Still the best tablet: Microsoft Surface Pro 9 review

Still the best tablet: Microsoft Surface Pro 9 review

Surface Pro 9 from Microsoft.
Zoom / Surface Pro 9 from Microsoft.

Andrew Cunningham

Let’s talk about Surface Pro 9.

Which Surface Pro 9? Not the version with 5G, which comes with Microsoft’s SQ3 Arm processor made by Qualcomm and the typical shortcomings of an Arm Windows (relatively low performance, persistent application compatibility issues) – but the vanilla, plain old Surface Pro 9, Intel -the foundation that’s going on a decade of Surface models Pro numbered.

Aside from that name confusion, the regular Surface Pro 9 isn’t designed to surprise. It (mostly) improves performance while (mostly) it keeps everything that worked in previous models intact. Anyone who didn’t already like the Surface won’t win, but for anyone who loves a 3- to 5-year-old Surface tablet, it should be a pretty safe upgrade.

look and feel

keyboard cover.  It folds down to reveal a compartment for the Slim Pen 2.
Zoom / keyboard cover. It folds down to reveal a compartment for the Slim Pen 2.

Andrew Cunningham

The basic design of the new Surface Pro is exactly the same As it was eight years agowhen Microsoft discovered the fully adjustable kickstand and foldable on-screen keyboard to increase stability and prevent the entire device from feeling floppy on a table or lap (some tablet manufacturers studied) I decided not to learn).

The design has evolved steadily since then, picking up USB-C ports (and scraping USB-A), trimming the edges of the screen, expanding the screen itself, and getting progressively faster and larger. The biggest change came last year, when Microsoft redesigned the front of the tablet enough to break compatibility with older Surface Type covers, increasing the screen size from 12.3 to 13 inches. The Surface Pro 8 reversed design changes that Microsoft made for the arm-based Surface Pro X two years ago, and both are compatible with the same keyboard covers and other accessories.

Compared to these changes, the Surface Pro 9 updates are especially Small enough that most people don’t even notice it. Buttons and ports moved, but file Microsoft Signature keyboard covers are the sameThe screen is the same, and the front and back camera are the same. The stylus support is the same (we have some notes about the Surface Slim Pen 2 in Surface Pro 8 review). It’s lighter, but not so much that you’ll notice (only 0.02 pounds). The Surface Pro 9 comes in colors other than graphite and platinum, with a “forest” green option and a “sapphire” blue colorway (our review unit is sapphire and it looks very nice). The default Windows 11 bloom wallpaper comes color-matched with the finish of your choice, which is a nice touch.

screen brightness.  The Surface Pro 9 scores a bit brighter than its predecessor on our colorimeter, although it's not really noticeable to the eye.
Zoom / screen brightness. The Surface Pro 9 scores a bit brighter than its predecessor on our colorimeter, although it’s not really noticeable to the eye.

Andrew Cunningham

Another one changes you may be Notice is the headphone jack, which is gone wherever headphone jacks (which fit perfectly but no longer work for some reason) go when they die. If I were to list every device in the last two or three years that was released without a headphone jack, we’d be here all day. I’ll just say that, as the number of devices without a headphone jack has increased in my life, so has the amount of time I’ve spent cursing Bluetooth and related technologies.

Every time my phone refused to connect to my earbuds because they instead connected to a computer on the floor above; Every time the batteries run out in the middle of something; Every time a bud falls from my ear to the ground or pavement, I wonder if we really have to improve things or if we just replace one set of problems with another, more expensive set of problems. I still use wired headphones sometimes, and can’t say I miss having a wire that dangles and sticks to everything. But they are reliable and predictable, two adjectives that don’t belong in any conversation about Bluetooth audio unless you put “un-” in front of them.

In any case. The Bluetooth audio on the Surface Pro 9 doesn’t sound better or worse than it does on most devices I use.

Go to the discussion…

#tablet #Microsoft #Surface #Pro #review

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