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REVIEW: Huawei MateBook D 14 (2020)

REVIEW: Huawei MateBook D 14 (2020)
John Reilly
  • On September 15, 2020
  • https://www.theeffect.net

Huawei has been releasing products after products and they just recently launched their latest addition to the MateBook series – The Huawei MateBook D 14. This notebook is made lighter and thinner for students and professionals on the go but I doubt anyone would be on the go anytime soon; so this might help with distance learning or working from home. Below is our full review of the Huawei Matebook D 14.

 

Huawei matebook D 14

Key Specs:

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U
RAM:  8GB DDR4 RAM
Storage: 512GB SSD
Display:  14 inch; 1920 x 1080 IPS; 60Hz; 16:9, Contrast 800:1
Camera: 0.9 MP, 720p
OS:  Windows 10 Home
Connectivity:  Wi-Fi: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, 2.4GHz and 5GHz, 2 x 2 MIMO
Bluetooth 5.0, compatible with Bluetooth 4.2, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
Battery: 56Wh
Dimensions:  322.5mm x 214.8mm x 15.9mm (approx. 30″ x 10″ x 6.5″)
Weight: 1.38kg
Colours:  Cosmic Grey, Space Silver

 

Huawei Matebook D 14 Specs

Design & Build Quality

The MateBook D 14 has an overall thickness of around 15.9mm, which makes it a relatively thin notebook for what it is.

Huawei has equipped the MateBook D 14 with a fair selection of ports, which include two USB-A ports (one 3.1 and one 2.0), a single USB Type-C port (which also doubles as the charging port), an HDMI port and a 3.5mm headphone jack.

 

Huawei MateBook D 14 ports

 

While I like the fact that charging is done via the USB Type-C port since it means you can charge the notebook via a power bank if it supports it, it’s a little annoying that you can’t plug in your phone or any gadget that uses the Type-C interface while you’re charging the notebook at the same time. A second Type-C port would have been helpful here. The Type-C port also doesn’t have Thunderbolt 3 support which is a little disappointing.

One of the nicer, more premium features is the use of an integrated fingerprint scanner in the power button, which makes secure sign-ins incredibly fast. The other is the relocation of the webcam to the chassis of the notebook, right between the F6 and F7 keys. The webcam pops up with a single press of a button, though the angle is less than flattering since it points up, at an angle.

 

Huawei MateBook D 14 Webcam

As unflattering as the webcam makes you look in Zoom calls though, its placement allows for the D 14’s minuscule top bezel.

Display

There’s a lot to like about the MateBook D 14’s display, but it’s not perfect.The good things first: the 14-inch, IPS panel sports full HD resolution and has a rather generous 84% screen to body ratio made possible by the skinny side and top bezels.

 

Huawei matebook D 14 Display

 

The display has been treated with a matte coating that takes care of annoying glare when you’re outdoors.

The bad news is that the display isn’t as bright as I would have liked, with maximum brightness coming in at just 250 nits. It’s good enough for outdoor use, though I’d stay out of direct sunlight if it was possible. The display also isn’t color accurate, which rules out the use of the MateBook D 14 for any work that requires color accuracy.

Performance

Huawei’s chosen to equip their budget and mid-range MateBook notebooks with AMD’s Ryzen 5 processors, with the MateBook D14 getting the Ryzen 5 3500U.

You’re also getting 8GB of RAM and 512GB of SSD storage, which is more than enough for the intended audience, which are students and office workers.

Running the MateBook D14 through my typical workday of writing articles, editing, and watching a few clips on YouTube and Netflix while having 5-10 Chrome tabs open didn’t faze the notebook at all.

Gaming of course is out of the question because the MateBook D14 isn’t made for that at all.

One nice value-added feature that you won’t find anywhere else is Huawei Share, which allows you to transfer files from your Huawei phone to the MateBook D14 with a simple tap.

Huawei’s OneHop system is a really convenient way to transfer images from your phone to the MateBook D14, though it’s a feature that’s only usable if your phone runs EMUI.

Battery Life

The MateBook D14 also impressed with its battery life. Huawei advertises the MateBook D 14 as having 9.5-hour battery endurance, and our battery loop test (that consisted of running video until the battery dies) recorded an 8 hour and 52 minutes run time. That’s pretty good for what you’re getting and is close to what Huawei is advertising.

 

Huawei MateBook D 14

Conclusion

The Huawei MateBook D 14 is a great Windows laptop for the ‘new normal’ we now live in. From its powerful internals, fantastic battery life and sleek aluminium chassis, there’s a lot to like here.

You can pick up the Huawei MateBook D 14 2020 model from Harvey Norman for €799 and, as a special offer, they’ll also through in a pair of Huawei Mini Bluetooth Speakers worth €29 each.

Review Overview

Design & Build Quality
7.5
Display
7.5
Performance
8.5
Battery Life
9
8.1

Very Good

If you’ve been looking for a notebook to use for our “new normal”, then you might want to take a look at Huawei’s new MateBook D 14. There’s a lot to like here, from the aluminum chassis to the powerful internals, to the laptop’s exceptional battery endurance.

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