Xiaomi’s smarter living event saw the launch of two new laptops that now join the Mi Notebook Horizon Edition in the company’s laptop line-up — the 15” Mi Notebook Ultra and the one Xiaomi sent me for this review, the 14” Mi Notebook Pro. I have received the mid-variant of this new laptop, which costs Rs. 59,999. And for this price, the Mi NoteBook Pro features Intel’s 11th Gen Core-i5 11300H processor, which has 4 cores, 8 threads and 35W TDP. This is paired with Intel’s own Iris XE graphics. There’s Dual-channel 16GB DDR4 RAM, while the storage is standard across all variants, i.e. 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD.
So, no doubt, we are getting solid specs on offer, but how does this machine hold up in the real world? We’ll get to that. First, let’s take a quick look at the specs, shall we?
Mi NoteBook Pro: Specs at a Glance
- 14″ IPS 60Hz (2560X1600 Pixels)
Anti Glare, 300 Nits, 16:10
- 10nm Core i5 11300H/ Core i7 11370H
4 Cores, 8 Threads
35W TDP(Thermal Design Power)
Intel® Iris® Xe GPU
- Up to 16GB RAM (3200MHz DDR4)
512GB NVMe SSD
- 1.4Kg, 17.3mm Thick
- Scissor mechanism keys
3 levels Backlit
Windows precision drivers
Macro key, Power button (fingerprint reader)
- Thunderbolt 4 with power delivery USB C + power delivery
USB 3.2 Gen1
3.5mm Headphone Jack
- 2 x 2W Stereo Speakers
DTS Audio Processing App
- 56WHr Battery
65W USB-C Charger
This is the Lustrous Gray colour option, the only shade this laptop is available in. Without a doubt, this is a well-built machine, not to mention, the looks are minimal and neat. And it is not just the looks, the Mi NoteBook Pro is a thin laptop that weighs about 1.4Kgs, making it extremely portable. So, keep this machine on the table and use it, or place it on your lap, either way, you should be just fine. Xiaomi has used Aluminium 6 series alloy for the construction, and the result here is solid. I also found the hinge to be sturdy and you can also open the lid with one hand, sweet. So, no loose-ends here, the fit and finish are top-notch and you get slim bezels across the screen.
Speaking of the screen, this is a 14” 60Hz QHD+ IPS LCD panel, it is anti-glare, has a 16:10 aspect ratio, gets bright up to 300 nits and it covers 100% of the sRGB colour gamut. Quality-wise, this is a gorgeous display, and since it’s an IPS panel, you can expect good colour reproduction. Although colour vibrancy could’ve been a tad better; but overall, it’s a fine display. I also found the viewing angles to be good despite it being an anti-glare screen. That said, in terms of brightness, while you should be okay using it indoors, don’t think of using it outdoors on a bright day, it doesn’t offer much there. There’s also a built-in 720p webcam and its quality is just like any other 720p webcam out there — average at best!
The Mi Notebook Pro comes with a couple of 2W bottom-firing stereo speakers, which sound okay, not great. I mean in terms of sound quality, they are good and you’re also getting the DTS Audio Processing app so you can actually tune the audio according to your preference. Basically, they should be fine for watching casual stuff or listening to songs when you’re in close range to the laptop. However, I was expecting a little more when it comes to the loudness.
Moving ahead, there’s a decent selection of ports on offer. On the left are two USB-C ports, with one of them featuring Thunderbolt 4 functionality, there’s an HDMI port, and a USB A port. On the right is a USB-A port along with a headphone jack. I would’ve loved to have an SD card slot here, but never mind.
Coming to the keyboard and trackpad, I quickly got accustomed to them. So the keyboard has scissor mechanism keys, they are backlit, there’s 1.3mm travel on offer, and yeah, a pretty good keyboard. I really enjoyed typing on it, and it more or less felt as if I was typing on my M1 MacBook Air. So, an excellent job here. Xiaomi has also added a macro button, which lets you launch a program or a file with a single click. Basically, it’s a shortcut key, and I absolutely appreciate this addition. And before I forget, the power button on this machine also doubles up as a fingerprint reader. As for the trackpad, again, it is slightly larger than my MacBook Air, it supports the Windows Precision Drivers, so clicks and gestures work absolutely fine, although I did find the buttons to be a little stiff for my liking.
For endurance, there’s a 56Whr battery under the hood, which comes with a 65W USB-C charger, and in terms of battery life, I was easily able to last about 8 hours on a single charge consistently, with screen brightness set at around 60-70%, and this should be enough for anyone to get through a working day.
Performance-wise, I didn’t come across any major hiccups or slowdowns. The presence of an NVMe SSD makes sure that everything from the boot times to the read and write speeds on this machine stay top-notch. And even when I did put this machine through its paces, i.e. say with two separate windows of Chrome running with around 12 tabs each, with My Computer minimised, Microsoft Teams running in the background, and a couple of other apps also loaded, the Mi Notebook Pro was able to handle things with ease, all while keeping the thermals in check, so that way, again good performance.
I even tried gaming on this machine, and while you shouldn’t expect this one to run high-end titles, casual games such as Valorant shouldn’t be an issue at all. I mean, I tried my hand at Valorant, and it ran just fine, with no issues. Although, the laptop did get significantly warm while gaming, so definitely keep that in mind.
Mi NoteBook Pro Verdict:
All in all, there’s a lot to like and very little to complain about with the Mi NoteBook Pro. For starters, the design and build are A+, the display is nice, the battery life is solid and the 11th Gen Tigerlake chip, coupled with 16 Gigs of RAM and fast SSD makes sure you get solid performance. Between the three variants on offer, I strongly recommend going for this particular mid-variant that I reviewed, I mean it makes the most sense when it comes to bang for the buck!
As for cons, while I found the audio quality to be fine, i.e. after manually tuning it, I really felt the loudness was not up to the mark. The built-in mic does an average job of cancelling the environmental noise. And this one might just be nitpicking, but I would’ve absolutely loved to have an SD card slot.
So, that was my review of the Mi NoteBook Pro. Let me know what you guys think of this machine in the comments below, and as always, for all the latest in tech, stay tuned to Mr Phone. Thank you for reading, have a pleasant day ahead! 🙂