Skip to main content

The Framework laptop is officially Thunderbolt 4 certified

Framework laptops are officially Thunderbolt 4 certified after going through a rigorous Intel testing process. While you may have assumed they had Thunderbolt 4 before today, the truth is Framework did not have official certification despite having Thunderbolt-capable input/output (I/O).

There are four (yes, four) Thunderbolt 4-capable expansion bays on these laptops. Once you get the Framework firmware update, you’ll be cruising with dual 4K monitors, eGPUs, and other fun peripherals.

A Framework laptop upside down with two hands holding it and the USB ports unscrewed
Image courtesy of Framework

“We’ve built in all of the necessary hardware (retimers, USB-PD controllers, power circuitry, and connectors) to be able to support both USB4 and Thunderbolt 4,” Framework said in a blog post on the company’s website. “In practice, we’ve seen community members using Thunderbolt and USB4 docks and eGPU enclosures successfully anyway, but we wanted to be sure to make support official.”

Thunderbolt 4 is the latest generation of this incredibly complicated technology, first started by Apple and Intel in 2011. Thunderbolt 4 allows a data bandwidth of up to 40 Gbps and Ethernet speeds of up to 10 Gbps through a USB Type-C port.

One of the biggest breakthroughs with the new Thunderbolt 4 technology is the ability to daisy chain multiple Thunderbolt 4 peripherals together. This means you can run two 4K monitors through one port, whereas the previous-generation Thunderbolt 3 required each monitor to have its own connection to the computer.

It also means you won’t lose data speeds over longer cables. For example, you can maintain 40 Gbps through a 2-meter cable, whereas Thunderbolt 3 started to slow down with anything longer than 0.5 meters.

All of this means your Framework laptop just became even more of a powerhouse than it already was.

We’ve written about Framework before. These laptops finally offer something to disrupt the stale Windows laptop market. Not only does Framework encourage you to repair and upgrade your own laptop (a screwdriver is even included in the package), but it comes with 12th-gen Intel CPUs and integrated Iris Xe graphics.

This fully upgradable, modular-designed laptop looks and feels great. Official Thunderbolt 4 certification across four expandable ports turns it into one of the most capable Windows laptops you can buy.

Editors' Recommendations

Nathan Drescher
Nathan Drescher is a freelance journalist and writer from Ottawa, Canada. He's been writing about technology from around the…
I took my son shopping for his first school laptop. Here’s what surprised me
A young man using the HP 14-Inch 2-in-1 Chromebook.

My son began second grade this past September, and his school issued him an old, beat-up Chromebook to his backpack as his first laptop. Unacceptable! As a tech writer, I could not settle for what the school was offering. So, I did what any tech nerd dad would do and took my boy shopping for a new Chromebook.

But as I quickly learned, the world of Chromebooks can be dizzying. If I was going to find the right option for my kid, I'd need to check my own tech knowledge and preferences at the door.

Read more
MSI might have the ultimate mini-LED laptop display at CES 2023
MSI GT77 Titan with the Digital Trends website up sitting on a table.

MSI is taking laptop displays to a new level at CES 2023, and it might have the sector cornered for a while. Ahead of CES, MSI announced the updated Titan GT77 HX which comes with the first mini-LED 4K 144Hz display in a laptop, and it boasts some insane specs.

If a 4K mini-LED laptop display at 144Hz isn't enough, the screen also comes with VESA's DisplayHDR 1,000 certification. That means it can reach 1,000 nits of peak brightness. MSI also says it comes with a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, which is on the level of screens like the Alienware 34 QD-OLED, and in a laptop at that.

Read more
The ROG Zephyrus G14 infuriates me, but it’s still my favorite gaming laptop of 2022
Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 2023 front view showing display and keyboard deck.

Gaming laptops are antithetical to how I play games, and despite my best efforts, I've never had great luck with them. That's why I sold my 2019 Razer Blade 15 to buy a Steam Deck early in the year.

But after a few months without a dedicated machine for traveling and working on-the-go, I took the plunge again with the 2022 Asus ROG Zephyrus G14, and it completely changed my relationship with gaming laptops. Despite the roller coaster of problems, and even cycling through a few different units, I still use the G14 every day.
Honeymoon phase

Read more