Is this a good configuration for FL16?

I ordered a Framework 16 for my new daily driver (replacing a 2019 ASUS S410U): coding, watching twitch/amazon prime, emailing, music, note taking.

What do you think of this load out with Linux Mint OS?

System: Ryzen™ 7 7840HS
Memory: DDR5-5600 - 32GB (1 x 32GB)
Storage: WD_BLACK™ SN770 NVMe™- M.2 2280 - 500GB

Expansion Bay Shell (no dedicated graphics)

RGB Macropad Module (instead of numpad)

Expansion Cards:
2 x USB-C (Aluminum)
HDMI (3rd Gen)
Ethernet jack
DisplayPort (2nd Gen)
3.5mm Audio jack

My thinking in my choices:

  1. I dont want windows and am willing to go through adoption curve of Linux Mint

  2. I dont think I need a high powered CPU and am doing ok with my 2018 Intel Core i7-8550U CPU @ 1.80GHz

  3. I dont think I need a graphics card because I wont be gaming on it, and dont currently expect to need CUDA support for LLM work

  4. RGB Macropad which I can program to be either a numpad or do other stuff as needed

  5. Add another 32gb RAM later if I think I need it

  6. Can add another NVMe M.2 drive later if I think I need it, but haven’t been constrained by 500gb drive

In any case, my understanding is that I can buy the upgrades piecemeal if I find I need something else. Is that true?

Is my thinking on track or are there other considerations I should make?

I’m still in the 30-day money back period and havent been charged for the full laptop yet.

get 2x32gb of ram or 2x16gb as you’ll take a massive perormeance hit running single channel Ram. The ethernet port sticks out quite a bit just an FYI. Yes you can upgrade piecemeal. Also buy your RAM/SSD seperately as you’ll save money as opposed to buying it direct from FW. Also do you need a 16 inch laptop? As I think the FW 13 with it’s 13.5 inch screen will be more then enough performance wise for your needs.


Thanks! I didn’t know that about single channel ram. I’ll look into buying another one that is compatible if I’m noticing performance issues.

The aspect ratio of the FW13’s screen is annoying to me both in workflows (I often do side by side windows) and also watching videos on twitch / amazon prime / youtube.

That was exactly the type of feedback I was looking for. Thank you @Bennett_Derrico !

no problem!

I would buy one or two additional USB-C modules as extra, you will need them more often than HDMI or DisplayPort and you will be thankful if you have some spare.

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I think it’s around 15% performance drop?
That’s not much really for the upgrade flexibility.

Wouldn’t it be better to get a 2230 and leave the 2280 for later expansion rather than the other way around?

Hm, I’m not sure. The 2230 option is more expensive but I dont know why that is. Can you elaborate on your recommendation?

It seems wasteful to use the large capacity 2280 option for a small SSD. The potential expansion you’re left with is greatly diminished.

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On the other hand tech often gets a lot cheaper over the years, so you might have better performance and still save money overall by getting a 2280 today and a 2230 tomorrow.

Side note, I found quite a few used like new SN850X SSDs on the used market in my area which saves a lot of money too. I bought from a guy who said he bought it for his Xbox, but then found out it was incompatible due to heatsink.

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Best is to have 2 from the same series. Make sure it matches as best as it can!

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My $0.02

Right now, you can get a faster 2280 drive for less money than a 2230. Personally, I’d start with a 2280 and decide on an upgrade path later, assuming you ever even decide you need to upgrade.

Not to take anything away from Framework, but I’d order RAM separate. You can probably get 64GB of good quality, compatible RAM for only a little more than 32GB from Framework. Or you could get 32GB and save some money, if you decide to go single channel for a simpler upgrade path later on.

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Based on your use case, you will probably be fine until you can fill out that second slot with another 32 GB stick. This CPU has two channels and two slots. Using a single slot isn’t a huge deal. It just decreases the physical paths available between the RAM module and CPU.
This is a bigger deal if you have two channels and four slots. If you load up two slots that are both on the same channel, then you start to suffer a performance hit that is avoidable.
I think your strategy of a single large RAM module gives you great flexibility for upgrading in the future with a marginal performance impact in the mean time, and it fits the ethos of Framework.

GN article for more context-


Bear in mind that a 16:10 screen is 3.2:2, so the ratio is not that different, just bigger.

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All my searching for drives suggests that for a given drive capacity the 2230 is more expensive than 2280. I suspect this is mostly to do with needing to use physically smaller components, possibly requiring an extra couple of layers of copper in the PCB to make all the connections in the smaller size, and there may be additional costs in handling the smaller components during manufacture.

However I did buy a triple pack us used 2230 256GB drives on eBay for a ridiculously small price, probably because everyone wants larger drives. However one is in my machine as a Win10 drive for when I absolutely need Windows, and one is in an external NVMe enclosure for use as data transfer etc.

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Thank you for all the amazing feedback and insights on this thread. I really appreciate the knowledge and expertise @Alan_Pearce , @Matt_Naylor, and all the others have provided.

One thing that nobody has brought up but someone in a different context has, is my choice to forgo the graphics card (and ironically, they didnt mention anything about the SSD or RAM).

Is there consensus on the impact/lack-of-impact that not having one has?

I don’t have a GPU, only the Radeon 780 that is part of the processor chip. I don’t do gaming or ML projects, so didn’t get the GPU. Unless you have some graphics intensive operations it isn’t needed.

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I have the graphics module installed. Most of the time it is not used, except when I start a game. The built-in GPU is largely enough for your use-case. You can even play some games with it. But I want to play Star Citizen from time to time :slight_smile:

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Just like @Jorg_Mertin said I don’t think you need the GPU for your use case.

I personally would do 2x 16GB sticks of RAM for the dual channel performance. I feel like the majority of people don’t usually need to upgrade their RAM. RAM isn’t a big upgrade as it was 15 years ago. I find that most people would probably buy enough or more and never need an upgrade past that. 32GB seems like overkill for your use case (I don’t know how much RAM is used while coding), but I doubt you’ll need to upgrade.

Lastly, I feel like 500GB is just too small for a storage drive. This is entirely a personal opinion as I don’t know how you plan to use your storage, and I bought a single 1 TB drive for my FW16 and it’s nearly full already. XD I game so no surprise there. I feel like 1 TB should be minimum with any new laptop or PC.

Overall, I think you did a pretty good job with the specs for your FW16.

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Thanks for the feedback. I actually chose the 32gb for the optionality of adding ANOTHER 32gb later if I need it. I keep my hardware longer than most people I think (my current laptop is from 2018) so I expect that if the framework lasts longer than my current one, I will, at some point, want another 32gb as we havent stopped needing increased sizes since Bill Gates proclaimed that 64kb should be enough for anyone.

Regarding the hard drive size, I’d agree with you if I stored everything on my laptop, but I have a couple other machines in my house, one of which is for gaming, and another for storing media like movies, music, and document backups. My current laptop only has a 250gb HD and until I installed Windows Subsystem for Linux, it was more than enough.

Thank you for your feedback all the same. This is exactly the type of sentiment I was hoping to get from folks to identify what my biggest pain points are likely to be.