Huawei ultrabooks follow and resemble each other, but for the best. With its latest addition, the MateBook 16s, the Chinese is further tweaking its copy by complying with Intel Evo certification with the adoption of a Core i7 Alder Lake-H and a touch screen. Is it enough to interest demanding users, presumably targeted by its high tariff? Response to follow.
Features of the Huawei MateBook 16s
|16″ QHD Touch LED 3:2 IPS 60Hz (2520×1680, glossy)
|Intel Core i7-12700H Alder Lake (2.3 GHz, 14 cores)
|16 GB LPDDR5 3200 MHz (dual channel, soldered)
|Intel Iris Xe 1.4GHz
|1TB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD
|2 USB 3.2 + 1 USB 3.2 Type-C (Gen1) + 1 USB 4.0 Thunderbolt 4, HDMI 2.0
|Wi-Fi 6AX, Bluetooth 5.2
|Yes, via fingerprint reader
|2 x 2W speakers
|Windows 11 Home 64 bit
|Announced autonomy / Battery
|9 hours / Li-Polymer 2 cells 84 Whr
|Weight / Dimensions (mm)
|2Kg / 350×255×17.8
Huawei MateBook 16s – Chassis / Design
Aesthetically, this new MateBook 16s uses the same chassis as the Matebook 16 2022. A chassis that has had the opportunity to sing the praises many times over Huawei laptop tests. Always very sober with the brand inscribed in large letters in the center of the lid, the case takes on a consensual dark gray color on metal surfaces with an impeccable finish. The weight is contained and the size also for a 16 inch. No complaints.
Inside, no more surprises. We find the speakers located on each side of the keyboard, the large touchpad and the glass slab which makes it possible to overcome the plastic borders seen on previous generations of the ultrabook (but whose shiny surface will not make the unanimity). Note that the 1080p webcam returns to its original place, above the screen and not under a keyboard key, which is very significant. However, we expected a little better from its image quality.
As you will have understood, in terms of look, Huawei achieves a flawless and can thus compete with the references in the matter that are the Dell XPS, Microsoft Surface and other Apple MacBook Pro.
Access to the components is easy, just remove the dozen Torx screws. The SSD is upgradeable. Conversely, the RAM is welded, so it is impossible to make it evolve. However, with 16 GB present natively, the interest is to be put into perspective.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Connectors / Ports
The connection is complete with two USB-C ports, one of which is used by the mains power supply and the other is Thunderbolt 4 compatible, an HDMI 2.0 output as well as two USB-A 3.2 ports on the right of the chassis. A combo jack / microphone is also present. Bluetooth is 5.2 and Wi-Fi 6.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Audio system
In terms of sound reproduction, the speakers are doing quite honestly. The spatialization is satisfactory as is the maximum volume. For the rest, the rendering is typical of a laptop with absent bass and a lack of warmth.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Keyboard / Touchpad
Don’t stop at the lack of a numeric keypad, the Matebook 16s keyboard deserves a lot of praise apart from this detail.
Indeed, if the dimensions (16.5×16.5 mm), the spacing (2.7 mm) and the stroke (1.2 mm) are nothing exceptional, the damping works wonders. This results in a very soft keystroke with barely perceptible noise even in a quiet room. Huawei seems to have found the perfect marriage to offer the best laptop keyboard we’ve had the opportunity to test in recent months.
Let us mention if we want to be picky the backlight which would benefit from offering a third intensity to be more visible at the end of the day for example.
We will console ourselves with the presence of a fingerprint reader perfectly integrated into the power button. Convenient to take advantage of Windows Hello and thus unlock your session without having to enter your password.
The touchpad is still one of the largest on the market for a Windows ultrabook with its 14×9 cm. This results in very comfortable everyday use. Only criticism, a tendency to sound a little “hollow” during physical support, at least on our copy.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Screen
Huawei has offered 3:2 format screens on its ultrabooks for several years. A time reserved for the brand’s 13 and 14 inches, this format that we particularly appreciate is applied to 16 inches with the latest MateBook 16 and on this Matebook 16s (2520×1680 px). Its particularity, it is higher than the 16:9 still majority on laptops and therefore displays more lines on the vertical.
In practice, however, the gain will vary depending on the scaling chosen. At 150%, this results in a useful area of 1680×1120 pixels, which is only 40 pixels more than a Full HD panel (1920×1080). In 125%, the useful surface becomes more interesting with 2016×1344 pixels. The best compromise, no doubt, even if the size of the texts and interfaces at this scale will not suit everyone.
As for the pixel density (189 dpi), if it does not equal the finesse of a UHD panel, its 4.3 million pixels constitute a good compromise in terms of display precision without being as demanding in terms of system resources than the 9 million pixels of a 4K display.
In terms of quality, the BOE BOE092F (TV160DKT) panel is a bit disappointing given its price. If we welcome the arrival of touch, the maximum brightness is established at 335 nits, a sufficient value for the interior, but a little too tight for working on a sunny terrace, especially since the slab is made of edge-to-edge glass. edge and therefore shiny. Similarly, our surveys show an sRGB space covered at 90% while the brand communicates on total coverage. Good point, the contrast ratio displays a nice 1577:1.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Performance
While the Matebook 16 2022 relied on AMD, the Matebook 16s opts for the latest 12th generation Intel processor with the Core i7-12700H.
In practice, this high-performance 6-core CPU (8 efficient cores) offers solid performance and great everyday versatility. What’s more, the support of the integrated Iris Xe graphics chip is enough to carry out occasional graphic work such as photo editing or video editing, for example. It does much better than a Ryzen 5000-H in this regard, especially during a Capture One export or editing under Da Vinci (visible on the graphs opposite).
Of course, the absence of a dedicated graphics card will be felt for certain profiles such as gamers or creators of demanding content who use software like Lightroom, DXO, Première Pro or Davinci Resolve, which are increasingly dependent GPU for optimal performance.
The PC Manager utility lets you choose between two performance profiles. In practice, we did not find any differences. Just a little more aggressive ventilation with the Performance profile, but without impact on average temperatures.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Noise pollution / Noise / Temperatures
In the absence of a dedicated graphics card, the constraints in terms of heat dissipation are less. And with its two large fans, the MateBook 16s has no trouble keeping Core i7 temperatures around 75-80°C even after several minutes of intensive calculations.
As a bonus, these remain quite discreet, with the strongest 45 dBA measured in a breath that easily goes unnoticed. In other words, you will have no trouble forgetting them when a slight background noise is present.
Huawei MateBook 16s – Autonomy / Battery
Thanks to its good capacity battery (84 Wh), the MateBook 16 2022 enjoys a good average autonomy with 8h45 measured in web browsing (brightness at 140 cd / m2). It is satisfactory at this level.
The Matebook 16s comes with a 90W USB-C charger. The latter remains quite compact and light (80x60x30 mm – 190g).
Our opinion on the Huawei MateBook 16s
Huawei endorses its emancipation from its now competitor Honor with this Matebook 16s. We find all the attributes that have made the charm of the brand in an ever more neat and efficient package, equipped with a 3:2 panel, thus coming to occupy the flowerbeds of a Dell XPS.
The choice of this type of screen will delight those for whom the use of a laptop rhymes with spreadsheets, word processing and other PDFs and touch is a plus in our opinion. The presence of an Intel Core i7 processor from the Performance range (and not low power) may appeal to other profiles more focused on the available computing power, especially since the Iris Xe is not ridiculous in support for some occasional graphic work.
Huawei has also corrected some details that were criticized for the Matebook 16 released a little earlier this year, such as the location of the webcam and Wi-Fi 5. As a result, we are close to flawless: good quality chassis , sober and elegant look, comfortable keyboard and touchpad without forgetting a contained weight. Only autonomy declines a little but remains honest. But there is a catch in our opinion: the price! Displayed at 1599 euros (September 2022) in the version tested, the Matebook 16s immediately no longer has the same charm and loses the advantage against competitors such as Asus and its VivoBook Pro or even the Matebook 16 of the same siblings, much cheaper.
Huawei MateBook 16s scores 4/5
Compare Huawei MateBook 16s configurations available online