Huawei is lastly launching the most important laptop computer within the MateBook vary outdoors of China, with the AMD-flavoured MateBook 16 now in the stores in elements of Europe, and a UK launch anticipated (however nonetheless unconfirmed) within the close to future.
Sporting a large 16in FullView show, the newest AMD processor and a singular facet ratio tailor-made to productiveness, the MateBook 16 could possibly be successful for distant employees, however creatives may be slightly upset – particularly given the high-end asking worth.
Is the Huawei MateBook 16 well worth the premium price ticket? Hold studying to search out out.
Design & Construct
Fashionable design much like others within the MateBook vary
Pretty transportable for a 16in laptop computer, but it surely’s heavy at 2kg
Premium sandblasted aluminium chassis
Huawei hasn’t rewritten the rulebook on the subject of the design of the MateBook 16, trying similar to each different latest MateBook – simply larger. That’s not essentially an issue although; similar to the remainder of the vary, the MateBook 16 seems modern, premium and let’s be sincere, faintly like a MacBook Professional.
Contemplating the big 16in show on supply, the chassis isn’t as massive and unwieldy because it may’ve been, measuring in at 254.9 x 315 x 17.8mm, though it’s a little on the weighty facet at simply shy of 2kg. It’s nonetheless a giant laptop computer although, make no mistake, and also you’ll in all probability wrestle as a lot as I did to discover a rucksack or laptop computer bag large enough to hold it with me.
That’s largely all the way down to Huawei’s selection of fabric, sporting a completely aluminium chassis with the traditional Huawei sandblasted end to assist scale back the marks, fingerprints and smudges that aluminium tends to select up over time. It’s out there completely in a House Grey end, which has a barely purple shimmer to it in some lights, however that’s nonetheless not fairly as eye-catching as some high-end laptops.
Regardless, if you’re in the marketplace for a big-screen laptop computer with a premium, understated design, the Huawei MateBook 16 ticks loads of bins.
Attractive high-res 16in show
Boxy 3:2 facet ratio is ideal for multitasking
Brilliant, with nice sRGB protection
Not nice for watching films
The principle draw of the MateBook 16, as its identify implies, is the large, stunning 16in show. It’s an IPS panel, so these on the lookout for a candy OLED expertise ought to look elsewhere, however the excessive decision (2520 x 1680) and fascinating facet ratio shall be greater than sufficient to tempt some.
The decision may appear slightly odd, and that’s all the way down to the three:2 facet ratio employed by the MateBook 16 (and others within the MateBook assortment) slightly than the widescreen 16:9 or 16:10 on most different laptops.
It’s a a lot boxier expertise, and whereas that may not sound too good on the floor, it’s an important function that provides you way more display screen actual property. It is excellent not just for working a number of apps side-by-side, but it surely’s very helpful for people who work in code, spreadsheets, phrase paperwork and different apps full of knowledge too.
Productiveness is the place the MateBook 16 excels most, as watching typical Hollywood blockbusters will at all times have enormous black bars atop and beneath when watched in full-screen mode.
In relation to efficiency, count on a vivid, vivid, detailed show that appears gorgeous when it first comes alive upon opening the lid of the laptop computer. The gorgeously slim bezels present a close to edge-to-edge expertise (a 90% display screen to physique ratio, to be exact) with solely the chunky backside bezel letting the facet down. It’s additionally vivid too, hitting 377nits in assessments, which is greater than Huawei’s claimed 300nits max brightness.
It’s additionally received nice color copy, as present in assessments utilizing Colordata’s Spyder X, providing 98% sRGB protection, ensuing an important visible expertise whether or not you’re shopping the web or watching a YouTube video. It’s not fairly the proper monitor for creatives although, managing solely 73% of the AdobeRGB gamut.
The one actual draw back to the show is the dearth of touchscreen compatibility; it’s a function of the smaller MateBook 14, and given the flexibility to work together with smartphone apps (extra on that later) it appears like it will’ve been a helpful function on the big-screen mannequin. At the very least it ought to keep fingerprint-free, proper?
Keyboard & Trackpad
Giant full-size backlit keyboard can really feel a bit spongey at occasions
Hidden 720p webcam is again, and the angle continues to be horrible
Large trackpad is ideal for tapping, swiping and gestures
Huawei’s laptop computer keyboards aren’t going to win any awards. Most favor the typing expertise of the Dell XPS 13, whereas I personally just like the MacBook Professional’s Magic Keyboard, however that’s to not say it’s a foul typing expertise.
There’s a full-size backlit keyboard on supply with nice key journey for simple touch-typing, however I do discover the keys can really feel slightly spongey in comparison with the crisp response given by some equally premium laptops. There’s additionally the slight annoyance of a one-row Enter key on the suitable of the keyboard, in comparison with most keyboards that cut up it throughout two rows for fewer mispresses.
It additionally options Huawei’s signature 720p webcam constructed into the keyboard, hidden beneath a faux operate key when not in use. Then, with a press, the webcam pops out, prepared to be used. Within the days earlier than the pandemic, it was heralded as an effective way to slim down bezels with out fully eradicating the webcam, and it had apparent privateness bonuses too.
Positive, it had a reasonably unattractive angle pointing up your nostril, and your fingers would sometimes get in the best way as you’re typing, however video calls have been a little bit of a rarity in on a regular basis life, and it’s one thing most customers would put up with.
Quick ahead to at the moment and the reliance on video calling, and thus webcams, has by no means been higher. Even with nations starting to return to some semblance of normalcy, the shift to distant working implies that video calls are set to be a staple of working life going ahead.
Should you’re going to be utilizing a webcam daily and even simply pretty frequently, it’ll have to be higher than what’s supplied with the MateBook 16. Even should you may regulate to the horrible angle it presents, and the very fact your fingers get in the best way, the general high quality isn’t nice.
Should you do want a webcam for work and you’ve received your coronary heart set on the MateBook 16, I’d advocate our choice of the finest webcams for an all-round enchancment.
The saving grace is the massive glass trackpad that sits beneath the full-size keyboard, offering ample house for swiping and gestures, plus the faucet recognition is nice should you don’t like absolutely clicking the trackpad to make a choice. With a trackpad this massive and responsive, I didn’t really feel the necessity to attain for my mouse in any respect.
The trackpad additionally homes the Huawei Share performance – however extra on that later.
Up-firing stereo audio system
Extra readability than most laptops with down-firing audio system
Constructed-in mics are handy for video calling
One of many perks of the MateBook 16’s massive chassis is the front-facing stereo audio system, which sit on both facet of the full-size keyboard behind a speaker grille.
In comparison with most laptops with downward-firing audio system, the MateBook 16 audio system supply nice readability, a a lot wider soundstage and it’s louder too – greater than sufficient for watching Netflix or YouTube movies, anyway.
The audio system received’t compete with full-size Bluetooth audio system when it comes to general efficiency, however for informal listening, they maintain up fairly nicely.
It’s additionally an honest video conferencing setup when mixed with the two-mic array, with no actual complaints from different individuals about mic high quality or readability in my latest video chats.
Ports & Connectivity
Extra ports than the MateBook 14, however no SD card reader
Fingerprint Energy Button works reliably more often than not
Help for Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1
Contemplating the big dimensions of the MateBook 16, I used to be anticipating to search out extra ports on the perimeters of the chassis. Because it stands, you’ll get two USB-C ports (although missing Thunderbolt), an HDMI port and a 3.5mm headphone jack on the left of the laptop computer, whereas the suitable homes two USB-A 3.2 ports.
That’s truly an enchancment in comparison with the smaller MateBook 14, with a single USB-C port, but it surely would’ve been good to have seen an SD card reader or even an Ethernet port for this work-focused machine.
In relation to different types of connectivity, the MateBook 16 fares a little higher, sporting the newest Wi-Fi 6, together with Bluetooth 5.1.
There’s additionally a fingerprint scanner constructed into the facility button that has the flexibility to scan your fingerprint as you flip the laptop computer on. In my expertise, this implies I solely should press the button a single time to energy on and get entry to my password-locked account and the near-instant learn time implies that even when I do have to reverify, it takes lower than a second.
Specs & Efficiency
Newest AMD Ryzen chipsets present stable CPU efficiency
No discrete GPU means common graphical energy, not ideally suited for players
New twin shark fin cooling system retains issues working easily
So, what’s lurking beneath the hood of the big-screen Huawei laptop computer? It’s an AMD-exclusive affair this time round, very like the UK launch of the AMD-only MateBook D14 again in late 2020 (although that was out there with Intel chips in different territories, whereas this isn’t).
You’ve received the selection between two fashions, with the important thing distinction being chipset; the entry-level mannequin sports activities the AMD Ryzen 5 5600H whereas the top-end mannequin encompasses a extra highly effective AMR Ryzen 7 5800H.
Each are coupled with a beneficiant 16GB of DDR4 RAM and 512GB of solid-state storage. It’s a pleasant, easy providing in comparison with different producers, one thing that customers will little question admire.
The one massive disappointment is the dearth of a devoted GPU. Even the smaller Intel variant of MateBook 14 got here outfitted with the Nvidia GeForce MX350 GPU, and given the additional house contained in the chassis of the big 16in mannequin, it would’ve been nice to see one thing related right here – particularly on the top-end mannequin. As a substitute, it utilises AMD’s Built-in Graphics.
For transparency, I’ve been testing and benchmarking the top-end Ryzen 7 variant, so efficiency may fluctuate with the entry-level mannequin. However, on the top-end mannequin not less than, general efficiency is unbelievable with the MateBook 16 dealing with nearly every part I threw at it with out as a lot as breaking a sweat – and that’s excellent given the big 3:2 show is screaming for multi-app use.
When issues did start to get scorching, the MateBook 16’s new twin shark-fin fan system kicked in. It was at its loudest when working benchmark assessments, as anticipated, but it surely was in any other case near-silent in use, and retaining the system cool means you’ll get peak efficiency for longer intervals – in addition to being extra comfy if you are truly utilizing your laptop computer in your lap.
After all, you’ll get a laggy expertise attempting to run the newest AAA video games on AMD’s built-in graphics, however outdoors of gaming the MateBook 16 is a nice performer, and that’s largely backed up by the benchmark outcomes.
It’s clear that the dearth of a discrete GPU is the chink within the MateBook 16’s armour; it comfortably beat most competitors within the CPU-focused Geekbench 5 and PCMark 10, but it surely fell behind when it got here to the graphical assessments in 3DMark.
It’ll deal with fundamental gaming on low graphic settings, but when you’re an avid gamer, or a video editor eager to edit multi-cam 4K video shoots, there are actually 16in laptops with extra graphical grunt out there.
Battery Life & Charging
All-day battery life with common use, however not the longest battery life ever
USB-C charging means 135W charger can be utilized to energy different USB-C units
Common cost occasions, offering 33% in 30 minutes
Due to a mixture of a giant 84Wh battery and AMD’s power-efficient chipset design, I’ve discovered that the MateBook 16 can comfortably get me by way of a median day of labor utilizing word-processing software program, on the spot message software program and a wholesome dose of shopping, with no need to succeed in for a charger – even with a high-res 16in show to energy.
After all, that’ll rely in your particular workload, as working video modifying software program or chatting in video calls will make the laptop computer drain at a quicker charge. The MateBook 16 scored an honest 13 hours and 20 minutes in our battery benchmark, but it surely’s far behind the 20hrs and 38 minutes from the LG Gram 17, so there are actually extra power-efficient laptops in the marketplace.
When it does want a top-up, I’ve discovered the bundled 135W USB-C charger – which can be utilized by different USB-C units for quick-charge functions – can present 33% cost in 30 minutes. That’s pretty common for a laptop computer of this dimension, simply barely behind the LG Gram 16’s 35%, although it’s slightly slower than the smaller MateBook 14’s 45%.
Home windows 10 & Huawei Ecosystem
Runs Home windows 10 out of the field with an improve to Home windows 11 out there
Particular options for Huawei system customers
Can entry Huawei smartphone display screen from the laptop computer, or use Huawei tablets as a wi-fi second display screen
In contrast to with Huawei’s smartphones, its laptops – and its enterprise with Microsoft – stays unaffected by the continuing US commerce ban, which means the Huawei MateBook 16 comes with Home windows 10 out of the field with entry to the identical software program as every other Home windows laptop computer. Actually, there are some things that the MateBook can do that almost all can’t.
Very similar to how Apple’s units work with each other, Huawei has its personal system ecosystem, with Huawei’s laptops enjoying very properly with Huawei smartphones and tablets. It goes a lot additional than merely wirelessly sharing recordsdata too (although it does that), with the flexibility to entry your smartphone’s show from the MateBook 16 just by tapping it on the trackpad.
Your smartphone will then seem in a window in your laptop computer, with entry to your textual content messages, calls, apps and recordsdata, with the latter providing two-way drag-and-drop for simpler file administration. The MateBook 16 expertise is rather less intuitive than the MateBook 14, as a result of lack of a touchscreen, but it surely’s nonetheless a helpful function for Huawei smartphone house owners.
It goes a step additional if you’ve received a Huawei pill – like the brand new MatePad 11 – as you can’t solely entry the pill’s show, however it’s also possible to remodel the pill right into a second display screen on your laptop computer. Or should you’ve received a suitable stylus, you possibly can flip the touchscreen right into a drawing pad for artistic makes use of.
I can’t draw to save lots of my life, however the means so as to add a second display screen is helpful. In any case, the extra screens the higher, proper?
After all, that is solely a profit when you have a latest Huawei smartphone or pill close by, and given the dearth of Google Play Companies, chances are high you don’t. However nonetheless, it’s a pleasant contact for devoted Huawei followers, and it labored flawlessly in testing.
It’s additionally price noting that whereas the MateBook 16 ships with Home windows 10, it’s prepared for the improve to Home windows 11 each time you’re prepared.
Worth & Availability
The massive show and high-end chipset imply the Huawei MateBook 16 is available in at a premium, with European pricing beginning at €1,099 for the Ryzen 5 variant, whereas the Ryzen 7 variant will set you again €1,199 when purchased straight from Huawei.
The UK market would not get the cheaper Ryzen 5 variant with Huawei providing the Ryzen 7 variant for a tempting £999 through the Huawei Retailer, and for a restricted time, it is throwing in a Huawei MateView 27in show utterly freed from cost.
We’ve received our choice of the very best laptops for people who want slightly extra inspiration earlier than making a purchase order.
There’s lots to like in regards to the MateBook 16; it boasts a modern design with a surprising 16in IPS show with a few of the slimmest bezels in the marketplace, and it’s vivid too. Nonetheless, it’s the three:2 facet ratio that steals the present, providing way more display screen actual property than 16:9 options, an actual boon for employees, multi-taskers and people who spend their time analysing knowledge.
The one draw back is that it’s not suited to watching films, with the boxy facet ratio leaving massive black bars atop and beneath the content material you’re watching.
The laptop computer is AMD-powered, sporting both the newest Ryzen 5 or Ryzen 7 alongside a beneficiant 16GB of RAM and 512GB of SSD storage, with greater than sufficient energy to deal with split-screen multitasking, phrase processing and even picture modifying.
Nonetheless, the dearth of a devoted GPU means it is not the strongest contender on the subject of superior graphic design, video modifying or hardcore gaming. Should you do want one thing with slightly extra graphical oomph, there are higher choices in our gaming laptop computer chart.
So, should you’re on the lookout for a classy laptop computer for emails, phrase processing, social media and nearly every part else that doesn’t depend on graphics efficiency – and do not thoughts the keyboard webcam – the MateBook 16 is a stable choice.
Huawei MateBook 16 (2021): Specs
254.9 x 351 x 17.8mm
16in IPS show (3:2 facet ratio, 2520 x 1680)
Full-size keyboard with backlighting
Hidden 720p webcam
Giant glass trackpad
Entrance-firing stereo audio system
Fingerprint Energy Button
AMD Ryzen 5 5600H or Ryzen 7 5800H
16GB DDR4 RAM
2x USB 3.1
1x HDMI port
1x 3.5mm jack
84Wh battery with 135W USB-C charger
Home windows 10, with improve to Home windows 11 out there