The Huawei MateBook 16s Is a Portable Productivity Powerhouse

Huawei’s MateBook 16s is so good I actually prefer it to the MateBook X Pro 12th Gen edition. It is super fast, chomping through processes like a hot knife through butter, and it can even handle more intensive tasks thanks to the impressive inclusion of Intel’s i9 12th Gen core. A must-buy if you’re after a laptop that is excellent for both work and play.

Specifications

  • Brand: Huawei
  • Storage: 1TB SSD
  • CPU: Intel i-9 Core 12th Gen
  • Memory: 16GB
  • Operating System: Windows 11 Home
  • Battery: 135Wh
  • Camera: 1080p FHD front facing
  • Display (Size, Resolution): 16 inch, 2520 x 1680, 189 PPI
  • GPU: Intel Iris Xe
  • Speakers: Stereo
  • Price: £1299-£1499
  • Model: MateBook 16s 2022
Pros

  • Great battery life
  • Large storage capacity
  • Powerful processor
  • Fantastic screen
  • Perfect for productivity
Cons

  • Might seem expensive to some consumers
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Huawei MateBook 16s 2022 Edition

Huawei is very much on a roll with its hardware of late. I recently reviewed the wonderful MateBook X Pro during IFA 2022, and the device blew me away. Now, we have the rather lovely £1499 (about $1600) workhorse that is the Huawei 16s in our mitts.


So, does the 2022 16s match up to the MateBook X Pro? And does the 16s do enough to power your productivity throughout the day? The short answer is “Yes”, but let’s look at why it is such an awesome little device.


Unboxing the Huawei MateBook 16s

When you lift the lid on your MateBook 16s box, you’ll find:

  • Huawei MateBook 16s laptop
  • 90/135 W USB-C power adapter
  • USB-C charging cable
  • Quick start guide
  • Warranty card

And that is all you need to get busy.

Looking Good

As always, Huawei’s 16s laptop is great to look at. It comes in a sleek (and now quite familiar, with Huawei products) “space grey” colorway, and its smooth aluminum alloy chassis feels ultra-cool to the touch. Especially when it is about 7 degrees celsius in your office, like mine at the moment.

Taking a stroll around this lovely laptop, we have dimensions of 13.8 x 10.0 x 0.7 inches, so this is a supremely portable device. Given that it only weighs 4.4 pounds, you can see how this laptop could easily become your go-anywhere daily driver.

On the left edge of the 16s you have a USB-C port supporting data, charging and DisplayPort, and a second USB-C port which also supports Thunderbolt 4. There is also a 3.5mm 2-in-1 (TRRS) headphone/mic jack, and the HDMI. On the right edge, you have two USB-A 3.2 ports.

Open the hinged lid, and you’ll see the roomy multi-touch touchpad and backlit keyboard, along with the equally roomy 16-inch, touch-sensitive display. It might look taller than a lot of displays, and that is because it is. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2, which is what makes this such an awesome work computer.

You’ve got a screen-to-body ratio of 90%, which is great. Although doesn’t quite match the MateBook X Pro’s 92.5%, most users won’t notice the difference. The bezel around the screen is still nice and thin.

Just above the display, you’ll find the 1080p FHD camera, and it is every bit the sensor you’d expect (more on that later).

Under the Hood

Popping the proverbial hood makes for some pretty nice reading, specs-wise. The 16s ships with Windows 11 Home Edition, straight out of the box, so aside from any necessary updates to the OS, you’re all set to get to work on a fully up-to-date version of Windows.

Powering the machine is a very noteworthy 12th Gen Intel Core i9-12900H processor (you can also get an i7 version, but the i9 makes the additional £200 investment worthwhile, in my eyes). Graphics comes in the form of integrated Intel Iris Xe, so the hardcore gamers might want to look elsewhere. However, perfectly good for casual gaming.

Alongside the processor sits 16GB RAM, and you get a whopping 1TB SSD for storage; great for keeping all your work documents safe, and then some. So, if you wanted to install a game or two, you’ll have no problem. Just keep in mind this laptop is more about productivity (although that doesn’t stop you having fun with it, too).

The long-lasting lithium polymer battery has an 84Wh rated capacity, so plenty of chops here to keep your productivity at max output even if you don’t have a power source close by.

The IPS display is a 2520 × 1680 (189PPI) screen, covering 100% of the sRGB color gamut. The screen supports up to ten touchpoints (even better for the productivity crowd reading this review) and tops out at 300 nits brightness.

Audio is available in the form of two microphones and two speakers. These speakers flank the keyboard, and are actually very good, but for listening to music or watching movies, I would always recommend that you use headphones for the best, most immersive, experience. The 16s does an excellent job without headphones, though, with nicely balanced dynamics that offer clear treble and midrange, and even the bass packs a punch.

Benchmarking the Huawei MateBook 16s

I ran both PCMark and 3DMark to check the theoretical performance of the MateBook 16s. While practical use is always going to be the best test of a laptop’s mettle, some numbers to compare with other devices are always helpful.

With PCMark10, the MateBook 16s performed incredibly well, scoring 5908 overall (which places it about 1500 points above a standard office PC, and about 800 points below a gaming PC), and better than 66% of other tested devices. It excelled in productivity tasks:

  • Web Score: 9940
  • Photo Score: 11697
  • Apps Score: 15916
  • Essentials Score: 10795

The lowest score was for rendering and visualisation. This hit 4400, and is most likely on account of the integrated GPU, which is going to be less powerful than your dedicated GPUs. It is still a respectable score, but you might notice the device underperforms if you want to use it for very complex modelling work or something of that nature. For most productivity tasks, the MateBook 16s absolutely shines. Great news, seeing as Huawei is positioning the device as a productivity powerhouse.

With 3DMark, I wasn’t expecting to see insanely high scores; again on account of the integrated graphics card. This isn’t a gaming PC, so while you can run some games on it, GPU-intensive titles might not perform as well as you’d like. If you are after something with great gaming performance, then you need a gaming PC or laptop dedicated to that pursuit.

  • Time Spy Score: 2122, with a GPU score of 1876, and a CPU score of 8349.
  • CPU Profile Score: 5229 (max threads)
  • Storage Benchmark: 2341 (against an average of 2060 across all hardware)

As you can see, the CPU is very capable for gaming, but that Iris Xe GPU doesn’t quite cut the mustard where resource hogging titles are concerned. According to 3D Mark, for a real world example, you’d get 45+ FPS on Apex Legends, and 30+ on Battlefield V.

A Genuine Workhorse, Especially With Super Device in the Mix

So, how are we looking in terms of performance? I have to say; the MateBook 16s 2022 edition does not disappoint in any way, shape, or form. It is a brilliant laptop, and I have thoroughly enjoyed testing it out. For the record, I spent two weeks with the device, testing its capabilities as a daily driver. Confirmed, it drove like a dream, on a daily basis, thanks to that chunky i9 chip nestled inside.

Those in the market for a premium Windows laptop should certainly consider the 16s. It is super-fast, and chewed through my tasks without even batting an eyelid. All the standard stuff you can do with a Windows laptop is not a problem for the 16s. Emails, web browsing, number crunching, and document editing are all tasks that the 16s laptop excels at.

I do a fair bit of image editing as part of my job, and I also need to edit some video. The 16s is super friendly with Photoshop and Premiere, so I can confidently say this is a work laptop capable of handling a more intensive workload. It works a charm even running several resource hogging applications at once (great if you use the Chrome browser, then…). Accessing your files is rapid, too, thanks to the generously sizable SSD.

We also mentioned the 1080p camera earlier. This is actually better than the 720p camera you’ll find on the MateBook X Pro 12th Gen, and you can tell when you use it; your video feed is crystal clear and your colleagues and clients will be able to enjoy every millimetre of your glorious visage on a work call. Again, this adds another string to the 16s’ finely hewn productivity bow.

As is the norm, nowadays, the MateBook 16s comes with full Super Device compatibility (what is Huawei a Super Device?). So, it connects wirelessly to my MateView monitor (as pictured above), my MatePad 11, and my P50 Pro smartphone. It also works a charm with the PixLab printer, as you would expect it to.

This is a real boon for productivity, as you can connect your devices together in one easy-to-access ecosystem. You can share files between devices quickly, send files easily to other people, and even share screens between devices in multiple ways, like extending the display to double screen space, or using mirror mode for some quick design work on your tablet, with a stylus, while you spy the results on your laptop screen.

The display is fantastic for watching movies and poring through photographs. The 2.5K resolution looks wonderful on a display of this size, and colors look fantastic as they pop out of the screen to wow your eyeballs. Safe to say, watching Netflix and Amazon Prime series’ on this device is a wonderful experience, making it great for relaxing after all your productivity is out of the way.

So, with performance dealt with, if you want a new WFH laptop, or one for your small business, then the MateBook 16s can do all you want it to without a single hitch. Thanks to its buttery smooth operation, you can work and play to your heart’s content with the 16s on your lap.

So, would I recommend you buy the MateBook 16s? Definitely. It offers fantastic productivity potential, even for heavier users who go beyond spreadsheets and text documents, into design work. It is an excellent all rounder, delivering a seamless experience; even more so if you’ve invested in Huawei’s wider ecosystem, given its compatibility with Super Device.

In short, you’re probably looking at one of the best 16-inch Windows laptops available right now, which is saying something, considering the multitude of brands out there.

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