Next generation Microsoft Surface Pro 6
4.3Overall Score

In reviewing the next generation Surface Pro 6 I was tempted to copy my Surface Pro 5 (2017) review. Take it from me the changes are well under the surface.

In fact, iFixit’s Surface Pro 6 teardown revealed the case, screen, battery and many of the components were the same. All that had changed was the processor and a new graphite heat pipe system.

Yes, there are two other ‘major’ changes. Microsoft again refers to the Surface by its generation. Last year’s decision to call it the Surface Pro 2017 was not good. Re-enter Surface Pro 6 that like Rocky movies that never seem to end, could be Surface 30 it 24 years!!!

Second, is the so-called trendy Black colour. Time will tell if it is as durable as the mag-alloy platinum. More on the black process later.

Microsoft Surface Pro 6 is an evolution, not revolution.

When you are on a good thing, stick to it. I entirely agree. The integrated kickstand, 12.3”, 3:2 format 2736 x 1824 screen and the build quality are essential foundations of the Surface Pro line.

That is why Microsoft sensibly invented the Surface Book, Surface Laptop, Surface Go and Surface Studio to fill in niches not served by the Pro.

Microsoft is not concerned about world domination by Surface devices.

The Surface series is about being ‘reference’ devices – to show what Windows can do with reference hardware.

Surface Pro 6

Microsoft is on record as not caring that it does not sell squillions of these either although its Surface Pro does dominate the hybrid (tablet and detachable keyboard category). It wants Windows OEMs to ‘rise above the Surface” and present new and innovative features and form factors.

There is a lot of tech that goes into a tablet – miniaturisation affects heat management, battery life, acoustics, screen, stand – it is not as easy as building a laptop or x360 format.

But Acer Switch, Samsung Galaxy Book, HP Elitebook/Spectre/Envy x2, Lenovo MIIx, Dell Latitude and even the Microsoft Surface Book are must consider alternatives. Remember they all run Windows, so it comes down to price, build, keyboard, CPU/GPU and screen. Some of these even have the elusive Thunderbolt 3 connection Surface lovers are aching for.

Review Microsoft Surface Pro 6 – review unit i5/8GB

Australian website here

Screen

12.3” 3:2, 2736 x 1824 (267 PPI) 10-point simultaneous multi-touch IPS Pixel Sense Panel

The LG made IPS display has 400+nits brightness and 1300:1 contrast. It is a great daylight screen that is only bested by an OLED screen like Samsung’s Galaxy Book.

Colour is 99% sRGB meaning it looks like the colours you see around the office and home. Neither saturated nor gaudy. But at 12.3” and 71% Adobe RGB is it not meant for photo/video editors. Buy the Surface Book 2 instead.

It has Enhanced and standard sRGB modes. Enhanced adds a certain ‘pop’ or saturation. I don’t mind that for movies.

There is no edge bleed or uneven colours – it is a superb screen. Grey-to-grey response time, important to gamers, is 40ms – fine for movies.