Most silent current Framework 13" laptop + egpu support


I currently think about preordering a Framework Laptop. One of my needs is to use it as a DAW for audio recording as a successor of my 10 years old desktop silent pc. So, CPU power is less important than silence.

What of the current cpu versions would you recommend, the Ryzen 5, the Ryzen 7, the i5 or the i7? I heard that the Ryzen might be more power efficient, so my suggestion is that it is less cooling needed and so it might be more silent.

However, I did not find any reviews so far for the AMD version, just for the i7 where it is often mentioned that it might be quite loud on load?!

Second question if both cpu versions are capable to connect an external egpu like the Razor Core X via usb-c thunderbolt 3 and pcie forwarding (40 GBit/s). Or is this only available for the Intel CPUs?

Best regards,

They will both draw the same amount of power, so if you need silence the best option would be to use power saving modes to prevent the CPU boosting and getting hot enough to turn on the fans.

Intel donated the Thunderbolt 3 spec to the USB-IF and is available in USB4, so you will be able to use a ryzen CPU but only on the top two ports (closest to the screen side).


Sounds both good. Thank you @Water261 !

Just as a PSA there isn’t a full silent mode, but with a good noise cancelling pass all the (very slight depending on mic placement) fan noise is gone.

I’ve found that the fan will stay on low when recording from midi devices (with my 11th gen i5), but will ramp up to high if using a software audio interface like ASIO.

Nothing is stopping you from unplugging the fan. Source: I have accidentally forgot to plug the fan back in before.

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Did you consider using a USB-C monitor/hub with external keyboard and mouse? Then you just plug a USB-C cable into the laptop and place it away from the microphone; possibly behind a separator (while still maintaining decent air circulation around the laptop). That would make the noise considerations a LOT less critical.

An egpu enclosure may already provide a lot of the connectivity required.


I’d like to give you a short update. In the meanwhile I bought the i7 1360P model. And today I did my first recording session with Presonus Studio One 4, Windows 11, USB Audio interface Presonus Audiobox iTwo and the Framework laptop as my new DAW. I used the Windows balanced energy mode.

I did not have any trouble with the cpu fan. It stayed completely silent during my recordings. Even when I playback an 18 tracks audio project, including virtual instruments and a lot of audio effects, there is no cpu fan. It’s a dream. Only the Windows update in the meanwhile did cause some fan noise. BTW: Good idea to stop it during the recording. :wink:

Also my second task, running it with an external eGPU, Raptor Core X and nVidia RTX 3060 via Thunderbolt works perfectly and ages faster than before my cpu only, intel graphics solution. Of course, if there is a lot to do, you can hear the cpu fan now in power intense situations. But it is not unpleasent, just some rush.

And finally Ubuntu works like a charm es well.

So, I guess that there is no need for the AMD Ryzen for these purposes. However, if anybody has one, I am interested if you have similar results.

Best regards,