Surface Laptop 13 (15 inches) in the test: The 15-inch Macbook with Windows 10 and Ryzen


A very good workmanship, an excellent keyboard and a nice bright display have always distinguished the Surface Laptop from Microsoft. Also, the notebook visually belongs to the rather unconventional devices on the market. This is due to the Alcantara textile cover, which certainly does not appeal to all buyers. Obviously, Microsoft has also recognized this, which is why the new Surface Laptop 3 is also available in a completely metal housing.

What the manufacturer delivers, reminiscent of the devices of the competitor Apple. The Surface Laptop is a kind of Macbook with Windows 10. is testing the new, larger version with a 15-inch panel – for the first time with the mobile and adapted AMD chip Ryzen 5 3580U Surface Edition. We come to the conclusion: There is hardly a more elegant and better processed notebook in this form factor, which is also very light at the same time. It's just a pity that Microsoft does not know how to do much with the bigger panel and more space for hardware.

• In the first part we look at the case and take a look at that very much
  good display.

• In the second part, the USB-C port shows its versatility and the keyboard its

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• How the cooling of the CPU under continuous load beats, we explain in the third part.

• Finally, we conclude.

Microsoft has made available to us the 15-inch model in black optics, which is equipped with 16 GB of RAM and a 256 GB Nvme SSD. The price for this model is 1,850 euros and is therefore not low.

A reference in terms of build quality

Already at the first touch of the chassis feels the matte black metallic version robust and looks subjectively also better than the Alcantara alternatives. Incidentally, they are still available for purchase, but are limited to the 13.5-inch version. Microsoft once again places high demands on the quality of workmanship, which are once again above the quality of very good products such as the XPS 15 (7590) from Dell or the Razer Blade 15.

What's more: weighing 1,556 grams, the device weighs noticeably less than the Dell XPS 15 (7590) with OLED panel that has already tested. This is interesting because Microsoft also installed a touch screen and thus a heavier glass panel for the third generation Surface Laptop.

However, we have to note two minor details: The hinge does not hold the panel firmly enough in place. If we hold the notebook in one hand and tap it with the other, the comparatively heavy lid can tilt backwards. In addition, the notebook is a bit larger than it should be. The display edges are already quite prominent with 1.2 cm. Overall, the chassis is 339.5mm x 244mm x 14.69mm but not noticeably larger than other 15 "devices.

Surface Laptop 3 15 inches (Image: Martin Wolf /

The footprint is more like a Macbook Pro (15 inches). This is partly due to the 15.4-inch display with a format of 3: 2. The resolution is – quite typical for the Surface series – quite unusual with 2'496 x 1.664 pixels. Here, too, we notice that the Surface Laptop 3 is also more suitable for office work in the larger version. The display offers more visible space in height. This benefits us if we want to display several windows next to each other – two text documents, source code or web pages. However, when consuming Youtube videos or other content designed for 16: 9, we have to make do with more unused space.

In itself, the LC panel is beautifully bright: we measure a maximum of 412 candelas per square meter of illumination. At full brightness, the reflection does not bother. In strong backlighting, however, the non-anti-glare display is a disadvantage. For this we can use both the finger and a stylus on it. For example, the Surface Laptop is compatible with the Surface Pen. This is not included with the product.

The display is sufficiently bright. (Image: Oliver Nickel /

Regrettably, the changes to the ports are not enough for us, although the USB-C port can do a lot more than its predecessor's Mini DisplayPort port.


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