Home / Technology / Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 in the test: Noble notebook invites you to screw

Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 in the test: Noble notebook invites you to screw

With Surface Laptop 3, Microsoft's design department has delivered something unusual. First, the new notebook looks just fine, even in the sandstone color of my review example. I would buy a different color, but it is definitely an eye-catcher. Even more so because the keyboard has also been adjusted in color.

Of course, this is not ergonomic. In the light of our office lamps, the buttons are often difficult to read due to the low contrast between the letters and the key color. Surface Laptop 3 has an extra large touchpad, much like Apple's MacBooks. This makes it easier to say goodbye to the mouse.

The build quality is excellent and the aluminum casing makes a very robust impression. That Microsoft has been a little inspired here by MacBook Air is not to be overlooked. But the designers have solved the current trend at one important point, namely to mount laptops with many small screws and with generous use of glue.

Laptop with Quick Release

Instead, Surface Laptop 3 is exemplary easy to open, as the Repair Portal iFixit has discovered. There is a screw each under the four rubber feet on the bottom of the unit. However, has a head in the format Torx Plus, which is quite unusual for home improvement. Still, you can get suitable screwdrivers in almost all hardware stores and on the Internet.

When the screws are loosened and the small rubber feet suffer a little, the casing can simply be opened and for example SSD can be removed in a few simple steps and replaced with another, It would actually be a good way to save money.

For more space, Microsoft, like Apple, can lush pay. The price difference between a model with a 256 gigabyte SSD and a 1

terabyte SSD is – with the same processor and memory – as much as 900 euros. The upgrade from 512 GB to 1 TB costs 450 euros. Given the low prices for retrofitting SSDs, it seems tempting to buy a simpler, cheaper and cheaper model to upgrade itself.

Microsoft prefers not to do so, points out on its website that SSD "cannot be changed by the user" may, but only "by a qualified technician". If you try anyway, you risk not relying on the guarantee for subsequent problems. In addition, Microsoft M.2 2230 format SSDs are still rare, but with prices starting at € 170 for a TB still very cheap.

It gets hot

For more casual applications such as web surfing, email or word processing, the unusually accessible interior of Surface Laptop 3. is not heard as soon as the machine is required, for example through elaborate games, image processing or multiple downloads gigabytes in size, it obviously gets hot.

If you balance them on the thighs for lack of tables, you notice this first because they are on the underside very much, get very hot, especially to the right. At the same time, a fan runs high and tries hard to blow out the heat through the slots in the housing.

But a space trip with "Elite Dangerous" is possible in good graphic quality, at least in the tested version with Intel Core i7 processor.

Connection error

Battery life is impressive. In continuous operation with deactivated energy saving functions and permanent network traffic, my Surface Laptop 3 was switched off after just over ten hours. Charging the battery took about 130 minutes after this test. Not a world record, but values ​​that you can live well with.

More problematic are the few connections that Microsoft processes to the nearly 1.3 kilo laptop. In addition to a headphone jack, there is only one USB-C and one USB-A port. Surface Laptop 3 with its 802.11ax module is already prepared for the new WLAN standard Wifi 6. It hardly has anyone at this time, but if you come across such a network somewhere, you can at least use it with this notebook.


Pros and Cons

Robust and very well made

Easy to handle opening housing

Very good screen

Many variants available

Too few gates

Gets very hot [19659024] High fees for more memory

Technically, the Surface Laptop in its third version is not a groundbreaking product. As usual in the industry, Microsoft has mainly been product maintenance here, so the new model equipped with the latest technology, such as Intel Core processors of the tenth generation. The result is a solid working tool that also looks good and impresses with a very good screen.

It doesn't sound very exciting at first. And yet Surface Laptop 3 differs from the amount of notebooks in its class. Not so much of the prices – the tested 13.5-inch version costs 1649 GB and 256 GB SSD proudly 1749 euros – but of the possibility to open it easily. This detail allows for potentially life-long measures such as replacing the SSD with a larger model or replacing the battery if it loses endurance after two to three years. Opposite is a very economical equipment with connections.

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