Xiaomi has recently started producing laptops for the global and Indian markets and they have already become a force to reckon with. At competitive prices, they are bringing good looking and powerful laptops for the world and the latest to come out from their factory is Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra. We spent few weeks with the device to understand it well. This is the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra review you all have been waiting for.
Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra review: Design and Display
Packed neatly, out of the box the notebook does come across as a really premium offering from the company. Yes, some might say it looks like the Macbooks, but, the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra has its own distinct identity. Built out of metal, the notebook has a lot of it. Despite that, the notebook is not very heavy and weighs under 1.8Kg.
When shut, it measures just 17.9mm from the sides, which again adds to its slim form factor. Xiaomi branding in Chrome can be seen on the top lid as well under the 15.6-inch screen. Open it up and you will see a large keyboard without a NUM pad. The keys have a scissor mechanism, which has 1.5mm deep key travel. The overall writing experience is good with it, but a bit robust tactile feel would have been better. The keyboard is also backlit and has 2 levels of it, good for people who work in dimly lit rooms or late at night.
With it, you get a fairly large trackpad. This is a multi-touch trackpad and works quite well. Also, there is a fingerprint sensor with Windows hello in the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra. The circular power button located on the top right (above the keyboard) also doubles up as a fingerprint sensor. This works well and 9 out of 10 times detected our finger without any extra effort.
For connectivity, the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra comes with 1 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0 gen 1, 1 Thunderbolt 4 and 1 USB Type-C charging port. These are accompanied by an HDMI as well as a single Mic cum Audio 3.5mm port. Users also get an HD webcam on top of the screen with few MICS in the fray.
Moving to its display, it is one of the best features of this laptop. Users get a 3.2K display, which means the resolution of the screen is 3,200 x 2,000 pixels summing up to 242 pixels per inch (PPI) density. The peak brightness of the screen is about 300 nits and 90Hz refresh rate is supported.
Together they portray vivid colours, crisp text and possesses excellent viewing angles. We played a lot of Netflix shows on the machine and it did not disappoint at all. With it, you also get dual 2W speakers that are DTS optimised. These are quite loud and does not require you to add any additional external speakers.
Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra review: Performance
So what all do you get under the hood? We are reviewing the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra with the Intel i5 11th Gen (11300H) CPU that has 4 cores and a clock speed of up to 4.4GHz. This is partnered with 16GB RAM (3,200MHz frequency), which is soldered on the mainboard and 512GB of NVMe SSD. For graphics, you will get an onboard Intel Iris XE graphics unit. Other features include WiFi 6 for fast network connectivity and Bluetooth 5.1 support.
So let’s move on to how does it perform in real life. Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra comes packed with Windows 10 Home edition, which is fine for most users. If you want to use this laptop for day to day work, edit images or even some videos in Adobe Premiere, you can do that without a problem. However, the rendering process will take a little extra time. We edited a small 4K video on it and the laptop did a rather good job. Also, users get a basic version of the Microsoft Office suite, which includes Word, PowerPoint as well as Excel in the package. There is a bit of bloatware found within the OS, but luckily all of it can be removed.
The gaming experience on the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra left us with a mixed bag of emotions. Since it does not have a very powerful graphics card, most games do not work at medium or high settings. Neither will you get 60-90FPS on them. But if you play games like CS:GO or DOTA 2, then you can extract 60-90FPS at medium to high settings.
The battery life is relatively good on this laptop. Xiaomi claims that users can get up to 12 hours of battery life. But that is when you put the display to the dimmest settings and are not doing any heavy-duty tasks on it. During our tests, it lasted for 7.5 hours when working and lasted 6 hours when we were binge-watching Netflix shows. Both of which is very impressive and quite good in the bracket. With the supplied 65W charger, which charges via the notebook using the USB-C port, the laptop charges to 50% in about 45 minutes.
The vents on the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra are big and you do get a large heat sink and fan inside the shell, too. This keeps the laptop fairly cool and we hardly felt any part of the laptop getting too hot. Users can also switch between Quiet Mode and Balanced Mode by hitting FN+K keys, this reduces the fan noise by a lot. Also, a dedicated Marco key can be found at the top right of the keyboard that can be set as an easy shortcut.
So, the final question that arises is, is it worth buying for Rs 64,999? Well, if you are a regular or power user who wants a lot of memory, storage, fast state-of-the-art performance, and a vivid screen, this laptop makes perfect sense, and you should go for it. If you are a gamer, then this is not the machine for you.
Overall, as a work from home force (at the moment), we quite loved the experience of the Xiaomi Mi Notebook Ultra. The boot time is very low, apps open quickly, and we hardly faced any issues. It has a good mix of work and entertainment features.
Good battery life
Tactile feel of the keys could have been better
No discreet graphics card
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