drained. I measured it and found it was almost empty, registering only 0.050 volts.

I can’t fathom how this could happen. It makes me wonder if I’m just incredibly unlucky or if these are symptoms of a broader quality control issue. The Framework’s concept demands high-quality standards. Otherwise, it is undermined by the time and resources needed to rectify its faults: replacing power cables, shipping hinges to Germany, addressing mainboard issues, and dealing with other electrical problems. These setbacks contradict the product’s promise, especially when consumers like me support it for its overarching mission. As a result, I not only risk voiding my warranty but also find my satisfaction and trust in the brand waning. I’ve advocated for Framework in the past, and these experiences feel disheartening. I genuinely hope—and this is the primary message I want to convey—that Framework will address and rectify these quality issues.

This was translated by chatgpt, i am not good enough in english.


Most likely just bad luck. I have had none of the problems you described. This luck was partially created by your own decision to purchase an 11th gen board. These boards have a number of quirks and issues that have slowly been addressed over time…except the one you ran into (which does have a workaround) where the CMOS battery gets drained. Sorry to see you run afoul of an old bug and the issue with your newer 12th gen.


Yes, but I might be fortunate in the end. Here’s a photo of the backside of my panel:

Can you identify the problem? I suspect the cable was never properly connected. As evident, I haven’t tampered with the tape; it’s still in its original state ;-). I’m contemplating addressing this immediately. However, could someone from Framework provide guidance? Should I await a response to my support ticket submitted last Friday?
Considering I’m in Germany and the website is in German, I relayed my concern in the same language. Might this pose an issue? Would it be advisable to initiate a new ticket, presenting my observations in English? If rectifying this eliminates the intermittent issues, it would both clarify and likely rectify my dilemma. If not, I genuinely hope Framework understands I haven’t caused any damage on my own, when this does not help. :innocent:

The battery being run down to zero on your new mainboard is normal. Inconvenient in some use cases, but normal.

Most computers use a large primary (non-rechargeable) button cell for the real time clock and perhaps configuration retention. (A CR2032 is the most popular choice.) Those will keep the RTC running for a few years; when they stop working you throw the button cell away and install a new one. Before flash memory was common and cheap, the battery was also used to power a small static RAM continuously so the computer would retain its configuration; now it’s only used for the clock.

Framework chose to instead use a small rechargeable lithium coin cell for the real time clock. That stores a lot less energy, both because of being smaller and being rechargeable, so it’s only good for a few days; it counts on being recharged regularly during normal use of the computer. On the 11th gen mainboard as originally designed, that cell would only recharge when the computer is on external power, so it would run down if you had your Framework in a bag for a few days; there is a mod so it can also recharge from the laptop’s main battery. Later systems were designed to do that from the start.

If you buy a mainboard from the Marketplace, it hasn’t been plugged into a computer for a while, so its battery will not have a charge when you receive it. 13th gen and Ryzen mainboards don’t come with a battery; those systems will have the wrong time until they connect to a network and receive the correct info from a network time server. You can add a battery if you frequently use your system without being on a network.

Thank you for the clarification. Based on what I understand about rechargeable batteries, the lithium cell is likely dead because it hasn’t maintained a minimal charge. It’s standard practice to prevent devices from draining their batteries in storage by disconnecting them or other similar methods. I’ve already attempted to charge it, but it doesn’t retain a charge for more than 10 minutes. I’ll give it another try.

Your approach of removing the battery, while still allowing the option to connect one, is good.

I’ve successfully reattached the eDP cable, and the system is now functioning optimally. Additionally, I’m in the third batch for the Ryzen version. Nonetheless, I believe any company should either provide a functioning battery upon purchase or include a note explaining the situation. Relying on forums or Reddit for such crucial information doesn’t seem ideal to me.

I feel it’s excessive to have to read the entire forum and all provided information before even buying a Framework laptop. This refers to my expectation that Framework should include a note or a new battery in the package. Perhaps you should train a AI for that reason. Which holds the forum as knolagebase. Or just answer our Questions as you did now, thank you!
The stress i had because of the issues combined espacially the feeling i shouldnt be mad at framework as i would be and i am at dell, apple and all the others is harmfull. I think you should prevent that by a note, sticker, or a new battery in the beginning. Please dont send one to germany afterwards.

Best regards E