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Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio Review: Windows 11 on a Pedestal

In releasing its most powerful, flexible Surface ever, Microsoft has built a device that’s a celebration of Windows 11. The Surface Laptop Studio ($1,599.99 to start, $2,699.99 as tested) switches between a laptop and a drawing tablet, with a display mode in between.

The Surface Book, with its detachable screen, is no more. The Laptop Studio puts its non-detachable screen on a hinge that lets the 14.4-inch display pitch forward or lean back, depending on if you’re typing, watching video or sketching. The 120 Hz screen is smooth, fast and works with Microsoft’s new Surface Slim Pen 2 ($129.99).

The move away from the detachable Book design means that Microsoft can use more powerful processors. And for the first time, we’re seeing an H-series Intel processor in a Microsoft device, in the form of a “Tiger Lake H35” Intel Core i7-11370H. However, some of the best ultrabooks still offer more power in both clamshell and convertible form factors. 

Design of the Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio

At first glance, the Surface Laptop Studio looks to be an ordinary laptop. Microsoft uses a magnesium and aluminum enclosure with a reflective Microsoft logo on the lid. The big giveaway that anything is special here is that the logo is on the lower third, beneath a line that’s actually the hinge that lets the Surface move into a few different positions. It’s not beautiful, but it’s not offensive, and I’ll take function over form.

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(Image credit: techy’s points)
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Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio

(Image credit: techy’s points)

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