The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 Is Great: Here’s Why

The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 Is Great: Here’s Why

Microsoft Review

Meet the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4: a real game-changer in the world of laptops. We’ve spent some time with this cool device, and it’s safe to say we’re impressed. It’s not just another laptop; it’s a mix of awesome looks, super speed, and all the stuff you need to get through your day, from work to play.

Why is everyone talking about the Surface Laptop 4? And what makes it so special? Stick around as we dive into what this laptop does best and how it might just be the perfect fit for you. Whether you’re in school, at work, or just love having the latest tech, there’s something about the Surface Laptop 4 that’s worth checking out.

Surface Laptop 4: An Overview of Specs

someone putting a laptop into their backpack

The Surface Laptop 4 is available in 13.5-inch and 15-inch models, powered by either an AMD Ryzen 5/7 4000-series or an Intel 11th Gen Core i5/i7 CPU. The laptop’s specs include:

  • CPU: 11th-Gen Intel Core i7-1185G7 (Core i5 and Ryzen options also available)
  • RAM: 16GB (8GB, 32GB also available)
  • Display: 13.5-inch touch-screen, 2256 x 1504 (201 PPI)
  • Storage: 512GB SSD (256GB, 1TB also available)
  • Ports: 1x USB-C, 1x USB-A, Surface Connect port, headphone jack
  • Battery life: Up to 17 hours (Microsoft’s claim)
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi 6/Bluetooth 5.0
  • Dimensions: 12.1 x 8.8 x 0.57 inches
  • Weight: 2.79 pounds
  • Price: Starts at $999 (13.5-inch), $1,299 (15-inch)

Evaluating the Design of Surface Laptop 4

surface laptop 4

When I first got my hands on the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4, I knew right away it was something special. The design is the first thing you notice. It’s sleek, with clean lines that make it look really modern and professional. Here’s what stands out about its design:

  • Slim and Lightweight: It’s super easy to carry around. Whether you’re moving from class to class or taking it to a coffee shop, it won’t weigh you down.
  • Solid Build: The laptop feels sturdy. You can tell it’s made of high-quality materials just by holding it. The keyboard and touchpad area are especially nice to touch.
  • Cool Colors: It comes in a few different colors. I got the classic Platinum, but there’s also Matte Black, Sandstone, and Ice Blue. It’s cool to have options that go beyond the usual laptop colors.

A Few Key Points:

  • The screen is awesome. It’s about 13.5 inches (there’s also a 15-inch model), and the colors look super bright and clear. Watching videos and scrolling through websites is a real treat.
  • The keyboard and touchpad are a dream to use. The keys feel just right, not too soft or too hard. And the touchpad is super responsive, making it easy to navigate around.
  • Ports might seem like a small thing, but they’re important. The Surface Laptop 4 has a USB-C port, a USB-A port, a headphone jack, and the Surface Connect port. This is pretty handy for plugging in different things you might need.

Using the Surface Laptop 4 feels good. It’s fast and quiet, even when I have a bunch of tabs open for schoolwork and music playing in the background. The design isn’t just about looks; it makes using the laptop an awesome experience. Whether I’m doing homework, watching shows, or just browsing the internet, everything feels smooth and easy.

In short, the Surface Laptop 4 doesn’t just look good; it’s built to make your everyday tasks easier and more enjoyable. From its lightweight build to its beautiful screen and comfortable keyboard, it’s a laptop that’s as nice to use as it is to look at.

Keyboard and Touchpad: A Writer’s Dream

microsoft surface 4 laptops

Diving into the keyboard and touchpad of the Surface Laptop 4, it’s like stepping into a writer’s paradise. As someone who spends hours typing away, whether it’s for articles, essays, or just emails, I’ve got to say, Microsoft really nailed it with this one. But, like anything, it’s not without its quirks.

The Keyboard Feels Great: The keys have just the right amount of travel—not too shallow, not too deep. It makes typing fast and comfortable. You get that satisfying click with each press, but it’s not loud enough to bother anyone around you. Plus, the backlighting is a nice touch, making it easy to type in lower light conditions.

Touchpad Is Top-Notch: The touchpad on the Surface Laptop 4 is smooth and responsive. Gestures like pinch-to-zoom and scrolling are a breeze. It’s generously sized, giving you plenty of room to navigate without feeling cramped.

But Here Are a Few Things to Consider:

  • Limited Layout Adjustments: If you’re someone who loves to customize your keyboard layout or relies heavily on macro keys, you might find the options a bit limiting. The Surface Laptop 4 keeps things simple, which is great for most users but might disappoint the power users out there.
  • Touchpad Clicks: While the touchpad is responsive, the clicks can feel a bit on the firmer side. It’s not a deal-breaker, but if you’re used to a softer touch, it might take some getting used to.

Despite these minor points, the keyboard and touchpad setup on the Surface Laptop 4 is impressive. It strikes a perfect balance between form and function, making it a joy to use for long writing sessions or just everyday browsing. Whether you’re drafting a novel or dashing off a quick email, this laptop provides a comfortable, efficient experience that truly stands out in the crowded laptop market.

Display Quality of Surface Laptop 4

The display on the Surface Laptop 4 is something you’ve got to see to believe. Right when I started using it, the screen made everything look amazing. Whether I was watching movies, editing photos, or just doing homework, everything popped with color and detail.

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Here’s What Makes the Display So Good:

  • Bright and Vibrant: The screen shines bright, making it easy to see even in sunny spots. Colors look vibrant, which is perfect for any kind of visual work or just enjoying your favorite show.
  • Sharp Resolution: The clarity on this screen is top-notch. Text looks crisp, making reading for long periods easy on the eyes. Pictures and videos are sharp, with lots of detail.
  • Touch Screen: This feature is super handy. Being able to tap, swipe, and scroll right on the screen feels natural and works great. It makes interacting with apps and websites really fun and intuitive.

A Couple of Things to Note:

  • Glossy Screen: The display has a glossy finish, which looks great but can catch some glare in bright light. It’s not a big issue, but something to keep in mind if you’re often in very sunny places.
  • Battery Life Trade-off: With such a bright and vivid display, it does use up the battery faster. If you’re planning to use it all day away from a plug, you might need to adjust the brightness to save some power.

Overall, the display quality of the Surface Laptop 4 is one of its best features. It brings everything to life, whether you’re working or playing. The screen is definitely a highlight, making every use a bit more special.

Audio Performance of Surface Laptop 4

The audio performance of the Surface Laptop 4 is pretty impressive for a laptop. When I first played music and videos, I was surprised by how good it sounded. It’s clear that Microsoft put some thought into making sure the sound quality wasn’t just an afterthought.

Here’s the scoop on the sound:

  • Clear and Loud: The speakers deliver sound that’s clear and can get quite loud without distorting. Whether you’re listening to music, watching movies, or on a video call, the audio comes through crisp and clean.
  • Good Bass for a Laptop: While laptops aren’t known for their bass, the Surface Laptop 4 does a decent job. It won’t replace a separate speaker system, but for a laptop, the bass has a nice kick to it.

But, it’s not all perfect:

  • Volume Levels: At higher volumes, the sound can feel a bit thin. It’s great for personal use, but if you’re trying to fill a room, it might fall short.
  • Speaker Placement: The speakers are under the keyboard, which is pretty common, but it means sound can sometimes feel like it’s coming from beneath the laptop. It’s not a huge deal, but something you notice during use.

Despite these points, the audio performance on the Surface Laptop 4 stands out compared to other laptops. It makes watching videos, streaming music, or jumping on calls a much better experience. You won’t need to reach for headphones or external speakers for casual listening, which is a big plus.

Performance Analysis of Surface Laptop 4

The performance of the Surface Laptop 4 is a big part of what makes it so impressive. After using it for everything from everyday tasks to more demanding jobs, I can say it really delivers. Whether you’re a student, a professional, or someone who loves to game in their free time, this laptop can keep up.

Here’s what you need to know about its performance:

  • Fast and Responsive: From the moment you start it up, everything from opening apps to browsing the web is quick and smooth. It handles multitasking like a champ, so you can have lots of tabs open without slowing down.
  • Power for Creative Work: If you’re into photo or video editing, the Surface Laptop 4 has got you covered. The processors are strong enough to run demanding software without a hitch. It’s great for creative folks who need that extra power.
  • Solid for Gaming: While it’s not a gaming laptop, it can handle many popular games at decent settings. It’s perfect for casual gamers who want to play without needing a separate gaming machine.

A Few Points to Consider:

  • Battery Life Varies: With lighter use, the battery can last all day. But, if you’re pushing it with games or heavy software, it’ll drain faster. It’s about finding the right balance for what you need.
  • Heat Management: When you really push the laptop, it can get a bit warm. It’s nothing alarming, but something to be mindful of during long, intense sessions.

Overall, the performance of the Surface Laptop 4 is a standout feature. It strikes a great balance between being powerful enough for most tasks and still being portable and easy to carry around. Whether for work, school, or play, it’s a reliable choice that won’t disappoint.

Webcam Quality of Surface Laptop 4

The webcam quality on the Surface Laptop 4 is another area where this device shines, especially in a world where video calls have become a daily routine for many of us. After using it for several online meetings and chats with friends, here’s my take on it.

Good Points About the Webcam:

  • Sharp Image Quality: The webcam delivers clear and sharp images, making you look good on video calls. Even in not-so-great lighting, it manages to brighten up the image and keep things clear.
  • Accurate Colors: It captures colors pretty accurately. This means your video looks natural, not too washed out or overly saturated. It’s great for making a professional impression on work calls.
  • Smooth Performance: I noticed very little lag or stuttering during video calls, which is crucial for smooth communication. Whether it’s a casual chat or an important meeting, the webcam keeps up without any hiccups.
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A Few Things to Keep in Mind:

  • Background Noise: While the video quality is great, the built-in microphones can sometimes pick up a lot of background noise. It’s not a deal-breaker, but using headphones or a separate mic can help in noisy environments.
  • Fixed Focus: The webcam has a fixed focus, which works well for most situations but can be a limitation if you need to show detailed objects up close. It’s perfect for face-to-face conversation distances, though.

In summary, the webcam on the Surface Laptop 4 stands out for its clear image quality and accurate color representation, making it a solid choice for anyone who relies on video communication. It’s a step up from many standard laptop webcams, providing a more professional and engaging video call experience.

Battery Life of Surface Laptop 4

The battery life of the Surface Laptop 4 is a mixed bag, offering enough power to get through most of your day but with some caveats depending on how you use it. After putting it through various daily tasks, here’s what I found.

On the Bright Side:

  • Decent Runtime: With typical use, including web browsing, working on documents, and streaming some video, the Surface Laptop 4 can comfortably last through a workday—around 8 hours or so.
  • Energy Efficient: For tasks that aren’t too demanding, it’s quite energy-efficient. If you’re just taking notes, sending emails, or doing light reading, you’ll squeeze out more battery life.

But There Are Some Downsides:

  • Intensive Tasks Drain It Faster: If you’re doing more intensive work like video editing, running heavy software, or gaming, the battery drains much quicker. In these scenarios, you might find yourself reaching for the charger in just a few hours.
  • Brightness Affects It: Screen brightness plays a big role in how long the battery lasts. Keeping the brightness up for a better view, especially outdoors, will shorten your battery life more than you might expect.
  • Not the Best in Its Class: When compared to some other laptops on the market, the Surface Laptop 4 doesn’t lead the pack in battery performance. It’s good, but there are options out there that offer longer battery life for similar usage.

In conclusion, the battery life of the Surface Laptop 4 is sufficient for most daily needs, especially if your usage leans towards the lighter side. However, for power users who push their laptops with more demanding tasks, the battery life might not impress. It’s a reliable laptop for general use, but if you’re often away from power outlets for long periods, you’ll want to plan accordingly.

Software and Features of Surface Laptop 4

The Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 not only impresses with its hardware but also stands out for its software and features. Running on Windows 10 (and upgradable to Windows 11), it offers a seamless and user-friendly experience right out of the box. Here’s a closer look at what makes the software side of this device so compelling.

Highlights of the Software and Features:

  • Windows Hello: One of the coolest features is Windows Hello, which lets you unlock your laptop with just your face. It’s fast and works really well, even in dim lighting. This adds an extra layer of convenience and security.
  • Touchscreen and Pen Support: The Surface Laptop 4’s touchscreen is responsive and fun to use. Combined with the Surface Pen (sold separately), it opens up new ways to interact with your apps and content, whether you’re taking notes, drawing, or just navigating through your day.
  • Microsoft 365 Integration: For those who rely on Microsoft’s suite of productivity tools, the integration is seamless. Whether it’s Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, everything runs smoothly, and having OneDrive for cloud storage makes managing files a breeze.

But It’s Not All Perfect:

  • Pre-installed Software: Like many new laptops, it comes with some pre-installed software or ‘bloatware.’ While some of it is useful, you might find yourself spending some time removing apps you don’t need to free up space and resources.
  • Updates Can Be Disruptive: Regular updates are necessary for security and new features, but they can sometimes be disruptive, requiring reboots and taking time to install. It’s not a deal-breaker but something to be aware of.

Despite these minor gripes, the software and features of the Surface Laptop 4 contribute significantly to its overall user experience. The combination of a solid operating system, useful security features like Windows Hello, and the added versatility of touchscreen and pen support make it a joy to use for both work and play. The tight integration with Microsoft 365 is particularly beneficial for professionals and students who need reliable productivity tools at their fingertips.

Final Verdict on Surface Laptop 4

After spending a lot of time with the Surface Laptop 4, I’ve got to say, it’s a pretty great laptop. Whether you’re typing up a storm, watching your favorite shows, or getting creative with drawing apps, it handles it all with ease. But let’s break it down to see if it’s the right pick for you.

Here’s What Makes It Awesome:

  • Design: It looks and feels premium. It’s light enough to carry around all day and sturdy enough to handle everyday bumps.
  • Performance: This laptop is fast. Whether you’re doing schoolwork, browsing the web, or even some light gaming, it keeps up without breaking a sweat.
  • Display and Sound: The screen is bright and beautiful, making everything from videos to homework look great. Plus, the sound is clear and loud enough for enjoying music or movies without needing extra speakers.
  • Keyboard and Touchpad: Typing on this laptop is a dream. The keyboard is comfortable for long essays or emails, and the touchpad is super responsive.
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But, It’s Not Perfect:

  • Battery Life: If you’re using it lightly, it’ll last the day. But, if you’re really pushing it with games or heavy software, you’ll need your charger by your side.
  • Webcam and Mics: The webcam is good for calls, but the mics pick up a lot of background noise. You might want a headset for important meetings.

Final Verdict:

The Surface Laptop 4 is definitely worth considering. It’s got the looks, power, and features to be a great fit for students, professionals, and anyone in between. If you need a laptop that’s versatile, reliable, and fun to use, this is a solid choice. Just remember, if you’re planning on using it for really heavy tasks all day, keep an eye on that battery life.

Alternatives to Consider

When considering the Surface Laptop 4, it’s also smart to look at other options in the market. Each laptop has its own set of strengths and weaknesses, and what’s best for you might not be the best for someone else. Here are a few alternatives to consider:

Dell XPS 13

  • Strengths: Known for its stunning display and compact design, the Dell XPS 13 offers great performance and a high-quality build. It’s also got a great battery life that can last you through the day.
  • Weaknesses: It’s on the pricier side, and the webcam placement has been a point of contention for some users, though recent models have addressed this issue.

MacBook Air (M1)

  • Strengths: With the introduction of the M1 chip, the MacBook Air has become a powerhouse, offering incredible performance and battery life. It’s also silent in operation since it doesn’t need a fan.
  • Weaknesses: If you’re used to Windows, switching to macOS might take some getting used to. The MacBook Air also has a limited number of ports.

HP Spectre x360

  • Strengths: This 2-in-1 laptop offers versatility with its fold-back screen, allowing it to be used as a tablet. It has a solid build, good battery life, and comes with a stylus for note-taking or drawing.
  • Weaknesses: The HP Spectre x360 can be on the heavier side compared to other laptops, making it less portable. It also tends to get warm with heavy use.

Lenovo Yoga 9i

  • Strengths: The Lenovo Yoga 9i stands out with its rotating soundbar, providing excellent audio quality. It’s also got a robust build and offers a comfortable keyboard and touchpad.
  • Weaknesses: The 9i’s high performance can lead to shorter battery life under intense usage. Additionally, it’s among the more expensive options in its category.

Acer Swift 3

  • Strengths: If you’re looking for value, the Acer Swift 3 offers good performance at a more affordable price point. It’s lightweight and has a decent battery life.
  • Weaknesses: The display and build quality don’t quite match up to some of the pricier alternatives. The screen can appear dim in brightly lit environments.

Each of these laptops could be a great pick depending on your priorities, like performance, price, or portability. Whether you lean towards the Surface Laptop 4 or one of its competitors, it’s all about finding the right balance for your needs and preferences.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will Surface Laptop 4 be supported?

Microsoft typically supports its Surface devices with firmware and software updates for at least 4 years from the release date. The Surface Laptop 4, released in April 2021, should receive support until at least 2025.

Is Surface Laptop 4 powerful?

Yes, the Surface Laptop 4 is powerful. It comes with options for 11th Gen Intel Core processors or AMD Ryzen processors, making it capable of handling a wide range of tasks from office work to creative projects.

Does Surface Laptop 4 have a touchscreen?

Yes, the Surface Laptop 4 features a touchscreen. This adds a layer of interactivity, allowing you to navigate, scroll, and perform tasks directly on the screen.

Does the Surface Laptop 4 fold back?

No, the Surface Laptop 4 does not fold back. Unlike 2-in-1 devices, its screen does not rotate 360 degrees to offer a tablet mode. It maintains the traditional laptop form factor.

Why is my Surface Laptop 4 so slow?

If your Surface Laptop 4 is running slow, it could be due to running too many programs at once, a full hard drive, or needing a software update. Check for any available updates, clear up space, and close unnecessary apps to improve performance.

How old is Surface Laptop 4?

The Surface Laptop 4 was released in April 2021. Depending on when you’re reading this, you can calculate its age from that launch date.

Are Surface laptops worth the price?

Surface laptops are often considered worth the price for users who value build quality, design, and the seamless integration of Windows software. They are premium devices that compete with other high-end laptops in terms of performance and features.

Is Surface Laptop 4 good for office work?

Yes, the Surface Laptop 4 is excellent for office work. Its powerful processors, comfortable keyboard, and sharp display make it ideal for productivity tasks, from writing and spreadsheet work to presentations.

Are Microsoft Surface laptops good?

Yes, Microsoft Surface laptops are generally well-regarded for their build quality, design, performance, and the tight integration with Windows 10 and Windows 11. They’re designed to offer a premium Windows experience, appealing to professionals, students, and general users alike.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Ashkan Forouzani;Unsplash – Thank you!


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