Throughout its current Floor occasion, Microsoft launched the biggest improve of its flagship Intel-powered Floor Professional lineup in years: the Floor Professional 8. The brand new 2-in-1 machine boasts a 120Hz show, Thunderbolt 4 assist, and new processors, however all of these enhancements come at a value — actually. Whereas the Floor Professional 7 begins at $549.99, the Floor Professional 8 begins at $1,099.99, that means it’s practically double the worth. And that’s additionally earlier than you consider the price of Microsoft’s new stylus and removable keyboard, two add-ons which might be extra like requirements for those who intend to make use of the 2-in-1 as marketed.
With all that mentioned, is it price upgrading or choosing up the Professional 8 over the last-gen mannequin when it launches on October fifth? To assist make your resolution somewhat simpler, we’ve put collectively the comparability under primarily based on specs and our preliminary impressions of the Floor Professional 8.
WHAT’S IMPROVED ON THE SURFACE PRO 8?
- Two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports
- You’ll be able to double the refresh fee from 60Hz to 120Hz
- Eleventh-gen Intel quad-core Core CPUs, beginning with i5 as an alternative of i3
- 10MP rear-facing digital camera, with 1080p and 4K video
- Bigger, 13-inch show with greater 2880 x 1920 decision (up from 12.3-inch)
- Double the RAM on the bottom mannequin (8GB)
- Microsoft says the battery ought to last as long as 16 hours
- New sensor that adjusts the show temperature primarily based on ambient lighting
- LTE assist for enterprise customers
- Preloaded with Home windows 11
- The Floor Professional 8 is extra than simply an incremental replace. Microsoft’s latest slate contains a modernized look with slimmer bezels, making it the Floor Professional’s largest visible redesign in years. Just like the Floor Professional X, the Floor Professional 8 contains a 13-inch show versus the 12.3-inch discovered on the Professional 7. In his current hands-on take, my colleague Dieter Bohn additionally remarked that the Professional 8 feels barely nicer to carry, given the corners are softer. And if shade issues to you, the touchscreen machine can also be now obtainable in graphite as an alternative of black, which is a colorway nonetheless obtainable for the Professional 7.
Spec-wise, the show on the Professional 8 is considerably higher in comparison with its predecessor, given there’s now an choice to ramp up the refresh fee from 60Hz to 120Hz, which might enhance scrolling and make utilizing the stylus simpler. Gaming might actually be extra pleasant on the Professional 8, too, particularly given the gadget comes preloaded with the Xbox app and a one-month trial of Xbox Recreation Cross Final. As well as, the newest Professional helps Dolby Imaginative and prescient and is the primary Floor gadget to come back with an ambient shade sensor, which robotically adjusts the show’s shade temperature and brightness primarily based on the encircling lighting situations. The brand new Professional 8 additionally boasts a 3:2 show and 2880 x 1920 pixels versus 2736 x 1824, though, technically, each share the identical 267 pixels per inch. Regardless, the expanded dimension nonetheless affords you somewhat more room for, say, multitasking.
The Professional 8 additionally seems to be superior to the Professional 7 in the case of efficiency and battery life. The brand new 2-in-1 is on the market with both a quad-core, Eleventh-gen Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor, and with as much as 32GB of RAM. The Professional 8 additionally comes with a detachable SSD in one among 4 configurations: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, or 1TB, one thing you can beforehand solely discover on the Professional 7 Plus. It’s vital to notice, nonetheless, that Microsoft says the SSD must be repaired or changed by a educated Microsoft-authorized technician — they’re “not consumer detachable.”
The Professional 7, in the meantime, comes with a dual-core, Tenth-gen Intel Core i3 or a quad-core, Tenth-gen Intel Core i5 or Core i7, and with as much as 16GB of RAM. It’s obtainable in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB capacities. Total, Microsoft says the Floor Professional 8 exhibits a 40 % enchancment over the Professional 7 in the case of sustained CPU efficiency; it’s additionally 74 % sooner on the graphics aspect, in response to Microsoft.
Battery life on the Professional 8 is, at the least on paper, larger as properly, with Microsoft claiming it will possibly last as long as 16 hours on a single cost. The tech large additionally says it will possibly cost from 0 to 80 % in somewhat over an hour. The Professional 7 was supposed to last as long as 10.5 hours on a cost compared, although, in our assessment, we famous it lasted 7-8 hours or much less when working with graphically intensive apps and pages. We don’t anticipate Microsoft’s battery claims relating to the Professional 8 to carry up in real-world utilization, although, particularly with a 120Hz show.
The Professional 8 moreover stands out in some methods in the case of connectivity, relying in your wants. As an alternative of a USB-A port and the built-in microSD card slot featured on the Professional 7, Microsoft went with two Thunderbolt 4 ports, permitting the pill to assist both two 4K shows with a 60Hz refresh fee or a single 8K monitor at 30Hz. The Core i3 and Core i7 fashions may also be configured with LTE, although the function is barely obtainable to enterprise prospects.
The Professional additionally boasts higher cameras than its successor. The brand new mannequin’s rear digital camera is a 10MP shooter versus an 8MP, and the rear digital camera on the Professional 8 also can seize 4K video. The Professional 8’s new face-tracking tech might additionally enhance video calls by retaining you in focus whilst you stroll round and speak. Microsoft says the Home windows Hey digital camera has been upgraded, too, and it pairs with Microsoft Studio mics for audio.
Unsurprisingly, Microsoft additionally improved the Professional 8’s non-obligatory equipment. The new Floor Slim Pen 2 ($129.99) contains a sharper tip that enables for higher precision and a built-in haptic motor, which helps the stylus higher emulate the sensation of writing on paper and makes for a smoother inking expertise. You may also cost the pen inductively if you’re not utilizing it through the built-in slot on the removable Floor Professional Signature Keyboard ($179). The brand new keyboard can also be stiffer because of a carbon-fiber core, however not heavier or thicker, which provides it much less bounce when typing.