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Surface Pro 7 vs. 7+ vs. 8: Full Comparison & Verdict 2024

Surface Pro 7 vs. 7+ vs. 8: Full Comparison & Verdict 2024

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    The Surface Pro has been a critical entry in Microsoft's hardware lineup which delivers a full Windows desktop experience on a unique 2-in-1 form factor, allowing folks to have a legit computer and tablet in one device. With the release of the Surface Pro 8 on 22 September 2021, many Surface Pro 7 and Surface Pro 7+ owners are wondering if it's time for an upgrade of their devices. And the people who are preparing to buy a Surface Pro for the first time are also hesitating whether to buy the older Pro 7 and Pro+ with a discount, or the latest Microsoft Surface Pro 8. In order to help you make the right decision, I will make a full comparison between the Surface Pro 7, the Surface Pro 7+, and the Surface Pro 8 and tell you the pros and cons of each device. Let's start now!

Cover Photo:microsoft.com

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Surface Pro 7, Surface Pro 7+ and Surface Pro 8 Review

| #1 Surface Pro 7

Google Users Rating: 4.6/5

The Surface Pro 7 is a massive jump forward from the Surface Pro 6 , elevated by worthy upgrades in the form of a USB-C port and peppy "Ice Lake" CPUs. It features a 12.3" PixelSense display with a 2736 x 1824 screen resolution (267 PPI) and a 3:2 aspect ratio. The display also supports 10-point touch, so you can take full advantage of the multi-touch gestures incorporated into Windows 10 Home. The 10th Gen Intel Core i5-1035G4 Quad-Core processor has a base clock speed of 1.9 GHz and can be boosted up to 4.2 GHz when performing demanding tasks.

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Source:walmart.com

The Surface Pro 7 also has integrated Intel Iris Plus Graphics. The Surface Pro 7 has 8GB of LPDDR4x RAM, a 128GB SSD, a microSDXC card slot, Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.0, a 5MP front-facing camera with Windows Hello face authentication sign-in, an 8MP rear-facing camera with Full HD 1080p video recording and autofocus, and dual integrated microphones for Cortana, Microsoft's intelligent assistant. There are also built-in stereo speakers with Dolby audio. But it still does not support Thunderbolt 3.

PROSCONS
Still a powerful deviceOlder performance hardware
2-in-1 design is still greatNo Thunderbolt
Beautiful touch display
Average battery life
More affordable than the Pro 8

| #2 Surface Pro 7+

Google Users Rating: 4.6/5

The Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ is a mid-generation update for the original Surface Pro 7 tablet that provides a few upgrades in regards to performance and user experience. Built for and sold exclusively to business users, the Pro 7+ adds a swappable SSD, 4G LTE (on some models), and some improved thermals.

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Source:bestbuy.com

The real reasons for many people to buy the Surface Pro 7+, apart from it running Windows 10 Pro, are for the 11th Gen Intel CPUs, which deliver significant performance gains over the original, and the extended battery life. It makes those upgrades while maintaining the  Surface Pro 7's bright and vivid display, capable cameras, and excellent accessories.

PROSCONS
Lightweight and ultra-portableNo Thunderbolt
Faster CPU and graphics performanceDisplay not as large
Massive upgrade in GPU power
Swappable SSD
Improved thermals
LTE options available

| #3 Surface Pro 8

Google Users Rating: /

The Microsoft Surface Pro 8 is the latest in the company’s line of 2-in-1 Surface Pro tablets. Starting at $1,099, it can be configured with an Intel Core i5, 8GB of RAM, and 128GB of storage. The base model will offer plenty of performance for everyday computing tasks, be it editing Excel sheets, composing long emails, or playing a light game. In addition, no matter which configuration you land on, each Pro has 11th-generation Intel chips and the 2,880 x 1,920-pixel resolution screen with a document-friendly 3:2 aspect ratio. The screen can be set with a 120-Hz refresh rate (120 frames per second), but this will significantly impact battery life.

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Source:officedepot.com

You also get two USB-C ports, a magnetic charging port, and a Windows Hello–compatible 1080p webcam. Just as important, it comes with Windows 11 right out of the box and is suited to the new operating system. Disappointingly, there is no longer a MicroSD slot. As the latest in Microsoft's 2-in-1 lineup, the Microsoft Surface Pro 8's exceptional display quality makes watching videos a delight. The powerful CPU ensures you won’t experience significant slowdown when browsing the web, video chatting, or performing other everyday tasks. Its small size and lightweight design also make the Surface Pro 8 ideal to use at home or on the road.

PROSCONS
Better performance from 11th Gen Intel CPUsLack MicroSD slot
Larger display with higher resolution, refresh rateWill cost more
Dual Thunderbolt 4 ports
Improved cameras
Improved inking experience with Surface Slim Pen 2
Good battery life

Surface Pro 7 vs. Pro 7+ vs. Pro 8: Side-by-Side Comparison

First, let's take a look at the main specifications of the Surface Pro 7, the Surface Pro 7+, and the Surface Pro 8:


Surface Pro 7Surface Pro 7+Surface Pro 8

General

Dimensions 292x 201 x8.5mm292x 201 x 8.5mm

287 X 208 X 9.3mm
WeightFrom 1.70 pounds (770g)From 1.70 pounds (770g)1.96 pounds (891g)
Processor 10th Gen Intel
Core i3-1005G1
Core i5-1035G4
Core i7-1065G7
11th Gen Intel
Core i3-1115G4
Core i5-1135G7
Core i7-1165G7
Consumer:
11th Gen Intel
Core i5-1135G7
Core i7-1185G7
Commercial:
11th Gen Intel
Core i3-1115G4
Core i5-1145G7
Core i7-1185G7
GraphicsIntel UHD (i3)
Intel Iris Plus (i5, i7)
Intel UHD (i3)
Intel Iris Xe (i5, i7)
Intel UHD (i3)
Intel Iris Xe (i5, i7)
Storage128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB SSD128GB, 256GB SSD (Wi-Fi, LTE)
512GB, 1TB (Wi-Fi)
128GB, 256GB SSD (Wi-Fi, LTE)
512GB, 1TB SSD (Wi-Fi)
RAM4GB, 8GB, 16GB
LPDDR4x

8GB, 16GB LPDDR4x (Wi-Fi, LTE)
32GB LPDDR4x (Wi-Fi)

8GB, 16GB, 32GB
LPDDR4x

Display

Screen TypePixelSensePixelSense

PixelSense

Screen Size

12.3 inches12.3 inches13 inches
Screen Resolution2736 x 18242736 x 18242880 x 1920
Stylus InputBuilt for Windows Ink (Active)Built for Windows Ink (Active)Built for Windows Ink (Active)

Compatibility

Operating SystemWindows 10 Home

Windows 11 Home

Windows 11 Home

Operating System CompatibilityWindowsWindowsWindows
Voice Assistant Built-inNoNoNo

Connectivity

Internet ConnectivityWi-Fi 6
Wi-Fi 6
Wi-Fi 6
Headphone JackYes

Yes

Yes

Bluetooth EnabledYesYesYes
Bluetooth Version5.05.05.1

Power

Charging Interface(s)ProprietaryProprietaryProprietary
Battery Life (up to)Up to 10.5 hoursUp to 15 hours (Wi-Fi 5)
Up to 13.5 hours (LTE)
Up to 16 hours
Battery TypeLithium-ionLithium-ionLithium-ion
Camera
Front-Facing Camera
YesYesYes
Front Facing Camera Megapixels5 megapixels5 megapixels5 megapixels
Front Facing Camera Video Resolution1080p1080p1080p
Rear-Facing Camera

Yes

Yes

Yes

Rear Facing Camera Megapixels8 megapixels8 megapixels10 megapixels
Rear Facing Camera Video Resolution

 Video Resolution

1920x1080 (1080p)

 Video Resolution

1920x1080 (1080p)

 Video Resolution

1920x1080 (1080p)

Features

2-in-1 DesignYesYesYes
Keyboard IncludedNoNoNo
Security FeaturesFacial recognitionFacial recognitionFacial recognition
Stylus DockNoneNoneNone

Design and & Accessories

Between the three devices, the Pro 8 has the newest design which  is still very slim, light, and is still made out of anodized aluminum like its other cousins, but the front of the Pro 8 looks a bit different with slimmer bezels. Microsoft says that the Pro 8 is 11% larger than the Pro 7 and Pro 7+.

In addition, the Surface Signature Type Cover on the Pro 8 has a slot for the new Surface Slim Pen 2 which has haptic engines. This lets you recharge the pen while it is not in use. Previously on the Surface Pro 7 and Pro 7+, you’d need to use an external charging cradle for the Slim Pen, or opt for a standard Surface Pen, which is attached to the side and worked with AAAA batteries. It is worth mentioning that the Surface Pro 8 enables the full functionality of the new Slim Pen 2, including haptic feedback that is intended to make writing and drawing on the screen feel more like you’re using an actual pen and paper. The new Slim Pen 2 will work with the Surface Pro 7 and Pro 7+, but you’ll lose out on this haptic functionality.

Performance

The key advantage of the Surface Pro 8 is its improved performance. Intel's 11th generation quad-core processors are at the heart of Surface Pro 8. Microsoft claims that's up to a 42 percent increase in CPU performance and up to 75 percent better graphics. On the Surface Pro 8, Microsoft is no longer offering an entry-level model with a Core i3 processor. It jumped right to a mid-range Core i5.

Screen Display

The Surface Pro 8's display is also a massive improvement over the Pro 7and the Pro 7+. It has a larger 13-inch panel instead of the old 12.3-inch one, a higher resolution, and a buttery-smooth 120Hz refresh rate. The display defaults to 60Hz when it's not in use, but whenever someone's touching it or using a stylus, it ramps up to 120Hz. The higher-refresh can offer silkier onscreen animations and a more refined visual experience.

Camera

The Surface Pro 8 comes with a slightly improved camera compared with the Surface Pro 7 and Surface Pro 7+. The latter uses an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera with 1080p full HD video capabilities, while the Pro 8 ups the resolution to 10 megapixels with the same 1080p video maximum.

Portability

The Surface Pro 8 employs two USB Type-C ports, both of which support Thunderbolt 4 speeds. The Surface Pro 7 and Pro 7+ has one USB-C port and one USB Type-A port, and no support for any version of Thunderbolt. But it also has a microSD card reader, which the Surface Pro 8 lacks.  So if you’ve got older Type-A USB devices, the Surface Pro 7 and 7+ will accept them without requiring a dongle. If you need to use an external GPU or hook up your Surface to dual monitors and want faster transfer speeds,the Surface Pro 8 is the better choice.

Battery Life

When it comes to battery life. the Surface Pro 8 wins on this front, as it is rated for up to 16 hours. The Pro 7, meanwhile, gets 10.5 hours, and the Pro 7+, 15 hours.

Final Verdict

With a refreshed design, a larger display,  a better inking experience( new Surface Slim Pen 2), improved performance, more battery life, higher-res cameras, and cutting-edge perks like a 120Hz refresh rate and Thunderbolt 4, the new Surface Pro 8 looks to be a notable step up from the Surface Pro 7 in several key ways. So if you want the best Surface Pro and don't care about the cost , no hesitation to get the Surface Pro 8.

The Surface Pro 7 is starting to show its age, especially with the new upgrades in the Pro 8. You aren't going to get as much performance or screen space, and the port selection isn't as good as the new Thunderbolt 4. The rear-facing camera also isn't as good, and there's no LTE support. But if you don't need an especially powerful tablet-hybrid device and you want to save yourself a good bit of money, then the Microsoft Surface Pro 7 is still worth a look (except the entry-level Core i3, 4GB model, definitely avoid this model and go for an i5 with 8GB minimum).

On the other hand, the Pro 7 Plus is a much closer rival to the Pro 8. Although it has a smaller screen and doesn't have Thunderbolt 4 support, the performance will be much closer to Pro 8, and you can still get LTE. So if you want to get the benefits of Intel's 11th-gen processors, you can consider buying the Surface Pro 7 Plus.

2022-01-14 00:291940