Hands-On With The New Xiaomi Mi Notebook Pro Powerhouse


Xiaomi on Monday introduced several new devices, including the bezel-less Mi MIX 2 flagship and the more conventional Mi Note 3. The final product unveiled by the tech giant at its latest hardware event in China is the Mi Notebook Pro, a new compact Windows laptop designed for people who aren't keen on making many compromises as far as their portable personal computers are concerned.

The Mi Notebook Pro will be offered in several variants, with the most high-end one being powered by the eighth generation of the Intel Core i7 processor built on the Kaby Lake architecture. This particular quad-core CPU has a base frequency of 1.80GHz (i7-8550U) or 1.90Ghz (i7-8650U), depending on the exact model, while also being able to operate at up to 4.0GHz and boasting 8MB of Intel's proprietary SmartCache. The chip was manufactured using 14nm lithography, features eight threads, bus speeds of up to 4 GT/s OPI, and the Intel UHD Graphics 620. Its integrated GPU has a base operating frequency of 300MHz and a maximum dynamic clock speed of 1.15GHz, in addition to boasting DirectX 12 and OpenGL 4.4 support. The same graphics chip also reveals that the Mi Notebook Pro can output an image to up to three display simultaneously, in addition to being compatible with Intel's proprietary InTru 3D technology. For more advanced users, the Mi Notebook Pro also offers the Nvidia GeForce MX150 dedicated graphics card, a Pascal-based GPU with a base core speed of 1,468MHz and 2GB of GDDR5 video memory operating at approximately 6,008MHz. While those options are unlikely to make the Mi Notebook Pro a gaming powerhouse, the device should still be more than capable of playing contemporary games at low-to-medium settings if battery life isn't a concern.

The 15.6-inch Full HD display panel of the notebook also makes it more than capable of serving as a work station, with the overall user experience being smooth and snappy. The screen is protected by Corning's Gorilla Glass 3 and seems rather durable, in addition to being able to display around 72 percent of the NTSC color gamut. The notebook's so-called "cooling design" is also pleasing to look at, with the device being extremely symmetrical and elegant. The multi-touch touchpad of the Mi Notebook Pro boasts an integrated fingerprint reader which is compatible Microsoft's Windows Hello biometric authentication service and seemingly works in a swift and reliable manner, according to our limited testing.


The variant which can be seen here and was impressing tech journalists in Beijing earlier today is the one with 16GB of RAM and Intel's current-generation i7 CPU, though there's little reason to believe that the configuration with the same processor and 8GB of RAM performs any worse as far as casual use is concerned. The same presumably holds true for the model with the current-generation Intel Core i5 CPU and 8GB of RAM, with this particular hardware still putting the Mi Notebook Pro on par with the majority of Microsoft's Surface lineup.

The RAM that's on offer here is of the 2400MHz DDR4 variety, with the laptop also boasting a PCIe SSD with up to 256GB of storage space. The premium feel of the Mi Notebook Pro extends to its keyboard which is entirely backlit, with the device itself also sporting two USB Type-C ports, a couple of USB Type-A ports (one of which is USB 3.0), a three-in-one SD card tray, regular HDMI port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. All of that hardware is packed in a rather compact body which is 360.7 x 243.6 x 15.9mm in size and weighs only 1.95kg, making the Mi Notebook Pro a relatively portable offering given its sheer hardware power. Another premium feature of the device is its Dolby Atmos support and the existence of custom Harman Infinity speakers which sound relatively powerful for hardware of this size, with the Mi Notebook Pro also being powered by a 60Wh battery and coming with a new iteration of Xiaomi's charger which can supposedly go from zero to 50 percent in 35 minutes, though this particular claim has yet to be tested.

Given the specs offered by the Mi Notebook Pro, it's fairly evident that the product is seeking to compete with the premium laptop segment and directly take on the likes of the Apple MacBook Air series and Microsoft's Surface series; the latest MacBook Air model was even used by Xiaomi as a reference point while the company was detailing its latest offering on Monday. The Mi Notebook Pro starts at 5,599 yuan, which translates to approximately $858 and is less than half the price of an equivalent model of the new MacBook Pro. The version with 8GB of RAM and Intel's new i7 CPU will set you back 6,399 yuan ($980), whereas the one with 16GB of RAM will have a price tag of 6,999 yuan, or just over $1,070. The Chinese original equipment manufacturer has yet to disclose the exact release date for the Mi Notebook Pro, though the device will only be available in the Far Eastern country for the time being, at least officially. Users who will be adamant to obtain it at all costs will likely still be able to purchase it from a reseller like GearBest once the Mi Notebook Pro hits the market this fall.

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Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]

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