Honor - Honor MagicBook


Honor MagicBook: essay transformed for the Chinese brand

Aprox. 860€

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Honor is entering the PC market with its first ultraportable, greatly inspired by Huawei's MateBook. A computer that we took care to pass through our different labs.

Our review


More known for its smartphones than for its PCs, the Honor brand, a subsidiary of Huawei, has unveiled its first ultraportable, the MagicBook. Largely inspired by Huawei's MateBook, it seeks to offer a less high-end, but still as correct, experience.

More than a variation of the MateBook, it is closer to a Chuwi Lapbook Air, which seeks to offer a computer similar to a MacBook Pro, but cheaper.


Apple has created a beauty canon for ultraportables and Honor is applying it here to copy it, without really looking for originality. With an aluminum chassis, the Honor has a hard time building a real visual personality. However, we must welcome a careful design, especially at the hood and edges.

Honor does not stray from his model in terms of design. We could note slightly more rounded angles than in competition, or very thick pads to raise the PC, which enhances comfort in use.

Last important point concerning the Honor MagicBook, it is supplied with a Chinese version of Windows 10. Some manipulations will then be necessary to change the language. Unconfirmed users will have to be careful and follow online tutorials (some are very well done) to put their MagicBook in the language of Molière.

Regarding the keyboard, Honor continues to take inspiration from Apple with extremely fine butterfly keys (almost as fine as on the new MacBook Pro) which require a little time to adapt. Once tamed, this short-stroke keyboard is however pleasant and the typing is silent. Apple inspiration also for the trackpad, very simple and with a very responsive mechanical click. Note that the idea of the webcam located under a key on the keyboard, like on the Huawei Matebook, was not repeated here.

Regarding connectivity, the Honor MagicBook is very flexible. In fact, it has a Thunderbolt 3-compatible USB type-C port, a USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0 port, an HDMI port and a mini-jack port. Only regret, the absence of SD card reader which is always a bonus on this type of product.

The MagicBook is equipped with a powerful Intel Core i7-8550H processor, giving off some heat. During our usual test protocol (Benchmark Unigine Heaven for one hour), the temperature rose to 46 degrees on the aluminum strip above the keyboard. Same observation under the PC. Difficulty under these conditions to work with such a machine on the knees. This heater is relatively high for an ultraportable, but logical given the integrated components. This is unfortunately not offset by a saving silence, since we have measured a noise of 45 dB (A). It is high, even if it is not deafening.

Honor delivers a very well constructed computer here. If the Magicbook is not yet at the level of the tenors of the market, Apple at the head (whose manufacturer is inspired by this product), it remains an interesting and pleasant product, despite some faults.


The Honor MagicBook is equipped with a 14.1-inch IPS matt panel with a definition of 1,920 x 1,080 px. The screen / facade ratio is relatively high, since it is 81.11%. Honor did her best to reduce the vertical edges of the screen, not the top edge. If the result is less impressive than a Dell XPS 13, for example, the thing is still pleasant.

Once passed in front of our probe, the slab reveals generally correct results, but also surprising weaknesses. Thus, the contrast increases to 1,284: 1, which allows a good vision of the shades of gray. The brightness can go up to 297 cd / m², a sufficient result for working outdoors. The measured temperature is excellent, since it reaches 6,453 K, very close to the ideal value of 6,500 K. We therefore benefit from a very balanced rendering.

The Achilles heel of this slab is however in the colors it displays. The Delta E average is 5.6. The color chart confirms this bad rating, thus showing greens, blues and purples displayed on the screen that are not very faithful to the original colors. A real weak point, especially for photographers. The remanence is correct for this type of PC, since it is 15 ms.


The Honor MagicBook has an Intel Core i7-8550U processor, very powerful for an ultraportable, supported by 8 GB of RAM. Note also the presence of a GeForce MX 150 graphics card, which is hardly more powerful than an Intel iGPU, but which will be enough to run some low-power games, such as Overwatch with a low graphics level.

During our usual test protocol (video, photo, audio compression, etc.), this variation of the Magicbook reached the index of 143 on our scale, making it one of the most powerful ultraportables on the market; it is thus placed alongside the Toshiba Portege Z30 professional PC or slightly above the Microsoft Surface Book 2. A computer that will therefore run software greedy in computation without any problem.

Mobility / Autonomy

For a 14 inch, the MagicBook remains relatively compact (32.2 x 22.1 x 1.58 cm), but is relatively heavy, since it weighs 1.4 kg. A weight offset by the size of the charger, barely larger than that of a phone and which makes the whole very mobile.

It is in terms of autonomy that the PC surprises. Indeed, during our usual test (Netflix in Chrome, brightness set to 200 cd / m², keyboard backlight off and headphones plugged in), this Magicbook, went out after 11 hours and 8 minutes, which makes it the most standalone Windows PC on the market, just after the HP Specter x360. A success on this point.


The Magicbook presents us with a very uneven audio part. Speakers, for starters, deliver very honorable benefits. They have the particularity of having openings both on the front, on the sides of the keyboard, and under the chassis. The domed shape of the latter allows the sound to diffuse widely on the sides of the PC, and thus to form a surprisingly wide and pleasant stereophony. As for the openings on the top, they make it possible to minimize the transmission of vibrations to the chassis, and thus to avoid any "box effect". The frequency response shows a notable peak between 800 and 1000 Hz, which gives a slightly nasal tone to the voices, but they remain perfectly intelligible and the timbres are clear. Even extra music listening is entirely possible.

Alas, the headphone jack seriously tarnishes the picture. Indeed, the Magicbook suffers from a very curious problem, probably software, which causes all the signal components located below 100 Hz to be polluted by an enormous parasitic distortion, thus creating a very unpleasant sound and making any measurement impossible. A headphone jack totally missed because of this concern.


Excellent PC overall, the MagicBook suffers from a few small errors of youth which unfortunately make a little spot. In addition to a headphone jack at the limit of the usable, the PC adopts a screen with colors not very faithful and its heat release could have been better controlled. But these shortcomings are offset by welcome qualities, such as great power, a classic, but effective design, as well as a very solid autonomy.