For some of the best Windows hardware on the market, look no further than Microsoft’s Surface brand. Best known for innovative, tablet-like designs, Microsoft has expanded its Surface line over the years and now offers a full family of computers, from a standard laptop to a giant desktop.
It’s hard to find a PC maker today that doesn’t ape the Surface’s kickstand-packing, detachable-keyboard-rocking design. It’s also hard to find a nicer Windows experience than that offered by the Surface. The problem is one of choice. With such a diverse family of premium computers, which is best for your needs? We’ve sorted through the options and found the best Surface for everyone.
Be sure to read our other buying guides for more, including the Best Laptops, Best Cheap Laptops, Best MacBooks, and our tips on how to choose a laptop.
Updated November 2023: We added the Surface Laptop Go 3 and Surface Laptop Studio 2. We also updated prices and links throughout.
- Should You Wait to Buy?
- Best for Most People: Surface Laptop 4
- The Awkward Choice: Surface Laptop 5
- Best 2-in-1: Surface Pro 9
- Best for Students: Surface Go 3
- Best for Power Users: Surface Laptop Studio
- A Good Smaller Laptop: Surface Laptop Go 2
- Best All-in-One Desktop: Surface Studio 2+
- For the Right Price: Surface Laptop Go 3
- Surface Devices to Avoid: Surface Laptop Studio 2
- What About Older Models?
- Things That May Annoy You
- Great Surface Accessories
- Look Into Surface All Access and Microsoft Complete
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It depends. Back in September, Microsoft announced a new Surface Laptop Studio 2 and Surface Laptop Go 3. So, if you’re in the market for a 2-in-1 laptop for graphics-intensive tasks, the second-generation model is now available. Looking for a lightweight touchscreen laptop? The Laptop Go 3 is also available. We recommend reading our thoughts on both of those devices before making your final decision, though. There’s also a new Surface Go 4, but the refresh is strictly for enterprise consumers.
We are, however, still waiting on a new Surface Pro 10, Surface Laptop 6, and Surface Studio 3 (all-in-one desktop). The latest versions of these devices were released in October 2022. While there’s no guarantee we’ll see these early next year, we do recommend waiting until at least then if you can.
It isn’t as smart or stylish as the transforming, flexible models that made the Surface brand famous, but most of the time what you really need is a laptop. Tablets, kickstands, and clicky magnetic keyboard covers don’t work well in every situation, which is why the Surface Laptop 4 (7/10, WIRED Recommends) is the best pick for most people.
It has a gorgeous, 13.5-inch high-resolution display, a lovely keyboard, a stellar glass trackpad, and a slim case. Ports are one place where Surfaces skimp (like MacBooks), but you do get a USB-C port along with your good old-fashioned USB-A port. It also has a magnetic charging port. If you tend to trip over your power cord all the time, this can be a lifesaver. It severs the connection between the wall plug and the computer before the laptop goes flying across the room like a Frisbee.