Huawei MateBook 16S evaluation – information


That is the brand new Huawei MateBook 16S – a laptop computer matching the overal design of final 12 months’s MateBook 16, however a notable shift in internals to Intel’s Alder Lake. If you happen to’re not conversant in Huawei’s MateBook 16, it has a 16-inch show with a taller 3:2 side ratio, packed right into a svelte physique that weighs just below 2kg.

And if you happen to’re unfamiliar with show side ratios, we’ll lay it down for you good and easy. A standard laptop computer display is 16:9, excellent match for vast movies, whereas a 3:2 show is simply barely narrower, however has much more vertical house. It makes it much better suited to displaying internet pages and pictures (these are often 4:3 or 3:2). The squarer side can be extra handy for video enhancing, the place you might want to match the precise video and a bunch of UI components under it.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

Huawei reused the chassis of the MateBook 16, ports and all, however went with Intel’s twelfth gen Alder Lake H collection chips, as a substitute of final 12 months’s AMD Ryzen 7 collection processors. The selection this 12 months is between the 12-core i5-12500H (4 efficiency cores and eight environment friendly cores), and the 14-core i7-12700H and i9-12900H (each of which have 6 efficiency cores and eight environment friendly cores).

These are all 45W processors meant for high-performance laptops, however with this 12 months’s large shift in Intel’s structure (the massive.LITTLE structure), we are able to anticipate a significantly better efficiency to battery life ratio. Extra on that later. Additionally, one USB-C port is Thunderbolt 4, and there’s Wi-Fi 6e assist.

The show is identical as final 12 months for essentially the most half. It’s nonetheless a 16-inch 2560x1680px IPS LCD with 300 nits of brightness and a 1500:1 distinction ratio. The massive change this 12 months is that the show is touch-sensitive, which might come in useful every so often, however we might’ve fortunately traded that performance for greater brightness.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

The Huawei MateBook 16S has the identical 84Wh battery as its predecessor, with a selection of the monstrous 135W charger or the more-reasonable 90W brick, relying on which CPU you get.

The laptop computer additionally brings an improved 1080p digicam with the flexibility to comply with you across the body and present a customized digital background. The speaker setup is identical, as are the keyboard, touchpad, and even the cooling beneath.

Design, show, ports, keyboard, and touchpad

For many intents and functions, the MateBook 16S is an identical to the MateBook 16. It has the identical dimensions and the identical 1.99kg weight. The show has the identical diagonal and bezels, that are skinny, in a vacuum, however a bit wider than what some fashionable 16-inch laptops supply.

We obtained the Area Grey mannequin and so will everyone else, as a result of it’s the one accessible shade. We guess 16-inch laptops must be gray and utilitarian. On a optimistic observe, the case is steel.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

You possibly can open the laptop computer with one finger. You’re greeted by a full-sized backlit keyboard with out a Numpad (nor any form of row of particular keys) and a generously-sized glass touchpad. The touchpad’s floor could be very pleasing to the finger and multi-touch gestures are straightforward to do.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

The keyboard is excellent. The keys have nice 1.5mm journey and are delicate, but not mushy when typing. They’re nicely spaced too, as you’d anticipate from a Numpad-less keyboard on a 16-inch laptop computer body. There are two ranges of backlight. Speaker grilles body the keyboard on each side. These are wonderful audio system – they get very loud and retain a great quantity of bass.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

The palm rests on both aspect of the touchpad are giant sufficient to accommodate your palms whereas typing. The touchpad itself has good palm rejection and we didn’t have points typing away on this machine.

We have now blended emotions in regards to the show. On one hand, it’s very sharp due to its excessive decision and ensuing 189ppi density. Viewing angles are good in that the show doesn’t lose its distinction when considered at an angle. Nonetheless, the shiny panel is extraordinarily reflective. You possibly can see nearly all the pieces round, mirrored on the glass, and the impact is much more pronounced at an angle.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

Couple that with the one common brightness of the show and you’ve got a display that’s solely good in dim environments.

Huawei advertises the panel as 300 nits. We measured 320 nits within the middle of the show and round 280 nits on the corners. Not excellent uniformity, nevertheless it’s not dangerous both. We’d’ve cherished a brighter panel this 12 months, as 300 nits is turning into reasonably disappoint, particularly at this value level.

Additionally, the show is simply 60Hz, we might’ve cherished to have seen a 90Hz panel as on a few of Huawei’s different laptops.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

Regardless of the low brightness, the show could be very contrasty and the colours are properly deep and saturated. Huawei claims a median Delta E of beneath 1, however we measured it at 2.5, which isn’t content material creation-ready. The show on our unit had an apparent blue forged. You possibly can calibrate the panel to 100% match sRGB.

The display bezels are a bit wider than what you’d get on the 16-inch MacBook Professional, or the 16-inchers from Asus. However you wouldn’t discover this until you’re evaluating them immediately. Huawei made the top-mounted digicam higher this 12 months. It’s 1080p and helps FollowCam, which retains you within the middle as you progress round, in addition to digital background and even a characteristic that may attempt to make it seem as if you happen to’re wanting on the digicam once you’re not (we have been unable to make this work, although).

Huawei MateBook 16S review

The digicam isn’t Home windows Hey licensed, however you get a fingerprint reader beneath the facility button, which additionally helps caching, so it would activate the pc and log you in with a single press.

The MateBook 16S does nicely in the case of ports. On the left, there are 4 – a 3.5mm audio jack, a full-sized HDMI 2.0, and two USB-C ports (3.2 Gen 1) – each assist charging and show output, however just one does 40Gbps Thunderbolt 4 (the underside one with the lightning arrow). There are two USB-A ports (3.2 Gen 1) on the suitable aspect. The one factor lacking is an SD card reader.

Ports on either side
Ports on either side

Ports on both aspect

Opening up the Huawei MateBook 16S is a straightforward job – simply unscrew 5 T5 Torx screws and also you’re in. Nonetheless there’s not a lot to do inside – there’s no second SSD slot and the Intel AX211 Wi-Fi 6E wi-fi card is now soldered to the motherboard.

Efficiency and battery life

Huawei made a shift to Intel silicon with the MateBook 16S and also you get a selection of twelfth gen Intel Core i9-12900H, Intel Core i7-12700H, and Intel Core i5-12500H processors. They’re all 45W, however as we already talked about, the Core i5 has 4 efficiency cores and eight effectivity ones, whereas the Core i7 and Core i9 have 6 efficiency cores.

We’d say that the i7-12700H is the only option. It’s noticeably quicker than the i5, and but virtually an identical to the i9 on this form of laptop computer. The i9 presents round 300MHz greater clock speeds, which isn’t one thing you’d discover on a machine that’s not meant for gaming.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

Persevering with that thread, the MateBook 16S lacks a discrete GPU and depends on Intel’s Iris Xe built-in graphics. It’s completely tremendous for workplace work and entry-level to midrange video games at decrease settings at 1080p, however you received’t be capable to get pleasure from triple-A titles on the MateBook 16S.

The Core i7-12700H we have now in our evaluation unit did simply tremendous for picture enhancing (after we did a display calibration), and even a spot of 4K video enhancing after some proxies.

Transferring to Intel’s twelfth gen processors would profit efficiency in gaming and creator purposes, as there Intel at present has a lead over AMD. However that’s no good with out a discrete GPU to pair with the succesful processor. On this case, you’re not likely having fun with the efficiency advantages, whereas concurrently getting a less-efficient chip than final 12 months’s, probably hurting battery life.

The Matebook 16S has prolonged integration with different gadgets within the Huawei ecosystem – Huawei calls it Tremendous System. The laptop computer comes with Huawei PC Supervisor, which is one solution to get pleasure from Huawei Share. The software program pairs a Matepad pill to make use of as a secondary display – you’ll be able to mirror the laptop computer, prolong the show, and even switch information by means of drag-n-drop gestures.

It really works the opposite means as nicely – you should use the Huawei M Pencil on the Matepad and switch in right into a graphics pill or use it to function any software program, in fact, with the obvious minuscule lag that comes because of the wi-fi connectivity.

Huawei Share works with eligible telephones as nicely – homeowners can cope with their telephones by means of the laptop computer – they will reply calls (significantly helpful in case you have some Freebuds ready), share screens, or drag and drop footage and different information. This all solely formally helps gadgets formally on the HarmonyOS 2.0 and never essentially all of them.

Let’s take a look at efficiency. The 1TB SSD posted spectacular numbers, nevertheless it’s a PCIe 3.0 disk and the motherboard of the MateBook 16S possible helps PCIe 4.0 given the Intel twelfth gen processor, so you possibly can take into account a PCIe 4.0 SSD for some further efficiency.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

At this level, Intel’s twelfth gen processors have been examined far and wide by nearly each respected PC reviewer, so we received’t do a very deep dive. Suffice to say that the Core i7-12700H is among the greatest performers in the marketplace proper now.

In Geekbench, the Core i7-12700H scored 20% higher than the Ryzen 5800H in final 12 months’s MateBook 16 in single core, and 54% greater in multi-core. The latter would vastly profit apps like Photoshop, Premiere, or DaVinci Resolve.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

Cinebench R23 re-emphasizes simply how briskly Intel’s newest processors are, nearing the highest of the chart for single core and topping it in multi core. We tried operating GFXBench, however the app stored crashing on each check we tried.

Cinebench R23
Cinebench R23

Cinebench R23

By way of thermal administration, we noticed the identical tuning from Huawei as on its different MateBook laptops, regardless of the processor collection used. Huawei likes a quiet and funky laptop computer, and it tuned the MateBook 16S to be one.

The processor is about to a base clock of two.3GHz, nevertheless it usually maintains round 1.4GHz. Once we ran a CPU burner check, the cores spiked as much as 3.2GHz for a couple of seconds, after which progressively ramped right down to round 1.3GHz. Which means that the laptop computer will infrequently perk up its twin followers they usually’re largely inaudible. Even throughout our stress check in a room at round 24°C, the followers have been very quiet.

Because of this, the laptop computer didn’t change into uncomfortably heat both. Most individuals will respect the quiet and funky operation, nevertheless it signifies that the highly effective Intel Core i7-12700H processor is significantly underused. It could make extra sense to place a decrease collection chip if it could be tuned to run as cool and as quiet.

Intel’s newest processors are nonetheless inferior to their AMD rivals in effectivity. The 10mm structure will not be as environment friendly because the 7nm of the Ryzen 5000 collection was or the brand new 6nm Ryzen 7 is.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

We did a battery check, which runs a YouTube video on loop at most brightness and quantity till the laptop computer dies. It provides you an concept of the longest you’ll be able to anticipate the laptop computer to run with all the pieces maxed-out. It clocked somewhat over 6 hours, which isn’t dangerous however doesn’t match final 12 months’s mannequin, which posted greater than 7 hours.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

A 30-minute cost with the 90W brick returned 37% from 0%. A full cost took round an hour and a half.


The Huawei MateBook 16S is a superb laptop computer. It’s constructed nicely with high quality supplies and is a superb performer. Battery life is sweet, if not likely spectacular and the identical may be mentioned for the show.

The factor is, the MateBook 16S isn’t considerably higher than its predecessor, however it’s much more costly. The MateBook 16S is €1,700/£1,300 for the Core i7-12700H mannequin, distinction that to the €900/£800 you’d pay for the MateBook 16 – these are all official Huawei costs. Final 12 months’s AMD Ryzen 7 processor remains to be nice and it’s simpler on the battery than Intel’s Alder Lake chips.

Huawei MateBook 16S review

The difficulty is additional difficult by Huawei’s personal MateBook D16, which is €1,300/£1,000 with the identical i7-12700H processor and close-enough specs, together with a 16-inch 1920x1200px IPS LCD – it’s no 3:2 panel, however at 16:10, it’s nonetheless taller than your typical 16:9.

Which suggests we will not actually suggest the Huawei MateBook 16S in the intervening time at its present value. You possibly can discover a laptop computer with a brighter show and related efficiency for much less cash and so much higher show and equal efficiency for a bit extra money. We’d go along with Huawei’s MateBook 16 over the 16S because it’s virtually pretty much as good and significantly better priced.


  • Huge, sharp show with good head-on viewing expertise

  • 3:2 side permits for higher usability
  • Highly effective Intel twelfth gen processors
  • Wonderful port choice – Thunderbolt 4 is sweet
  • Keyboard and touchpad are each high-quality
  • Good, loud audio system


  • Costly, particularly in comparison with predecessor
  • Solely 300 nits of brightness
  • Little sensible impact of transfer to Intel Alder Lake
  • Very reflective show