Microsoft Surface Comparison: The Laptop or 2-in-1 Hybrid That’s Right for You

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Microsoft’s Surface line of devices is undoubtedly some of the best Windows hardware on the market today. They are known for their impressive hybrid design, where you will be able to use them like a traditional laptop or a tablet. Now, there are a lot of different Surface designs that fit different types of users with varying budgets.

What separates the Surface devices from others is their innovative design from the iconic kickstand to the detachable keyboards. These devices are definitely going to provide you with the ultimate Windows experience in a thin and light form factor.

There is undeniably a diversity of models here, and one of the problems with a lot of options in selecting the best one. We have sorted out through the many types of Surface devices available on the market to help you pick out the best one.

Surface Pro

Microsoft’s Surface Pro line of devices is a high-end 2-in-1 detachable PC that is extremely versatile, allowing you to do more than consume content, surf the web, and send emails. These are lightweight devices that can help you with your productivity and entertainment.

You can use the Surface Pro line in a variety of ways. The first one is the Laptop Mode, where you can attach a kickstand and keyboard and use it just like any portable device. It comes in handy when you want to type a lot of things and improve your productivity.

Using the Surface Pro line, you can also unleash your creativity by using Studio Mode. Lower the kickstand, and the device settles into an angle that is suitable for writing, drawing, or editing using the Surface Pen.

Lastly, you can transform it all together to a tablet by detaching the kickstand and keyboard, allowing you to have an extremely portable device in your hands.

Build and Design

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
Dimensions287 x 208 x 7.3 mm292 x 201 x 8.5 mm292 x 201 x 8.5 mm292 x 201 x 8.5 mm
Build MaterialAnodized
Aluminum
Unibody
Magnesium
Unibody
Magnesium
Unibody
Magnesium
Weight774 g790 g784 g768 g
PriceCHECK PRICE
$1,299
CHECK PRICE
$1,149
CHECK PRICE
$1,199
CHECK PRICE
$799

Display

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
Display13” PixelSense™
Display
12.3” PixelSense™
Display
12.3” PixelSense™
Display
12.3” PixelSense™
Display
Resolution2880 x 1920
(267 PPI)
2736 x 1824
(267 PPI)
2736 x 1824
(267 PPI)
2736 x 1824
(267 PPI)
Aspect Ratio3:23:23:23:2
Touchscreen10 point multi-touch10 point multi-touch10 point multi-touch10 point multi-touch

Hardware Specs

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
MemoryUp to 16GB
LPDDR4x RAM
Up to 16GB
LPDDR4x RAM
Up to 16GB DDR4
RAM
Up to 16GB DDR4
RAM
ProcessorMicrosoft® SQ1™Up to 10th Gen
Intel® Core™ i7-
1065G7 Processor
Intel® Core™ 8th
Gen i7-8650U
Intel® Core™ 7th-
Gen Core i7
StorageRemovable SSD up
to 512 GB
Solid-state drive up
to 1 TB
Solid-state drive up
to 1 TB
Solid-state drive up
to 1 TB
Battery LifeUp to 13 hoursUp to 10.5 hoursUp to 13 hoursUp to 13.5 hours
GraphicsAdreno™ 685 GPUIntel® Iris™ Plus
Graphics
Intel® UHD
Graphics 620
Intel® Iris™ Plus
Graphics 640

Input and Output Ports

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
USB-C PortsTwo (2)One (1)NoneNone
USB-A PortsNoneOne (1)NoneOne (1)
Headphone JackNone3.5 mm3.5 mm3.5 mm
SD Card ReaderNoneMicroSDXCMicroSDXCMicroSDXC
SIM CardNano SIMNoneNoneNone

Audio and Video

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
Windows HelloYESYESYESYES
Front CameraYES, 5.0 MegapixelYES, 5.0 MegapixelYES, 5.0 MegapixelYES, 5.0 Megapixel
Rear CameraYES, 10 MegapixelYES, 10 MegapixelYES, 8.0 MegapixelYES, 8.0 Megapixel
MicrophoneDual far-field
Studio Mics
Dual far-field
Studio Mics
Dual MicrophonesDual Microphones
Speakers2 W Stereo1.6 W Stereo1.6 W Stereo1.6 W Stereo

Connectivity

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
Wi-FiYES, Wi-Fi 5YES, Wi-Fi 6YESYES
BluetoothBluetooth 5.0Bluetooth 5.0Bluetooth 4.1Bluetooth 4.1
LTEYESNoneNoneYES

Sensors

Surface Pro XSurface Pro 7Surface Pro 6Surface Pro
AccelerometerYESYESYESYES
GyroscopeYESYESYESYES
MagnetometerYESYESNoneNone
Ambient LightYESYESYESYES

Surface Laptop

Microsoft’s Surface Laptop is not your usual Surface device. It is not one that you would expect since it does not come with the typical features like the kickstand and detachable keyboard. The Surface Laptop line of products is simply that a clamshell design that is similar to what you expect from a portable computer.

One advantage that you get with the Surface Laptop is the extra power that is packed into the hardware with the latest high-performance processor. It also comes with removable storage in the form of a solid state drive.

The Surface Laptop is designed to maximize your productivity with improved speed and better battery life, allowing you to focus on your work rather than your hardware.

Build and Design

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
Dimensions339.5 x 244 x 14.69
mm
308.1 x 223.27 x
14.48 mm
Build MaterialAluminumAluminum
Weight1,542 g1,283 g
PriceCHECK PRICE
$1,499
CHECK PRICE
$1,299

Display

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
Display13.5” PixelSense™
Display
13.5” PixelSense™
Display
Resolution2256 x 1504 (201
PPI)
2256 x 1504 (201
PPI)
Aspect Ratio3:23:2
Touchscreen10 point multi-touch10 point multi-touch

Hardware Specs

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
MemoryUp to 32 GB DDR4
RAM
Up to 16 GB DDR4
RAM
ProcessorUp to 10th Gen
Intel® Core™ i7-
1065G7 Processor
8th Gen Intel®
Core™ i5 or i7
Processor
StorageRemovable SSD up
to 1 TB
Solid state drive up
to 1 TB
Battery LifeUp to 11.5 hoursUp to 14.5 hours
GraphicsIntel® Iris™ Plus
Graphics
Intel® UHD
Graphics 620

Input and Output Ports

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
USB-C PortsOne (1)None
USB-A PortsOne (1)One (1)
Headphone Jack3.5 mm3.5 mm
SD Card ReaderNoneNone
SIM CardNoneNone

Audio and Video

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
Windows HelloYESYES
Front CameraYESYES
Rear CameraNoneNone
MicrophoneDual far-field
Studio Mics
Stereo microphones
SpeakersOmnisonic SpeakersOmnisonic Speakers

Connectivity

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
Wi-FiYES, Wi-Fi 6YES
BluetoothBluetooth 5.0Bluetooth 4.1
LTENoneNone

Sensors

Surface Laptop 3Surface Laptop 2
AccelerometerNoneNone
GyroscopeNoneNone
MagnetometerNoneNone
Ambient LightYESYES

Surface Book and Go

Both Microsoft’s Surface Book and Go could not be more similar than they are different. Both these Surface devices have 2-in-1 capabilities where you can use them as either a tablet or a laptop. The main difference between the two is in the hardware that they carry.

The Surface Book line is one of the most powerful Surface devices. They come with dedicated graphics allowing you to take your productivity to the next level. Even though it does come with added power, battery life is not compromised, and you will still be able to get decent usage out of them.

With the Surface Book line, you can use it for your gaming needs, thanks to the discrete graphics it comes with. This is a device for the power user who wants to maximize productivity and convert it to a tablet in a pinch.

The Surface Go, on the other hand, is an excellent all-around device that will take care of your daily tasks either in laptop or tablet mode. Attach the keyboard, and you can type up emails and documents quickly or use it as a tablet and watch your favorite videos. It is ultra-portable and comes with mobile connectivity options allowing you to take advantage of fast LTE networks.

Build and Design

Surface Book 2Surface Go
Dimensions343 x 251 x 23 mm245 x 175 x 8.3 mm
Build MaterialMagnesiumMagnesium
Weight1,905 g532g
PriceCHECK PRICE
$2,899
CHECK PRICE
$549

Display

Surface Book 2Surface Go
Display15” PixelSense™
Display
10” PixelSense™
Display
Resolution3240 x 2160
(260 PPI)
1800 x 1200
(217 PPI)
Aspect Ratio3:23:2
Touchscreen10 point multi-touch10 point multi-touch

Hardware Specs

Surface Book 2Surface Go
MemoryUp to 16GB RAM
LPDDR3
Up to 8GB RAM
ProcessorUp to 8th Gen
Intel® Core™ i7-
8650U
Intel® Pentium®
Gold Processor
4415Y
StorageSolid state drive
(SSD) up to 1 TB
Solid state drive
(SSD) up to 128 GB
Battery LifeUp to 9 hoursUp to 17 hours
Integrated
Graphics
Intel® HD Graphics
620 integrated
Intel® HD Graphics
615
Dedicated
Graphics
NVIDIA®
GeForce® GTX
1060 discrete
None

Input and Output Ports

Surface Book 2Surface Go
USB-C PortsOne (1)One (1)
USB-A PortsTwo (2)None
Headphone Jack3.5 mm3.5 mm
SD Card ReaderSDXCMicroSDXC
SIM CardNoneNone

Audio and Video

Surface Book 2Surface Go
Windows HelloYESYES
Front CameraYES, 5.0 MegapixelYES, 5.0 Megapixel
Rear CameraYES, 8.0 MegapixelYES, 8.0 Megapixel
MicrophoneDual MicrophonesSingle Microphone
SpeakersFront-facing Stereo
Speakers
2 W Stereo
Speakers

Connectivity

Surface Book 2Surface Go
Wi-FiYESYES
BluetoothBluetooth 4.1Bluetooth 4.1
LTENoneNone

Sensors

Surface Book 2Surface Go
AccelerometerYESYES
GyroscopeYESYES
MagnetometerYESYES
Ambient LightYESYES
Proximity SensorYESNone

Surface Studio

The Surface Studio is an all-in-one desktop PC that is for creatives and professionals. It comes with a large 28-inch display that you can use in several ways apart from the usual standing configuration. The Surface Studio has excellent support for the Surface Pen allowing you to use it as a stylus for any of your creative workflows.

The base can be folded and swiveled, allowing you to set the display at an angle most comfortable for you while you grab the Surface Pen and start drawing.

The Surface Studio is not what you expect from a Surface model. Since it is targeting professionals and creatives that will use it for a lot of different activities like video and graphics editing and production, then it needs that extra size to pack in that additional hardware.

Definitely one of the most powerful Surface out there, but it is not as portable and versatile as other smaller and handier models. However, if you are an artist, video professional, or illustrator, this is excellent hardware that you can use to improve the way you work.

Build and Design

Surface Studio 2
Dimensions637.35 x 438.90 x
12.50 mm
Weight9.56 kg
PriceCHECK PRICE
$4,199

Display

Surface Studio 2
Display28” PixelSense™
Display
Resolution4500 x 3000
(192 PPI)
Color SettingssRGB, DCI-P3, and
Vivid Individually
color-calibrated display
Aspect Ratio3:2
Touchscreen10 point multi-touch

Hardware Specs

Surface Studio 2
MemoryUp to 32 GB DDR4
RAM
ProcessorIntel® Core™ i7-
7820HQ
StorageSolid state drive
(SSD) up to 2 TB
Integrated
Graphics
Intel® HD Graphics
630
Dedicated
Graphics
Up to NVIDIA®
GeForce® GTX
1070 8GB GDDR5

Audio and Video

Surface Studio 2
Windows HelloYES
Front CameraYES, 5.0 Megapixel
MicrophoneDual Microphones
Speakers2.1 Stereo Speakers

Connectivity

Surface Studio 2
Wi-FiYES
BluetoothBluetooth 4.1
LTENone

The Best Microsoft Surface

Best All-Around Surface – MICROSOFT SURFACE LAPTOP 3

MICROSOFT SURFACE LAPTOP 3

Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 3 is not as stylish compared to other devices in its line that are flexible and can be used in a lot of ways. Still, it is undoubtedly one of the more powerful ones. If what you need is a clamshell laptop and do not need a tablet mode, this is the device for you.

It does not have kickstands and magnetic keyboard covers that are common add-ons on other Surface devices, but they do not necessarily work well in all situations. This is one of the reasons why the Surface Laptop 3 is the best all-around device for most users. It is definitely not a tablet or a 2-in-1, but it is a really great laptop.

The laptop comes in two sizes, starting with a 13.5-inch model and a 15-inch one. Both come with a high-resolution display, an improved keyboard, and a responsive trackpad. There are a few places where the Surface Laptop 3 is skimping a bit, like the I/O ports, but you do get both USB-C and USB-A giving you options. It also comes with a magnetic port for charging that is perfect if you always trip on your cord all the time.

One of the most notable additions to the Surface Laptop family is the 15-inch model, which uses AMD’s latest Ryzen chips. These chips give the laptop better battery efficiency without sacrificing power, giving it the best of both worlds in terms of performance and battery life. It is not going to be your device of choice if you are a heavy power user. Still, it does have plenty of grunt for your everyday computing needs, even some light video editing.

The Surface Laptop 3 is the perfect device for students, writers, bloggers, and on-the-go professionals since it comes with a pretty robust keyboard for typing.

It may not be the design that you expect from a Microsoft Surface device with detachable keyboards, and it is also on the pricier side. However, if you are looking for a robust and versatile machine for your productivity needs, this is an excellent laptop.

MICROSOFT SURFACE LAPTOP 3
✔ Slim and lightweight chassis
✔ Attractive metal design
✔ Bright and vivid display
✔ Loud and clear speakers
CHECK PRICE
$1,499

Best 2-in-1 Surface – MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO 7

MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO 7

The Microsoft Surface Pro 7, after all these years, still comes with the original design with a kickstand and keyboard cover. The Surface Pro line is a 2-in-1 mobile device that blurs the distinction between a tablet and a traditional clamshell laptop. It is somewhere in between where you can use it both ways.

The latest version of the Surface Pro line comes in a variety of configurations, and each one of those come with the newest 10th generation Intel chips with improved 12.3-inch high-resolution touchscreens with a 3:2 aspect ratio.

Additionally, you also get the I/O ports that you would expect from a 2-in-1 device like a USB-A port, magnetic charging port, MicroSD slot, and a Windows Hello compatible webcam. It also comes with a USB-C port giving you some input flexibility allowing you to connect more devices like your phone to the Surface Pro 7. However, even with the latest USB-C port, it does not support Intel’s Thunderbolt 3 technology.

All these are improvements from the previous iterations and are welcome additions to the Surface Pro line. This time around, it comes with a bit more power with a configuration boasting an Intel Core i5. Making it a perfect device for the on-the-go professional who is looking for a lightweight alternative to their laptop.

You can surely use the Surface Pro 7 as a laptop, and it offers better portability. However, it may not be the device of choice for power users who are looking to use their device for more intensive tasks.

MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO 7
✔ Is equipped with a USB-C port
✔ Now has Wi-Fi 6
✔ Mobile and versatile device
CHECK PRICE
$799

Best Surface for Students – MICROSOFT SURFACE GO

MICROSOFT SURFACE GO

If you are looking for a much simpler system that is capable of running your light compute needs, Microsoft’s Surface Go is the right device for you. It is the most affordable and smallest member of the Surface family equipped with a 10-inch display that should be enough as long as you have minimal needs. Its size also lends to its portability, so you can surely bring this anywhere with you.

Since it is small, it does come with significantly slower chips. However, it does have other features that make it stand out from the rest of the Surface family of devices. The most notable one is its Surface Pen compatibility, which can come in handy for note-taking. Attach a Type Cover, and you have a small laptop that performs surprisingly well.

It is not the most powerful device in the market, with some tablets coming with better computing power and battery life. However, it is a good enough machine for students or those looking for a decent second computer.

There are a couple of configurations for the Surface Go, but if you are looking for an overall decent device. Make sure to go for the $549 version as it comes with better capacity storage and memory, allowing you much smoother operation.

The Microsoft Surface Go is an ideal machine for your browsing, social media, email, and content consumption needs. This makes it the perfect device for students who do not really require the extra power for their daily computing needs.

MICROSOFT SURFACE GO
✔ Faster than most budget laptops
✔ Windows Hello facial recognition support
✔ Comfortable keyboard and touchpad
✔ A bright and colorful display
CHECK PRICE
$549

Best Surface for Travel – MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO X

MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO X

Looking at the Surface Pro X, you might think that it is merely a tablet with a kickstand. It comes with all the necessities like the Type Cover and the Surface Pen so you can enjoy its full features right away.

The most notable feature of the Surface Pro X is its impressive battery life. Among the different Surface devices, this is the one with the best battery life rated at 13 hours of use. This is the perfect machine if you are a regular traveler and always spend most of your time in aircraft cabins bringing work or your own set of entertainment options.

One of the components that are generally new to the Surface Pro X is Microsoft’s proprietary processor, the SQ1. It is a chip made in partnership with Qualcomm giving it up to 3 GHz of power and built-in graphics that are capable of two teraflops. It is certainly enough for most tasks, especially if you are using it more as a tablet for multimedia and light productivity work.

It comes with two USB-C ports, a microSIM card slot for LTE, and a headphone jack. It does not have a USB-A port, but as a tablet, you do not really need it since you will not be plugging in a USB storage device to it.

The Microsoft Surface Pro X is more of a mobile device rather than a PC with tablet capabilities. You do get the keyboard and pen all bundled up, so you do get these additions at no extra cost. The impressive battery life allows it to get through the workday or a long flight without having to plug it in to charge.

MICROSOFT SURFACE PRO X
✔ Incredible lightweight and versatile
✔ Impressive 13-hour battery life
✔ microSIM slot for LTE connectivity
CHECK PRICE
$959

Best Surface for Power Users – MICROSOFT SURFACE BOOK 2

MICROSOFT SURFACE BOOK 2

There is only one Surface device with a dedicated graphics card, and that is the Surface Book 2. With the added discrete graphics, it allows you to boost core performance and to speed up intensive tasks like video editing and even gaming.

You might think that the Surface Book 2 is a traditional clamshell-type laptop. Still, it will surprise you since its screen quickly undocks from the keyboard allowing you to use it as a tablet. This feature is extremely useful when you are watching movies or taking notes using the Surface Pen.

The Surface Book 2 comes in two configurations, with a smaller 13.5-inch one and a much larger 15.6-inch version making these a direct competitor to Apple’s Macbook series. Powered by Intel’s latest Core i5 and i7 processors, the Surface Book 2 also comes with an optional Nvidia 10-series chip that is embedded inside the keyboard. You get excellent performance for an incredibly handy device that you will be able to bring with you anywhere.

You also get the usual suite of added features like Windows Hello, high-resolution display, backlit keyboard, and an impressive trackpad. These features will allow you to do your work as smoothly as possible. It is the best Surface device on the market, and the extensibility that it offers is impressive as you can use it both ways.

If you are looking for a high-powered device to handle intensive productivity tasks and gaming, you can simply use it as a laptop with the keyboard on. After working, you can detach it and watch some movies, just like a tablet.

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 is a high-performance device that is versatile and lightweight, allowing you to use it in just about any situation. It is an excellent device for on-the-move video editors, vloggers, and other professionals that needs flexibility with the power.

MICROSOFT SURFACE BOOK 2
✔ Excellent battery life
✔ Impressive stylus support
✔ Brilliant and clear display
✔ Innovative and robust design and build
✔ Designed for power users
CHECK PRICE
$2,899

The Right Surface for Your Needs

There is certainly a lot of variety when it comes to Surface devices, and it seems that Microsoft has covered all the bases, so there is conceivably one for just about any type of user. From the on-the-go professional to those who want a bit of power for their creative projects, there is a right mix of versatility and portability among Surface devices.

The Surface Laptop 3 might be the best all-around machine, but it does not mean that it is the right one for you. You might not be inclined to use its traditional clamshell design since you want one with a bit more flexibility where you will be able to use it as a tablet. If that is the case, you can surely check one from the Surface Pro line, where the 2-in-1 feature is definitely welcome.

If you are looking for a bit more power, a machine that can handle some creative tasks, then Microsoft also offers the Surface Book 2. It comes with a dedicated graphics card that can make short work of your pending tasks and even do a bit of gaming.

As for the price, these different Surface devices come at different tiers. Some are for professionals, and they do come at a premium. However, there are also devices that are more affordable that are perfect for students and those who want a laptop and tablet hybrid without breaking the bank.

Wrap Up

One of the best aspects of the Surface line of products is the diversity. You do have a lot of choices from a performance and budget standpoint. There is a good chance that you can find the perfect device for your needs.