Review Huawei MateBook X Pro: a laptop for serious tasks

Despite the huge variety of laptops, to find both a compact and powerful device is not as easy as it seems at first glance. Of course, the first thing that always comes to mind is a company with a fruit name, and everything would be fine, but if you need Windows? Fortunately, with their decisions in the market there are new players who have successfully established themselves in other areas. One such company is Huawei, which recently introduced the MateBook X Pro laptop. So let’s see how compact and powerful it is.

Specifications Huawei MateBook X Pro:

Screen: TFT IPS, 13.9 ’’, 3000×2000, 260 ppi, touch
Processor: Quad-Core Intel Core i5-8250U 1.6 GHz
Graphics Accelerator: Intel UHD Graphics 620, Nvidia GeForce MX150
RAM: 8/16 GB LPDDR3 2133 MHz
Built-in memory: 256/512 GB PCIe SSD
Memory card support: no
Wireless interfaces: Wi-Fi 802.11a / b / g / n / ac, Bluetooth
Webcam: 1 megapixel
Sensors: fingerprint
Battery: 57 Wh, Li-Po, non-removable
Dimensions: 304x217x14,6 mm
Weight: 1330 grams

First impressions

MateBook X Pro turned out to be somewhat heavier than typical ultrabooks of similar dimensions, but its mass did not exceed the critical limit, at which the gadget would be uncomfortable to carry around with it every day. In addition, it is fully justified by the overall reliability of the design. As soon as you take the laptop in hand, you immediately understand: there is a high-quality and expensive device in front of you. The device rivets attention with severity and simplicity, and the full metal case and the successful completion of the “MacBook test” immediately issue a business-class laptop in the MateBook X Pro.
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But the most impressive, of course, is the screen. In the Huawei device, the frames are made as thin as possible not only on the sides of the display, but also on the top and bottom: there is a complete feeling that the laptop lid consists of one screen, nothing more.

Design and materials

As already mentioned, the case is entirely made of brushed metal, except, of course, the display, which is covered with protective glass Gorilla Glass. The only glossy case element is the manufacturer’s logo on the lid. A laptop came in review in the color “cosmic gray”, but there is also a version of “mystical silver” on sale.




On the bottom panel of the case there are four anti-slip feet, as well as a pair of long and narrow vents for ventilation. The stickers of the partner companies are also placed here – it is nice that the manufacturer did not visually litter the working surface of the laptop, leaving only the Intel sticker there.

Keyboard and touchpad

In the spirit of the latest trends, the MateBook X Pro keyboard is slow, but the keys themselves are large. The response of the buttons is distinct, but if you have not used similar keyboards before, it will take a little getting used to. Thanks to the enlarged buttons, the usability of both the function and navigation keys was practically not affected, which is often lacking in modern laptops. The impression is spoiled by the absence of a number of auxiliary ones: Print Screen, Insert, Page Up, Page Down, Home and End are available only through Fn. And the last four are still not signed in any way – one can only guess about their placement on the buttons with arrows. Of course, the keyboard is equipped with a backlight. White LEDs have two levels of brightness and are almost imperceptible during the day, but softly and evenly illuminate the keys at night.

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There were no surprises: between the F6 and F7 keys there is another button, pressing which extends the webcam lens. The solution is interesting: the manufacturer made the frames around the display so thin that it was simply impossible to place the camera in a more familiar place. The consequence of this design – will have to accept the fact that the interlocutor will see your second chin, not to mention the fact that video calls when placing laptops on your lap become impossible. On the other hand, for those who are concerned about privacy, the hidden location of the camera provides reliable guarantees against unauthorized access to it. You should not worry about the fact that the untimely closed lid can break the mechanism: the manufacturer has provided for this situation, the camera will simply go down.

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The round button for turning on the laptop is located above the Delete key, and a fingerprint scanner is integrated into it. Working with the sensor is carried out through the Windows Hello service, and the scanner itself handles the touch quickly and accurately.

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The touchpad in MateBook X Pro is great. The touch surface occupies a maximum of usable space, and there is simply no desire to connect a mouse in everyday tasks. The panel allows you to comfortably use the three-and four-finger gestures in Windows 10. On some other laptops this is not always enough space. The touchpad response is implemented in the old manner, mechanically, because of what it is pressed until it clicks only in the lower half.

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Ports and connectors

MateBook X Pro was exposed to a ruthless modern fashion on the minimum number of connectors. On the left side of the device there is a 3.5 mm audio jack and two USB Type-C ports, one of which is compatible with the Thunderbolt 3. On the right side there is a single USB 3.0 Type-A port. But if a small number of ports can still be explained by the desire to make the case as thin as possible, then the absence of a card reader looks quite strange.

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Charging the laptop is possible through any of the USB Type-C ports, and any of the connectors can be used to connect peripherals and adapters.

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Screen

Huawei MateBook X Pro is equipped with an LTPS-display with a diagonal of 13.9 inches and a resolution of 3000×2000 pixels, which gives an impressive density of 260 ppi for a laptop. The aspect ratio of the matrix was 3: 2, which emphasizes the “business” purpose of the device. Despite the fact that films on such a screen will have huge black bars, it is more convenient to perform all other tasks with this aspect ratio. It doesn’t matter if you are working with documents, programming or even just surfing – the display contains more useful information, and you rarely have to scroll.

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“I was a little skeptical about the aspect ratio at first but now I really like it, the screen is beautiful to look at, yes you do get black bars when watching movies but it’s not something that I think about. Screen does go very bright but I don’t think this machine is a good match to be using outdoors in sunlight because it is a glossy touch display so it does produce a lot more glare than a regular matte display”.- said user on Reddit

The display of the notebook is glossy and, of course, touch. The quality of the screen is beyond praise: the picture looks juicy and saturated (the manufacturer claims 100% coverage of sRGB), it does not fade either when the matrix is tilted or on the street. The brightness of 450 nits is enough even for work on a bright sunny day. Indoors, the maximum brightness does not make sense to use even with good artificial lighting, the level of 70-80% is enough in most situations. The small thickness of the frames is also impressive: the display occupies 91% of the area inside the lid, creating a real sense of framelessness.

Sound

Despite the large size of the keyboard, on the sides of it, the manufacturer found a place for the speakers. Due to this, the laptop will sound equally well both on the table and on the lap, and on the sofa. The speakers are loud and of high quality, which is just amazing for such a compact device. They will fit both for listening to music, and for watching movies even in a small company.

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Huawei matebook x pro in work

The laptop runs under the home version of Windows 10. Among the pre-installed applications, there are a number of advertising “tiled” programs, which, like everywhere else, are deleted in a couple of clicks.

The only proprietary application of the manufacturer is PC Manager, which keeps track of driver updates, UEFI firmware, and general system status. If you have a Huawei smartphone, with the help of the program you can quickly connect from a laptop to a Wi-Fi access point on your phone and share files.

The MateBook X Pro hardware platform is based on Intel’s eighth generation quad-core processors: depending on the model, this may be the Core i7-8550U or, as in our case, the Core i5-8250U. In addition to the integrated graphics accelerator Intel UHD Graphics 620, the device received a discrete Nvidia GeForce MX150 graphics card with 2 GB of GDDR5 memory. RAM can be 8 or 16 GB. What is a little strange for a modern business class laptop, it has the type LPDDR3 and a frequency of 2133 MHz. Despite this, the device showed very good results both in synthetic tests and in real-world problems. Not least thanks to a fairly productive discrete graphics.

Gaming on huawei matebook x pro

The new MateBook cope with games. Not in native resolution, of course: when rendering a picture of 3000×2000 points, the gadget produces no more than 25 fps in Metro Last Light, while lowering the resolution to 1920×1200 increases the result at least twice with medium graphics settings. The picture quality does not suffer at all. You can play without any problems even in Rise of The Tomb Rider, albeit at low graphics settings with disabled effects: the stuffing provides a comfortable level of 35-40 fps.

As internal storage in the new NVMe SSD with a volume of 256 or 512 GB is used. In the younger version we tested, the drive was initially divided into two logical partitions of 80 and 143 GB.

Autonomous work

The battery has a capacity of 57 Wh typical for a good ultrabook. This is quite enough to perform undemanding tasks like surfing or using an office suite for 6-7 hours with an average display brightness. If you “unscrew” the backlight by 100%, the battery will be discharged much faster – do not forget about the high maximum brightness of the backlight. When watching movies in airplane mode at medium brightness, the gadget can last about 10 hours.

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At the present time, it is already assumed that a high-quality laptop should support fast charging. It is also supported by the new Huawei, and you will not have to be chained to the outlet even when using demanding programs: it takes less than two hours to fully charge the device.

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Results

With some trends in modern laptops, “old-fashioned” people like the author seem to have to accept. Speech and the rapid reduction of a set of connectors (including the card reader), and the most simplified keyboards. This is not avoided and Huawei laptop. On the other hand, the novelty can offer a stunning display and high power, which is enough for serious tasks (programming, video rendering), and even for modern games.

Good stuff:

  • excellent display;
  • all metal case;
  • high performance;
  • decent sound speakers.

Bad stuff:

  • controversial webcam placement;
  • the absence of a card reader;
  • A row of keys is available only through Fn.

Users experience with the Huawei MateBook X Pro

  1. “Bought mine from the Microsoft Store in the US in October 2018, and have used it in Europe every day since, primarily for web and graphic design and lesson preparation. It can run hot and loud when editing longer videos in Premiere (hour plus) but it has plowed through all work I’ve thrown at it with no problems. Best laptop I’ve ever owned by far!” – KijabeDude
  2. “Honestly one of the best laptops I’ve ever owners. Everything about it is either good or extremely good. Display, keyboard, smoothness, built quality, design, and battery. All great” –greatscottttttttt
  3. “Bought it in July 2018. Beautiful machine, good battery. Use it for work and light gaming. However, for the last month or two I have experienced periodic BSODs coming seemingly out of nowhere. I am keeping drivers updated, but they persist. Not a huge annoyance yet but disconcerting.”-newanimals
  4. “I returned mine with the anticipation of buying 2019 one instead. Mine had the right lower corner not touching the table problem and the rattling touchpad. Cooling was mostly OK but actually using it and trying to charge at the same time resulted in slow charging. I also had the crackling audio from the headphone jack.
    Overall it’s a good laptop for the price but there are a lot of small issues which demonstrate how first generation the 2018 MXP really was. Then again there are reports the 2019 refresh doesn’t actually fix any problems with the 2018 one so maybe Huawei thinks it’s perfect the way it is. I don’t really know.
    If the 2019 model doesn’t fix anything at all about the 2018 one, I doubt I’ll buy it.”-unknown_soldier_

source: 4pda

Review Huawei MateBook X Pro: a laptop for serious tasks
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Post Author: Thomas Braven

Thomas Braven

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