Subpar touchpad

My initial impressions with the laptop’s hardware is that the touchpad is annoying to use compared to the one on any MacBook.

The issue is that the top region of the touchpad is not clickable, requiring the user to take their finger off the touchpad and click using a lower region of the touchpad.

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That’s not subpar, that’s standard. There’s a reason why macbook touchpads are so widely praised.

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I am not judging but am genuinely curious, why would one prefer to physically click instead of utilizing tap-to-click, which (in my experience as a decades-long laptop user) is a tad faster, no less accurate, and requires less force to perform? I have to use Macbooks for work from time to time and I never thought their touchpads seemed any better than the best Windows laptops, but maybe that’s because I don’t physically click them.

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If you are used to using a touchpad on Linux or Windows, you may find that they have an awful push-to-click experience.
This is because they are too sensitive.
All OSes have a feature for scaling the mouse pointer speed based on how fast your finger is moving.

It happens that the scaling function used in Windows and Linux (tested in Fedora) is poorly tuned, and makes your mouse pointer move around a lot while you are trying to push the touchpad down. It may differ between vendors like Synaptics.
The touchpad on a macbook both has less resistance and a well tuned scaling function, so that clicks are actually clicks and not drags.

tl;dr clicking the touchpad on a macbook actually works so you’re more inclined to do it

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this, Macs have long been the gold standard of touchpads, unfortunately no one on the pc world has come close. I believe Framework went with one of the best ones available to non-mac computers. That being said once you get used to tap to click you will never go back, I actually find mac book touch pads annoying to use because their tap to click is terrible compared to other touch pads, but their push to click is far superior so it really all depends on if you prefer to tap to click or push to click, and personally I prefer tap to click.

Personally I’ve never liked touchpads. Whenever I need precision on something, I always mess up the double tap. Clicks offer better precision.

In order my preference is mouse > TouchPad with physical buttons on top > TouchPad with clicks > tapping.

But yeah, that’s just me messing up the TouchPad controls lol.

Unfortunately, that is pretty normal for a non-Apple laptop. I can’t name a single laptop that has a trackpad as good as an Apple one. The Razer laptops have a pretty good track pad, as does the Dell XPS line up. But not even those match a MacBook, especially since ForceTouch launched. Even the pre-ForceTouch track pads are superior to modern Windows laptop offerings. The best Windows track pad that I can think of is probably the Surface Book (1-3) and the Surface Laptop 4. If the Framework Laptop matches Dell’s, I’d say it has a pretty good track pad. Windows precision drivers are supported, so it should be decent at the least?

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I prefer mouse, regardless how good a trackpad is, if you are working for 4 hours straight you’ll have strains in fingers… Even cheap mouse like M235 (Rs. 800 or ~10$ outside) works very well for high productivity task having a lot of scrolls or swipes…

Although in my current acer laptop I do have push to click anywhere, I barely use it, I just pull n tap most of times when I don’t have a mouse, otherwise mouse is all time my best friend. Edit: Also when you’re scrolling you must have to both fingers before tapping.

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First. Framework is great. The company, people, ideas and ideals. I appreciate it and hope for a great continued and successful future.

I can’t describe the trackpad as subpar but it’s not working for me. I do not know what my expectations should be but I am very disappointed in my experience so far. I am trying to sort if I expect too much or I if I have a hardware problem.

My daily use machine is a mid 2012 MacBook Pro. I have been holding out for years for a new machine to come around that has similar repairability and hands on experience as that 2012 machine does.

I am having many problems with the touchpad such as palm rejection and other unexpected input responses but my primary concern is accuracy and precision. I am finding that my Framework touchpad simply does not have the pixel-level accuracy that I expect. While I can use it I cannot precision select text or GUI elements with any of the same fluency and efficiency as I can on a 10+ year old MacBook design. Small pixel level movement simply does not work or is unreliable. I am able to regularly move my finger at least 1-2mm without always getting reliable cursor movement on the screen or the movement is not proportional or fluid.

My Framework laptop trackpad works. I have tested win 10 and 11 with all the Framework provided drivers and Fedora. Multi touch, tap, scroll, all work. Nothing immediately seems to jump out as non-functional or even a provable hardware problem. I am truly hoping that my trackpad does have a hardware problem though. Or software or user error.

I WANT very badly for this Framework to be my new everything computer for many years. Unfortunately I continue to feel actual relief when jumping from my Framework back to my 2012 MacBook trackpad. That can’t be a realistic compromise on a $1500+ investment in a new machine. Not when a $200 MacBook from 2012 is still a massively better user input experience for me personally.

I feel utterly gutted and sick at the thought that I would ask for a return but based on finding very few complaints that match my concerns there is a chance I am experiencing the trackpad exactly as it is supposed to be.

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I’ve been really happy with the touchpad on the Framework, although Linux gesture support is pretty subpar compared to what’s available in macOS. However, I am a happy tapper not a clicker, so maybe that helps account for my better Framework experience.

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My old machine is a 2015 macbook and I too found the Frameworks touchpad difficult. It operates much differently from Apple’s. I used to let fingers rest on the pad, but now that causes spurious presses and cursor movements. I’ve had the framework for about 10 days on Ubuntu and have decided to try to adapt my habits to it. I’ll see if that work. I certainly agree the Framework touchpad is not like the Mac’s.

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Having run Windows/Linux on old Macbooks (2013 era), I can only offer that this is more likely than not a driver issue rather than a touchpad issue. The same input device on the same machine was nearly unusable for this exact reason (spurious presses, pixel-by-pixel drift and jitter) in Linux.

Somewhat along the same lines, I find that the Framework’s touchpad under Windows doesn’t produce any of those issues (for me.)

I was pretty disappointed in the quality of the FL touchpad. The touchpad in the 2017 Pixelbook is by far the best of any laptop I have owned or tried, and the difference between the FL is massive.

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So you knew other touchpads will not be able to measure up…then proceeded to mention others are subpar?

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Strange assumptions. I’ve only ever used ThinkPads (nobody even uses the touchpad), Macbooks, and now the Framework, so no, I did not presume to know anything about other laptops, but I do know about user experience.

The irony of this post is that the compliant is completely and utterly lodged at the Linux distro you are using, and is outside of Framework’s control.

Have you tried Windows 10? The trackpad is glorious. Super precise and gestures all work flawlessly. Microsoft actually invested a lot of time in creating trackpad drivers that are pretty great.

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Strange assumption indeed. Can’t say I know everybody to say nobody.

When it comes to ‘clicks’ on a touchpad, I use tap to click instead. Press to click has more of a hardware dependency…not to also mention the varying degree of tactile differences from vendor to vendor. Tapping, to me, removes some of those dependencies / unknowns.

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Weirdly, on an X13 gen 2 with an enormous touchpad, I instinctively use the touchpad much more often than with past models where I almost exclusively used the TrackPoint (some of my ThinkPads don’t even have touchpads; on the rest, it’s much smaller). That’s despite it being the same kind of (imo) annoying hinged touchpad like the Framework’s apparently is! If I weren’t worried about the warranty I’d open it up and look for a way to disable the hinge entirely – which one could do with the Framework, perhaps.

If we ever get TrackPoint support on the Framework, I imagine I’d actually prefer one with a much smaller touchpad (which would maybe leave room room for another row of keys!), instead of one taking up practically half the vertical space on the input cover…

I made a similar point in the relevant blog post’s thread. Hinged touchpads are not the only option on the market; perhaps other types of touchpad were considered too expensive, but I hope they’ll be an option in the future. (I haven’t had time to research the hardware/documentation issues mentioned below – that all input is routed through the touchpad though an unspecified “single cable system” – and didn’t receive any responses about it, so I don’t know how feasible DIY experimentation would be.)

I had an initially bad experience with the touchpad on Pop Linux and eventually switched off “Tap to Click” and “Disable while Typing.” I can’t say it’s perfect now, but I no longer have crippling “random clicks” taking focus away or otherwise messing up my typing.

EDIT: Just to follow up with this–I installed the latest libinput10 driver (a user land driver used by X11) and things are subjectively feeling much better right now. I’ve switched “Tap to Click” back on, and it feels more consistent.

I upgraded from libinput10-1.18.1 to libinput10-1.19.2-1:

wget http://ftp.br.debian.org/debian/pool/main/libi/libinput/libinput-bin_1.19.2-1_amd64.deb && dpkg -i libinput-bin_1.19.2-1_amd64.deb
wget http://ftp.br.debian.org/debian/pool/main/libi/libinput/libinput10_1.19.2-1_amd64.deb && dpkg -i libinput10_1.19.2-1_amd64.deb

EDIT2: Welp, it isn’t perfect. Still seeing random pointer jumps and clicks.