Pros and cons: Our quick verdict on the Surface Studio

Innovative, but not for everyone.

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Arguably the most interesting computer released this year wasn't an ultra-thin laptop or even a tablet hybrid -- it was a desktop computer. The Surface Studio is hardly the first all-in-one desktop, but it's the first from Microsoft, and the company even managed to make this classic form factor feel fresh. In particular, we're fans of the optional "Surface Dial" accessory, which gives users an additional way to get around menus and control on-screen objects. (The included pen works well too.) This is also just a very well-crafted product, with a sturdy build and an articulating screen that comes in handy for creative work.

The main problem is the price. Well, and the specs you get for the money. Though the Studio is powerful, it's limited by the fact that it runs mobile, not desktop, processors. Also, though there are configurations beyond the $3,000 base model, the machine itself isn't user-upgradeable. And that could be a problem for the sort of niche the Studio is aimed at.

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Microsoft Surface Studio


  • Powerful for most creative tasks
  • Gorgeous display
  • Screen tilting function is genuinely useful
  • Responsive stylus
  • Dial has the potential to be very useful


  • Limited to mobile graphics
  • Expensive for the hardware you get
  • No upgradeability
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Pros and cons: Our quick verdict on the Surface Studio