Honor MagicBook View 14 review published. In September of last year, Honor introduced its MagicBook View 14 in China, equipped with Intel’s Core 11 generation chipsets and NVIDIA GeForce MX 450 graphics and operating Windows 11 out of the box.
The computer (minus its dedicated graphic card) was released to Europe in the fourth quarter of last year. We’re now able to share our thoughts after a period of testing during which the reviewer was using the MagicBook View 14 as his sole computer for more than two weeks.
The transition from MacOS to the Windows 11 laptop took some adjustment at first, and even though I’m not entirely ready to make the switch, I am not yet prepared to do so. An honor indeed came up with an attractive ultra-portable that covers all the main pillars of a high-quality laptop:
- Top-quality build
- A good keyboard and screen
- Good performance
- Plenty of battery life
Do you think this should be the first choice for you, or would you be better off with smaller laptops?
Honor MagicBook View 14 review published
Design, display, keyboard
MagicBook View 14 features an aluminum unibody that weighs less than 1.5 kilograms. At its most significant point, the laptop measures 14.5mm, a convenient daily carry that can fit in any standard-sized backpack. The model we reviewed is the elegant Space Gray color, but Honor also offers the more striking dark blue version.
One of the top features that deserves praise is the ability to lift the laptop’s lid with one finger, and I am happy to report this happens here. The main attraction will be its 14.2-inch LTPS LCD touchscreen with its 2520 x 1600 pixels resolution and 90Hz refresh rate, and an aspect ratio of 3:2.
The higher aspect ratio can be a significant aspect of productivity, allowing more vertical content to be displayed on the screen. This is great for those who use two side-by-side windows, such as an editor for word or browsers, or you are constantly navigating Excel sheets.
The panel is produced by the Huaxing Optoelectronics division of TCL and has the MNE208UA1-1 model number. Viewing angles are fantastic, and there is no noticeable change in contrast. The display aims to render colors for 100% sRGB coverage and 72 percent NTSC coverage. Honor boasts the collection has 400nits brightness, and we have measured an average of 405 nits.
That’s enough for indoor use and outdoor use, although the glossy finish isn’t ideal in this scenario. The default screen’s refresh rate is 60Hz however it is possible to change it to 48Hz or 90Hz using the keys Fn+R. I preferred the highest speed setting to keep the UI being more fluid.
The bezels are slim and provide a pleasant visual experience. Also, the 10-point multi-touch feature is perfect in the rare instances when you’ll be using a finger instead of the trackpad made of glass. One of the times, I prefer using the touchscreen while watching TV shows in rooms with dim lighting. Navigating the UI was much more convenient without using the keyboard or trackpad. Windows 11 seems better suited for touchscreen controls over its predecessor.
The integrated 5MP camera, with a wide-angle lens that is 90 degrees and an exclusive ISP chip, is a considerable improvement over the previous generation of webcams that have 720p resolution that is found on older laptops. It can provide better clarity when it comes to Skype and Zoom calls. The computer also has Windows Hello and a fingerprint scanner incorporated into its power button.
I/O is adequate for an ultra-portable this big. You get 2 USB 3.2 ports on the right side, with the second port acting as a Thunderbolt 4 connector. Also, there are headphones and a microphone combo. You will find only a USB 3.2 (type-A interface) and a large HDMI connector on the left side.
The keyboard is your typical chiclet with good movement (Honor claims 1.5 millimeters), and you’ll soon become accustomed to its size. It comes with a two-stage backlight that is adequate for use in dark spaces. My only complaints with the keyboard were the absence of a fully-sized enter key, and the cramped keyboards that are tight and led to several mistakes. Also, you get four microphones and an audio system with quad speakers that can be pretty loud.
The base model MagicBook View 14 comes with Intel’s 11-gen Core i5-1132H, Tiger Lake-U processor. The higher-end model is the Core i7-11390H. The laptop has an energy balance model of 35W that draws less power and allows for the quietest operating. If you want to boost the power, you can switch to a high-performance model of 45W (Fn+P), as we did in our benchmarking test. Be aware that you must connect to the power adapter to enable this high-performance option. The system has four Willow Cove cores, each with two threads, and the base frequency is 3.4Ghz in the performance mode of 45W that can be turbo-charged up to 5Ghz when you require a single core.
The system comes with 12MB of level three memory on this Core i7 chip and a regular TDP of 35W. Let’s discuss benchmark scores. We’ll start by using Geekbench 5, MagicBook View 14, which manages 1,548 single-core scores and 6,118 points in Multi-core tests. The comparable AMD Ryzen 7 5800H could be a tad less efficient in single-core tests but could make up for that in multi-core with a 20% edge against it.
Intel chip. Moving to Cinebench R20 gives a score of 2,523 points that is quite impressive for a light and thin laptop. The built-in Iris Xe graphics card is not the ideal choice for triple-A gaming, but it can get enough for light games and simple editing of photos or videos. Honor has equipped this laptop with twin fans, and wings-shaped heat sinks that only sounded their horns during intense testing sessions, while everyday activities made the noise almost invisible. MateBook View 14 comes with 16GB of dual-channel DDR4 RAM and a 512GB WD S730 PCIe SSD. Here, the read and write speed is decent, with 3,400 MB/s of sequential read and 2700 MB/s write speeds. The cold boot process is just 10 seconds long, and Chrome is responsive even when there are more than twelve tabs open.
The laptop is one of the ones that we have that came with Windows 11 Home out the box and it’s divisive. The interface appears familiar but is radically different from Windows 10 and I found myself searching for certain UI features in the incorrect spot repeatedly. Microsoft introduced some new features in recognition of inputs using touch and the entire UI is much more responsive to touch and is a welcomed improvement.
The new layout for personalization menus and options with depth is excellent and so is the system-wide dark mode. Snap assist lets you control up to four applications on your screen with no need to move your mouse all that much. I took a while to become accustomed to the new Start menu, and I wasn’t able to utilize the new widget, but at the same time, I didn’t enjoy its predecessor, the live tiles.
The new default app settings are a hassle and if you wish to set a browser from a different vendor as the default, you’ll have to proceed through the process of choosing the one you want to open a specific file type that ranges from HTML to HTTPS that takes an inexplicably long time.
Although there are some issues Windows 11’s fresh visual identity to be a refreshing change, and I had no problems in terms of the stability of or performance. Honor also comes with its Multi-Screen Collaboration feature that allows you to connect devices compatible with Honor phones to laptops. It lets you mirror your phone’s screen to the laptop as well as transfer photos and files wirelessly and also make calls in audio and video on the large screen. I tried it out on an Honor 50 we had laying around in the office. And while pairing was easy, screen mirroring itself was a bit slow and sluggish.
Battery life and charging
The honor was able to squeeze an adequate 60Wh battery in its MateBook View 14. Its battery capacity is 15 hours local playback using 1080p resolution, 150 nits brightness. It also comes with 11.7-hours of mixed-use with 150 Nits brightness. In our tests, which included playing a video at 1080p on YouTube in Chrome using 75% brightness on the screen at 50 percent volume, we had six hours and 56 minutes which is quite acceptable.
Honor offers the USB-C 65W SuperCharger which weighs 200g with the USB-C cable detachable provided, which makes it ideal to travel with one charger for all of your devices. Incredibly, it can be charged by the laptop through one of the USB-C ports, at a maximum of 65W power. The full charge took approximately 104 minutes and the laptop was at 80% after one hour on the charger.
With the MateBook View 14, Honor has managed to achieve an outstanding blend of power and portability with a price which is hardly outshined by other brands. Some bundles even include the Honor 50 smartphone which makes the deal even more appealing should you be able to pick one. It’s currently available as a laptop but is available only in China, Russia, Belarus, and France which retails for $1,099.
The bundle includes an Honor 50 for just EUR400 additional. A quick look at the comparisons reveals only a handful of laptops with the stunning display, high-quality and lightweight design, speedy performance, and lasting battery life of MagicBook View 14. The Acer Swift 3 and 5 series are among the top contenders, as are the Asus Vivobook S14 as potential competitors within the EUR1,000 price point. Lenovo’s IdeaPad Slim 7i Pro, MSI’s Prestige 14 Evo and LG Gram 14 are all available when you go above the threshold of EUR1,000.
If you’re not bound by the Windows ecosystem, you can pay some more money – EUR1,200 will get you a 13-inch M1 MacBook Air with 8GB RAM and 512GB of storage. Keep in mind that a plethora of Intel 12-gen laptops powered by CPU is expected to be launched in the near future. MateBook View’s 14.2-inch QHD+ screen is an absolute pleasure to use, with vivid colors, a spacious 3:2 aspect ratio, and also supports multi-touch with 10 points.
The keyboard has decent travel and is well laid out. The glass trackpad is impressive. Intel’s Core i7-11390H processor handles every office task with ease with the Iris Xe integrated GPU handling light games and content creation. A 60Wh battery on the thin and light laptop is an excellent choice and can make it impossible to sit near a wall outlet.