Are Huawei laptops any better than other brands? You will find out about that in this Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 review.
Itechguides' Take on Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021
The Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 is a decent ultrabook with some impressive features. These features include a QHD resolution touchscreen display, 1 TB SSD storage, and a Core i7 processor. However, it lacks a lot of ports, and its price tag is very high.
- Powerful Core i7 CPU
- QHD resolution display
- 1 TB SSD storage
- Very costly
- Few ports
In this review, I will analyze the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021’s main features. This will cover the design, CPU, RAM, storage, GPU, and battery life of this laptop.
In addition to that, each section of this review will present a benchmark test result along with a rating for the corresponding specs and features of the laptop. I’ll further compare this laptop’s performance to that of similar laptops.
Therefore, read this review to the end and see why everybody is talking about this Huawei laptop.
My Initial Thoughts
Many people know Huawei as a Smartphone manufacturer but they might not know that Huawei began manufacturing laptops in 2016. Six years after that (2021), the company released the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 as one of its luxury laptop releases.
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Being a luxury laptop, the Huawei MateBook X Pro starts at $1,790.00 (price valid as of March 2022) when I wrote this article. However, like any other product, this price might change at a later date.
Commendably, innovations have always come with Huawei’s products, and this laptop isn’t an exception to that.
But, how many innovative design features are on this laptop? To find out, read this article to the end.
Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Design, Dimension, and Weight Review
The Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 looks as sleek and glossy as other high-end ultrabooks. This laptop’s premium look comes from its smooth aluminum alloy chassis with a sandblasted finish.
With its aluminum chassis, you can expect this laptop to be reasonably durable.
Also, the smoothness of the chassis helps it to hide fingerprints pretty well. So, you don’t have to wipe fingerprints from this laptop every now and then.
Regarding color options, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 comes in two color variants. To be specific, it comes in either Space Gray or Emerald green color with a blue-ish tint.
With color options out of the way, now let’s talk about this laptop’s lid in particular. The Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021’s lid is not overly decorated, it only has a shiny Huawei logo at the center.
Furthermore, the lid of the laptop rests on a single hinge that opens to a maximum angle of 150 degrees. Without any doubt, the hinge is far from being unstable, it holds the lid firmly.
But then, when you pull this laptop’s lid up and you will be impressed by the display. Speaking of the display, this laptop features a 13.9-inch display with a QHD (3000 x 2000) resolution.
Thankfully, the QHD (Quad High Definition) resolution makes screen content very sharp and crisp. In addition to its QHD resolution, this display is an LTPS type display.
For clarity, LTPS (Low-temperature Polycrystalline Silicon) is a new-generation technology that boosts LCD display resolution and response time. Hence, with this technology, the quality of the Huawei MateBook X Pro display is improved.
Another display feature on this display is its wide color coverage. In that regard, the Huawei MateBook X Pro has a 100% sRGB color gamut coverage.
Still on that, sRGB is the most commonly used color space both in browsers and photo viewers. Therefore, a 100% coverage of the sRGB color space implies that graphics will look more vivid on this device.
Moving on, this laptop has a screen-to-body ratio of 91% which implies that the display covers almost the entire screen area. This brings us to talk about the bezels on this laptop.
In light of that, the display of the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 has narrow bezels. The bezels are so narrow that we can call this laptop a no-bezel laptop that conforms to modern standards.
In addition to being bezel-less, the display also has an aspect ratio of 3:2.
This aspect ratio creates a more panoramic viewing effect than in standard 4:3 format. Therefore, the 3:2 aspect ratio will do better in scrolling through web pages and reading long documents than the 4:3.
Another important display feature I will talk about is the touch functionality of this display. In addition to that, this display also features a light sensor and 10-point multi-touch sensitivity.
With the light sensor, you can enable automatic adjustment of the screen backlighting. Also, with the multi-touch sensitivity, you can take screenshots using a three-finger swipe on the screen.
In terms of brightness, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021’s display offers up to 450 nits brightness. Indeed, this laptop is a true definition of bright display laptops.
Hence, using this laptop in extremely bright situations will not be a problem.
Having talked about the display of this laptop, let’s proceed to this laptop’s base. There, you will find the keyboard with black keys that contrast well with the white texts on them.
Commendably, the keyboard is backlit in white color and this makes it convenient to use at night. Not just that, the keys are quite clicky and comfortable to type on.
However, just as in most UltraBooks, these keys have shallow travel which affects their feedback. By key travel, I mean how deep the keys go down when in full press.
One of the new innovations Huawei made on the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 is a pop-up button on the keyboard. This button is located in the middle of the first row of keys.
The button pops out a 720p resolution webcam when you press it. Therefore, popping down this button when the webcam is not in use will protect you from webcam spying by hackers.
But then, the location of the webcam will be a disadvantage especially if the laptop is on one’s lap. In that case, the capturing angle of the camera becomes awkward.
Another innovative design on this laptop is the power button that doubles as a fingerprint scanner. This power button lies above the keyboard to the right-hand side.
Thus, you can simply place your finger on the power button and unlock the screen.
At this point, I will like to proceed to the 4.5 x 3.0-inch touchpad that is located below the keyboard. The touchpad which Huawei calls the “Free Touch” touchpad feels very smooth and even slippery at times.
In light of the above, there are no dedicated click buttons on the touchpad. Instead, any part of the surface can be clicked to get soft feedback.
Then, at both ends of the keyboard, there are long openings for two tiny up-firing speakers. In addition to the up-firing speakers, there are also two larger speakers along the left and right edges of the laptop’s bottom.
Therefore, you’re getting four speakers on the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 in total.
Impressively, the sound produced by the speakers is clear and loud, but it is quite disappointing that it lacks bass. Even more disappointing is the absence of any audio software on this laptop to tune the sounds.
There are also two microphones on the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 located just under the touchpad. These microphones can pick up sounds from as far as 5 meters away.
Thus, this mic allows you to move around while making calls.
That said, let’s talk about the ports on this laptop. Simply put, this laptop doesn’t have many ports.
Specifically, it has two USB Type-C ports and a headphone jack on the left. Turning to the right, you’ll see just one USB 3.2 Type-A port and that’s all.
For wireless connection, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 features Bluetooth 5.1. In addition to that, it also has an 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax MIMO WiFi card.
This WiFi 6 card uses the 802.11ax WiFi standard. This new standard focuses on multi-user efficiency management and backward compatibility with older WiFi standards.
Coming to dimensions and weight, this laptop measures 304 x 217 x 14.6 mm (W x D x H). It also weighs 1330 g.
In comparison, the 13.4-inch Dell XPS 13 9310 measures 295.7 x 198.7 x 14.8 mm (W x D x H) and weighs 1200 g. This makes the XPS more portable, but that is not surprising because the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 is a 13.9-inch laptop.
Also, the 13.3-inch ASUS ZenBook 13 UX325JA is more portable. Specifically, the ASUS Zenbook 13 measures 304 x 203 x 13.9 mm (W x D x H) and weighs 1069.9 g.
In conclusion, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 apparently looks good and the display is superb. Also, this laptop feels very light and this makes it very portable, although not as portable as some of its competitors.
However, it lacks many ports like HDMI, Ethernet, and Thunderbolt ports.
Therefore, I will rate the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 an eight out of ten in this section of the review.
Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Processor (CPU) Performance Review
The Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 comes in two 11th generation processor options. The base model runs on a 4-core Intel Core i5-1135G7 CPU with 8 MB of cache memory.
Additionally, the Core i5 processor has a base frequency of 2.40 GHz and a maximum frequency of 4.20 GHz.
The second processor option can be found on the European model of the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021. This processor is a 4-core Intel Core i7-1165G7 with 12 MB of cache memory.
The Core i7 processor has a base frequency of 2.80 GHz and a maximum frequency of 4.90 GHz. That said, my review model uses the Intel Core i7-1165G7 CPU
Without any doubt, the Core i7 processor should be capable of running heavy applications.
In fact, it outperforms the Core i7 processors found in older models of the MateBook X Pro. Still, its performance level falls below that of some other laptops that have the same CPU.
For a better analysis, let’s talk about this laptop’s CPU benchmark test results. To deliver on this, I’ll be highlighting this laptop’s Cinebench R15 test result from notebookcheck.net.
Before I do that, let me tell you what this test does.
A Cinebench test evaluates a processor’s capability by subjecting its cores to some stressful workloads. Remember that CPU cores are separate processing units, each of which can read and execute instructions.
Hence, the Cinebench test is in two parts – the single-core and the multi-core test.
With the single-core test, only one processor core is used to execute tasks. Meanwhile, in the multi-core test, all the processor cores are used to carry out tasks.
Also, a higher score in this test shows a better performance of the CPU.
Therefore, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 recorded a total of 209 points in the single-core test. Also, it got 635 points in the multi-core test.
In comparison, the ASUS Zenbook 13 UX325JA with a 10th generation Intel Core i7-1065G7 CPU recorded 183 points in the single-core test. Also, the ASUS laptop got 724 points in the multi-core test.
From the test result, it can be seen that the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021’s CPU is faster when using a single core. On the other hand, the ASUS Zenbook 13 UX325JA is faster when using all its processor cores.
Meanwhile, the Dell XPS 13 9310 with an 11th generation Intel Core i7-1185G7 outperformed both laptops above. Specifically, the XPS got 217.07 points in the single-core test and 870.74 points in the single-core.
Considering all I have mentioned in this section, I’ll be rating the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 an eight out of ten.
Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Memory (RAM) Performance Review
The Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 has one RAM slot for an LPDDR4X type of RAM. The laptop comes with a 16 GB standard RAM capacity which is also the maximum it can take.
This implies that you can’t upgrade the laptop’s RAM further. Nevertheless, this RAM has an impressive clock speed of 4266 MHz.
Thankfully, this RAM in conjunction with the laptop’s processor is strong enough for multitasking. Specifically, with 16 GB of RAM, this laptop can open 30 Chrome tabs including 5 HD YouTube videos concurrently without any slowdown.
For a clearer picture of the RAM’s performance, let’s look into the laptop’s results in a PCMark 10 benchmark test. PCMark 10 benchmark is used to evaluate the memory performance of a computer.
In similarity with the previous benchmark we talked about, a high score denotes better RAM performance.
Commendably, this laptop got a total of 4870 points in the PCMark 10 test. That’s quite higher than the 3861 points scored by the previous model – the MateBook X Pro 2020 i7.
However, the MateBook X Pro 2021’s memory performance falls below that of the Dell XPS 13 9310 which had 4872 points.
Therefore, I will rate the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 an eight out of ten in this memory review section.
Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Storage Options and Performance Review
Over the years, Huawei has been equipping its laptops with SSD storage from different manufacturers. These manufacturers include Western Digital, Toshiba, and Samsung whose storage drive is on this laptop.
For the MateBook X Pro 2021, Huawei has decided to use a Samsung NVMe PCIe SSD storage with a maximum capacity of 1 TB. This type of storage is found mostly on high-end gaming laptops.
As you might already know, SSD storages are the fastest compared to other storage types. Combining the speed of the SSD storage on the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 with its maximum 1 TB of storage space is a big plus for this laptop.
This implies that you will have sufficient storage space as well as a fast storage performance. Thus, despite having no SD card reader, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021’s storage is indeed mouth-watering.
As our norm at www.itechguides.com, let me share with you the CrystalDiskMark test result of this laptop. CrystalDiskMark is a benchmark test that measures the sequential write and read speeds of a storage drive.
By sequential read speed, I mean the speed with which a storage drive opens a file. Meanwhile, a sequential write speed refers to the speed with which a storage drive saves a file.
Similar to other benchmarks in this review, a high read or write speed denotes better performance.
Therefore, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 recorded a read speed of 2794.16 MBps and a write speed of 2384.89 MBps. Meanwhile, the MateBook X Pro 2020 model recorded a read speed of 2737 MBps and a write speed of 2530 MBps.
From the comparison, you can see that the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 model opens files faster than the 2020 model. Meanwhile, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2020 model reads files faster.
Furthermore, the ASUS Zenbook 13 gave a read speed of 1586.98 MBps and a write speed of 938.09 MBps. This puts the Huawei Matebook X Pro 2021 ahead of the ASUS Zenbook 13.
Therefore, I will rate the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 a nine out of ten in this section. This rating is due to the size and type of storage drive which it uses.
Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Graphics Card Performance Review
For graphics, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 features an integrated Intel Iris Xe GPU which is fairly powerful. However, because this is an integrated graphics card, its graphics ability is limited.
Matter of fact, no one will recommend playing intensive 3D games with an integrated GPU such as the Intel Iris Xe. This is because integrated GPUs don’t have a VRAM to handle intensive graphics tasks.
Nevertheless, this GPU’s clock speed is respectable. Speaking of which, its speed starts from 400 MHz and you can overclock it to a maximum of 1300 MHz.
To find out exactly how well this GPU can perform, let us discuss its result in a 3DMark test performed by pcmag.com.
For better understanding, 3DMark is a benchmark test that evaluates how well a computer can render 3D graphics. Therefore, achieving a high score on this test indicates a better performance.
Therefore, from the 3DMark test, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 got a total of 4,284 points.
Meanwhile, the Dell XPS 13 9310 with the same GPU did better, scoring a total of 4,857 points.
Considering the result of the benchmark test, I will rate Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021’s graphics performance a seven out of ten in this section.
Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Battery Life and Performance Review
The battery on the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 is a 56 Wh, Li-Po battery. According to Huawei, the MateBook X Pro 2021’s battery should last for 11 hours under regular usage.
Additionally, Huawei also claims 10 hours of battery life from this laptop in a video playback test.
As interesting as these claims are, we still need to verify them. Therefore, I’ll be sharing this laptop’s battery rundown test results.
In a WiFi web surfing test by notebookcheck.net, the MateBook X Pro 2021’s battery lasted for 10 hours 29 minutes. Thankfully, that’s very close to Huawei’s 11-hours claim.
In comparison, the ASUS Zenbook 13 performed better by lasting for 13 hours 47 minutes in the same test.
Even at that, the MateBook X Pro 2021’s 10-hour battery life is not too poor. After all, the Dell XPS 13 9310 lasted for just 7 hours 10 minutes in the WiFi web surfing test.
Huawei further claims that a 30 minutes charge of this battery can power the laptop for 4 working hours.
If this claim is true, then the 65 W pocket charger that comes with the laptop could be all you need to take to work. Therefore, there will be no need for AC chargers as the pocket charger can give your laptop another 4 working hours life.
In conclusion, due to the laptop’s result in the battery rundown test, I, therefore, rate it a nine out of ten in this section.
Frequently Asked Questions
The Huawei MateBook X Pro is quite pricey. However, it still offers a decent CPU, storage, RAM, display, and GPU performance.
These features can make you overlook the price if you can afford it.
The MateBook X Pro 2021 comes with 16 GB RAM which is also the maximum it can take. Thus, you can not upgrade it further.
Yes, Huawei was founded in 1987 in Shenzhen, China with Ren Zhengfei as the founder and CEO. It is one of the leading manufacturers of smartphones, computers, and telecom equipment.
As of March 2022, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 sells for $1,790.00. However, this price might change at a later date.
The Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 has a powerful processor and RAM to handle most modern games. However, because of its integrated GPU, it is not recommended for playing graphics-heavy games.
My Final Thoughts
No one can deny the fact that the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 is really a powerful laptop. But then, this laptop isn’t too different from other laptop brands.
Furthermore, innovations are not plenty on the laptop. Precisely, I can mention its pop-up webcam and the “Free Touch” touchpad as its only major innovative design features.
Away from creativity, other appreciable features on this laptop include a fast and huge 1 TB SSD storage. Also, its Windows 10 OS, QHD resolution display, Intel Iris Xe GPU, and Core i7 processor are good attributes.
But then, not everybody can afford this laptop’s price tag of $1,790.00. Therefore, the bottom line is, if you can afford it, the Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 can afford to serve you well.
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References and Further Reading
- consumer.huawei.com – HUAWEI MateBook X Pro 2021
- laptopmag.com – Huawei MateBook X Pro (2021) review
- notebookcheck.net – Huawei MateBook X Pro 2021 Tiger Lake Laptop Review: Now Shipping Worldwide
- pcmag.com – Huawei MateBook X Pro (2021) Review
- notebookcheck.net – Core i7-1165G7 vs. Core i7-1185G7: Dell XPS 13 9310 4K Laptop Review