Available in red or blue. Huawei offers its MateBook 14 both with AMD and Intel processors. Completely identical on the outside, they are very different laptops internally. We have tested and compared both versions of Huawei's 3:2 mid-range device.
The lower the price range, the more diversified the laptop market tends to be. Manufacturers fight over the mid-range in particular. Huawei is still a relative newcomer among them, but it has already built up an impressive portfolio. The MateBook 14 fills the mid-range gap between the expensive Huawei MateBook X Pro and the more affordable HUAWEI MateBook D 14 2020 series.
The Huawei MateBook 14 is available in two versions: The MateBook 14 AMD and the MateBook 14 Intel. We are testing both versions here, whereby the review will primarily focus on the Intel model, and the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD will be the main comparison device. Further comparison laptops include the Dell XPS 13 9310, the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 14, and the older model of the Huawei MateBook 14.
The high-end model of the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel, which we are reviewing, costs around 1,300 Euros (~$1,578). Our MateBook 14 AMD test device costs 1,100 Euros (~$1,335).
Huawei MateBook 14 2020 Intel (MateBook 14 Series)
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.
Huawei MateBook 14: Aluminum case with plastic parts
Huawei MateBook 14
Huawei hasn't made any major changes to the case. This means that both the MateBook 14 AMD and the MateBook 14 Intel continue to use the same dark gray case that we already saw in the older Huawei MateBook 14. In terms of design, it's very minimalistic and modern but also little creative.
The majority of the Huawei MateBook 14 is made of aluminum. In addition, the display frame is made of glass, and the sides around the ports are made of plastic. A pure metal case is reserved for the Huawei MateBook X Pro. Nevertheless, the MateBook 14 is not unstable: The base can only be twisted slightly on the right side, and the display is also reasonably resistant to torsion. The palm rest and keyboard don't give way. However, pressure on the back of the lid is transferred to the panel comparatively quickly.
The hinges with the wide plastic cap allow a limited aperture angle of 150 degrees. The screen can't be opened with one finger, and it also wobbles a bit when shaken.
With a rather high weight of 1.5 kg, the Huawei MateBook 14 is heavier than the competition. In terms of dimensions, however, it's roughly on par with the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 14, although the latter is wider due to the 16:9 format. The MateBook is slightly longer with its 3:2 screen. With its 13.5-inch LCD in the 16:10 format and its ultra-thin display bezels, the Dell XPS 13 is unrivaled here.
Lenovo Yoga Slim 7-14IIL05 Huawei MateBook 14 2020 Intel Huawei MateBook X Pro 2020 i7 Dell XPS 13 9310 Core i7 FHD ❌
320 mm / 12.6 inch208 mm / 8.19 inch14.9 mm / 0.587 inch1.4 kg3.17 lbs307.5 mm / 12.1 inch223.8 mm / 8.81 inch15.9 mm / 0.626 inch1.5 kg3.33 lbs304 mm / 12 inch217 mm / 8.54 inch14.6 mm / 0.575 inch1.3 kg2.95 lbs296 mm / 11.7 inch199 mm / 7.83 inch14.8 mm / 0.583 inch1.3 kg2.85 lbs
Connectivity: The USB 2.0 in the MateBook 14 Intel is out of place
The port configuration in the Huawei MateBook 14 is modest but sufficient. With two USB-A ports and HDMI, it offers more variety than the Dell XPS 13 9310. However, the MateBook 14 does without Thunderbolt 3; this is very hard to understand with the Intel model in particular. Moreover, there's no card reader.
There's only one difference in terms of ports between the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD and the MateBook 14 Intel: On the Intel model, one of the ports on the right only supports USB 2.0, while the AMD version has two USB 3.0 ports.
Right: USB-A 2.0, USB-A 3.0
Left: USB-C 3.1 Gen 2, 3.5 mm audio jack, HDMI
For a module that only supports the older ac Wi-Fi standard, the 2x2 Intel Wireless 9560AC card interestingly scores ver well. Sometimes it even leaves newer ax Wi-Fi solutions
Huawei MateBook 14 2020 Intel
Apart from the 65-watt power adapter with a USB-C plug, no other accessories are included.
Huawei MateBook 14 with 65-watt power adapter
As similar as they are externally, the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel and the MateBook 14 AMD differ significantly on the inside. At least the process to access the interior is the same: 11 TX screws have to be removed, and there are some clips to be released.
Underneath the bottom cover, we find a large fan with two heat pipes on the Intel model, while the AMD variant has two small fans with one heat pipe each. Besides the cooling system, you also have access to the battery, the SSD, and the Wi-Fi module. RAM is soldered and, therefore, not upgradeable.
A view of the interior (MateBook 14 AMD)
The Huawei MateBook 14 has a two-year warranty with bring-in service. Huawei offers a free shipping service for users to send their devices in.
Input devices: Huawei laptop with good touchpad
The backlit keyboards with chiclet keys in the MateBook 14 Intel and MateBook 14 AMD are externally absolutely identical. This also applies to the layout, which is about 95% of the ISO standard width. However, there's a slight difference in terms of the typing experience: The pressure point of the keys is slightly mushier on the Intel MateBook. In general, the typing experience provided by the keys needs getting used to due to the very short travel of approximately only 1 mm. The keyboard is neither particularly good nor particularly bad, but it's sufficiently suitable for everyday typing.
Huawei MateBook 14: Keyboard
The 12 x 7.2 cm touchpad has a slightly roughened surface that doesn't prevent fingers from gliding on it. Because it's a ClickPad with integrated mechanics, the surface can be pressed down in the lower area. The click mechanism has a short travel and a firm stroke, which matches the high-quality overall impression. We can't complain about anything in terms of software either. Gestures work perfectly, and the mouse pointer can be controlled precisely thanks to the Microsoft Precision driver.
Huawei MateBook 14: Touchpad
3:2 Display: The Huawei MateBook 14's highlight
Although the 14-inch touchscreens in the 3:2 format are identical on paper, our measurements show differences. The reason for this: Huawei uses 2K panels (2160x1440) from different manufacturers. This panel lottery has a measurable effect on brightness in particular: While the Intel model is 448 cd/m² bright on average, we only register 387 cd/m² on the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD. However, it must be noted that both panels are well above the specification. According to the data sheet, the display of the MateBook 14 should actually only deliver 300 cd/m².
In comparison with the competition, the Dell XPS 13 9310 delivers significantly more brightness, while the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7 lags behind in this respect.
We measured both displays with Calman and the X-Rite i1Pro 2 colorimeter. We noticed here that the MateBook 14 AMD had a noticeable blue tint out of the box that disappeared after calibration. Subjectively, the color reproduction of both displays was very good; this is also confirmed by the contrast value of over 1,800:1.
Color-space coverage is practically identical on both the Intel and AMD versions of the Huawei MateBook 14. This translates to almost 100% of the sRGB color space and a basic suitability for image-editing.
You have to live with reflections with the Huawei MateBook 14, no matter which version you buy. Fortunately, the luminosity levels are high enough that you can still use it in brighter environments. But you should avoid the sun if possible.
Display Response Times
Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 39 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is similar to the average of all tested devices (37.6 ms).
Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)
To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM detected59520 Hz≤ 30 % brightness setting
The display backlight flickers at 59520 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) Flickering detected at a brightness setting of 30 % and below. There should be no flickering or PWM above this brightness setting.
The frequency of 59520 Hz is quite high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering.
In comparison: 52 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 17002 (minimum: 5 - maximum: 2500000) Hz was measured.
There are no problems with the viewing-angle stability of the two IPS displays.
Huawei MateBook 14 Intel viewing angles
Huawei MateBook 14 AMD viewing angles
Performance: AMD Ryzen 4000 easily outperforms Intel
Huawei offers four different CPUs in the MateBook 14, two from Intel and two from AMD. On the Intel side, there are the Core i5-10210U and the Core i7-10510U. On the AMD side, you have to make do with the Ryzen 5 4600H and the Ryzen 7 4800H. The GPU options are also divided, and the Intel models are delivered with a combination of the Intel UHD Graphics 620 and the Nvidia GeForce MX350 chips. With AMD, you get either the AMD Radeon RX Vega 6 or the AMD Radeon RX Vega 7.
8 or 16 GB of DDR4 memory is available, whereby memory is soldered. With the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel, you get DDR4-2166 memory; the AMD model offers DDR4-2666 RAM. An M.2 2280 SSD serves as mass storage device in each case.
In our Intel model, we are dealing with the Intel Core i7-10510U, a Comet Lake 15-watt processor with four cores. The Huawei MateBook 14 AMD contains, on the other hand, the AMD Ryzen 7 4800H, an octa-core processor with a TDP of 45 watts. You can compare the CPUs with other chips using our CPU comparison list.
Starting with the Intel processor: It can consume 45 watts, but consumption is then quickly limited to 25 and finally 16 watts. Consequently, the processor runs at 2.6 GHz and 15 watts. Interestingly, the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD has a performance mode that can be activated; except for a slightly louder fan noise, it has no noticeable effect on CPU performance. In any case, the processor can consume 55 watts for a short time, but in the long run, it uses 37 watts.
In terms of CPU performance, the score is clearly in favor of the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD. The AMD Ryzen 4000 model is simply much faster than the Intel ULV competition.
We could not find a CPU performance limit on the MateBook 14 AMD. But we did with the Intel model, since the Huawei laptop only achieved 8,204 points in the 3DMark 11 Physics test (about -11%).
Both Huawei MateBook laptops contain PCIe NVMe SSDs in the M.2 2280 format with a capacity of 512 GB. The Western Digital model used in the MateBook 14 AMD is slightly slower than the Lite-On SSD in the Intel version. Compared to the competition, however, both SSDs are slightly faster.
The Nvidia GeForce MX350 is a dedicated GPU based on the old "Pascal" architecture. It comes by default in the Intel version of the Huawei MateBook 14. The AMD model we are testing uses the integrated AMD Radeon RX Vega 7 instead. Comparisons with other graphics chips can be made with our GPU table.
Although the Intel variant with the dedicated graphics has a bit more graphics performance, the gap to the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD isn't that big in the 3DMark tests. In addition, it must be noted that the new Intel Tiger Lake Xe GPU (96 EUs) is faster here - in our opinion, the Nvidia GPU isn't a truly worthwhile investment.
In terms of the GPU, we couldn't find any battery-related performance limitations.
The single fan in the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel runs a bit more high-frequency and louder under load. With the AMD version, however, the two fans are also clearly audible. In idle usage, the active cooling is usually barely noticeable in both versions. Unfortunately, they don't remain completely quiet.
There was no coil whine to be heard on either Huawei laptop. But the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD emits a quiet, electric crackling sound.
As we already saw in the maintenance section: The cooling systems differ significantly. The temperatures are slightly different: While we measure a maximum of 51.3 °C (~124 °F) under load on the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel, it's slightly less on the AMD counterpart at 49.9 °C (~123 °F). The maximum temperature was reached at the bottom on both devices. Especially on the Intel model, the left side of the palm rest also became noticeably warm at almost 37 °C (~99 °F).
The stress test with Prime95 and FurMark confirms our impression that the cooling system on the AMD model is simply better. The processor needs to be throttled down to 6 watts on the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel, and the GPU is not exempt from throttling either. The AMD model also shows a consumption limitation, but the processor can still consume 29 watts at the end of the stress test.
In the 3DMark 11 test performed after the stress test, the Huawei laptop with the Intel chip achieved a reduced result, so throttling can also be problematic in everyday use. This is not the case with the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD.
As was already the case with the display, the same applies to the speakers: The Huawei MateBook 14 Intel and AMD contain different components. The speakers in the MateBook 14 AMD can deliver noticeably more low frequencies. But neither of them are at a really good laptop speaker level; they are okay for YouTube videos or video calls.
The 3.5 mm output delivers sound perfectly to headphones or external speakers.
The Huawei MateBook 14 AMD isn't completely superior to its Intel counterpart, which is shown by the power consumption values: Here, the laptop with the Intel processor performs significantly better in idle usage in particular.
The 65-watt power adapter has sufficient capacity on both MateBooks, even if the load peak is just above this mark.
The battery life results also match the energy consumption: With its 56 Wh battery, which is the same size on both versions, the Intel MateBook achieves well over 12 hours in the Wi-Fi test (150 cd/m²); on the other hand, the AMD MateBook runs out of breath after a bit over 7 hours. The Intel model is also able to repeat this victory in the Big Buck Bunny video test.
Verdict: Both Huawei laptop versions are good
In review: Huawei MateBook 14 Intel (and AMD). Test devices provided by Huawei.
A 14-inch laptop in a 3:2 format is definitely something special. However, this feature is not exclusive to the Intel version of the Huawei MateBook 14, since the AMD model has this aspect ratio too.
The Huawei MateBook 14 AMD is better in some aspects: In terms of CPU performance, the gap in the multicore area is immense. In addition, the AMD model has two USB-A 3.0 ports, while Huawei bizarrely provides the Intel model with a USB 2.0 port and does without Thunderbolt. The AMD model seems to have better cooling as well, because it can maintain performance well in the stress test - in contrast to the Huawei MateBook 14 Intel, which suffers from throttling. At least the Intel model wins in two aspects: The battery life is significantly better, and the graphics performance with the Nvidia GPU is superior when it comes to games, at least.
Common to both versions is the great 3:2 display with touch functionality, although it has to struggle with the reflections of the glossy surface. The aluminum case of the MateBook 14 is perfectly manufactured and of high quality, even if a bit heavy for a subnotebook. We also like the touchpad very much. On the other hand, we miss the inclusion of a card reader. The soldered RAM has a maximum capacity of 16 GB; we would definitely like to see a 32 GB option.
Whether with Intel or AMD: You get a good laptop with the purchase of the Huawei MateBook 14 in any case. The two versions have different strengths and weaknesses.
Overall, we can recommend the Huawei MateBook 14 without hesitation. When choosing between Intel and AMD, potential buyers need to consider their priorities: If battery life is more important, the Intel model can definitely be worth considering. For maximum CPU performance, the Huawei MateBook 14 AMD is clearly the best choice.
Editor of the original article: Benjamin Herzig - Managing Editor - 928 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2016
I was an ardent reader of Notebookcheck’s laptop reviews even back in school. After writing reviews as a hobby, I then joined Notebookcheck in 2016 and have worked on device reviews and news articles ever since then. My personal interest lies more with laptops than smartphones, with business laptops being the most interesting category for me. Technology should make our lives and work easier and good laptops are an essential tool for that to happen. This is why laptop reviews are not just my work but are also my passion.
contact me via: LinkedIn
Translator: Stephanie Chamberlain - Translator - 453 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2020
I've been fascinated with technology ever since I got my very first Android smartphone, which was quite a while ago. The power packed into such a small footprint still amazes me. Learning to program made my understanding of technology deeper, and at the same time, it expanded my interest to the area of desktop computers and laptops. All this led me to enjoy reading and watching reviews of new devices, and that's how I stumbled upon Notebookcheck. I immediately found their reviews to be very comprehensive, and luckily, I've even had the chance of translating them since 2019. When it comes to the huge field of technology, I'm currently also interested in specializing in Java programming.