Why does it cost so much? Huawei MateBook 16s – review

If I were to blindly identify Huawei devices that appear the most, right behind smartphones, they would be laptops. A few days ago, Huawei MateBook X Pro (2022) came to Poland, and a little earlier two sixteen – Huawei MateBook D 16 and Huawei MateBook 16s. I have already tested the first one and you can read its review here. The more expensive version with “s” in the name, that is the title one, I also checked and you have a review here. Huawei showed two MateBook laptops with 16-inch screens at the same conference, but they are actually two completely different devices. Even the aforementioned screen is different, because it has different proportions and a different resolution. On the stubborn one, you can write that one of the most eye-catching features is … the Huawei logo on the housing. A more accurate term would be that the MateBook 16s is a bit of a MateBook 14s, but larger.

More expensive sixteen with great specification

When testing one of the Huawei laptops, you can get the impression that something the same is being tested. Especially when it comes to the quality of workmanship. Huawei has been passionately using the same formula for several years, improving something a bit, but slightly. We have a solid, aluminum housing, perfectly fitted and made. It is really neat, and additionally the casing is so “cut” that it actually looks lighter than it is. Nothing bad can be said here, even if I insist. Okay, maybe there is one thing that again proves that this is the “bigger brother” of the MateBook 14s. I often pay attention to whether the laptop can be opened with one hand. It is not possible here. However, it must be admitted that the hinge system works reliably, with adequate resistance and holds the matrix in the position in which we set it.Huawei MateBook 16s Unlike the MateBook D 16, a numeric keypad fell out of it, and speakers appeared on both sides. Or rather, perforations in the casing that indicate that the speakers are there. Do I regret this keyboard? A bit like that, because I haven’t seen it in laptops for a long time, but personally I don’t use it too often, so yes, I prefer better speakers instead. And these are really good and placed in such places that we will not cover them with anything. They sound clean, even at a higher volume, but, as is already the case with laptops, they lack low tones, and thus warmth and depth. But still, in general, for “laptop conditions” they fare exceptionally well. The keyboard is backlit, but I would have deducted one point from the Galaxy Meter if it were otherwise. It is not the most comfortable keyboard I wrote on, and it is very far from the nice-mentioned Microsoft Surface Pro 4. I have the impression that even the Surface Laptop Go 2, on which I wrote most of this review, was better. The keys are flat, they give an appropriate, but also a bit “hard” answer. However, the biggest reservations I have about the double-row Enter and the backslash key pressed between the right Shift and the letter “Z”. Thus, by cutting the Shift by half, the great thing is that – as in the MateBook 14s – the webcam has been moved to where it should always be. From the keyboard, she went up to the screen. And the webcam is in Full HD as if someone asked.A few more sentences about the touchpad itself, because it immediately catches the eye. It takes up a lot of space and stretches from the middle of the left Alta to almost the half of the right Ctrl. So far, I cannot say if it is glass, but if the manufacturer does not boast about it anywhere, it probably is not. But ok, this is not a requirement for all expensive equipment. It is important that the trackpad responds well to fingers and supports Windows gestures. The most disturbing thing was the loud operation of the touchpad, which made a clearly audible and “hard” click when pressed.Huawei MateBook 16sHuawei MateBook 16s

Beautiful 16 inch with 90Hz refresh

I have a small deja vu and I will write again that I feel like I am testing a larger MateBook 14s. Here the display is larger, has an even 16 inches and the aspect ratio of 3: 2 I praise. The point is that the screen is “taller” and a little more vertical space comes in handy in everyday work. Added to this is a resolution of 2520 x 1680 pixels, a 90 Hz refresh rate and we have material for success. I didn’t put any testers on it, so I have to take the manufacturer’s word for it that the screen has 100% coverage of the sRGB palette. For me, the screen is beautiful, fast, detailed and that’s enough for me. And one more thing. The screen is also tactile, it recognizes up to 10 points, but I must admit that I was choosing something with my finger on the screen of a smaller laptop more often than the sixteen. You should also know that touch = shiny matrix. You can also praise Huawei for the satisfactorily narrow bezels around the screen, although not as narrow as in the flagship MateBook X Pro.Huawei MateBook 16sHuawei MateBook 16s

I can not write that I missed ports.

It’s good that Huawei did not give up the USB-A ports, because with the sixteen it would be a bit of a shot in the foot. There are two such ports and it’s good that it’s USB 3.2 Gen 1, so technically the newest. There are two USB-C on the other side (left). One of them supports Thunderbolt 4, but importantly, both can be used for charging. Next to the HDMI and mini jack. Maybe someone could use a memory card reader, so you can define it so that we get a satisfactory minimum.The fingerprint reader is in the power button, so Huawei again flew a well-known and rather liked standard. This solution is used in almost every laptop and it’s cool, because the reader is unobtrusive. It is not within the keyboard or “cut” in the touchpad. The reader works with great efficiency and automatically lets us into the system if we turn on the laptop by pressing the button added to the reader with a finger.

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Strong parameters with one “but”

Huawei MateBook 16s came to me in one and the only available version. One with the 12th generation Intel Core i7 processor (Core i7-12700H), fast LPDDR5 RAM memory, of which we have 16 GB, and an NVMe SSD disk with a capacity of 1 TB. The processor has 14 cores and can “twist” up to 4.7 GHz. Even a decade ago, such timing could be dreamed of even with overclocking, and here you are, now we have it in a laptop.Huawei MateBook 16sHuawei MateBook 16s

Do you need anything more? Theoretically not.

The laptop works lightning fast and it really looks like Intel Evo is giving us something. The applications opened “from the click”, the browser with a dozen or so tabs worked as if I had just launched it, the animations were super smooth and I did not see anything wrong during such everyday activities on the laptop. Although I must also point out that I mainly used it for office work, writing texts, the Internet and multimedia. I did not run any games on it, because Intel Iris Xe is probably not a gaming card. I’m not saying that it is not suitable for games, because it will allow you to run a bit smoothly, but that’s right, here is my “but”. Why has Huawei not shown a laptop with dedicated graphics and some efficient RTX for so many years? I would like to see it someday, because such a model is clearly missing from the offer.Here I must point out that while the SSD can be replaced with a larger one (but what for?), RAM is not so easy, because it is permanently soldered to the motherboard. The size of the disc is 2280 and it was manufactured by a company that is completely unknown to me, Yangtze Memory Technologies Co., Ltd. Yes, I checked it this time. It is the same medium as in the much cheaper MateBook D 16, so on the one hand I shake my nose a bit that they pack the same, but on the other hand, the speeds are so good and repeatable that stability should not be a problem. note that (unlike the MateBook D 16) MateBook 16s has two fans and two heat sinks to remove heat from the components.The photo shows that about a third of the housing is occupied by the battery. The one according to the specification has 84 Wh, so (excuse me for another comparison to the D 16) it is a bit more capacious than in the MateBook D 16. You can also see in the photos that the battery is physically larger. The performance of the battery is great and will easily withstand the so-called “working day” in mixed use. After more than two hours of typing, it had dropped from 79% to 62% with the screen brightness set to 70%.

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Windows 11 straight out of the box

Huawei MateBook 16s is such a fresh model of a laptop that you do not need to update it from Windows 10 to “eleven” when you take it out of the box. It immediately has Windows 11 Home. There is nothing to write about the system itself, Windows like Windows. I have been using it practically since the trial version was released and now, after a million updates, I can say that I will never go back to 10. I must also say that the entire interface is better suited to the device and consistent. I mean one specific thing – the space on the bar between the right edge of the screen and the “Show Desktop” option. On such a MateBook 13 from 2020, it has about one and a half centimeters, and in 16s it is normal. Huawei does not add unnecessary garbage to the system and praise him for it. The only and most important software is PC Manager, which is a kind of laptop management center. We can basically check the correct operation of the computer with one click or download the latest drivers for virtually every element. It is so important software that we have a hotkey for it under F10.Windows 11 Home for Huawei MateBook 16sWindows 11 Home on Huawei MateBook 16s A novelty in laptops is the Super Device option, which allows you to quickly search for other devices in the vicinity and connect them to the laptop, e.g. headphones or a stylus. And when we do it with a phone or tablet, it becomes a laptop and this device becomes “one”. We can display the contents of the smartphone / tablet screen on the laptop screen, quickly transfer files or even reply to messages. It’s especially fun to use the tablet as an extra screen for your laptop.

Why does the Huawei MateBook 16s cost so much?

In conclusion, I repeat the question that I also asked in the title of this review. Why does it cost so much? The easiest way to answer this is … Huawei wanted it that way. But seriously, the Huawei MateBook 16s was priced at PLN 7499, and I did not even feel for a moment that it was working on such expensive equipment. Seriously, even comparing it to the MateBook D 16, I can say that the work culture was very similar. The fact is that this equipment is brilliantly made and refined, it has one of the best screens on the market (but you can have a laptop with OLED cheaper), and great components make almost everything work without stuttering, but there are also a few things that for they cut me off the final grade. I complained the most about the keyboard and its incomprehensible, awkward placement of some buttons, but it would be nice if the touchpad was better. Certainly, the drive should be faster, because at times it is surpassed by the one half cheaper MateBook D 16. Okay, now it’s the best equipped and polished sixteen Huawei, but like the MateBook 14s, I must say that I do not feel premium here. And I should, first and foremost, look at the price. As for me, 5,999 zlotys is all that can be given for this computer and it seems that not only I think so. Huawei proposed this price for the MateBook 16s on the occasion of the first, quite quick discount as part of the “Many opportunities to start” promotion.

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