Help me decide - downgrade AMD 7840u board to Intel 11th gen

I got my FW13 (ADM 7840u) one week ago. I’m using it with Linux, and I’m dissatisfied with battery life.

I did a side-by-side comparison with my previous DELL XPS 9305 (intel 1165g7), and with the same test conditions (light browsing/yt video playing) it uses less than half the power the framework does.

Maybe Linux is better optimized for older hardware, maybe DELL is just better at optimizing the whole package, including peripherals, than FW (plus, it uses LPDDR). I dunno.

Point is, the moment I unplug my FW, I get battery anxiety, which is something I haven’t experienced in a while with my Dell.

I have already shared my frustration with support, done some troubleshooting and tried some stuff, to no avail. Temperatures are also at least 10C higher than on the Dell, especially at light/medium loads.

Now to the point: I love the FW concept and don’t wanna go back to soldered stuff, so I definitely want to keep this laptop. But I want to try it out with an 11th gen board/cpu that should make the comparison with the Dell easier, and hopefully provide the same/similar great battery experience.

My return window is wide open, and I’d like to order an 1185G7 assembly, test it during my current 30-day window, and then keep whichever board gives better results.

Here come the questions: how are things looking for the i7 11th on the FW 13?
Do new boards come with a fix for the RTC battery thing?
What does powertop say? How are the temps?
What’s the maximum amount of RAM I could use with the 11th gen board + 1165g7/1185g7?

I had to replace my Dell only because the 16GB soldered RAM had become a bottleneck. I was otherwise satisfied with its single-core performance. I use my laptop for coding and compiling, mostly. Otherwise it’s media consumption and browsing, no video editing, no gaming. And comparing the Dell’s 1165G7 with the FW’s 7840u, the difference was marginal (maybe 10%?). Not a deal breaker for me, would much rather take double the battery life if that means giving up 10% perf gain.


P.S. here you can see what I’m talking about


Battery life on the 11th gen boards is worse than AMD boards. You can’t make comparisons across manufacturers as they have completely different boards and tuning. Video playback is one of the power intensive tasks you can do especially if you don’t have hardware accelerators enabled. I would recommend posting what distro you use and other members of the community can offer suggestions on settings.

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The AMD version should have better battery life. People are reporting around 6 to 9 hours of usage depending on usage and screen brightness and so on.

The 11th gen Intel version was way worse when it came out, I think 3-4 hours were normal and you needed extreme power saving setting or good luck to reach 5 or 6 hours. There have been a few tweaks and bios updates and the expansion cards have been optimized, but the AMD version should still perform significantly better.

Also the 11th gen has the whole issue with the bios battery that is an additional problem.

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Get a PD power bank. Upgrade kernel and distros when they become available.

Stop paying attention to consumer electronics hype cycles and various crack pushing, on all sides . Go touch some grass, be happy :blush:


I upgraded from a i7-1165G7 to a 7840U, so I think I can weigh in on this. There does seem to be some problem with 7840U power management, because the idle power is absolutely atrocious. I could get down to 3 W idle under ideal conditions with my 1165G7, but the 7840U only goes down to around 4.5 W under the same conditions. I’m holding out hope for firmware updates to solve this, but this seems to be a common problem even on other 7840U laptops so it’s probably more up to AMD than Framework to resolve this.

That said, under light loads both boards draw a similar amount of power, so that benefit of the 1165G7 goes away unless you’re literally just reading on your laptop. Overall my battery life is very similar with both boards, and at least for me the other benefits of the AMD chip when doing anything remotely performance intensive are too big to consider going back.

Also note that I use Windows, and my battery life with the 1165G7 was better than that reported by Linux users, while for 7840U it’s on par or lower than what is reported by Linux users. So if you intend to use Linux, you might see even less benefit from downgrading.

Finally, if you use anything other than USB-C expansion cards on the 1165G7, your battery life will significantly go down and will likely be worse than 7840U across the board. This is possible to work around depending on your usage, but another thing to keep in mind.


On my AMD unit, watching YouTube videos does seem to sap the battery pretty fast. I’m hoping a firmware and/or driver update will reduce power draw during video decoding at some point.

But if I’m just doing other light tasks like browsing and word processing, I get pretty good battery life, even limiting the max charge to 80%.


Thanks for your detailed and authoritative reply, that’s exactly what I was looking for.

Thanks to all the others as well, I guess I will just keep my current configuration and hope for some improvements down the line.


Also make sure you mind where you use USB-A dongles and cables, as FW detailed higher power drain on the Ryzen USB4 ports with them:

Thanks, all my measurements were made following that advice (extra care only needed for the HDMI adapter, since the remaining 3 are all USB-C).

But thanks for chiming in, I appreciate it :slight_smile:

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By the way do you wanna have a laugh folks?

I had already pulled the trigger on my cart while replies to this thread were starting to come in, thinking “worst case I’ll cancel the order”.

Well fuuuu turns out once the card is charged, it ships. Now I have to wait for delivery and return it.

Double-fail, yay!

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Lol I did this too a couple months ago. At least I’m not the only one. :joy: Impressive how quickly they move in-stock laptops though!

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I’m having similar issues for battery as you. got my board a couple days ago and am only getting about an hour to 2 hours on battery compared to my 12th gen that was getting 3. Interested to hear what you end up doing

I think I’m pretty much set on keeping the equipment I have and hope that kernel/bios/firmware updates improve the situation.

My amd one doe 2.8W idle with wifi connected and bt on and display on min, could probably go down to 2.6 if I took out a stick of memory but don’t really want to.

There is definitely something wrong with the hw decoder at this point, it decodes fine but uses way too much power to do so, at 720p you are straight up better off sw decoding. Probably just borked power management or something though (since apparently it doesn’t do that on windows but I have not gotten around to test that and probably won’t).


Since we’re all having the same feeling and coming to the same conclusion that sth may be off with HW decoding, I wonder: are there any AMD folks in this forum? :thinking:

I noticed right away that simply watching a 720p video on YouTube seemed to take more battery than made sense, but right now, I can get by, so I’m kinda just hoping it gets solved. Hopefully it doesn’t take too long. It’s not my wheelhouse at all, or I’d be trying to help solve it.


There are FW folks that are working with AMD folks so I’d imagine if this issue keeps gaining traction it’ll be looked into. Just have data and screenshots at the ready for Framework support.

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