Meet the surface laptop 4. It looks the same as the surface of the laptop 3, which is only the surface of the laptop 2 which is slightly larger, a computer that is not too different from the original surface laptop. Get a picture? Not much has changed with the most traditional Microsoft PC path for years. It is always a minimalist exercise, with no luxurious screen of the entire surface family.
But in 2021, the simplicity almost made a surface 4 laptop look like a “norma” PC. It is especially true when you see competitors like Dell, HP and Asus, all of which have annoyed wild new designs. Just look at the screen bezel that is almost invisible around XPS 13, or a double zenbook duo display – they make a 4 surface laptop look really ancient.
So, if you haven’t guessed, I’m a little disappointed because Microsoft decided to keep the beach with this same look. But after using a 15-inch surface laptop 4 over the past week, I was warm for it. It feels faster and has a longer battery life than the previous model, and still has one of the best keyboards on the market. You also have a choice between Intel and AMD processors on a 13-inch model and 15 inches. Take it all along with a truly sturdy case and a feeling of premium, and you have ultraportable which I can recommend easily to anyone.
What really made me go around was to see how much AMD Ryzen 7 4980U accelerated everything. I can play overwatch at 1080p with high graphics settings smoothly more than 60fps, while surface 3 laptops can only do it with medium settings. You can thank Graphics Radeon innate for that. 4 laptops remain sharp even when I jammed with dozens of browser tabs, 4K videos and big game downloads. I only hope that Microsoft is able to enter the newer AMD 5000-series chip, which will be a bigger leap of performance. SSD Laptop 4 can also be faster, but at least it is something you can change on the phone.
Or, you can also complete the surface 4 laptop with a newer Intel 11th generation CPU. The chips have managed to impress us on other laptops, so they might be a better choice for future checks – just be prepared to pay a little more. Hardware 4000-series AMD is one year old, so the Ryzen Laptop 4 processor may feel outdated far faster. However, however, you will get a computer that is fast enough.
Thanks to updated hardware, Microsoft can also correct one of the biggest weaknesses of the laptop surface 3: battery life. The machine only reached seven hours and 50 minutes in our battery test, which was far less than 16 hours the uptime time we saw on a 13-inch surface laptop 2. This model is managed for 15 hours and a memorable 25 minutes. It’s two hours less than Microsoft’s claim. In real world performance, I can do it for about 10 hours before the 4 laptop requires refills. The combination of speed and battery life makes a surface laptop 4 solid alternatives for the M3 M1 Apple (which is basically what I judge all ultraportables against these days).
As much as I want to see Microsoft change everything, the design of aluminum aluminum laptop surface 4 still feels quite luxurious to go to to-toe with Apple hardware. Our matte black review unit almost seemed to absorb in light, and handle it felt like stroking BMW with my fingertips. (I can’t be the only person who does that, right?) The bigger 4 laptop does not offer Alcantara Palm located like a 13-inch model, but I don’t mind putting my wrist on the fine metal.
Mostly, it was because I was too focused on the phenomenal laptop keyboard 4. After reviewing so many notebooks for years, I was used to a shallow and unsatisfactory typing experience. But again, Microsoft has managed to give something almost perfect, with deep and responsive key trips, and luxurious layout. Every time I sit in front of a 4 laptop, I almost feel compelled to type only for a little sweet sweet key action. Trackpad is also solid, but it’s the most keyboard I will miss when I send this review unit back.
I will be sad to see a 15-inch pixelsense screen too. It doesn’t change at all because of the surface of the laptop 3, but it’s still brave, bright and offers a very good touch screen responsive. I was still more impressed with the XPS screen equipped with Dolby’s vision, but it did not support accessories such as surface pen.
Now you will think that with a large screen, 4 surface laptops will feel big enough. But it weighs only 3.4 pounds, significantly less than the 15-inch MacBook Pro (4 pounds) or XPS 15 (4.5 pounds). Maybe a little unfair to compare 4 surface laptops to the machine with more larger hardware, but Microsoft’s technique still feels amazing. Moving the 4 laptop around my house it felt as easy as the 13-inch ultraportable toting.
And really, the cheerful vibration is my biggest takeaway after testing the surface laptop 4. This is a fast and sturdy PC, you don’t need to think too much about it. No need to optimize graphical settings or tweak fan speeds. And the battery life is very good, you don’t need to worry about billing too often. It’s a Windows laptop that only works – imagine it.
That doesn’t mean it’s perfect. I want to see more than two ports on this, but at least Microsoft gives you both USB Type-A and USB-C. You can also charge USB-C, just like some of the last surface devices. But the company still relies on the exclusive surface connected to its official power adapter, as well as accessories such as pier. And once again, there is no support for the Speedy Intel Thunderbolt interface, which means you will not see full performance of some external hard drives. You will not be able to plug the external GPU at all, but I think it surpasses the realm of typical surface laptop buyers.
Real question for most buyers: Should you get a surface 4 laptop above M1 MacBook Pro, or the latest Dell XPS device? I think everything comes to what you value the most. Apple’s M1 hardware still feels the X86 chips, and they run so cool, you don’t need to worry about a lot of fan noise. But if you want to run a Windows application, you are less fortunate with the M1 device. Personally, I will choose XPS 13 and 15 on both laptop surfaces 4, but Microsoft shows a strong one.
Even the $ 1,000 base model is well equipped, with 5 Ryzen and 8GB RAM chips. It was a better deal than the cheapest Dell XPS 13, which is currently worth $ 950, but has a low Intel i3 processor and weak integrated graphics. 15 inch 4 surface laptop starts from $ 1,300 with Ryzen 7 CPU and 8GB RAM, but you have to spend $ 1,700 to increase to 16GB of RAM and SSD 512GB. No matter what computer you consider, it’s good to jump for 16GB of RAM if you can – you will thank me in a few months.
You can see surface laptops 4 as a statement by Microsoft. No need to follow every single trend in the PC market, not when it already has very capable hardware. And when you see how solid laptops are 4, I can see why the company made that choice. I just hope Microsoft is a little less conservative with the next model. Sometimes, it’s okay to show off a little.