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Which is better, and how do you choose between the Surface Pro 8 and the Surface Laptop Studio? This guide is for you. Microsoft has just released both devices, and we''ve reviewed them, and both are impressive enough to contend with the competition in our rankings for the best 2-in-1 laptops you can buy.
Now that both the Surface Pro 8 and Surface Laptop Studio are available (alongside Windows 11), it''s time to figure out which one fits your budget most. Each is designed to double as a fantastic digital canvas, and they''re the only two devices that currently support the latest haptic feedback features of the Microsoft Surface Slim Pen 2.
If you''re having trouble getting to choose which to buy, then look for the Surface Pro 8 vs Surface Laptop Studio.
Price and availability for Surface Pro 8 vs Surface Laptop Studio
Both Surface devices are currently available to order after their October 4th release date. The Surface Pro 8 is for $1,099 (opens in a new tab) and includes an additional $179 for the tablet that has been detachable, as well as $129 for the new Surface Slim Pen 2 stylus.
The Surface Laptop Studio, which costs $1,599 starting, is also available on its new tab, as well as a few optional accessories you can select. The $129 Surface Slim Pen 2 is available on devices that support the Pro 8 and the Laptop Studio for the first time.
So you should expect to pay more for the Laptop Studio, but you should also get more: the laptop Studio costs $500 more than the base Pro 8, but it has a slightly bigger screen, which doubles the RAM and storage space. And if you''re willing to pay up to $2,099 for the Laptop Studio, you may get a model that is equipped with a Core i7 processor and a discrete Nvidia GeForce GPU. That''s enough power to function as a decent gaming laptop, according
Surface Pro 8 vs Surface Laptop Studio: Specs
|Surface Pro 8||Surface Pro Studio|
|Price||from $1,099||from $1,599|
|Display||13-inch 60 - 120 Hz touchscreen (2880 x 1920 pixels)||14.4-inch 120Hz touchscreen (2,400 x 1,600 pixels)|
|CPU||11th Gen Intel Core i5-i7||11th Gen Intel Core i5-i7|
|Graphics||Intel Iris Xe Graphics||Iris Xe (i5 model), GeForce RTX 3050 Ti (i7 model)|
|RAM||8-32 GB||16-32 GB|
|Storage||128-256 GB (LTE), 128 GB - 1TB (Wi-fi only)||256 GB-2 TB SSD|
|Ports||2 x Thunderbolt 4/USB 4, Surface Connect port, 3.5mm headphone jack, Surface Type Cover port||2 x USB 4/Thunderbolt 4, 3.5mm headphone jack, Surface Connect port|
|Size||11.3 x 8.2 x 0.37 inches||12.7 x 9.0 x 0.7 inches|
|Weight||1.96 pounds||3.83 lbs (i5 model), 4 lbs (i7 model)|
Design of Surface Pro 8 against Surface Laptop Studio
Both the Surface Pro 8 and the Surface Laptop Studio can function as both a Windows 11 tablet and laptop, but only the Surface Laptop Studio can do that out of the box. When you attach the Pro 8 as a laptop, it''s almost $200 more easier to use, as long as we have an encounter with the Surface Pro 7, which is quite a risk.
Microsoft appears to have improved the Surface Pro 8''s design in modest but meaningful ways. It''s about the same size as the Pro 7, and a 13-inch display, which is a minor improvement from the 12.3-inch screen in the Pro 7, but it''s also more likely to add additional external monitors, including 4K models.
The Surface Laptop Studio is a bit larger and heavier than the Pro 8, but it also has a larger screen, and its striking sliding hinge design allows you to slide the screen over the keyboard to transform it into a (thick) Windows 11 tablet. Plus, if you like the idea of using your tablet like an easel, you may slide the screen roughly halfway down (into what Microsoft calls "stage mode") so it can tilt the screen at a 45-degree angle, which may be a more comfortable way to use the
The Laptop Studio''s design isn''t much different from the Pro 8, because it also offers a pair of Thunderbolt 4 and USB4 Type-C ports for carrying out external devices. Both Surface devices also have headphone jacks and Surface Connect ports, which are used for charging.
The Surface Pro 8 is thinner and lighter than the Surface Laptop Studio, which is 11.3 x 8.2 x 0.4 inches and is built on 0.7 ounces, but when one tablet is used, the other is a fully-fledged tablet. This means that you may either get the portability of the Surface Pro 8 or the multi-functionality and complete computing experience of the Surface Laptop Studio.
Draw with the Winner
The Surface Pro 8''s design is for about $500 less than the Laptop Studio. At this point, you''ll need $179 to equip the Pro 8 with its detachable keyboard, which allows you to pay higher prices. Plus, the Studio has a larger screen and a decent sliding hinge design that we can''t wait to test out for ourselves.
Displaying Surface Pro 8 against Surface Laptop Studio
The Pro 8 is a bright choice when it comes to display features such as a 13-inch touchscreen with a 3:2 aspect ratio and a nearly 3K resolution (2880 x 1920 pixels) that delivers 267 pixels per inch. In Windows 11, the ability to switch the screen between 60Hz and 120Hz should be somewhat eased, given that the screen can only respond to input as quickly as it can display a new image.
The Surface Laptop Studio gets even brighter at 487.2 nits while the Surface Pro 8''s display hits 452.8 nits. Perhaps it''s not surprising that the color outputs are quite significant.
The Surface Laptop Studio has a wider 14.4 inch touchscreen with a 3:2 aspect ratio, but a lower resolution (26x16) that has just 201 pixels-per-inch. It has the capability to run some games at framerates higher than 60fps if you configure it with a discrete Nvidia GeForce GPU, and those 60-plus framerates should look real nice.
The Laptop Studio has a larger display than the Pro 8, but it does have a less resolution and will not yield quite the same fidelity as the Pro 8 and its 267ppi pixels. However, if you configure it to double as a decent gaming laptop, the laptop may benefit from this option.
Performance of Surface Pro 8 vs. Surface Laptop Studio
The Surface Laptop Studio is outshining the Surface Pro 8 if you''re willing to pay for the finest components. We tested a high-end laptop studio with an 11th Gen H-series Intel Core i7-11370H processor, 32GB of RAM, and Intel Iris Xe Graphics.
While the specs might make you think the Laptop Studio would win for a clear victory, most of its victories are that well defined. On the Geekbench 5 general performance benchmark''s multi-core test, the Surface Laptop Studio''s Pro 5,820 beat the Surface Pro 8, 5,347. And that''s the closest the Surface Pro 8 came to its pricier counterpart.
Our in-house file copy testing indicated that the Surface Laptop Studio''s 1TB SSD is significantly faster, with a transfer rate of 1,051MBps. That''s more than double the Surface Pro 8 256GB SSD''s 415MBps rate.
The Surface Laptop Studio was given a mammoth of 10,356 thanks to the 3D Mark Fire Strike graphics benchmark, considering that the Surface Pro 8 has integrated graphics, and the Surface Laptop Studio we tested has discrete graphics.
Surface Laptop Studio is the product of a competition from Microsoft.
Cameras for Surface Pro 8 vs Surface Laptop Studio
The Pro 8 offers a variety of cameras on the front and rear as you expect from a tablet. The Surface Laptop Studio is a more traditional laptop camera setup, with a single 1080p webcam embedded in the display.
The Surface Pro 8 is equipped with a 5MP front-facing camera that can capture up to 1080p footage. Windows Hello also supports this feature, so you can connect to Windows 11 with your face. A more powerful 10MP camera that can capture 1080p or 4K videos is shown on the back.
The Surface Laptop Studio is a bit weak as it has just the 1080p webcam up front, and while that''s great for a laptop (far too many people still ship with the 5MP selfie camera these days, despite Zoom). However, the laptop Studio''s webcam also has IR sensors, which you may use on Windows Hello.
If camera quality is important to you, the Surface Pro 8 is definitely the best solution. However, the 1080p webcam on the Surface Laptop Studio should be more than enough for your needs, so you should only use video calls and a selfie.
Both cameras provided clear video and excellent photos in our experiments, but it''s also evident that both Surface and the cameras are better.
Microsoft Surface Pro 8 is a top-tier product.
Battery life on Surface Pro 8 vs Surface Laptop Studio
Microsoft claims that the Core i5 processor model will last longer than the Core i7 model (by two hours in its testing).
If every minute matters, there''s another reason to consider spending more for the Surface Laptop Studio.
Surface Laptop Studio is the winner.
Scorecard and verdict for Surface Pro 8 vs Surface Laptop Studio
|Surface Pro 8||Surface Laptop Studio|
|Design (15 points)||13||13|
|Display (25 points)||22||22|
|Performance (30 points)||26||29|
|Cameras (10 points)||9||6|
|Battery life (20 points)||16||19|
The Surface Laptop Studio is a little advantage on the Surface Pro 8, but that''s not found everywhere. While the question of whether your new Surface device is also based on how much you''re willing to spend, and if you plan to use your new computer, it''s also possible.
The Surface Pro 8 is a premium Windows 11 tablet that has excellent (but not great) performance and endurance, but its internal cameras are amazing. And because the Surface Pro 8 is cheaper and less powerful than the Surface Laptop Studio, anyone with slightly less demanding features on performance might be able to remove some of their flaws.
The Surface Laptop Studio is a great investment. Its cameras may not be the best, but its speed and battery life are superior, although both factors are dependent on how you get it shipped. Today, a Core i7 processor, 32 GB of RAM, and a Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU will be combined to be considered one of the most spectacular gaming laptops.