I love the framework laptop. To me, it is the ideal machine.
Unfortunately, I suffer from both heavy FOMO and buyer’s regret. This makes it hard for me to buy things (like a $1200 laptop) without feeling like I’ve made the wrong decision.
I’m worried that buying too early means I miss out on major generational leaps in design to the chassis, expansion cards, and screen, but I’m worried that if I buy too late that I’ll lose the opportunity to experience the novelty of a “gen-1” device.
I’ve never owned (or at least purchased) a gen-1 anything before. I always wait for revisions to efficiency and hardware bugs, or I buy devices that have components that are reliably set in their tech, with little left in terms of improvement. (High-quality LCD screens as opposed to OLEDs, for example)
I know that the Framework team will try their best to keep biocompatibility to a maximum and to avoid major, undoable jumps in design, but I’m always going to have that worry in the back if my mind saying “what if…”
I just want to have some more words of whether I should or shouldn’t wait, seeing as I’m absolutely going to get a Framework laptop eventually.
Edit: Also, is there any way to get the dope clear keyboard anymore or is that gone?
To be fairly honest the only issue is the company going under otherwise all the issues most of the time get fixed by support.
Quite the opposite actually, it hasn’t been officially available yet. When the marketplace eventually launches (hopefully within the next couple of weeks), it will be available as a spare part (along with the blank black keyboard).
They’ve shipped 3 batches already and there are stirrings for the 4th batch.
So far there have been minor hardware bug fix changes, double-sided tape to keep the touchpad cable in place and rearrangement of the grounding stickers on the USB ports. Nothing major.
There have been requests for huge changes which Framework has very wisely avoided. As more and more get shipped, it will get harder and harder to make fundamental changes to the design (screen size, number and size of expansion ports, etc.) without alienating and obsoleting current owners, requiring them to replace substantial components of the laptop to keep up with the latest. That goes against the company’s philosophy of sustainability and will require customers buy new components and dispose of obsolete ones.
There will be upgrades as Framework promises - new expansion cards, new mainboards, new keyboards - but they have not said anything about wholesale changes to the case and screen size.
Those changes to the case and plastic castings are VERY expensive. The company must be on a very secure financial footing to undertake such changes, equivalent to starting the design from scratch. They have to sell quite a few laptops before they will have the capital necessary for this, and many people would wish they’d rather put out a new mainboard (which they’ve planned) rather than change the laptop size or shape (which they’ve never mentioned). It’s probably less expensive to come out with a new mainboard rather than new tooling for an entirely different laptop.
You haven’t missed out on anything. Upcoming Batch 4 shipments are only a little different than the Batch 1 shipments. There are no large changes announced and there are few alternate parts available. It will take years before there are substantial changes, and the change will likely be new mainboards which will fit in place in the current laptop.
It’s generally smart not to be a gen-1 user of any product. Doubly so for a brand new company. I myself am a gen-1, batch-1 user so that says something about me
The thing here is that if you care about getting the best specs for the lowest price or you don’t particularly care about the general Framework mission then this laptop is not for you. The audience Framework is trying to capture right now are the tech junkies and right-to-repair advocates who are more willing to buy into the mission, to be active in the community, and to proselytize the product.
If you just need a bang-for-bunk workhorse to get shit done or you need a tried-and-tested/iterated product from an established company, look elsewhere. I’d review why you believe that the Framework laptop is your ideal machine. If your reasons are sound, chances are you won’t feel buyer’s remorse.
Ah, by the description I assumed it was an exclusive option for batch 1 and 2 people. Good to see that it might be available eventually because it looks super cool.
Thankfully they’ve said it’ll be one of the initial keyboards offered this year, and in the experimental build of the marketplace, it’s one of the ones listed
if you’re worried about early adopter, maybe just get an i5 version with 16gb of ram. the $300 you save vs the i7 version will be a huge portion of the upgrade cost if / when they release a 12th gen processor or ryzen mainboard, which is not yet announced, and we have no eta for.
I’d advise to get a 1tb ssd, maybe gen 4. Even if pcie gen5 ssd’s become a thing, nvme to usb c enclosures are cheap, and incredibly useful.