Microsoft Surface Laptop 4 Review
The right way, the surface laptop 4 is not exactly a new foray for microsoft and if you’ve used the surface laptop 3, this is not a huge upgrade. Now i haven’t used three. So for me this was this was a new avenue and i’m coming at it. From that approach, so if you have not used the surface laptop before or if you are skipping a few generations, you might find something that you like here. This is, this is a great machine in a lot of ways, and i do like the mix that microsoft pursued here and i use the word mix very strongly, because that is essentially what you have to accept. If you’re going to go with this too i’m going to explain about that too, first things: first, when we look at the screen it’s a 13.5 inch, pixel sense display it’s above a 1080p panel. So if you’re looking for something with a little bit of a higher resolution, you will get that here: it’s, of course a touchscreen also that works with the surface pen. So if you do like using the stylus that’s, not gon na, be a problem here, the screen is pretty vibrant, it’s really nice. Actually i do like the quality of the screen. I didn’t have an issue with it at all. The brightness could have been a little bit brighter, not gon na lie, but it could have been just a little bit more, but at the same time you know if you’re used to working in dimmer conditions, then you’re – probably not going to complain too much about that.
The other thing, too, is that i like how the screen is complemented by the keyboard and the trackpad. So this is one of the best track, pads i’ve used on a windows, machine and that’s, saying something because i’ve used a lot of them, but it just felt really really smooth and just slick, and the keyboard too, is really nice. Now i know that not everybody has liked surface keyboards. This one to me is just i don’t know it just felt right. The key travel may be a little shorter than other keyboards tend to be, but i just found it really just fluid it. Didn’T make a lot of noise either, which i appreciated and, and it it felt nice the felt actually play on words there, the felt that surrounds the track pad. This is an interesting design. I i am a little bit on the fence for it i mean it feels great, but my problem with it is that, if, if for whatever reason, it gets dirty it’s, not the easiest thing to clean and over time you know, obviously you’re you’re resting your hands On it, i i don’t know i i wonder about the longevity of using this kind of material. Microsoft says that it’s easy to clean – i don’t, know i’m, not so sure about that, because i just feel like there it’s enough of a porous substance where you know a porous surface where dirt can really really kind of get in there and just kind of stay There another thing, though, that i do wish microsoft would have given a little more credence to, or at least paid more attention to, or just done.
Something with was is the ports. So there are not a lot of ports here: there’s, a usbc port, a a port headphone jack and the microsoft connect plus port to charge the device and to use other peripherals that use it as well. Look that’s, not a lot. Okay, for a laptop that is of this caliber you’d like to have something else. On top of that i mean the usbc port doesn’t even do thunderbolt, for example. So if you are going to connect an external monitor to this, you will need an adapter or a hub to pull that off. That is a bit of a downer really because i feel like if you had thunderbolt on here, then you could. You could do a lot of different things with it, but unfortunately, microsoft didn’t do that. Nor could they find the space or the room to put a second usb c port on here, which i think would have been a real benefit too, especially for connecting any peripherals that could use that port. So, as is you’re, probably gon na have to splurge. For a hub or an adapter, if you don’t have one, if you plan to use this in any way with other devices, especially the monitors when it comes to workflow, i have to sort of look at it from a couple of different angles, because that’s that’s. What i came away with while using this so, for example, now right now, you know i’ve got i’ve got lightroom open here.
This is the browser based version, but i had used also the regular program it’s, not that you can’t use programs like that. So creative programs, where you’re photo editing video editing things like that, you can use them. The issue comes in is when you’re multitasking with those apps part of the problem here is that the ram is too low. In my opinion, it’s eight gigs now my uh, my review unit was an intel core i5 with eight gigs of ram. There are amd variants and there certainly are variants with 16 gigs of ram as well so there’s a lot of different configurations. I can’t speak to the amd uh variants because i didn’t get. I didn’t get to test those, so i don’t know how much better or worse they might be in those in any particular case. But when it comes to usability here there is, there is a a catch to what you’re going to do. The laptop’s certainly capable, but if you’re going to multitask in a very big way and you’re drawing a lot of power in a creative app that you’re, using especially when it comes to graphics power, you probably would want something with a better graphics chip, but certainly something With more ram, so at least you can offset the lack of the graphics prowess. In this case, what i found when i was using it was that i would fi i got ta slow down like, for example, if i was adjusting a slider in lightroom it it would delay.
There was a lag in applying the effect that i mean to me. That’S just unacceptable. I can’t have that if i’m editing photo – and i imagine others like you watching – might feel the same way, that’s not always the case. If i was running lightroom alone, i might not have that issue. Certainly, if i was running it with better specs, for example, more ram, then i definitely wouldn’t have that issue at all. I don’t think, but because i didn’t get to test it, i don’t know. What i can say is that if you are doing any kind of work i mean the three two three by two aspect: ratio is perfect for documents, spreadsheets anything where you benefit from the extra vertical real estate, and so for that reason i i look at this More as a productivity, utility kind of laptop, as opposed to a content creation laptop and what i mean by that – is that, if you’re looking to create video photos, things like that, i feel like you would benefit more from a laptop that has better graphics, a better Graphics, chip probably more ram or is otherwise a little more customizable when it comes to the configuration that you go with all of these things. That i’m talking about – and i know that it seems like i’m negative – a little bit on this laptop but well it’s. Not so much that i’m making i’m trying to be very specific about who i think it’s for – and i want to add to that about the battery life, because i feel like battery life plays a significant part in this, or at least in the point i’m trying To make, as is now microsoft, i don’t know it rates it rates this at about 12 hours or so i’ve seen different numbers.
I never got 12 hours using this and 10 was a good number. If i could get to that and that’s with pretty moderate mixed usage, it wasn’t with any heavy usage. So if i was, i know if i was playing a lot of video if i’m editing tons of photos and i’m doing it hour for hours i’m not going to even hit 10 hours in most cases, so you can definitely find better battery life with other laptops. This one here i found you had to make a choice, so i had to make a choice. I had to prioritize either performance or battery life uh oftentimes. If i try to maneuver between the two there, one of the two would probably get in the way or disappoint me so uh. If you want to prioritize best perform, you know performance, no problem. This is going to be great. You want to prioritize battery life, it will last longer too what i’m getting at here is that to get both at the same time, all the time i don’t know that this laptop is going to be able to do that for you, if you’re using apps, that Are very demanding so for that reason i feel like it is a great laptop for a a mixed use case. So you’re doing some word processing, maybe a spreadsheet. Maybe then you need to edit a photo you’re watching some video you’re consuming content. You know all those things when you’re when you’re looking at this as an all around laptop, i can see the benefit from it if you’re doing a lot of work with words numbers things like that, you’re not gon na have much of a problem here.