Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 is Intel all the way
13.5in and 15in duo make an Intel-powered return
The Surface Laptop 5 has been officially revealed as an exclusively Intel-powered laptop duo, with 12-gen Core CPUs promising whip-crack performance in Windows 11.
Outgoing versions of Microsoft’s 13.5in and 15in laptops used to be available with Ryzen processors, but there’s no mention of any AMD-powered versions for the fifth generation. Instead, consumer shoppers get the choice of Intel Core i5-1235U and i7-1255U silicon for the more compact model. The larger laptop will come exclusively with an i7-1255U.
Commercial buyers see a slight step up, with the 13.5in model using either a Core i5-1245U or i7-1265U. The latter also makes its way inside the business-focused 15in version.
Whichever way you slice it, these should be potent work machines, with up to 32GB of RAM, as much as 1TB of on-board storage, and Intel Iris Xe graphics. Microsoft reckons the smaller of the two is good for up to 18 hours of life away from the mains, with the larger model delivering 17.
Physically the two laptops haven’t changed all that much from the previous generation. You’re still looking at a choice of alcantara-wrapped or metal keyboard trays on the 13.5in model (it’s metal all the way for the bigger brother), and a handful of colour options. A new Sage colour joins the line-up this year, alongside the existing matte black, sandstone and platinum. Last year’s Ice Blue has seemingly gone into retirement.
The 13in machine has a 2256×1501 LCD screen with 10-point multi-touch and Dolby Vision IQ support, while the 15in model raises the resolution to 2496×1664. Both have 3:2 aspect ratios that are perfect for document double duty, and built-in speakers that play nicely with Dolby Atmos audio.
It’s hardly a surprise the 720P webcams both play nicely with Windows Hello face recognition, and the dual far-field microphones should be well suited to video calls.
A single Thunderbolt 4/USB-C port leads things on the connectivity front, with a further USB-A, 3.5mm headphone port, and Microsoft’s familiar Surface Connect port.
US customers be able to order a Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 directly from the Microsoft Store soon. There’s no clue on UK pricing just yet, with the base 13.5in model starting from $1000 (around £900) The 15in version starts at $1300 (about £1200) in America, and climbs to a heady $2400 for the top-spec model.