Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air 13

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Xiaomi Mi Notebook 13.3″ Unboxing & First Impressions

Xiaomi Mi Notebook 13.3″ Unboxing & First Impressions

This is the larger and more powerful 13.3″ Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air. It’s powered by a Core i5 6200U,  8gb of DDR4 clocked to 2133Mhz, 256GB Samsung NVMe SSD and Nvidia 940MX GPU with 1GB of DDR5 ram for 3D. It’s got switchable graphics so depending on what you’re doing it will use the Nvidia GPU or Intel 520 iGPU. It’s $649 here http://www.gearbest.com/laptops/pp_421980.html?lkid=10793687 with coupon Air13L

02:34 – Skip the spec/info fluff, just unbox it.
05:40 – First boot
07:39 – Speakers
07:57 – Screen
08:34 – 940 MX
10:07 – Weight and thickness
10:43 – Keyboard & touchpad
11:53 – Quick comparison to 12.5″ version
13:05 – SSD speeds and final words

The build is just like the 12.5″ version very good. The keyboard is the same only a little wider and the typing experience just as good. It comes with Windows 10 Home Chinese single OS licence, and if you install English there is still Chinese present. I’ve had to do a full reinstall. So you’ll need to factor in getting a Windows 10 key.

I bought my unit from GearBest here. I almost used Aliexpress but they hadn’t shipped it yet, so canceled my order. And unfortunately, Banggood only offer EMS. Which is no good for me, it would take weeks to arrive as Spanish customs get hold of everything labeled as a notebook and EMS. (Correos + ADP Postales these guys take 3 weeks to customs clear anything!)

Additional info:

Gaming benchmark already run: Rise of Tomb Raider:

1080p low settings = 28 FPS average benchmark result
720p low settings = 34.02 FPS average.

First impressions:

Pros:

  • Great build quality, feels and looks premium
  • Fans are off or very low when doing light computing and inaudible.
  • Thin and light, with some okay power under the hood for the size of it.
  • No throttling as of yet in my testing.
  • Nice touchpad and keyboard. No issues or complaints. The touchpad is great to use.
  • Max thermals seem to be GPU 71 degrees. (So far testing gaming and benchmarks)
  • While not the sharpest screen, Xiaomi made the right choice going 1080 for GPU performance (Same games will play just fine at 1080p) Whereas higher 2k resolutions, for example, will be far too demanding for the 940MX.
  • Possible overclocking room due to temps? (However, don’t want to get it too high)

Cons:

  • Expensive. It’s in short supply, a new release, prices of the 13.3″ version are sky high at the moment. The price I pay for review tech early before every Tom, Dick and Harry.
  • Loud fans when gaming (This was expected.) It’s not MSI GT60 turbo fan loud, that’s a jet engine.
  • Temps could be an issue with extended gaming, laying flat on a table, I’m investigating this more.
  • Gets very hot to the touch on the top middle area below the screen.

Questions? Please post them below and not in YouTube, it’s becoming a flood of comments lately.

Video tech reviewer and tech blogger. I have a huge interest in the latest tech, tablets, laptops, mobiles, drones, and even e-scooters. Active in the tech community since 2008 days of the Omnia i900 Windows phone. Samsungi8910omnia.com, Samsunggalaxysforums.com founder from way back.

25 Comments

  1. I do not think should buy at the proposed price. Between customs fee and shipping costs are over 1000 euro. All this considering that there not is an international version of Windows, and there not is an international assistance. I would buy an ASUS Zenbook UX303UB.

    • Yes wait for the price to drop down, the ASUS Zenbook UX303UB is a good option you can get an i7 6500U and touchscreen and the 940MX has 2GB of RAM. However the RAM is DDR3 1600, not DDR4 2133Mhz like the Mi Notebook, that’s the only thing slower on the ASUS.

  2. Does it have thunderbolt 3

  3. Working in basic tasks (internet, video, office, music), what do you thing about the battery? more autonomy 12,5″ or 13″?
    Cordially.

    • 12.5″ by far wins on battery life. Core M3 is 4W and the i5 is 15W big difference. If it’s just for light use I would go with the Core M3 model and save 250 euros. I love the fan it’s fanless, so no annoying fan noise.

  4. Is the bios as locked as the 12″ version? I really want to do some tweaking.

    • Pretty much, but you can under volt and increase power limits in Intel XTU

  5. How long battery time do you expect from this?

    • Just been testing it out, around 5-6 hours web use about 7 hrs video playback by my calculations. A good hour or so less than the Core M3 version. Not the greatest battery life!

  6. Hello Chris… I’m very interested in this product because I need an Ultrabook for video editing when I travel…
    So… Light and portable, but powerful enough…
    Do you suggest it?

    • Yes so far it’s good, only flaw I see is gaming it gets to 80 degrees and the fans when gaming are quite loud and a bit distracting.

    • Also @massu4 I’ll be testing out some video editing soon as I got it for just that.

      • Thank-you very much! Best reviewer ever!!

        • It will be covered in the video review. 1080p editing its fine. Even 4k, but does get a little slower. Encoding certainly takes its time.

  7. Is it possible to underclock or have somekind of powersaving mode? Looking for new laptop to be pseudo PC replacement, but also something that can handle whole days at UNI. I think that CPU is way too powerfull for everything one might do with laptop, it should be underclocked severely.

    • Using XTU, I have been able to under volt the CPU a little, but if you don’t need the power I recommend getting the Core M3 version.

      • I’m trying to decide whether the m3 or the i5 version fits best for me. I’m living in HK and I could get both of them at his real price (470/670 euro), so probably it’s worth paying 200 more for the higher end model.

        I want it to carry to the uni, but also it would be fine if I could edit pictures in that screen, and probably the 12.5″ is too small. I also think the 13.3″ has better screen, better speakers, double and faster storage, double and faster ram…

        And if the battery is just an hour worse than the core M3, it’s probably better going for the i5, right? I’m not going to play games, ever.

        • Oh man i would pay those prices in literally a heartbeat. Too bad Banggood and gearbest take so huge profits.

          • Yes, it’s like $750 in China apparently. All sellers are adding a nice mark up for themselves.

        • I still quite like the M3 version, due to the better battery life. Sometimes it looks like 4-5 hours of battery on the i5 version and the screen on the 13.3″ isn’t really any better, just bigger. I’m still deciding on what version I’ll go with. The fan on the i5 is also annoying at times (I hate fan noise)

          • Really? I’ve read the screen in the bigger model has better contrast and color.

  8. There are tools to save the Windows activation tokens and restore them. So, backup those tokens, wipe and reinstall, load the those tools and backups and restore activation.

  9. About the changing from Chinese to English, with stuff still being in Chinese. That happens as well if you change between Spanish and English or Swedish(OK, then it’s not in Chinese, of course) which are the only three languages I’ve tried to change between, except for the Chinese on my X98 Plus.
    The left over language things are usually in the start menu on Windows apps, like Weather, X-box, Sports and News. Somehow, it disappears after a while.

    You mention BUYING a Windows 10 License to completely install a new version in English(or other language). Why? Wouldn’t the original Windows 10 license be legit for a complete reinstallation?

    What I specially like with the Xiaomi Mi Notebooks, is the small side bezels. OK, it’s not as extremely small as on the Dell XPS, but it’s in a different price range as well. Compare the Mi Notebook 13.3″ to a MacBook Air 13 and you’ll see that the MacBook is an inch wider, bigger and bulkier, using the old iPad first generation design with an inch bezels all around.

    I’m on the fence of buying the Mi Notebook 13.3″, but still choosing between the Mi, Dell XPS 13 and MacBook 12(not as huge bezels as the Air).
    It still has to wait a few months while saving up funds though.

    • Windows 10 installation wouldn’t accept the Windows 10 Chinese Home key, so I had to use my own.

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