Is this sleek budget laptop a winning formula at mate’s rates, or does that ‘D’ really stand for disappointing? Read our Huawei MateBook D4 Review.
The Huawei MateBook D14 was released in 2020, but it is still the current budget MateBook model sold today. Unfortunately, while $ was probably a reasonable asking price when it launched, the 10th generation Intel Core i5-10210U CPU that powers it isn’t far off being lapped twice by new processors. Walk into any major retailer and you’ll be able to get a laptop with an equivalent 11th Gen processor for the same price and we’ve even seen comparable devices with i7-1165G7 CPUs go for hundreds of dollars less.
The MateBook D14 was on sale at the time of writing-knocking $ off the asking price – but even then, they’re still not overly competitive. Two years of processor updates is a major sacrifice when you consider you’ll probably only use this device for five or six years at most, so they really need to be on a $ discount to be even worth considering.
It’s unusual for a budget device to feature an all metal chassis (generally
|Huawei Mate Book D14||Surface Laptop 4 13″|
|PCMark 10 – Overall (score)||3,939||4,144|
|HWBot x265 – 1080p (fps)||22.678||25.848|
|3DMark Time Spy (score)||462||1,505|
|Ceekbench 5 OpenCL (score)||5,562||15,091|
|Battery life – PCMark 10 (h:min)||13:16||14:00|
|Peak CPU temperature (°C)||89||86|
|CrystalDiskMark Read/Write (MB/s)||2,377||2,230|
|CrystalDiskMark Read/Write (MB/s)||1,400||1,207|
because it adds cost for non-essential elements), so if you could get it for cheap enough there might be an argument for it in the name of style. The FullHD IPS display is nothing to get excited about, but the bezels are reasonably compact for a budget device and the webcam relocation to the keyboard means that the 84 percent screen to body ratio looks relatively borderless.
The Intel Core i5-10210U scores up to 20 percent behind the i5-1135G7 processor on general home benchmarks, but in some cases the difference is negligible. Unfortunately the same can’t be said for graphics capabilities, since the 11th generation processors get Intel Iris Xe Graphics which was around three times faster than the Intel UHD graphics on the D14.
While it doesn’t have the latest spec PCIe SSD, the device still gets 2,377MB/s and 1,400MB/s read and write speeds, respectively, which is going to be more than enough for most people. And while there are more generous storage offerings out there, 512GB is still adequate for today’s mostly cloud-based workflows.
The one major advantage of this device is that the processors are underpowered, and the 1080p screen isn’t overly bright, allowing the 55Wh battery to get 13 hours and 16 minutes in PCMark 10 general work benchmarks and 12 hours 39 minutes for 1080p movie playback. This is one of the higher Windows-based lifespans we have on file and will be more than enough to keep you going all day.
The MateBook D14 has a nice enough keyboard and the trackpad is responsive and not overly sticky. There’s also a fingerprint reader and the device is advertised as getting a free Windows 11 upgrade whenever that becomes available for 10th Gen chips, so it has some appeal.
A dated budget laptop that looks good but isn’t overly competitive.