Microsoft Surface Studio: A Class Apart

Microsoft Surface-compressed

The new Microsoft Surface Studio is shaking up the world’s idea of the desktop PC. With the ability to transform into a giant tablet, this US$3000 PC is unlike any ordinary computer. Here’s our take on the revolutionary gadget from Microsoft.

With a PixelSense display of 28-inches, the Surface Studio is visually stunning. With a resolution of 4500 pixels by 3000 pixels and a pixel density of 192 DPI, images and videos on this glossy screen seem life-like.

The display is glossy and reflective, but we didn’t find that too troublesome in our own office space. Measuring just 13mm in width, the display is incredibly thin and yet the touchscreen is extremely sensitive and responsive. Microsoft has incorporated what it is calling a zero-gravity hinge, which props up the display. This can be folded to rest at different angles by simply pressing the top of the screen.

This feature is especially helpful for artists, as it allows them to tilt the screen to an angle that makes drawing easy and almost natural. Surface Studio offers a drawing board mode that is also its key specification. Though it cannot sit flat on your desk, it tilts up to 20 degrees, which is ideal for sketching.

To further assist artists, Microsoft has released the Surface Dial along with this new PC. This small puck-shaped device is powered by AAA batteries (two) and functions as an additional input method. The Dial also works with any Windows 10 enabled device that has Bluetooth. Users can tap on the Dial, rotate it clock or counter-clockwise and access various controls and menus from it.

Using applications such as Sketchable, the Surface Dial and the Surface Pen (multi-functional stylus) revel their true purposes. Whether it is to change paints, brush sizes or simply move around the canvas, these accessories provide the quickest way to do so without ever moving away from the screen. One issue is that the Dial tends to slip downwards when the Surface Studio is placed at an incline. While the capabilities of the Dial are improving and growing gradually, users can expect the technology to grow exponentially and work even with apps like Photoshop.

Microsoft Surface 2

Now on to the specifications of the PC. Fitted with a sixth-generation Intel Core i7 quad-core processor and a RAM of 32GB the Surface Studio is undoubtedly fast. While the processor is not the latest model available, the inbuilt RAM makes up for this by allowing an intense multi-tasking experience. The GPU is the Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M that allows users to play heavy games with detailed graphics, very smoothly. Xbox gamers can use this PC as it supports any controller for the Xbox One and even has a 1080p camera which lets you log in using your facial profile.

The storage capacity offered here is a 2TB Rapid Hybrid Drive along with a 128GB SSD. The connectivity options include four USB 3.0 ports, an SD card reader, a Mini DisplayPort that can connect to a second monitor and a headphone jack. Unfortunately these ports are all placed on the rear, so it becomes difficult to access them when the device is folded flat against a wall.

One thing that you may notice is that this device tends to whirr away when it is overloaded with applications. So if you are used to working in pin-drop silence, this may be an issue. For everyone else, this will barely seem like background noise.

While the Surface Studio will probably not overtake Mac devices as the go-to in design houses as yet, there is certainly a possibility. For artists and those who are willing to shell out a minimum of US$3000 for a gorgeous yet not overly-powerful device, the Surface Pro is the way to go.

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by techtalks @TechTalks November 30, 2016 12:19 PM UTC


Mobile Upgrades: Killing The Product Before Its Time?

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Maalin Ashar

Q5 blackberry

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