HONOR MagicBook X 15 (Intel Core-i5 10th Gen)
It's not a secret that Honor used to be owned by Huawei until recently, hence the striking similarities in many of their products, including the one I am about to review today. The Honor MagicBook X 15 has lots in common with the Huawei MagicBook D15 that we just reviewed last week, with just minor differences. Without further ado, let's dive in!
The packaging and chassis of the Honor MagicBook X 15 and Huawei MateBook D15 are identical, save for the charger and number of ports on the laptop. The MagicBook X 15's power adapter boasts a 3-pin design, and it has 1 less USB-A port compared to the MateBook. Our review unit also features a sleek gunmetal grey exterior made of aluminium, which is a great feature at this price point.
Otherwise, the exterior is functionally the same, with the same notch to enable easy one-handed opening, as well as the same back-heavy design that makes it prone to toppling if you open it too violently (not encouraged).
The USB-C charger is small and portable just like a phone charger, which is a huge plus in my book as you can easily carry it around to top up the battery if needed. The laptop itself also comes with the same NFC feature as the MateBook's Huawei Share, but is titled 'Honor Magic-link' instead. If you have an Honor phone, you can simply tap it on the sticker to instantly connect the two devices. Tablets, however, will rely on Bluetooth and being on the same internet network to handle file transfers and mirroring.
Display and audio
The display features a 1920x1080 resolution as well as TUV Rheinland Low Blue Light and Flicker Free certifications, making it ideal for long hours of office work. There's nothing spectacular about the display, but it has decent indoor brightness and ultra slim bezels for a classier appearance, fitting right in at the workplace. As with the MateBook, the webcam is also not residing on its usual perch on the top bezel, but is hidden within the keyboard instead.
This assures complete privacy when not in use, as the webcam is completely stowed away. However, it does present a rather unflattering view of your face, and will be pointed at your nether regions should you prefer working cross-legged on the floor.
Audio-wise, it's unremarkable as well, but will perform fine for video calls and such. You also have the option of plugging a pair of headphones into the audio combo jack, so you can better enjoy movies and music.
Keyboard and touchpad
The keyboard features black keycaps with a very rough texture and a simple, elegant font. While it looks great, I'm not a huge fan of the typing experience, as the key travel is extremely shallow and not very tactile. I'm a pretty heavy typist who enjoys bottoming out solidly, but even so, I did get used to it after a while. Another thing to note is that the keyboard is not backlit, so if you're not a touch typist, you might struggle a bit in the dark.
On the bright side, the power button sits separately from the main keyboard, preventing accidental shutdowns. It also houses a fingerprint sensor, which is great since the webcam does not support facial recognition. The trackpad is stable and doesn't wobble much, and while the smoothness is nothing to write home about, it does the job well enough.
As for ports, it pretty much has everything you'll need for an office laptop - one HDMI port so you can hook it up to an external display for presentations, an audio combo jack for headphones, two USB-A ports for your peripherals, as well as one USB-C port that doubles as a charging port.
Again, I would have liked it if there were at least two USB-C ports, cause it's a bit silly that you can't plug in any USB-C peripherals while you are charging the laptop.
In terms of specs, the MagicBook X 15 boasts identical specs to the Huawei MateBook D15 that I reviewed: an Intel Core i5-10210U processor with Intel UHD graphics, 8 GB of RAM, as well as 512 GB of NVMe SSD storage. While it is not meant for gaming, it is completely adequate for general office work such as spreadsheets, video calls, web browsing, and more. The RAM and storage hit the sweet spot in terms of value for money, although interestingly enough, the storage came partitioned on the review unit.
The battery life is just alright. The 42 Wh battery will grant you 4-5 hours away from a power outlet, which is mostly sufficient for remote work. In any case, as mentioned before, the power adapter is pretty compact, so you won't have an issue bringing it around.
One bonus perk is that the Honor MagicBook tablet is supposedly compatible with the Huawei multi-device ecosystem as well as other Honor devices (or used to be), which means that if you have certain Honor or Huawei tablets and phones, you should be able to connect them seamlessly with each other for easy file transferring and multi-screen collaboration.
Unfortunately, while I had a Huawei MatePad 11 on hand, I was unable to get it work together with the laptop, as the PC Manager app on the MagicBook X 15 simply refused to update - the .exe just wouldn't run (might just be a review unit quirk), and so while the tablet could connect to the laptop for file transfers, I was not able to test out the multi-screen collaboration feature here. In any case, the official product page claims that the feature is compatible across selected Honor laptops with PC Manager version 11.0 and above as well as mobile phones running Magic UI 4.0 and above. To understand more about how the Multi-screen collaboration feature would work, you can check out our MateBook D15 review here.
Buy or no buy?
At RM2,899, the Honor MagicBook X 15 is a bang-for-buck device designed for office work. The sleek aluminium chassis, built-in webcam, and lightweight form factor makes it the perfect on-the-go device. There's also an i3 variant at just RM2,299, which is amazing value if all you're using it for is basic productivity tasks.