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Comparing the Microsoft Surface screen to the competition

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Comparing the Microsoft Surface screen to the competition
Results of DisplayMate's testing

Results of DisplayMate's testing

DisplayMate recently selected the Amazon Kindle Fire HD as having the best screen among the low priced 7 inch crowd. Now, DisplayMate has tested the display on three full-sized tablets, the Windows Phone 8 Microsoft Surface RT, the Android powered Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 and the third-generation Apple iPad. The conclusion? It is hard to say. The Microsoft Surface RT screen reflects the least, and has better factory display calibration, but the text is not as sharp as on the the third and fourth gen iPad models and the color gamut at 57% means that the colors are not as saturated.  The sub-pixel rendering on the Microsoft tablet allowed it to beat out the Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 when it came to text sharpness.

The Third-generation Apple iPad crushed the other two tablets with a 264ppi pixel density as opposed to 149ppi on the Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 and the 148ppi on the Microsoft Surface RT. At least we can say that the Samsung tablet is a much older model, but surely Microsoft could have stepped it up with the resolution a bit.

The bottom line from DisplayMate is that the Microsoft Surface RT screen outperformed all full-sized 10 inch Android tablets with standard resolution, and had a better screen than the Apple iPad 2. But the third iteration of Apple's tablet has better color saturation and accuracy than Microsoft's tablet. If having a tablet that displays sharp text is important to you, it would seem that the third-gen iPad beats out the other two. If you are going to be using the tablet outside a lot, the Microsoft Surface offers better protection from reflections. For example, the third-gen iPad reflects 33% more ambient light than the Microsoft Surface, a number that rises to 41% on the Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1.

We would suggest that DisplayMate re-do the testing, replacing the older Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 with the new Google Nexus 10. This tablet has a screen that challenges the iPad with a 2560 x 1600 resolution and a 300ppi pixel density. The Samsung built 10 incher will launch tomorrow from the Google Play Store.

source: GizmodoAustralia, MicrosoftNews via WMPoweruser

18 Comments
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posted on 12 Nov 2012, 21:33 5

1. MeoCao (unregistered)


MS took a page or 2 from Apple: MS declared that resolution is not important and even had a "research" to prove it.

This is awfully similar to Apple's infamous "reality distortion field".

Surface screen is simply disgrace considering the money MS asks for it. But may be users are not looking at the screen "the right way"?

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 21:34 8

2. maryaaadil (Posts: 146; Member since: 07 Apr 2012)


Surface RT < iPad mini < iPad 4< Suface Pro

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 23:52 8

11. Commentator (Posts: 2399; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


All of those < Nexus 10

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 21:42 6

3. Shubham412302 (Posts: 298; Member since: 09 Nov 2011)


we must wait for surface pro

posted on 13 Nov 2012, 02:36

14. MeoCao (unregistered)


waiting is favorite theme for MS fans, now the talk is waiting for WP8.5 and next gen of Surface.

And when those things arrive people will skip that and wait for the next next thing.

It's waiting forever for MS.

posted on 13 Nov 2012, 07:41 1

18. chaoticrazor (Posts: 2347; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)


An android fanboy cant talk to others about waiting, look at the updates roll out not good

Do you like been the android version of the apple trolls

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 21:44

4. bomariam1 (Posts: 30; Member since: 08 May 2012)


Still I don't like the way w8 present the main screen.
It seems that I won't change from note10.1 especially that we will get MS Office.

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 22:00 1

5. kamejoko (Posts: 108; Member since: 10 Nov 2011)


Nexus 10 = Super PLS?

Note 10.1 = PLS.
Surface = PLS.

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 22:07

7. carlosechev07 (Posts: 39; Member since: 16 Oct 2012)


Please.. the screen on Surface are a really pixelated crap... it's not competitive for the money you are paying..

Please people, don't expend your money, compare before buy..!!!

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 23:54

12. Commentator (Posts: 2399; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)


That's sound advice for people who buy tablets based purely on screen quality...

posted on 13 Nov 2012, 04:04

16. hiBreed (Posts: 90; Member since: 29 May 2012)


and by that i dont think you have used one

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 22:25

8. shuaibhere (Posts: 1428; Member since: 07 Jul 2012)


Galaxy tab 10.1 is too old....
don't compare it with new ones..

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 22:29

9. loyals (Posts: 129; Member since: 10 Nov 2012)


@meocao
The resolution matters till someextent that is why Apple came up with retina display. If u take a phone, we usually bring it to a feet closer n still ur eye cant detect ny more than 330 for a tablet its around 270 so they improve colour reproduction ,viewing angles etc. And THE TABLET SHOULD HAVE APPS FOR ITS RESOLUTION. Which only IPAD have almost 250K apps EXCLUSIVE. None can't beat that. In performance ipad has already beat nexus10 note 10.1 n ofcourse surface with a big difference. So I don't see a reason y to buy something other than ipad

posted on 12 Nov 2012, 23:40

10. SleepingOz (unregistered)


I kinda agree the ipad is one of the best tab out there. Hardwares and ecosystem are great but the reason why I won't be getting one is that iOS sucks!

posted on 13 Nov 2012, 02:37

15. MeoCao (unregistered)


iPad? forget it, there are Nexus 7 and Nexus 10

posted on 13 Nov 2012, 00:38

13. noim1 (Posts: 297; Member since: 15 May 2012)


Wait till nexus 10 is in market... Then I will come back and take a look... Come on those androids tabs r wayy too old....

posted on 13 Nov 2012, 04:06

17. hiBreed (Posts: 90; Member since: 29 May 2012)


at least you can increase the ppi from within windows 8

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