It’s November here, thus begins the back to school period, and the hunt for a new laptop for your schoolwork, Netflix, Gaming, and more have begun. Now if you are not a person who requires a high-performance laptop but just enough for some programming, Entertainment, and have a budget of around $1200-$2000, then you are probably looking at Apple‘s MacBook Air, MacBook Pro lineup, and Microsoft‘s Surface Pro 3 laptop. These are one of the best light-weight, aesthetically beautiful-looking laptops but which one is the real winner between MacBook Vs Surface Laptop?
For keeping the comparison fair as possible and since the prices of the MacBook and Surface Laptop 3 vary so we have chosen the laptops versions worth around $1500.
Today we will compare all 3 MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 with all the parameters and will exactly figure out which laptop better suits your needs. We will compare these laptops with respect to Display, Keyboard, Input/ Output Ports, Battery Life, Graphics & Computing Performance, Build Quality and Aesthetics, and finally Price.
Let us start with the display. The Apple MacBook Air and Apple MacBook Pro come with 13.3 inches having a 2560 x 1660 resolution retina non-touch display while the Microsoft Surface Laptop comes with 13.5 inches having a 2256 x 1504 resolution touch screen LCD display.
The MacBook Air and MacBook Pro go up to 400 nits brightness while the Microsoft Surface Laptop goes up to 400 nits of screen brightness as well.
The Color accuracy and sharpness are a bit more impressive and crisp on Apple MacBooks but considering the screen size, it wouldn’t matter much. So if media consumption, photo, and video editing is your primary purpose, Apple’s MacBook Air/ Pro would be your best option since it has a higher resolution. So for the display between MacBook Vs Surface Laptop, MacBook is the clear winner. The only choice is between MacBook Air Vs MacBook Pro.
Keyboard & Trackpad-
As for the Keyboard, Apple has replaced the faulty keyboard on their MacBooks and finally instated a good Butterfly keyboard that is much better and suitable for MacBooks. Both Apple MacBook Air and Apple MacBook Pro have similar keyboards but MacBook Pro has a Touch bar that can be customized to the user’s choice.
The keys on both MacBooks are well spaced and placed which enhances the typing experience. The TouchPad on MacBook is smooth and drivers are well-optimized.
For Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 3, the keyboard has a little wider keys than MacBooks and more suitable for a person with an average size hand or larger than average size. The trackpad is smooth and has good driver optimization.
So in the keyboard and TrackPad’s department, both the MacBooks and Surface Laptops are good and you won’t be having any issue using it.
Input/ Output Ports-
If you are the person that has multiple external devices connected to the system and that is a daily need for you, then you might have to purchase an external port hub if you are purchasing MacBook Air or MacBook Pro, or even Microsoft Surface Laptop 3.
The MacBook Air and MacBook Pro have 2 Thunderbolt 3 Ports while Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 has 2 USB ports. So if you are comfortable with the Thunderbolt port, choose MacBook or else choose Surface Laptop 3. Since all three laptops have similar port setup, both can be considered as the winner between MacBook Vs Surface Laptop.
Now when it comes to the battery, the MacBook Air has 30 Watts, MacBook Pro has 61 Watts, and Surface Laptop 3 is not specifically given by Microsoft but has given the battery life instead.
As an average, MacBooks, and Surface Pro 3 Laptop has 10-12 hours of battery backup on paper. In our battery test, the MacBooks gave around 7-9 hours while Surface Laptop 3 gave 6-7 hours. So MacBooks performed well in our battery test.
If you stay out all day and doesn’t want to carry a laptop adaptor, you are good to go with MacBook Laptops. Surprisingly, both the MacBooks gave almost similar backup considering the battery capacity of MacBook Pro is almost double that of MacBook Air.
Graphics & Computing Performance-
In terms of performance, the Apple MacBook Air has a Quad-core Intel’s i5 10th gen clocked at 1.1 GHz while Apple MacBook Pro also has Quad-core Intel’s i5 8th gen processor clocked at 1.4 GHz.
If you are planning to do high computing tasks or graphics rendering, we highly suggest upgrading the MacBook Pro’s CPU to a 1.7GHz quad‑core 8th‑generation Intel Core i7 processor which will cost you $300 more.
On the other hand, Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 has an Intel 10th Generation Core i7 processor clocked at 1.4 GHz that will handle the high-performance requiring tasks smoothly.
Both the MacBooks and Surface Laptop 3 have Intel’s Integrated graphics so you won’t be experiencing any difference in the graphic processing performance in all.
So if you are planning to use your laptop for high-performance tasks like graphics rendering, heavy photo & video editing, you will have better performance with a Microsoft Surface laptop 3.
Build Quality & Aesthetics-
You want your laptop to be lightweight but also to last long. All the laptops have a good built quality and durable enough to toss in your bag without any issues. You can also purchase a skin cover just so you don’t scratch the surface.
The MacBook Air as the name suggests is the lightest on the list and weighs only 2.8 pounds while MacBook Pro weighs around 3.1 pounds and Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 weighs around 2.89 pounds, slightly above MacBook Air. All three laptops are highly portable and can be carried around all day without any issues.
Coming to the looks, the Apple MacBook Air and Pro looks almost similar, has an Apple logo at the back, and model names have written below the screen. One has to take a look at MacBook from the front to recognize if it is Air or Pro, it’s that similar.
The color variations for Apple MacBooks are Silver, Gold, Rose Gold, and Space Gray while Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 3 comes in Sandstone, Black, Cobalt Blue, and Platinum.
For the Microsoft Surface Laptop 3, the logo is centrally placed on the back and nothing fancy on the front. It is the stealthiest laptop on the list. So the choice of looks totally depends upon you, so for Aesthetics in MacBook Vs Surface Laptop, it’s a tie. If Apple has impressed you with its look, then the choice you want to make is MacBook Air Vs MacBook Pro.
Since we have compared the laptops that priced around $1500, we will focus on upgradeability. So if you want the storage double in your computer, Apple and Microsoft both will cost an additional $200 and you cannot change the hardware configuration after your purchase.
Our Final Verdict-
We haven’t got into the operating system as it goes completely with one’s preference and comfort level. If we go with the Price to performance ratio, the Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 sounds a great deal but if you will be working light and using your laptop for entertainment and somewhat office work, MacBook is for you.