Let’s get straight to the point: the Microsoft Surface Studio is one of the most desirable objects to have passed through the Stuff team’s hands in years. We love it, and if you’re a serious illustrator it should be near the top of your shopping list.

We love it not because it is perfect. It isn’t - not by a long shot. Fortunately for the human race, desirability rarely relies on technical perfection - think back to the original iPhone for proof of that.

No, we love the Studio because it is outlandish, beautiful, tactile and quietly unique. If Werner Herzog went into the PC business, he’d make something like this.

But before you rush off to grab one, let me put some flesh on the bones of that verdict. After all, I’d hate you to part with between £2999 (RM16,655) and £4250 (RM23,600), only to find that our love affair translates into your years of regret. 

The display: as beautiful to look at as it is to use

For those of you not already familiar with the Surface Studio, it's best described as a Surface Book that's been through some kind of comic-book radiation beam and emerged Bigger! Stronger! Better! It's technically a desktop PC, but its glorious 28in touchscreen can flip down on a clever hinge so you can use it flat, like an illustrator's tablet. Or indeed, like a Surface Pro. 

The screen is the first thing you'll see upon unpacking, and it dominates the entire Studio experience. Now I’ve seen a lot of screens, including the very best that Apple has to offer, but to describe this one as glorious is no mere hyperbole. It is truly stunning.

Having spent the wrong side of RM23,000, you have every right to expect the initial set-up to be impressive, and the Studio doesn’t disappoint. Log in for the first time, and I defy you not to feel a mini rush of glee and wonder at the 28in 3:2 screen’s size, colour depth and sharpness.

I could bang on about specs - the 4500 x 3000 native resolution, the 192 DPI, or the 10-bit colour depth. Also, I could mention that the rival 27in 5K iMac’s 218 DPI has the Studio licked, on paper at least - I didn’t have a 5K to hand for a real-world comparison.

Instead, let’s stick to what you’ll actually experience day on day. Own a Studio, and you’ll be staring at a big screen that’s crazy sharp. Text looks as though it has been intricately etched into the glass with a surgeon’s scalpel. It’s fantastic, and the novelty will never wear off. Promise.

Colours are well calibrated and attractive, without ever straying into gaudy. Besides, if you do find them a little saturated on the default ‘Vivid’ setting, you can always switch it to a more restrained sRGB mode, which I found more natural and much easier on the eyes.

As I unboxed the Studio, I briefly wondered how many of my favourite Windows apps would be thrown into an ugly mess by its ultra-high resolution. But I needn’t have worried - everything scales well and looks razor-sharp, from Adobe Creative Suite to Spotify to Steam. So be assured that your 28in PixelSense display will be a joy to look at, and will probably stay that way for years to come.

Stuff says... 

Microsoft Surface Studio review

The Surface Studio's stunning design and sheer audacity help it overcome its flaws to stand out as one of 2017's most exciting new products
RMTBC
Good Stuff 
Glorious screen
Flexible design makes it easy to use
A true object of beauty
Bad Stuff 
Not enough power for high-end gaming
High price - and stingy approach to extras
Some Windows 10 glitches
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