Review – Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface

Since the introduction of the Logitech K380 Keyboard, there has been a lot of debate around the product. In this review, we hope to come to a definitive answer about who the keyboard appeals toward as a consumer.

You cannot deny that the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface is a beautiful piece of technology — simple, yet compact and manageable. But does this streamlined design affect the performance of the product?

Does the small size of the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface come at the cost of typing comfortably? If you want to know the answer to these questions and more, then it is your lucky day. In this article, we will examine what it is that made the new device from Logitech so popular.

We will also compare it to some other types of popular keyboards so that you know how it stacks up against the competition. But first, let us take a closer look at what precisely the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface is and how it functions.

Comparison Table

What Is The Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface And How Does It Work?

​Image via Pexels

The Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface is a wireless, lightweight keyboard that can connect to almost all computing devices (Chrome OS, Mac, Windows, iPhones, iPads, Android products, and Apple TVs). It connects with these devices via a Bluetooth function on the keyboard.


The product comes with a battery life of roughly two years, but you will need to change the battery for the keyboard when they die. When you turn the cells, the device takes two AAA batteries.


While the company advertises the product as a lightweight alternative, there is a little bit of weight to it — around fifteen ounces to be precise. It comes with a wireless range of roughly thirty-three feet, give or take depending on possible obstacles and obstructions in the way.


The keys on the device come in the shape of circles. Color options for the product include a deep dark blue and dark grey with a striped yellow for the transition keys.


The keyboard itself measures a size of roughly five inches by eleven inches, with a vertically inclined thickness that measures around one half of an inch. This size makes it relatively small, especially compared to some of the larger wireless keyboards out there.

What Makes The Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface Unique?

​Image via Pexels

The main selling point of the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface is that it can connect simultaneously with up to three devices. Once you connect with these devices, you can switch between them using easy access buttons found on the keyboard, getting rid of the annoyance of continually connecting and reconnecting.


While the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface might seem incredibly small, the looks should not deceive you. The device packs a lot of benefits into its relatively tiny frame. For example, you can find the three little Bluetooth buttons we mentioned at the top left of the keyboard for easy switching between devices.


Also included on the sturdy board are a set of ten hotkeys and a pair of two alternative keys you can find on both sides of the keyboard. However, if you need a home key or directional arrows, then look elsewhere. The Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface does not offer them.


The company also offers a particular type of mouse that works in tandem with the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface. The mouse, known as the Logitech FLOW mouse, allows your mouse to move seamlessly between devices right alongside your keyboard.


However, the product does not come with the keyboard. You will need to purchase it separately. The Logitech FLOW mouse costs around thirty-five dollars new.

How Much Does The Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface Cost?

The Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface currently costs thirty dollars. This price is a ten dollar difference in its original retail value of forty dollars.

What Does The Public Think Of The Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface?

For the most part, the reviews for the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface remain overwhelmingly positive. The majority of users appreciate the reduced size since it opens up valuable desk or table space. The consensus seems to be that this product makes a good back up and travel device.


While most people thought the small size of the keyboard would be an issue, it seems many were pleasantly surprised. Working on the product feels comfortable for most people — even people with typing intensive jobs, like coders or writers.


The Bluetooth works well with most devices and can easily switch between tablets and phones without need a reconnect. The adaptability to different operating systems seems to be a big plus for a lot of people. With this keyboard, you do not need to worry about an encounter a device that will reject the product.


Unfortunately, the review for the product is not all favorable. If you have large hands, then you might not like how small and cramped the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface can feel when you use it.

Most people seem able to adjust to this small board, but some people find the small travel key and awkward layout to be unadaptable to their needs. Other users reported that the core began to malfunction on this after a few weeks of using.


For example, one user experienced significant difficulty with the backspace key on the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface. Whenever they tried typing the backspace key would hold down and delete a good portion of whatever they typed.


However, we should note that instances like these seem few and far between. The main issue people seemed to have connectivity problems associated with the Bluetooth. Some people were not able to have their PC stay connected when they switch between devices.


Most of the time they were able to solve this by removing the keyboard as a Bluetooth device and then connecting again. But this other process presents an inconvenience for some users.

How Does The Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface Compare With Other Keyboards?

10,363 Reviews
Logitech K380 Multi-Device Bluetooth Keyboard – Windows, Mac, Chrome OS, Android, iPad, iPhone, Apple TV Compatible – with Flow Cross-Computer Control and Easy-Switch up to 3 Devices – Dark Grey
  • Multi-device Bluetooth keyboard: Universal keyboard for typing on all your computing devices:...
  • Easy-switch: Connect up to 3 devices simultaneously and switch between them at the touch of button....
  • Logitech flow cross-computer typing: Use as a regular keyboard or combine with a compatible Logitech...
  • Compact mobile keyboard: Easy to carry around your home for familiar typing in any room and Logitech...
  • OS adaptive: Automatically recognizes each device and maps keys to give you a familiar layout,...

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

In this section, we compare the Logitech K380 Keyboard with three other popular types of wireless keyboards. Specifically, we look at the Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad, the HP K3500 Wireless Keyboard and the Microsoft EKZ-00001 Modern Keyboard with Fingerprint ID.


We do this step so we can determine the areas in which the Logitech product succeeds and the regions in which it loses out to the competition. We also hope to present some alternative options for individuals who know that the Logitech K380 Keyboard is not for them.

11,245 Reviews
Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad (Wireless, Rechargable) (US English) - Silver
  • Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad features an extended layout, with document navigation controls...
  • A scissor mechanism beneath each key allows for increased stability, while optimized key travel and...
  • The numeric keypad is also great for spreadsheets and finance applications.

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

It is hard to deny that the Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad is not a superior product than the  Logitech K380 Keyboard. Apple’s product is light, more spread out, optimized for the operating system, and rechargeable without disposable batteries.


However, there is one major area where Apple loses out to Logitech: the price. One Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad costs one hundred and fifteen dollars, making it almost ninety dollars more than Logitech.


While the beautiful sleek design might seem worth the steep asking price, we only recommend it if you own a Mac and absolutely must have the Apple brand name.

239 Reviews
Microsoft EKZ-00001 Modern Keyboard with Fingerprint ID
  • Bluetooth 4.0/4.1 LE connectivity; Compatible with Windows 10 and Windows 10 phone
  • Enterprise grade security with Windows Hello biometric authentication
  • Hidden fingerprint sensor: Blends fingerprint reader into a keyboard, making it look like any other...
  • Wired/wireless capability: Versatility in how you like to connect, plus easy Bluetooth pairing with...
  • Rechargeable: Up to 4 months of battery life per charge

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Microsoft EKZ-00001 Modern Keyboard with Fingerprint ID is Microsoft’s answer to the Apple Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad.

The company also offers the product at a minor discount — one keyboard costs around one hundred in three dollars.


It also comes with a charging wire, so you can choose either wireless or plugged. A fingerprint sensor gives you the ability to apply your thumbprint on the device. Frankly, we have the same assessment with this keyboard as we did with the Apple one.


It works fantastically, looks great, feels light, but it is a bit too expensive when compared to the Logitech product. However, if the price does not object for a good keyboard, then we do not think you can go wrong with it.

698 Reviews
HP K3500 Wireless Keyboard
  • Brand new, and authentic HP products ship from, and are sold by Amazon.com (check above)
  • Hot keys grant fast access to common tasks. Volume up & down, mute, and sleep mode are right there...
  • USB micro receiver with 2.4 Ghz Wireless
  • HP's exclusive Link-5 wireless technology connects 5 Link-5 devices at once
  • Compatibility-Microsoft Windows XP/Vista/7/8. Minimum system requirements-Available USB port and...

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

The last keyboard on our list is the HP K3500 Wireless Keyboard. Unlike the previous two models, HP offers its product at the affordable price of twenty-five dollars, which makes it a little bit more affordable than the Logitech K380 Keyboard. In general, the HP K3500 is pretty big and spread out.

As such, we recommend it for people with large hands that get tangled up in smaller keyboards. However, keep in mind that the product does not offer the same universal operating system as Logitech. Instead, the HP

K3500 only works for Window products. It also cannot switch seamlessly between Bluetooth devices. So, if these features are important to you, then we recommend the Logitech product. Otherwise, the HP K3500 offers a good alternative.

What We Think: Our Final Opinion Of The Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface

For most people, we think the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface offers good value as a functional wireless keyboard. However, we should note that not everyone will be as satisfied with the product. People will big hands may have trouble typing competently on the device.


Our only issue with the keyboard is the caps lock key. Sometimes when you type your finger can slip from the ‘a’ key and accidentally turn on the caps locks. If you are not paying attention, then this issue can quickly turn into a big inconvenience.


If you work as a web designer, or a similar graphics arts profession, then we think you will like the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface. The ability to quickly switch between devices should not be understated.


We do think the ability to hook up your keyboard with your iPhone is a cool one. It makes navigating search menus, typing on the go, and sending long-winded text messages much more comfortable and quicker. In some cases, people prefer the cramped nature of the device — it can make typing faster.


Not to mention the fact that you can easily switch from your iPhone to the computer, to tablet with the touch of a button. If you want to use your keyboard from the comfort of your couch, then the Logitech K380 Keyboard offers everything you need.


In our opinion, for the current thirty dollar price tag, the Logitech K380 Keyboard offers more than enough incentives for a reliable light device or a dependable backup. And, for the most part, it seems like most people agree with us on it.

Logitech K380 Keyboard For Surface Coupons And Deals

Unfortunately, there are currently no deal or coupons offered by the company for the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface. However, if you purchase the product on the company’s website, then they will give you free shipping for the product. You can also get free shipping through Amazon.


We hope this article helped you decide whether the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface is the best keyboard for you. Ultimately, the decision comes down to your preference and needs when working. If you need a device you can take between rooms; then you will be hard pressed finding a more portable model.


If you need and keyboard for fast typing and hardcore online gaming, then the product probably was not made for you. But, if you need a lightweight, easy-to-move keyboard, then we think you will be satisfied with the Logitech K380 Keyboard for Surface.


Considering the price the company now offers it, we believe it represents a great value, even if you keep it as a backup. But, as we said, the decision comes down to you. Good luck with your shopping process!

ESR and Inatek Case Review

This article is a review of ESR and Inatek Case. Check it out and you’re bound to learn things. Thanks for stopping by. I really do appreciate it. Reading an article can be fun, but what’s better is seeing something visual. As human beings, most of us respond more to pictures and sounds than words. That’s one of the reasons that I decided to include videos instead of writing for endless hours and ask of you to invest in reading my material. Instead of an article, I decided to included videos. It’s the best option. Sorry for the bad quality videos.

These are my first videos for reviewing two cases. I will be uploading more video and hopefully I will do a better job editing. If you guys have any good suggestions for a good video editing software please leave a comment video.

Also, if you have any suggestions regarding the content for the videos, don’t hesitate to leave a comment and let me know. I’d love to put out high quality content that you want to see, so I’ll need your help with that. Thanks for checking out the videos. Much appreciated.

Enjoy the videos and do come back.

What is the best case for the Surface Pro 4?


What is the best case for the Surface Pro 4? This is probably a very subjective topic, but I’ll try to point out as much details as I can so that you can decide for yourself which is the best case for you.

In this article, I would like to introduce and review three cases for the Surface Pro 4 as starters. I have picked these cases knowing that each case would meet various types of users in terms of style.

I will be looking at each cases on the following views:

  • QualityWhichever Surface Pro or cover 4 cover you decide to go with, you want to make sure that you have one that is made of the best material possible. While there are so many options that on the cheaper side of the pricing spectrum, you have to consider that you will get what you pay for. If you pay for something really low quality, then low quality is what you are going to get. I don’t know about you but if I have just dropped a heap of money on a device like the Surface Pro 4, I want to make sure it is protected with the best cover possible. While it might be a little unnerving to spend a bit of money on a good cover, the quality and protection that you will be getting will be so worth it if you ever do find yourself in a situation where you have dropped your Surface Pro 4 or have had it exposed to elements that could damage ii. 
  • FunctionalityIn addition to the quality of the cover, you want to make sure you have a cover that you can actually use. Practicality is of the utmost importance so be sure that you can easily access navigation buttons and the charging port. You want to make sure that your Surface Pro 4 cover is not too bulky either.  This will decrease the functionality as it will be difficult for you to keep your Surface Pro 4 in certain locations due to a bulky cover. 
  • Protection from water and dropsWhile you might try your best to keep your Surface Pro 4 away from water and water droplets, the reality is that at one point your Surface Pro will inevitably come in contact with water. Even minimum moisture exposure can cause some issues with your Surface Pro 4. Because of this, you want to make sure that your cover has at least minor features for protection against water and water droplets in place. 
  • ExtrasLastly, you want to consider any other features or trinkets got your Surface Pro 4. Extras including A built-in keyboard or a stylus compartment. Features like this can make your life a whole lot easier when you are trying to keep track of additional accessories you have for your Surface Pro 4. While having additional compartments may run the risk of making your Surface Pro cover a little bulkier, there are some really neat designs that still retain that Surface Pro 4’s sleek and compact shape. With all the different options available, including the ones we will go over, you are sure to find one that fits your needs best.

In the near future, I will be adding more cases for review in this article. If you want us to review any specific cases, please let us know.

If you have any suggestions on the details I should look into, please let us know that in the comment section as well!

UPDATED on Aug 20, 2016

Two more cases have been added to the review – “Urban Armor Gear” and “Exact”.

Quality

As the name suggest, it is snug and it is primarily a slick leather-like sleeve for the Surface Pro 4. It is well crafted and very stylish to carry your Surface Pro 4 by hand. It feels high quality.

Functionality

Snugg is more for style than functionality because of its simplistic slick design. This case does not provide many pockets or slots for accessories. The Surface Pro 4 is secured by a magnetic button that closes the flap which feels sleek and nice at first, but I find it unstable at times. It does come off occasionally when I didn’t want it to. I’m sure over time as the magnets become weaker, it could potentially become an issue.

The main slot hold your Microsoft Surface Pro 4 with the type cover and a slot for your pen. As mentioned before, it fits quite snugly (no pun intended!).

In the front of the case there is also a card holder for your standard credit card size. Once again, it fits quite snugly, but I wouldn’t put anything valuable in this holder. You can’t really fit anything more than a thick card or two.

There is a back compartment where you may hold your phone, earphones or other smaller accessories. Once again, this compartment is tight. I wouldn’t put anything that might get damaged when compressed. My earphones are blue tooth kinds, so they are quite compact but it does bulge out this pocket as you can see above.

Protection from Drops and Liquids

I would not recommend anyone to leave this case near a moist area because the flap may open. At least all surfaces are covered, so I would say it will be able to handle some water sprays. It appears that the water does not get absorbed into the material easily so if you wipe out quickly, there won’t be any water damage.

The lack of cushioning inside will not handle drops very well. Nevertheless, the soft inner lining can protect the Surface Pro 4 if you lightly bump into hard objects.

Extras

Any damages to the Snugg case is covered by their claimed lifetime warranty which is a great addition to any product. Make sure to read their small writings though.

If you are interested in this case, you’ll find them here.

Quality

The Inateck is a sleeve that is primarily made out of soft felt material. But the soft felt material makes the case feel flimsy. The stitches do look and feel quite strong though so I wouldn’t be concerned about the build quality. Due to its soft material, you won’t need to worry about the Surface Pro 4 developing any scratches as you repeatedly insert and remove the Surface Pro 4 from the case. The material feels soft and smooth to the touch.

Functionality

The Surface Pro 4 is secured inside by a button that closes the flap and it safely secures the device. But this is not a magnet based button so it will make some noise whenever you open the case. If you need a totally silent case, this case is not for you. But you will not need to worry about it being open when you don’t want it to. The main compartment is not big enough to handle both the Surface Pro 4 and the pen.

Inateck case has a slot in the front for your accessories but it lacks a slot for the Surface Pro 4 pen. If you want to keep the overall profile of the case slim, you can’t put anything thick in this slot. The pen and a charging cable fits well but the Surface Pro 4 charger will not fit in this slot very gracefully. The sleeve cover  goes over this slot so when the case is closed, it won’t fall off even if you shake it upside down (not that I recommend it!)

Protection from Drops and Liquid

The soft felt like material does not protect from drops very well. Furthermore, interior of the case does not have much padding. It will protect the Surface Pro 4 from light bumps but clearly it is not designed for hard bumps. This case is really designed to protect against light bumps and perhaps more importantly, scratches when it is being stored with other sharper and harder objects, such as your school bags.

This material can easily be soaked when in contact with liquid and water damages can occur easily. Don’t use this case when it is wet outside.

Extra

Inateck provides us a carrying case for our Surface Pro 4 charger. This is a separate pouch that you need to carry alongside your main case. It does an excellent job protecting your charger while it is in your bag. This is another reason why you will want to carry this case  and the main case inside another (larger) bag.

If you are looking for this case, you’ll find them here.

Quality

Cady Messenger Cube is beautifully crafted with heavy duty outer hard shell. It is composed with leather like material with zippers that goes around all sides for a secure fit. Compare to other cases reviewed here, this one has the toughest shell and it is water proof.

The interior of the case has many slots to hold your accessories. One side has a strap that can hold note books, wallet, charger, and etc. The other side is composed with slots to hold smaller items such as keys, coins and the Surface Pro 4 pen. As you can see, the charger fits easily within the case, so this case can be carried by itself without needing to carry a larger bag.

Protection from Drops and Liquid

The Cady Messenger Cube is a heavy duty case which can protect the Surface Pro 4 from drops. Of course, not all drops are created equal but I would say it would survive a normal drop from a desk height. It can also protect the device from liquid damages since it is sealed with zippers from all sides. I wouldn’t drop it into a pool of water but for a typical rainy day, you can use it without worrying about damaging your Surface Pro 4.

Extras

This is not only a case but it is also a traveling bag. Cady Messenger Cube has a top handle and also provides a shoulder strap.

If you like this case, you’ll find it here.

Price

Please check this link for the latest price.

Quality

From all the cases I have review so far, I would have to say UAG has the best build quality. At the first glance, the rubber sides felt flimsy but when attached to the Surface Pro 4 it locks in very tightly.

This case is comprised of mostly soft rubber and an aluminum kickstand. The kickstand is very sturdy and it is designed to withstand just about anything. The aluminum kickstand has the UAG engraved.

Protections From Drops and Liquid

This hard duty case can withstand drop impacts because the inside of the case is protected by a soft rubber. UAG secures the Surface Pro 4 so it would not accidentally fall out.

I would not recommend using this case under moist environment because it does not protect it from splashes. The case makes absolutely no effort to make itself water tight.

Features

On the top of the case there is a Surface pen holder but unfortunately it is not very secure. I believe it is designed that way for an easy attachment. Unfortunately, that also means it is easier to pop out. I personally would not hold my pen in this slot since the pen costs a pretty penny to replace for the Surface Pro 4.

Beside the Surface pen holder the case also features buttons for the volume and the power. The rubber button sticks out and it is very easy to click. Its an interesting design that works.

There are small holes on the sides for fans and air ventilation. There is a hole for the 3.5 mm headphone jack. These are thoughtful touches.

On the lateral side there are holes for the HDMI, USB and charging port.

The Surface Pro 4 can be used in landscape mode and the kickstand can hold the Surface Pro 4 in a portrait mode as well without issues.

There is a mini strap in the top corner that holds the flip cover keyboard in place. Looks gimmicky but it is surprisingly secure.

It features soft rubber material that locked in your Surface from falling out and have a mini strap that holds your type cover closed.

If you are looking for this case, you’ll find them here.

Price

Please check this link for the latest price.

Quality

This case is made out of a soft leather like material. It feels very cheap (it actually is!) in hand and the cut outs for the speaker is uneven. Nevertheless it does not block the Surface Pro 4 speakers.

The leather like material is very flimsy and it is not sturdy.

The stand on this case does not stand well and it can rock around if not careful.

Protection from Drops or Liquid

I would not recommend using the Surface Pro 4 in moist area. This case would not do a great job in drops either.

Features

This case provides a strap that locks the flap from opening and it is secure band.

On the flap there are two slots for your credit card and anything of that size. There is also a slot for your micro SD card.

On the top of your case there is a slot for you Surface Pro 4 Pen.

There is a cut out from the right side of the display to access your Action Center and on the left side to show your opened windows.

If you are looking for this case, you’ll find them here.

Daniel’s Final Thoughts

So which case is the best case for the Surface Pro 4?

To start, The Snugg is a very slim and stylish case which is also a sacrifice for the functionality. Its slick and narrow look feel makes it comfortable to hold in your hands. Pricing of the Snugg case is reasonable, but not the cheapest of the group. The Snugg is available in several colors.

The Inateck sleeve is made out of a soft felt material which is perfect for keeping it in your bag. Although it lacks pockets for bulky accessories, it does come with a charger case. This is one of the cheapest in this group while offering decent value if you can live with its restrictions.

The Cady Messenger Cube is a heavy duty carrying bag which also carries all your other essential. It has many slots while keeping the case slick and stylish. Obviously this also means it is the heaviest and the bulkiest but still feels surprisingly light for what you get. I would recommend this case for those who may only carry the Surface Pro 4 without using another bag. The Cady Messenger Cube is available in several colors.

The Urban Amour Gear features a high quality case that is one of the most durable cases I’ve seen on the Surface Pro 4. If the durability & protection is what you want, this is it. But it is far from water tight.

The Exact is built with cheapness in mind and not much else. Unless you are incredibly tight in budget, you probably don’t want this product. Not exactly the best case for the Surface Pro 4.

Hey guys please comment below which one fits you best and why. Many more cases are coming so stay tuned and if you have any suggestions about cases, please let me know! Many Thanks!

John’s Pick

I realize that the best case for the Surface Pro 4 is subjective, so please keep that in mind when you read the case of my choice.

I have tried each bag for a while as well, trying to figure out which is the best for me. I’m the type who likes to carry a laptop, a tablet, an external battery, two earphones, a power bar, and couple of phone/laptop chargers along with necessary cables. So I am forced to use a laptop backpack. Given this, Inateck sleeve works great for me. I no longer have to worry about the Surface Pro 4 getting scratched and since it is within another bag, I don’t have to worry about it getting damaged. I also don’t have to worry about other stuff getting damaged by the exterior of the case due to its soft build. The weight is very light which is a huge plus.

I’ll be using this case for the next 6 months or so and I can report back on its durability.

SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive Review


Meta: Need new storage and considering a SanDisk? Here’s how the king of external storage’s Extreme hard drive stacks up.

External hard drives are can’t-live-without accessories, and SanDisk is a big part of the reason why.

Open the memory slot on virtually any digital camera, and there’s a high probability that the store you’ll see inside features the name “SanDisk.†The company, which began as a three-person start-up around 30 years ago, started earning patents in computer memory and chip design almost immediately. Today, one of the co-founders has more than 70 patents to his name.

SanDisk has become synonymous with flash memories because it was an early-adopter. Today, it maintains its reputation by producing devices like the SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive.

The SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive is one of the best players in SSD storage today. It is not only reliable and durable, but it’s stylish and portable. As it turns out, you can have it all.

Will the SanDisk Extreme suit your storage needs? Keep reading for a full review.

SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive: An Overview

External hard drives are everywhere these days, so why does the SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive merit an entire dedicated review?

You’ll see why as soon as you pick it up. SanDisk’s device is compact even compared to the most modern drives. It’s 3.5-inches tall and under 2-inches wide. It’s also only .25-inches thick, which places it firmly in the category of pocket-size.

The construction is plastic, but it also features a rubber bumper around the sides and a rubber backing. We think the addition of the rubber is clever in three ways. The material adds an extra layer of protection. It also makes it more comfortable to carry in your pocket. Finally, the added rubber creates a softer look.

Is the construction robust? Yes. Although other drives offer metal casings that may feel stronger to the touch, you’ll see that the specs more than cover most precarious scenarios.

SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive Specs

Image via flickr

What does SanDisk’s premium external SSD storage offer? The small device packs a serious punch.

The specs include up to 2TB of storage, which is more than enough for a single user. If 2TB sounds extreme and expensive, you can also use the 250 GB, 500 GB, and 1TB options.

It also offers lightning-fast 550 MB/s read speeds, so you’ll never need to wait around.

SanDisk’s build is worth the cost. It is shock and vibration resistant, as we now expect from most of our devices. The device also boasts an IP55 rating against dust and water.

Connectivity is nothing to sniff at, and it’s one of the drive’s best qualities. It features USB 3.1 gen 2 support. SanDisk also satisfies complaints about other drives by sending you a USB-C to USB-C cable with the device. The box also includes a USB-A adaptor.

Out of all these features, we find the USB-A adaptor most compelling. It means you can use both Type-C and Type-A port devices with ease, but more importantly, you can do so without carrying around a superfluous cable.

Performance

SanDisk touts 500 MB/s read speeds, but does the drive stand up to the test?

Several reviewers set out to test those speeds against a baseline. One reviewer used QuickBench and Blackmagic Disk Speed Test programs for the endeavor. They found that the drive read at 521 MB/s on Blackmagic and 536 MB/s on QuickBench.

It wrote at speeds of 471 MB/s for Blackmagic and 491 MB/s QuickBench.

Sandisk offers an option for users with a need for speed, but how does it hold up to your workflow?

It works well as a MacBook Pro companion drive. It’s also reportedly fast enough for workflows that include 4K ProRes 422 Hq.

Warranty

SanDisk offers a three-year limited warranty on the Extreme as well as most of its other products.

What Makes The SanDisk Unique?

Image via flickr

The SanDisk’s design is what makes it particularly unique among other external storage devices in its class.

It isn’t the fastest unit on the market. Nor is it the cheapest. However, the design is both ergonomic and good-looking. The SanDisk Extreme looks like a device you’d bring on the go.

Other pocket-size drives are pocket-size in name only. They don’t offer features that would encourage you to physically put the drive in your pocket. The svelte design with the rubber sides means it fits comfortably in your pocket. If you don’t want to carry it that way, you have the option to clip it to your bag or even a belt-loop.

Even if you throw it in your bag, you’ll still find it easily. It has a look and feel that easily distinguishes from other devices in your bag using your fingers only.

Finally, one reviewer said that the design offers another unique purpose. Because it boasts an unusual shape and a rubber coating, it doesn’t look like a $500 device. You could speculate that it would make it less attractive to thieves, but that’s just a guess.

There’s no reason to leave your SanDisk behind.

Pricing

46,374 Reviews
SanDisk 1TB Extreme Portable External SSD - Up to 550MB/s - USB-C, USB 3.1 - SDSSDE60-1T00-G25
  • High-speed transfers with up to 550MB/s read speeds let you move hi-res photos and videos faster...
  • Ruggedized, water- and dust-resistant (IP55-rated) (IEC 60529 IP55: Tested to withstand water flow...
  • Shock-resistant solid state core for greater durability (Shock-resistant (up to 1500G) and...
  • Compact and pocket-sized
  • For PC and Mac users

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

The price of the drive varies according to storage size. Prices range from $100 for the smallest drive (250 GB) to over $500 for 2 TB.

Pricing may seem steep, but it is on par with other drives of its size and quality, particularly among the 2TB range. Other smaller drives in the GB range are less expensive, but those cheaper drives may not come with the same quality.

If you need a terabyte or more of space but don’t have the budget, you might choose an HDD drive instead. These drives write data on a spinning disk, and they work slower. If you are looking for a drive to back up your laptop or deal with spillover from a laptop, then an HDD will suit you well.

What The Pros Say

Image via pexels

Professional reviewers and users with a vast amount of tech experience share both their admirations and hesitations about the drive.

Almost every reviewer loves the size and weight. It makes portability a dream because it not only fits in your pocket neatly but also offers a built-in space to attach a carabiner or another clip. You can clip it to a loop in your backpack and make sure you never leave home without it.

They also love that it truly stands up for professional use. It may be small, but it’s up to the task for even storage-heavy tasks. Overall, if you have a professional use for a MacBook Pro, then they don’t see why the SanDisk Extreme shouldn’t be by your side.

However, reviewers also come together to wonder about the use of the plastic casing. The idea fails to instill confidence, and storage in a professional context is too important to take risks with. At the same time, there are no reports to suggest that the drive doesn’t offer the long-term durability professional users need.

Still, reviewers note that you can upgrade to an aluminum casing if you choose, but there’s no clear value in doing so as of yet. However, this may change as reviewers update their perspectives after a few years of ownership.

What Customers Say

We are fortunate that the SanDisk Extreme is so well-reviewed given its price. Hundreds of people have taken to the internet to share their thoughts online, and many of them stick to two common themes: speed and portability.

Users write in to share how happy they are about the speed of such a small drive given its price. In some cases, user’s report accurate speeds. One user with a 2016 MacBook Pro reported 470 MB/s write and 515 MB/s read speeds with a USB-C connection. Others state that it’s the fastest hard drive they own by far.

They also love the size and shape of the drive. The hole provided for a carabiner is a tiny detail, but it’s also unique enough that people flip for it. Of course, portability only works as well as it does because almost all the other aspects of the drive function as they should. If the drive was slow or overpriced, you can be sure that the thoughtfulness of the design would become a complaint.

Things To Consider Before Buying

When it comes to gripes, many people have the same issue. First, they struggle to register the drive’s warranty with SanDisk, particularly when they buy the hard drive on Amazon. While this seems like a minor problem, the warranty becomes particularly important if you invest in a 2TB device, which retails at over $500. If something goes wrong, it’s not unreasonable to want to use your warranty.

These gripes make up a minority of reviews. It is unclear how many attempts to register the device and fail. If it is a concern, getting in touch with SanDisk support online or by phone shouldn’t be a problem.

People have also mentioned that the drive can run hot in some cases. Large file transfers and long run times lead to the device heating, but no one has suggested that running hot causes any problems when using the drive. Perhaps the plastic casing heats faster than an aluminum casing, but the reason is generally unclear.

A few reviews have mentioned issues with corruption and fatal errors, but it is unclear whether these are the result of operator errors, device defects or something else. Regardless, reports of these issues are few and far between.

Additionally, it is important to remember that device failures occur and as long as a model sits below a 10 percent failure threshold, it is still a good buy.

Most people who have issues with the SanDisk Extreme external drive tend to run Mac OS computers.

Customer Hacks From The Comment Section

Although the drive should be plug-and-play, some customers have problems.

If you hold files in ExFAT, you may have trouble using the drive unless you reformat to NTFS. Switching to NTFS is neither difficult nor time-consuming, and it will likely solve all future formatting problems.

Additionally, if you use APFS, then the drive won’t suit you as it only supports HFS.

How It Compares

5,768 Reviews
SAMSUNG T5 Portable SSD 500GB - Up to 540MB/s - USB 3.1 External Solid State Drive, Blue (MU-PA500B/AM)
  • Superfast read write speeds: SSD with V-NAND offers ultra-fast data transfer speeds of up to 540MB/s...
  • Compact and portable design: Top to bottom shock resistant metal design fits in the palm of your...
  • Secure encryption: Optional password protection and AES 256-bit hardware encryption keeps your...
  • Seamless connectivity: Includes USB type C to C and USB type C to A cables to connect to PCs, Macs,...
  • Warranty and compatibility: 3-year limited warranty; Requires Windows 7, Mac OS X 10.9 (Mavericks),...

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The SanDisk Extreme is an excellent device, but is it the right device for your needs? To learn more, we compared it with its closest competitor: the Samsung T5.

The Samsung T5

The Samsung T5 is arguably SanDisk Extreme’s closest competitor even though the Samsung’s specs are slightly superior. Samsung’s product is both smaller and faster than the SanDisk Extreme. It features a metal case that feels robust and looks futuristic.

In one-off usage, the speed difference between the Samsung T5 and the SanDisk Extreme seems minute even though the T5 is faster. After all, what are a few seconds difference here and there? However, if you intend the drive for heavy-use, you’ll find that you will save an appreciable amount of time over the course of your work week.

At the same time, if you are a remote worker or a frequent traveler, you may find that you’re willing to put up with only-slightly slower speeds from the SanDisk Extreme for the practical features that make the SanDisk drive more portable.

The big difference is likely to lie in what system you use. Mac users seem to prefer the Samsung T5 SSD to the SanDisk. They find the T5 supports more Mac-related formats than the SanDisk drive does, which naturally makes it a better fit.

Users also like that the T5 comes with an indicator light that lets you know when it connects.

With otherwise negligible differences, you might also choose the Samsung on price. The 2 TB drive offers a slightly lower retail price than does the SanDisk drive. However, price competitiveness depends on the offer.

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is that the SanDisk Extreme External Hard Drive is a solid product that offers the performance and style we look for in today’s hard drives. Little features like the caribiner hole make the device stand out among its peers, but the little things matter most because SanDisk made sure compatibility, security, and performance were all perfect before bringing it to market.

Best USB Bluetooth Adapter For Windows 10

Wireless technology allows one or several computers to connect to printers, copiers, and other devices without needing to string cable across a room. Most new desktops and laptops can connect devices wirelessly through Bluetooth technology with a Bluetooth antenna built into the computer. 

However, if your system doesn’t have a Bluetooth antenna, you can still connect it by finding the best USB Bluetooth adapter for Windows 10 for your desktop or laptop.

Comparison Table

How To Use A Bluetooth Adapter

image source: Pexels

Setting up a Windows 10 computer with Bluetooth is a simple task because Windows 10 has the necessary drivers for connecting it to the software. An adapter, also known as a dongle, is the hardware that is necessary to connect to Bluetooth. All you need to do is plug the adapter into a free USB port and then pair the Bluetooth devices to your system. 


However, before buying an adapter, you need to know which Bluetooth version to buy. To use a system with Windows 10, you will need an adapter that has Bluetooth 3.0 or 4.0 on it. Otherwise, it may not connect the devices to your system. Also, to make sure it has the drivers on your system, go into the Device Manager to check for a Bluetooth Network Connection.


If the computer has that listed, you are ready to plug the adapter into an available USB port and start pairing your devices. If you don’t have any open USB ports, you can buy a USB hub or expansion card to get one to use. 


Some of the devices you can pair to your computer using Bluetooth connectivity include:

  • Keyboard
  • Mouse
  • Speakers
  • Headset
  • Printers
  • Copiers
  • Scanners

Pairing Devices With Windows

image source: Pixabay

To pair one of these devices to your Windows computer once the adapter is plugged in, you need to place the device in “Discovery” mode. With a headset, keyboard, or speaker, there is usually a button you can press and hold down for a moment that will start the device seeking the Bluetooth connection. 


Once some devices are turned on, they will automatically go into a Discovery mode. Many of these devices have an indicator light that tells you if it is in Discovery mode. In Windows, you can help devices find the PC by going into the Control Panel and changing the Bluetooth settings. Click "Change Bluetooth Settings" and then, "Allow Bluetooth devices to find this PC."


Once the Bluetooth device discovers your computer, a small Bluetooth icon should appear, or you can go to the Control Panel to manage Bluetooth devices to ensure the printer, headset, or whatever the device happens to be is listed there.

How We Chose Our Ratings

To find the best USB Bluetooth adapters, we read about each choice and the reviews and testimonials from people who bought them to find the list of the best ones to recommend to our readers. We then gave each device a star rating from one to five stars, with five being the best, to help people choose the best adapter for their Windows 10 system.

Top 10 - Best USB Bluetooth Adapter
for Windows 10

Here are the 10 adapters that we found to connect Bluetooth to a Windows 10 laptop or desktop.

USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter for PC, Techkey Wireless Dongle, for Stereo Music, VOIP, Keyboard, Mouse, Support All Windows 10 8.1 8 7 XP Vista
  • Bluetooth-enable PC / Laptop - Turn your Non-Bluetooth PC or laptop into Bluetooth-enabled so you...
  • Universal Compatible with Windows - Support Win 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista and XP. Most Win 8 + can use...
  • Extremely Small - Thumbnail size allows you to leave it on laptop or PC and no need to remove.
  • Support - 10+ Video guide (Step by step) & many FAQ online to support users with different...
  • 2 Years Warranty available.

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

Whether you have a laptop or desktop PC that needs a Bluetooth dongle, you can use this TECHKEY USB Bluetooth 4.0 adapter on either type of device. It provides support for Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, and Linux systems that don’t have it. Additionally, it adds Bluetooth 4.0 support for Low Energy Bluetooth technology for Windows 8, 8.1, and 10.

The adapter is compact and can be left in a laptop while traveling with it. It will connect to a variety of devices like headsets, keyboards, mice, speakers, and others. It is also compatible with Ubuntu and Raspbian for Raspberry Pi. This device will not work with Mac systems, TVs, or car stereos. 

It provides a Bluetooth signal up to 33 feet away, and it has a data transfer rate of three Mbps with EDS or Enhanced Data Support.

If you need to add Bluetooth to your desktop or laptop PC, this adapter can do that for Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP, and Windows 2000. It is also compatible with Linux laptop and desktop computers, as well as Raspberry Pi. It does not work with Mac OS, TVs, or car stereos.


The data transfer speed on this adapter is three Mbps, and it has a working range of 33 feet. It should be connected through a USB 2.0 port as USB 3.0 can cause some interference. It will connect to several Bluetooth devices and services like:

  • Keyboards
  • Speakers
  • Headphones
  • Mice
  • Printers
  • Skype
  • Music Streaming
  • Google Hangouts

This Bluetooth 4.0 adapter uses the latest Low Energy technology, and it is backward compatible with Bluetooth versions 3.0, 2.1, 2.0 and 1.1. HIGHEVER offers a 24-month warranty on this device. 

Add Bluetooth connectivity to your desktop or laptop computer by installing this USB Bluetooth 4.0 adapter. It is compatible with 32- and 64-bit Windows computers, versions 10, 8.1, 8. 7. Vista, and XP. It does not work with iOS or Mac OS, car stereos, or TVs. 


It has a wireless range of up to 33 feet, and it provides high-speed data and audio transmissions. It works with USB 2.0, and it is compatible with USB 1.1. It has low power consumption, so it won't use up too much energy when it is connecting your system to Bluetooth devices. The adapter has an indicator light to let you know when it Is working.


It connects to Bluetooth devices like:

  • Smartphones
  • Headsets
  • Keyboards
  • Mice
  • Headphones
  • Speakers

It does not support mics, HP Elite Book, or Wi-Fi Pinter. It is also compatible with the XBOX One S and PS3/4 Controllers. 

19,998 Reviews
Avantree DG40S USB Bluetooth Adapter for PC, Bluetooth Dongle for Desktop Laptop Computer, Mouse, Keyboard, Headphones Stereo Music, Skype Calls, Support All Windows 10 8.1 8 7 XP Vista
  • [Enable bluetooth compatibility] For Windows 10 / 8 / 7 / Vista / XP Laptop or desktop computer....
  • [Multiple usage] Connect with Bluetooth headphones, speakers or receivers for wireless stereo music...
  • [Wide range of device support] Connect with Bluetooth keyboards & mice (NOT 2.4G devices), printers,...
  • [Plug & play or Free driver] For native Win 10, plug into USB port and windows will auto-install the...
  • [Support] Avantree stands behind this product with 12-Month (extend to 24 months with product...

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you need a Bluetooth dongle for your Windows 10 laptop or desktop PC, the Avantree USB adapter is an Amazon's Choice device. It is also compatible with Windows 8.1, 8, 7, and Windows Vista systems. It is compatible with a wide range of Bluetooth devices, although it will not work with 2.4G devices like a mouse. 


For Windows 10 and 8, it is a plug and play device. You need to plug it into an available USB port, and it will install itself. However, for other Windows systems, you will need to add the driver from Avantree’s support site or the install it from the CD that comes with the device.  


This dongle comes with 24-months of support and warranty. You can choose to buy a dongle just for Windows 10, or they have one available for all compatible versions of Windows.

1,257 Reviews
USB 4.0 Bluetooth Adapter for PC Bluetooth Dongle Receiver Wireless Transfer Compatible with Stereo Headphones Desktop Windows 10,8,7,Vista,XP
  • Bluetooth adapter supports maximum transfer rate up to 3Mbps and transmission distance up to...
  • Bluetooth dongle 4.0 can work with laptops and desktops running Windows 10 / 8.1 / 8 / 7 /...
  • Windows 7 need to install driver(CD included),most Windows 8/10 plug & play without manual...
  • USB bluetooth dongle applies the latest bluetooth 4.0 with low energy (BLE) technology and it is...
  • Supports endow your PC with bluetooth function, you can easily connect a Bluetooth-enabled device...

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

This ZEXMTE USB Bluetooth adapter is Amazon’s Choice for a Bluetooth desktop adapter. It is a Bluetooth v4.0 dongle that is compatible with Windows 10, 8.1, 8. 7, XP, and Vista. It does not work with TVs, Mac OS systems, or car stereos. It is not compatible with 2.4G wireless technology.


For Windows 10, 8.1, and 8, the adapter is plug and play, but for Windows 7 and prior versions, a driver needs to be added to connect Bluetooth to your desktop. The dongle uses the latest Low Energy Bluetooth technology, and it is compatible with other Bluetooth versions, including 3.0, 2.1, 2.0, and 1.


Although most Bluetooth devices will connect to your system once the adapter is in place, some products like the Bose QC35 require a special driver downloaded to your system before it can connect. It connects from far away as 33 feet, and it runs at a speed of 3Mpbs.

10,089 Reviews
Kinivo USB Bluetooth Adapter for PC BTD-400 (Bluetooth 4.0, Low Energy, Compatible with Windows, Raspberry Pi, Linux)
  • Connect your Computer/Laptop with Bluetooth Enabled Devices such as Mobile Phones, Printers,...
  • Latest Bluetooth specification v4.0 Class 2 with low energy technology; Fully compatible with older...
  • Compatible with 32 bit and 64 bit Windows 10/ 8.1/ Windows 8 / Windows 7 / XP / Raspberry Pi / Linux...
  • Windows 10 (Need driver installation). Plug & Play installation for Win 8.1, 8 with default...
  • 2 Year Warranty and US based customer support

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

Kinivo’s BTD-400 dongle helps to connect your desktop or laptop to Bluetooth devices like headphones, printers, stereo speakers, and smartphones. Along with new Bluetooth devices, it is also compatible with older equipment that accepts low energy technology Bluetooth v4.0.


It is compatible with both 32- and 64-bit Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista, and XP. It is also compatible with Raspberry Pi and Linux systems that do not have built-in Bluetooth. It provides plug and play installation for Windows 10, 8.1, and 8, and the driver for all other Windows versions, plus Raspberry Pi. The wireless range for Raspberry is 10 meters or 30 feet.


The company offers a two-year warranty on the device and the support for the adapter is based in the United States. 

11,611 Reviews
Plugable USB Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy Micro Adapter (Compatible with Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Classic Bluetooth, Gamepad, and Stereo Headset Compatible)
  • START USING BLUETOOTH - Adds Bluetooth to your Windows 11, 10, 8, and 7 PC that doesn't already have...
  • CONNECT YOUR DEVICES - Supports wireless Bluetooth headphones, speakers, headsets, keyboards, mice,...
  • TINY DESIGN - This mini USB dongle can stay plugged in while you are on the move. This adapter is...
  • COMPATIBILITY - Not usable in car stereos, TVs, or Mac computers. Not recommended for...
  • 2 YEAR WARRANTY - We love our Plugable products, and hope you will too. All of our products are...

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

The tiny dongle with Plugable allows your Windows 10, 8.1, 8, or Windows 7 computer to use Bluetooth connectivity available on many devices. It is also compatible with Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora, and other Linux computers. 


While it is plug and play for most versions of Windows, special drivers will need to be added for Windows 7 to use it with Bose devices like the QC35 and others. This adapter will not work on Mac computers, for TVs, or in cars. 


The company offers a full one-year warranty on the adapter, and its email support is in the US.

9,269 Reviews
ASUS USB-BT400 USB Adapter w/ Bluetooth Dongle Receiver, Laptop & PC Support, Windows 10 Plug and Play /8/7/XP, Printers, Phones, Headsets, Speakers, Keyboards, Controllers,Black
  • Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter
  • USB 2.0, Up to 3Mbps and Over 10 meters in free space
  • Frequency Band: 2.4~2.4835GHz unlicensed ISM band
  • OS Support: Windows 8 , 32bit/64bit / Windows 7 , 32bit/64bit / Windows XP , 32bit/64bit

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

This ASUS USB Bluetooth adapter is compatible with several versions of Windows including:

  • Windows 10
  • Windows 8, 32- and 64-bit
  • Windows 7, 32- and 64-bit
  • Windows XP, 32- and 64-bit

It supports USB 2.0 and Bluetooth v4.0. For Windows 10, the adapter is plug and play as the OS will automatically recognize it, but for the other versions of Windows, the driver needs to be installed to use Bluetooth on the system. 


It also supports Bluetooth Low Energy devices to reduce power consumption. It has full backward compatibility with Bluetooth v3.0, 2.1, and 2.0, so it can connect to a wide variety of devices using Bluetooth connectivity. 

3,138 Reviews
Sabrent USB Bluetooth 4.0 Micro Adapter for PC [v4.0 Class 2 with Low Energy Technology] (BT-UB40)
  • Compatible with Bluetooth V3.0/2.1/2.0/1.1
  • Enable wireless connectivity between a laptop and a cellular phone
  • Access internet via a Bluetooth Mobile phone with GPRS/CDMA or Bluetooth-enabled PC with an internet...
  • Connect a Bluetooth headset to your PC
  • Bluetooth specification v4.0 Class 2 with low energy technology

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

This small adapter allows you to add Bluetooth technology to your Windows 10, 8.1, or 8 desktop or laptop. It uses Bluetooth Low Energy Technology to save on power consumption when you’re using a Bluetooth device like a printer, headset, smartphone, or mouse. 


Although this is Bluetooth version 4.0, it is also compatible with v3.0, 2.1, 2.0, and 1.1. Along with being compatible with Windows computers, this Bluetooth adapter is compatible with Linux systems as well. Sabrent offers a 1-year warranty on the adapter, but if you register it within the first 90-days, then they will extend the warranty to two years for free.  

1,566 Reviews
Bluetooth 5.0 USB Dongle, Rocketek Bluetooth Adapter for PC, Mini Low Energy USB Dongle Wireless Transfer for Laptop Bluetooth Headphones Speaker Keyboard Mouse Printer Music Calls, Windows 10/8.1/8/7
  • 【Bluetooth 5.0 Dongle Adapter】Engineered with the latest Bluetooth 5.0 technology featuring four...
  • 【Faster Speed, Longer Range】One 5.0 Wireless Adapter can connect up to 7 devices simultaneously....
  • 【Portable Mini USB Dongle】USB 5.0 Wireless Adapter Extremely compact USB adapter allows you to...
  • 【Wide Compatibility】USB 5.0 Wireless Bluetoth Adapter Compatible with Windows...
  • 【Stream Music & Take Calls】DG45 Bluetooth USB for PC connects with Bluetooth headphones or...

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

Rocketek offers a Low Energy USB Bluetooth adapter that is compatible with Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP. It is plug and play for Windows versions 7 and above, but you will need to download Bluetooth drivers for Windows XP and Vista. 


This adapter will work with both desktop and laptop PC with these Windows versions. You can connect seven devices with one adapter like speakers, printers, headsets, phones, and more. It has a wireless range of 30 feet or 10 meters.


Along with having the latest Bluetooth v4.0 Class 2 low energy technology, the adapter also works with older Bluetooth devices. The tiny adapter carries a 12-year manufacturer’s warranty. Rocketek also offers an adapter compatible with Linux OS and an EDR wireless receiver for Bluetooth. 

Buyers Guide

The best USB Bluetooth adapter for Windows 10 is a plug and play device, so when you connect it to the USB port, it will detect the Bluetooth Network, and you can start connecting the Bluetooth devices you have to your computer.

image source: Pexels

However, if you have certain versions of Windows, such as 7, XP, or Vista, then you will need to download drivers to use Bluetooth. Also, check to make sure your USB port is 2.0. A USB 3.0 port can infer with the signal, and you may not be able to use your Bluetooth devices with that type of port.

Knowing which Bluetooth and USB versions to look for can save a lot of frustration when trying to use wireless devices with your desktop or laptop computer. 

Best USB Bluetooth Adapter for Windows 10

Wireless technology allows one or several computers to connect to printers, copiers, and other devices without needing to string cable across a room. Most new desktops and laptops can connect devices wirelessly through Bluetooth technology with a Bluetooth antenna built into the computer.

However, if your system doesn’t have a Bluetooth antenna, you can still connect it by finding the best USB Bluetooth adapter for Windows 10 for your desktop or laptop.

Best USB Bluetooth Adapter for Windows 10: Comparison Table

PRODUCT

IMAGE

WHERE TO BUY

Techkey USB bluetooth adapter

HIGHEVER USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter

Mpow USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter

Avantree USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter For PC

ZEXMTE USB Bluetooth Adapter

Kinivo BDT 400 USB Bluetooth Adapter

Plugable USB Bluetooth Adapter

Asus 4.0 USB Bluetooth Adapter

Sabrent USB Bluetooth Adapter

Rocketek USB Bluetooth 4.0 PC Adapter

How We Chose Our Ratings

To find the best USB Bluetooth adapters, we read about each choice and the reviews and testimonials from people who bought them to find the list of the best ones to recommend to our readers. We then gave each device a star rating from one to five stars, with five being the best, to help people choose the best adapter for their Windows 10 system.

Top 10 - Best USB Bluetooth Adapter For Windows 10

Here are the 10 adapters that we found to connect Bluetooth to a Windows 10 laptop or desktop.

TECHKEY Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter for PC  4.5 Stars

Whether you have a laptop or desktop PC that needs a Bluetooth dongle, you can use this TECHKEY USB Bluetooth 4.0 adapter on either type of device.


It provides support for Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, and Linux systems that don’t have it. Additionally, it adds Bluetooth 4.0 support for Low Energy Bluetooth technology for Windows 8, 8.1, and 10.

The adapter is compact and can be left in a laptop while traveling with it. It will connect to a variety of devices like headsets, keyboards, mice, speakers, and others. It is also compatible with Ubuntu and Raspbian for Raspberry Pi. This device will not work with Mac systems, TVs, or car stereos.


It provides a Bluetooth signal up to 33 feet away, and it has a data transfer rate of three Mbps with EDS or Enhanced Data Support.

HIGHEVER USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter

If you need to add Bluetooth to your desktop or laptop PC, this adapter can do that for Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP, and Windows 2000.

It is also compatible with Linux laptop and desktop computers, as well as Raspberry Pi. It does not work with Mac OS, TVs, or car stereos.

The data transfer speed on this adapter is three Mbps, and it has a working range of 33 feet. It should be connected through a USB 2.0 port as USB 3.0 can cause some interference. It will connect to several Bluetooth devices and services like:

  • Keyboards
  • Speakers
  • Headphones
  • Mice
  • Printers
  • Skype
  • Music Streaming
  • Google Hangouts

This Bluetooth 4.0 adapter uses the latest Low Energy technology, and it is backward compatible with Bluetooth versions 3.0, 2.1, 2.0 and 1.1. HIGHEVER offers a 24-month warranty on this device.

Mpow USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter

Add Bluetooth connectivity to your desktop or laptop computer by installing this USB Bluetooth 4.0 adapter. It is compatible with 32- and 64-bit Windows computers, versions 10, 8.1, 8. 7. Vista, and XP.

It does not work with iOS or Mac OS, car stereos, or TVs.

It has a wireless range of up to 33 feet, and it provides high-speed data and audio transmissions. It works with USB 2.0, and it is compatible with USB 1.1. It has low power consumption, so it won't use up too much energy when it is connecting your system to Bluetooth devices. The adapter has an indicator light to let you know when it Is working.

It connects to Bluetooth devices like:

  • Smartphones
  • Headsets
  • Keyboards
  • Mice
  • Headphones
  • Speakers

It does not support mics, HP Elite Book, or Wi-Fi Pinter. It is also compatible with the XBOX One S and PS3/4 Controllers.

Avantree USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter For PC Or Laptop Computers 

If you need a Bluetooth dongle for your Windows 10 laptop or desktop PC, the Avantree USB adapter is an Amazon's Choice device.

It is also compatible with Windows 8.1, 8, 7, and Windows Vista systems. It is compatible with a wide range of Bluetooth devices, although it will not work with 2.4G devices like a mouse.

For Windows 10 and 8, it is a plug and play device. You need to plug it into an available USB port, and it will install itself. However, for other Windows systems, you will need to add the driver from Avantree’s support site or the install it from the CD that comes with the device. 

This dongle comes with 24-months of support and warranty. You can choose to buy a dongle just for Windows 10, or they have one available for all compatible versions of Windows.

ZEXMTE USB Bluetooth Adapter

This ZEXMTE USB Bluetooth adapter is Amazon’s Choice for a Bluetooth desktop adapter. It is a Bluetooth v4.0 dongle that is compatible with Windows 10, 8.1, 8. 7, XP, and Vista.

It does not work with TVs, Mac OS systems, or car stereos. It is not compatible with 2.4G wireless technology.

For Windows 10, 8.1, and 8, the adapter is plug and play, but for Windows 7 and prior versions, a driver needs to be added to connect Bluetooth to your desktop. The dongle uses the latest Low Energy Bluetooth technology, and it is compatible with other Bluetooth versions, including 3.0, 2.1, 2.0, and 1.

Although most Bluetooth devices will connect to your system once the adapter is in place, some products like the Bose QC35 require a special driver downloaded to your system before it can connect. It connects from far away as 33 feet, and it runs at a speed of 3Mpbs.

Kinivo BTD-400 Low Energy Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter 

Kinivo’s BTD-400 dongle helps to connect your desktop or laptop to Bluetooth devices like headphones, printers, stereo speakers, and smartphones.

Along with new Bluetooth devices, it is also compatible with older equipment that accepts low energy technology Bluetooth v4.0.

It is compatible with both 32- and 64-bit Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista, and XP. It is also compatible with Raspberry Pi and Linux systems that do not have built-in Bluetooth. It provides plug and play installation for Windows 10, 8.1, and 8, and the driver for all other Windows versions, plus Raspberry Pi. The wireless range for Raspberry is 10 meters or 30 feet.

The company offers a two-year warranty on the device and the support for the adapter is based in the United States.

Plugable USB Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy Micro Adapter

The tiny dongle with Plugable allows your Windows 10, 8.1, 8, or Windows 7 computer to use Bluetooth connectivity available on many devices.

It is also compatible with Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora, and other Linux computers.

While it is plug and play for most versions of Windows, special drivers will need to be added for Windows 7 to use it with Bose devices like the QC35 and others. This adapter will not work on Mac computers, for TVs, or in cars.

The company offers a full one-year warranty on the adapter, and its email support is in the US.

ASUS USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter

This ASUS USB Bluetooth adapter is compatible with several versions of Windows including:

  • Windows 10
  • Windows 8, 32- and 64-bit
  • Windows 7, 32- and 64-bit
  • Windows XP, 32- and 64-bit

It supports USB 2.0 and Bluetooth v4.0. For Windows 10, the adapter is plug and play as the OS will automatically recognize it, but for the other versions of Windows, the driver needs to be installed to use Bluetooth on the system.

It also supports Bluetooth Low Energy devices to reduce power consumption. It has full backward compatibility with Bluetooth v3.0, 2.1, and 2.0, so it can connect to a wide variety of devices using Bluetooth connectivity.

Sabrent USB Bluetooth 4.0 Micro Adapter

This small adapter allows you to add Bluetooth technology to your Windows 10, 8.1, or 8 desktop or laptop.

It uses Bluetooth Low Energy Technology to save on power consumption when you’re using a Bluetooth device like a printer, headset, smartphone, or mouse.

Although this is Bluetooth version 4.0, it is also compatible with v3.0, 2.1, 2.0, and 1.1. Along with being compatible with Windows computers, this Bluetooth adapter is compatible with Linux systems as well.

Sabrent offers a 1-year warranty on the adapter, but if you register it within the first 90-days, then they will extend the warranty to two years for free.  

Rocketek USB Bluetooth 4.0 PC Adapter 

Rocketek offers a Low Energy USB Bluetooth adapter that is compatible with Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP.

It is plug and play for Windows versions 7 and above, but you will need to download Bluetooth drivers for Windows XP and Vista.

This adapter will work with both desktop and laptop PC with these Windows versions. You can connect seven devices with one adapter like speakers, printers, headsets, phones, and more. It has a wireless range of 30 feet or 10 meters.

Along with having the latest Bluetooth v4.0 Class 2 low energy technology, the adapter also works with older Bluetooth devices. The tiny adapter carries a 12-year manufacturer’s warranty. Rocketek also offers an adapter compatible with Linux OS and an EDR wireless receiver for Bluetooth.

How To Use A Bluetooth Adapter

Image via Freepik

Setting up a Windows 10 computer with Bluetooth is a simple task because Windows 10 has the necessary drivers for connecting it to the software. An adapter, also known as a dongle, is the hardware that is necessary to connect to Bluetooth. All you need to do is plug the adapter into a free USB port and then pair the Bluetooth devices to your system.

However, before buying an adapter, you need to know which Bluetooth version to buy. To use a system with Windows 10, you will need an adapter that has Bluetooth 3.0 or 4.0 on it. Otherwise, it may not connect the devices to your system. Also, to make sure it has the drivers on your system, go into the Device Manager to check for a Bluetooth Network Connection.

If the computer has that listed, you are ready to plug the adapter into an available USB port and start pairing your devices. If you don’t have any open USB ports, you can buy a USB hub or expansion card to get one to use.

Some of the devices you can pair to your computer using Bluetooth connectivity include:

  • Keyboard
  • Mouse
  • Speakers
  • Headset
  • Printers
  • Copiers
  • Scanners

Pairing Devices With Windows

To pair one of these devices to your Windows computer once the adapter is plugged in, you need to place the device in “Discovery” mode. With a headset, keyboard, or speaker, there is usually a button you can press and hold down for a moment that will start the device seeking the Bluetooth connection.

Once some devices are turned on, they will automatically go into a Discovery mode. Many of these devices have an indicator light that tells you if it is in Discovery mode.

In Windows, you can help devices find the PC by going into the Control Panel and changing the Bluetooth settings. Click "Change Bluetooth Settings" and then, "Allow Bluetooth devices to find this PC."

Once the Bluetooth device discovers your computer, a small Bluetooth icon should appear, or you can go to the Control Panel to manage Bluetooth devices to ensure the printer, headset, or whatever the device happens to be is listed there.

Image via Freepik

Buyers Guide

The best USB Bluetooth adapter for Windows 10 is a plug and play device, so when you connect it to the USB port, it will detect the Bluetooth Network, and you can start connecting the Bluetooth devices you have to your computer.

However, if you have certain versions of Windows, such as 7, XP, or Vista, then you will need to download drivers to use Bluetooth. Also, check to make sure your USB port is 2.0. A USB 3.0 port can infer with the signal, and you may not be able to use your Bluetooth devices with that type of port.

Knowing which Bluetooth and USB versions to look for can save a lot of frustration when trying to use wireless devices with your desktop or laptop computer.

Core m3 vs i5 vs i7 processors

The Core m3 vs. i5 processor vs. i7 processor comparison has been around for a long time. And for each processor generation, the “best” option differed depending on individual needs. Microsoft has finally released a new version of their Surface Pro with the Kaby Lake processors.

So how does this generation of Core m3 vs. i5 vs. i7 perform within the Surface Pro skin?

Here are the specs on paper:

CPUCore m3 7Y30Core i5 7300UCore i7 7660U
# of cores222
# of threads444
Clock speed1.0 – 2.6 GHz2.6 – 3.5 GHz2.5 – 4.0 GHz
Cache4MB3MB4MB
TDP4.5W15W15W
GPUIntel HD 615Intel HD 620Intel Iris Plus 640

As you can see, the number of cores and threads don’t change across the range, just as it has been in the past.

As expected, there is a big jump in clock frequency from the Core m3 to Core i5 models, but Intel processors have artificially crippled the Core i5 model by reducing the cache size slightly to 3MB. The Core i7 model still features the same ‘smart’ cache as the one found in the Core m3 model. The Core i7 model’s base frequency is actually lower than the Core i5’s! But it does peak well beyond the level of the Core i5’s ‘turbo’ frequency.

Also interesting to note here is that the TDP difference between the Core m3 and the Core i5 is massive (which is to be expected given their frequencies), but the Core i5 and the Core i7 models feature identical TDP numbers. Does this mean the Core i7 model will not have much in the way of battery life penalty?

Stay tuned – another article will address this.

The GPU units are different across the board as well. In theory, the Iris Plus 640 found in the Core i7, should give 3D tests huge boosts.

Let’s move on to the benchmark scores.

Novabench – Core m3 vs i5 vs i7

Novabench has been around forever. It reports a nice, simple set of numbers for easy comparison between different Windows (or iMacs) devices.

Novabench measures the CPU performance (integer, floating point, and MD5 hashing), GPU test (3D graphics), and raw hardware performance (RAM, Disk speeds). The entire test only runs for a few minutes so I would not call it extensive, but it is easy to compare across different devices.

Here are the results for each of the Surface Pro machines:

 System RAM TestCPU Test3D Graphics TestDrive Write Speed Test
Core i7 7660U21153423136
Core i5 7300U1595266326
Core m3 7Y301524086119

Core M3 Vs. I5 Vs. I7: What Is The Difference In Speed With I5 Vs I7 Processor?

Core i7 7660U vs. Core i5 7300U – The results are all over the place. RAM is 33% faster, but the CPU is only 2% faster! The SSD drive is also 38% faster! But as expected, Core i7’s graphics performance is far far better, almost four times better! This is of course, due to the presence of Intel Iris 640 built into the Core i7’s die.

Core i5 7300U vs. Core m3 7Y30 – Between these two, the differences are much more subdued. The Core i5 is 5% faster in the RAM test, 29% faster in CPU test, only 3% faster in graphics test, and 37% faster in SSD drive speed test.

Core M3 vs. I5 vs. I7: Gaming and Video Editing

Naturally, having good graphics capabilities helps with gaming. But the Core M3 takes things even further than that by boasting that it is the ideal choice for it. According to Intel, the gaming experience it provides is one of a kind because of how amazing the visuals are. They even say it’s the best to come out yet!

The best part of the Core M3 is the fact that you do not need an added card in order to experience all that it has to offer for gaming. Not only is the display amazing, but the amount of games to choose from has increased. You have Google play your fingertips, and the M3 processor belonging to the core is the thing that changed the game. Tests have been conducted that have proven the M3 processor core to be significantly faster and higher quality. There is less waiting time when it comes to videos and code loading. For the gamer, this is incredible news. The Core M3 rightfully boasts being able to save you precious time overall.

On the flip side of the coin, video editing is a task similar to gaming. You will need the ability to experience minimal glitching, fast performance, and smooth visuals on-screen. All these things are promised with the Core M3, but remember that this processor is best for basic editing. Things like editing GoPro videos can be done, but it is not the absolute best option for video editing anything more than the basics.

As far as the i5 vs. i7 processor laptops go, some of the issues seen with these two types are the size in weight. The i5 is significantly heavier than the i7, which is enough reason for some to choose the slightly more expensive i7. These are definitely faster as well as hold more storage for games and videos. Many would say at the end of the day that the i7 is not a significant enough improvement in the areas of these two categories for the jump in price. You have to remember, the core M3 is an entirely different processor from the i5 and i7. So you are really comparing the M3 and then the i5 and i7.

Core M3 vs. I5 vs. I7: PCMark V10

PCMark v10 is a benchmark designed to produce numbers realistically mimic the work environment. It uses a wide variety of tests. Hence, it doesn’t rely heavily on one type of analysis over another.

The results are split into  three categories– ‘Essentials,’ ‘Productivity,’ and ‘Digital Content Creation.’ And finally, it produces a single number that represents the overall performance, called ‘PCMark 10 score’.

 EssentialsProductivityDigital Content CreationPCMark 10 Score
Core i7 7660U6900586627403444
Core i5 7300U6103471222772889
Core m3 7Y305824374918072440

Core i7 7660U vs. Core i5 7300U – The Core i7 outperforms the Core i5 by 13% in Essentials, 24% in Productivity, and 20% in Digital Content Creation.

Core i5 7300U vs. Core m3 7Y30 – The Core i5 outperforms the Core m3 by 5% in Essentials, 26% in Productivity, and 18% in Digital Content Creation.

Overall, the performance gap between the Core i7 and Core i5 is roughly similar to that of the Core i5 and the Core m3 based on these results.

Core M3 vs. I5 vs. I7: Cache

The level of cache available determines the productivity levels at which you can work. Naturally, the Core M3 is decently fast, while the i7 has faster speeds than the i5.

The beauty of the larger cache is that you can do so many things at once, thus the larger the cache, the more things you can do. Some of the things a large cache helps you to accomplish are multi-tasking edits, spreadsheets, documents, browsers, and calculations.

A large cache is great for those who use their device to work and need to get a ton done at once. Many of us are entirely reliant on fast devices to do our jobs efficiently. This means that since the cache is the background storage that makes your multitasking readily available, you will need a ton of it.

Memory cache speeds up your computer, but how exactly? Well, let’s walk through it. The cache is a high-speed data storage piece. In this piece, the microprocessor keeps track of your most used data and stores it. If you begin to use programs that require more substantial data usage, this same microprocessor will use the cache memory processor space to store that data and carry out the necessary tasks quickly and effectively. The more storage room, the higher the speed at which it can work. So if your work is overwhelmingly large, it is going to be best to have more spacious cache storage.

If we are getting technical, i7s on average have 12MB, and i5s have 9MB. Depending on your job and level of productivity needed, you can determine which system is a better fit for you.

But there is one caveat to be aware of: there is a point at which a higher cache does nothing for speed. It is essential to recognize this as you purchase either the i5 or i7. It is useless to spend large amounts of money unnecessarily if the larger cache won’t even do the things you want it to do. It is not harmful to have a too large cache, but it might merely be useless.

Since most caches tend to be on the smaller side, this is only something you will need to worry about if your amount of work and productivity needs are exceptionally high. To determine this, you will need to use your past experiences with maxing out a smaller cache in the past and go from there.

All in all, it is a general rule that productivity performance is best done if you have enough space to store your various common applications. It only makes sense for this to be the case. Think of it like having those cookbooks you read regularly or favorite coffee mugs you use all the time in an easily accessible front drawer or cabinet. The same is true of a cache memory storage space.

Core M3 vs. I5 vs. I7: 3DMark V11

3DMark measures precisely what the name says – 3D graphics performances of each device.

 TestsCore m3 7Y30Core i5 7300UCore i7 7660U
Time SpyFailedFailed571
Fire Strike7218241,099
Sky Diver3,2493,4424,354
Cloud Gate4,9535,5436,820
 Ice Storm Extreme31,78033,97946,521

Both the Core m3 and the Core i5 models have failed the Time Spy test which also happens to be the newest and the most stressful test of this group. Time Spy test needs more V-Ram to run the entire test clean and completely.

The results are pretty clear – there is a small incremental improvement going from the Core m3 to the Core i5. But by far the most significant gaps exist between the Core i5 and the Core i7 models.

Core M3 vs. I5 vs. I7: Browser Tests

Google Octane is a browser-based benchmark site. You don’t need to install any applications on your laptop. It measures the execution speed of the Javascript engine.

Similarly, Mozilla Kraken also measures the Javascript execution speed. I’ve added this to get some diversity.

CPUCore m3 7Y30Core i5 7300UCore i7 7660U
Google Octane v2.022,01831,44036,030
Mozilla Kraken v1.11626 ms1153 ms1031 ms

The results here show that the Core i5 performs much better than the Core m3 in both tests. The Core i7, on the other hand, only returns slight advantage over the Core i5.

Let’s Talk About Core I9

Core i9 is a workhorse compared to the i5 and i7 cores. The use of i9 is typically for professional workers or very prestigious gamers. This core is a costly investment, but it is useful if you need the space. I9 has proven itself to be very productive and valuable. You will have to do some research to find one of the few laptops that offer it, but it is known for being one of the most powerful available in our day and age. As a laptop addition, this is a powerful agent. But for a desktop, it is an absolute wonder. This more advanced and stronger option is even more costly, but it is known as the most loved among serious gamers. If you need a bit more juice, the i9 core may be for you!

Final Thoughts on the Core M3 vs I5 vs I7

If you are looking to get some excellent performance in 3D graphics, you have no choice – you must get the Core i7 model. The difference is so big that it would be stupid to consider another model, even if they are significantly cheaper.

If you are looking for a productivity model with some value, then the choice is less obvious. One factor that will weigh significantly in your purchasing decision is that the Core m3 model only comes in 4GM of RAM and 128GB of SSD. If you need more capacity, the m3 model isn’t for you.

For the rest of you, the Core i5 model (with the options of 4 or 8GB RAM, 128 or 256GB SSD) will probably suit you the best.

(UPDATE: Please check out this article for in-depth battery life comparison!)

(More comparison tests are coming soon – storage speed, SD card performance, battery life test, etc. Also, more tests to compare the performances between the Surface Pro vs. Surface Pro 4.)

Last update on 2021-10-20 at 10:10 / Affiliate links / Images / Prices / from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Surface Pro 4 Battery Life Benchmarks

The Surface has been out for about seven weeks as I write this and I finally managed to get all of my data together to do some real-life Surface Pro 4 battery life benchmarks. Part of this delay was to give Microsoft a chance to address some ongoing battery issues with the November Update which released in mid-November.

I’ve done this type of testing for previous Surface models, and many people have found it much more useful and accurate than synthetic benchmarks created by battery testing software (which many reviewers use).

So, let’s get down to the test results.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Benchmarks

Here are the results for all three SP4 CPU models (m3, i5, i7). For these tests, in the interest of scientific rigor, my testing procedure was as follows (unless noted otherwise in a specific section):

  • The m3 SP4 had 4GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD
  • The i5 and i7 SP4s and 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSDs.
  • The Surfaces were all patched up as of November 15th (and included the November Update).
  • The Surfaces were not updated during the test sequence (to keep the patch level consistent throughout the tests).
  • The tests were run six times for each model and averaged to get the results below.
  • The devices were fully recharged and restarted before each test run.
  • The default “Balanced” power plan was used on each device.
  • Screen brightness was set to “Suggested.”
  • The devices were used until the critical battery action put them into hibernate at 3% remaining capacity. All low power messages were ignored.
  • None of the three devices I tested seemed to suffer from any issues or bugs that caused premature battery drain.
  • If I got an “outlier” result (such as the battery only running half as long during a single test), it was discarded, and a new run was performed.
  • Results were rounded to the nearest minute.

Now that you know what my testing procedure was like, let’s move onto the actual benchmarks.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Normal Use

In this scenario, I tested a “normal use” scenario. I used the Surfaces to do things like web surfing, blogging, editing pictures, light graphics work, email, Facebook, streaming videos, etc. In other words, I basically just used them to work and web surf like any normal day.

I let the SP4s turn off the screen and sleep normally when I wasn’t using them, but I did not power them off or press the power button to rest them manually.

This graph shows minutes of battery life during regular use, including when sleeping:

All three tablets would have made it through a typical 8-hour work day but, the m3 model would have just barely squeaked by at 7 hours and 54 minutes. By comparison, the i5 model gave me, on average, 10 hours and 4 minutes of life

This graph shows the total battery life while the Surfaces were actually powered on and in use (not including sleep):

You might be surprised by how poorly the m3 version did with this test. At 376 minutes (6 hours, 16 minutes) of average total run time, it had a battery life that was even less than the average for the i7 version. However, nothing was wrong with the test. It seems that the m3 version of the SP4 is simply less efficient than the other models.

If you try these tests yourself, the results will vary depending on the types of software you run, power settings, and how often you let your Surface go to sleep. I tend to let my Surfaces sleep about 30% of the time during the day, and I don’t tend to run high-intensity apps like Mathematica, Lightroom, or Lumion. Inversely, I do often run several web browser windows at once, and I usually have MS Paint and/or Excel running in the background; so, I am taxing the CPU a little bit, just not a lot.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Streaming

For this test, I fired up the Netflix app and played back to back videos until the battery was exhausted. There were minimal gaps between videos (sometimes I had to deal with the “are you still watching” prompts). This test does a good job of simulating being on a long flight and passing the time by streaming movies. I did the same thing with YouTube (in Chrome).

The results are as follows:

Correction: The original graph for this section was incorrect. The m3 data was good but, the data for the i5 and i7 models were from a different test that I decided not to use (powered on, doing nothing). The graph above is the corrected version. The other graphs were double-checked and are correct.

As you can see, the m3 model once again is lagging behind the i5 model but, has a slight edge on the i7 model. Streaming from the net uses Wi-Fi quite a bit, but it shouldn’t be a significant tax on the CPU; so the m3, in theory, should have an advantage.

It also seems that the Netflix app is a little more efficient than YouTube on Chrome, which is not a total surprise.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Gaming

For this test, I fired up SP4 is lacking) but they are still pretty good, and it draws each spacecraft component separately which adds to the CPU load.

Here are my results:

 

The m3 finally outperformed the i5 and i7 for battery duration. However, even though the battery lasted longer, it was much more painful to play KSP on the m3 than the others.

Often, I would have framerates in the single digits when I had more than one small spacecraft on screen. The i5 was quite playable most of the time (but would lag if I had a lot of objects on display) and the i7 version played pretty smoothly no matter what I had on screen (up to a point I put a monster space station with 628 individual parts in orbit, anyway).

Funny enough, if you look at my post on the Surface Pro 4 for this test, you will see that the SP3 has a battery with a larger capacity.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Recharging

While depleting the battery is usually more fun, how quickly you can recharge your SP4 is pretty essential, as well. So, here are the results of my testing where I recharged the SP4 models from 3% back up to 100%. The tablets were not in use during the charge cycles:

This time, the result is pretty much a draw as all three versions recharge in a little over 2 hours and 30 minutes. Since the m3 version of the SP4 comes with a 24W charger (as opposed to the 36W version that comes with the i5 and i7 versions), I was a bit surprised by this result.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: How to Save Battery Life on Surface Pro 4

There are some basic things you can do to save battery life on this Surface. These are fantastic tips if you are looking to experience prolonged juice, in addition to already having a good battery!

Use Battery Saver Mode

There is an icon in your notifications section (it can also be searched, or Cortana can be used) that can be set up. This preserves the battery as much as possible by automatically dimming the screen as well as turning off other behind the scenes life suckers. You can turn this one on at all times, or select it to go on automatically when it hits 20%.

Disable background apps

In your settings, you can disable the background apps with a simple click. Go to the privacy feature and then click on background apps under the words “let apps run in the background”. You also have the option to turn off individual apps as you desire. These selections will help your device to do less work and therefore preserve your battery.

Keep an eye on your brightness

When the brightness automatically adjusts to brighter, it is wise to put it at a moderate level. High brightness on the display is one of the worst battery drainers. You can change the brightness through settings, on your toolbar, or on the keyboard itself.

Turn off battery suckers you don’t need

Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and mobile broadband are all things that run in the background. They are always searching for networks, and they drain your battery life in the process. Airplane Mode is a great way to give your laptop a break when you can go without these features. You can also individually keep them off as they are not in use.

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Best Accessories

We can talk all day long about battery life, but I also wanted to give you some insight into how to improve your time spent on the Surface Pro 4. I am doing that by giving you a list below of some of the best accessories! These accessories will only make your device even more lovable than it already is.

Type Cover

Some would argue that the Microsoft Surface type cover(aka the Surface’s keyboard) is the most important of all the accessories. This addition is the one thing that can make or break you having just a tablet or a two in one tablet and laptop. And the Surface 4 type cover is the best out there! It is larger than its predecessors by a whopping 40 perfect, and it’s so upgraded that even the Typepad glass is smoother than before! Not only does it have these improved features, but it is also faster, and typing has never been more comfortable with the new space that fits in between keys. There are even a few extra keys that come with this upgrade, which adds onto the list of improvements. All that extra space was truly put to good use!

Car Charger

The next great accessory on our list is the car charger for your Surface Pro. Do you use your Surface on the go regularly? Do you worry about it dying while you’re on the road? Then this is a great accessory for you! Laptop chargers seemed all but a far off dream for many of us. But now they are here and made just for your device. This charger is specifically designed for both the Pro 3 and 4. It also keeps the device from overcharging, which protects your battery from harm in the long run!

Surface Pen Tip Kit

Our third great feature is the Surface Pen Tip Kit, which saves you from buying a ton of pen types or wearing out your pen. With this kit, you have a great variety of sensitivity in your pen tips as well as different shapes and sizes. This product is a customizable set of pen tips which help you to get to work more efficiently. Regardless of if you draw, shade, write, select, or whatever you do, these tips are great for anyone who is looking for more than the generic tip that came along with your surface when you first purchased it.

Urban Armor Gear

The last add ons we will cover are some very protective, military-grade accessories. The first is the Urban Armor Gear, which is a surface case made for your Pro 4. This case offers ultimate protection from severe potential damages such a dropping it, scraping it, and scratching it. Not only is this an incredible protector, but it also has a built-in storage space for your Surface Pen! You can even stand this case up in not one, not two, but FIVE positions! Not to mention, it does not block any necessary ports from being used. It’s like a dream protector.

Matte Screen Protector

One of the best brands around is the ArmorSuit MilitaryShild. This accessory of theirs helps to keep your screen from scratching and cracking. If you are on the go frequently, have children around, or simply experience wear and tear that can lead to breakage, this screen protector is your best bet. It is military grade, meaning it’s top-notch quality. It is designed for this device specifically and offers incredible clarity through the glass. This protective layer is not like others meaning it is clear as day. This protector allows the device to remain free of common issues like fingerprints, dust, oil, and even screen bubbles. Not to mention, it is a UV protection, meaning the glass will not yellow like others tend to do. Lastly, the brand is so incredible that they allow you to claim free of charge if it does not live up to its expectations.

There is everything from mouses and chargers, to a variety for pens, to cases and screen protectors. There are so many fun and useful accessories out there for you to purchase and enjoy with your Surface Pro 4. We have covered a good variety of them below, but be sure to dig deeper and find ones that aren’t listed here as well!  

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Conclusion

Surface Pro 4 Battery Life: Final Thoughts

So, according to the marketing folks, the low-end m3 version of the SP4 should have the best battery life. Unfortunately, it doesn’t. I poked around online looking for other SP4 m3 battery reviews, and it seems that SP4 that was pretty similar to mine. This makes me think that my testing wasn’t flawed and that there’s something wrong with the m3 equipped SP4 when it comes to power management.

Overall, the i5 version seems to do the best job of managing battery life and, as a bonus, it has more computing power than the m3 model. So, if you want the best battery life from your Surface Pro 4, opt for one of the i5 models.

See also:

Manual Disk Cleanup: How To Find Out What Is Taking Up Your Hard Drive Space In Windows 10

Turn Off Hibernation In Windows 10

Core M3 Vs I5 Vs I7 Processors

What’s new about the Microsoft Surface Book With Performance Base?


While everyone is raving about the Microsoft Surface Studio, people are defiantly sleeping on the Surface Book with Performance Base!

The Surface Book is a love it or hate it device.

Some may hate the fulcrum hinge that divides the tablet to the keyboard, and others love the unique design.

The tablet itself still stands on a dual-core configuration and up to i7 Skylake Possessor. It holds up the 16GB of ram and 3000×2000 display with 267ppi.

What Is a Surface Book

Simply put, the Surface Book is a convertible laptop, and the first full laptop to come out among the Surface devices. Windows is the maker, and this is a windows 10 addition to the Microsoft Surface device lineup. The Surface Book came out in late 2015.

The things that make this device different are its unique keyboard dock and the secondary battery that offers good battery life. You can use this as a tablet or flip it back around and attach it to the keyboard, to use as a laptop.

What Are the Features of a Surface Book

There are quite a few bells and whistles that come with a Surface Book.

Full laptop power

This title means it is sturdy and more substantial than any before it. Surface Book has the level of drive that a laptop contains, but the daintiness of a tablet as well. You can count on strength, as Windows brags it is the most powerful Surface laptop.

Moveability

The tablet detaches from the keyboard, making it a sleek tablet that can be used for drawing, writing, or other things you would typically use a tablet for, alongside your Surface Pen.

Creative performance

This laptop/tablet love child is made for maximum creativity, regardless of if it is in tablet mode or laptop mode. There is the beauty of a 16GB memory hold, as well as the option for an i5 or i7 system processor, and a 6th Generation Intel Core. I mean, what more could you need? This is a great variety of features.

A graphics wonder

Since there is a discrete graphics chip lodged inside, as well as better video playback the Surface Book is made for the creatives. If you are a graphic designer, photographer, or videographer, you will appreciate this feature. The Surface Book is compatible with programs like Adobe and Photoshop. With the built-in multi-touch PixelSense, you can master the the art of curating by using your surface pen.

OneNote

Since this is a Windows 10 device, you will have OneNote right at your fingertips. This program is the ultimate storage spot for everything from your to-do lists, to calendar events, to notes, and everything in between. OneNote is accessible on all devices, making it the perfect way to organize on the go.

This device is not just great for the creatives. It is also ideal for the gamers too. If you want to hook up your Xbox wireless controller to the Surface Book, you are more than able to. This laptop is built to accommodate hardcore gaming, so get ready to play!

What Accessories Are Available with the Surface Book

When you purchase this device, certain things that come with it, and others you can buy separately. These accessories truly up your experience as a Surface Book owner.

A surface pen

Owning this accessory is a game changer, especially for the creative person. You can draw, shade, write, scroll, and so much more with this pen. As you can imagine, this is one of the features that is most talked about with the Surface lineup. Great new? It comes with your device!

Surface Mouse, Surface Mobile Mouse, Surface Arc Mouse, Surface Precision Mouse.

Each of these has a unique function, and they all vary in price pretty significantly. Decide on your needs, then take your pick. All of these are sleek, use current technology, and come in a variety of colors.

Surface Dial

This accessory may be one of the most incredible technological wonders Windows has created to date. You can change the color while you paint with this tool, as well as adjust volume or scroll without putting a single finger on the keyboard. It vibrates on your fingers as you work, giving you a better way to become one with your work. For sketchers, blueprint creators and other artists of all kinds, this is changing the way creators work. There are a variety of creative apps that work alongside Surface Dial. As a partner with the Surface pen, this accessory is the ultimate product for professionals of all kinds. It is a bit like magic!

Type covers

There are a variety of type covers to purchase, but your Surface Book does come with one! If you want to own a variety of type covers or want to try out a different one, these are interchangeable.

Questions to Consider When Buying a Surface Book

When searching for a surface, there are specific questions you can ask that will help you choose the perfect fit. The surface book is not the only option available to you.

1. Consider your needs. Are you are a gamer, a creative, or a professional that needs a drawing board, a manager, a freelancer, a contractor? No matter what your profession, there is most definitely a perfect Surface for you.

2. What features matter to you the most? Do you want a device that can be shared with others or a personal computer device? Do you need a creative design tool? Do you want 4G LTE when wifi is terrible? What amount of storage are you interested in having on a computer? These factors all matter when making a decision

3. Where will you spend the most time using your Surface?

4. How will you use it, meaning do you mostly use it for personal use, for productivity, for gaming and or professional use?

5. Which computer are you looking to purchase? The options range from laptops to desktops, to a 2-in1, which means a tablet with a removable keyboard (such as the Surface Studio)

6. A factor that plays a role in this decision is how frequently you are planning on bringing your Surface with you.

7. Consider your desired screen size, which can then help you determine the number of inches you want.

8. What are you planning to store on your Surface? Simple things like documents, or everything you do online?

Consider these questions, then match your answers with your ideal Surface.

Benefits of Microsoft Surface Book with Performance Base:

Now that we have walked through what a Surface Book is, imagine a Microsoft Surface Book with Performance Base as pretty much the Surface Book on steroids.

-The newly upgraded d-GPU is packing 2GB 965M, which is an upgrade from the older 1GB 940M. So you are looking to play high graphics games in higher FPS this model is for you!

-At this price point, it competes with the MacBook Pro.

-The battery life is 16 glorious hours long!

-This version is designed to balance at any angle you desire.

-The performance base writes as smooth as a pen on paper.

-This option is even more creative-friendly.

No Wrong Answer

Regardless of which Surface you choose, whether the Surface Book, the Surface Book with Performance Base, or a different Surface in the lineup, these devices are made with you in mind. There is indeed no wrong answer.

See also:

Best Surface 3 Case Options For You

Surface Pro 4 Accessories – What’s New?

Consider A Refurbished Surface Pro 3

Best Surface 3 Case Options For You


A lot of people have been asking about some of the best Surface 3 case options to protect their new tablet.

It’s been a while since we did an accessory roundup, so I thought it might help folks if I went over some good options for Surface 3 cases.

Below you’ll find several choices ranging from a Mil-Spec (military specifications) armored case, all the way down to a simple clear skin case.

We tested most of these personally, and I marked them with (Tested) next to the name of the case. The remainder of cases are on our list because they are getting good ratings on Amazon and they have one or more features we found interesting.

Click the picture or the link for each protective case to see details…

What Types of Cases Are Available for the Surface Pro 3

Later on, we cover the best of the best, the top rated cases for a Surface Pro 3. But let’s first do a brief overview of all the cases available to you for your Surface.

  • Portfolio (or Padfolio) type covers. These come in all types of material and are available with various brands. These are complete work cases. If you take your work with you on the go and want a simple way to store your Surface, pens, a notebook, your phone, business cards, and other work-related things, then this is the perfect case for you. The level of protection with the Microsoft Surface portfolio case is not the highest quality, and neither is it a thin, sleek option. But it serves its purpose in keeping your work things front and center and making your life simpler and more organized.
  • Safety focused cases. These include Under Armour, Otterbox, and others of this nature. Cases like these are known for their protection. They function as an armour for your Surface. If your main concern is safety, this is the way to go. These devices are not cheap, and keeping them safe is essential. To some people, this is more important to find in a case than any other feature.
  • Messenger case. This type is the perfect way to carry a Surface, just as you would a laptop. The primary goal of this tote bag is to bring it along with you, so this is not a case that can be used as a skin. But if you are looking for portability, this is your case. It comes with pockets and handles, just like a traditional laptop case. Other options like this allow for tons of storage for your everyday things such as cards, bills, etc. Some even have openings that allow you to plug in your charger or have ports for speakers. There are safer and more protective case options like this, depending on the brand.
  • Cases with a kickstand. If you want to use your Surface like you would a laptop, purchasing a case with a kickstand is a good place to start. It allows your tablet to stand upright as you use it. There are cases such as the Dux who not only keep your Surface standing upright, but they also give a nice thin skin. This skin will protect your Surface, but since it is mostly clear, it also gives it a natural look. Kickstand cases with skins are some of the best if you need an upright surface, with the ability to touch all buttons and protect your case.
  • Cases that withstand nature. There are certain cases out there that are what is considered “military grade protection.†These are created to keep your case safe, regardless of the effects of nature. You could go hiking with a case like this! They are water resistant, shatter and pressure resistant, as well as shockproof. Though this is a bulkier case, you do have the plus of having a kickstand available.
  • Sleeve cases with zippers. These cases are amazing for portability, similar to the messenger case. Great for cross-country road trips, and even down to going to the coffee shop to get some work done. They keep the Surface neat and protected. Sleeves are the less bulky alternative to the messenger case. This sleeve is not a skin, but it does good for what it is meant to do. You can even put your charger in the zipper! These come in materials such as leather, which claim to be waterproof as well as anti-scratch. Some come with straps, and there are a variety of colors and patterns to choose from among the various brands.
  • Slim shell holder cases. Some cases are meant for nothing more than outside beauty. There are so many designs, patterns, fabrics, and colors to choose from. The options and brands that hold these varieties are endless. Many pretty cases can be purchased that have protection as well, but most are less durable. If your Surface doesn’t really leave your home or office, then aesthetics can be the most important thing to you. These options are typically cheaper than the high protection cases and there are options for them with other surface products, such as the Surface Microsoft Book.

What to Consider When Buying Cases for Surface Pro 3

There are a few things to consider when purchasing a case for your Surface Pro 3. None of these are required, but they are some of the best features available in case technology. Go through the list and find which ones are most important to you, then research your right fit based on that knowledge!

  1. Durability.
  2. Shock protection.
  3. Waterproof.
  4. Versatile.
  5. Kickstand.
  6. Storage heavy.
  7. Pockets and zippers
  8. Military grade protection.
  9. Tin & sleek body.
  10. Stylish.

OK, now let’s get started on the best Surface 3 case options in the industry.

Best Surface 3 Case Options: Armored Case

You’ll want to go for an armored case if: you’re clumsy, you are using the Surface in a construction zone/shop, your kids use it a lot, or if you’re just really protective of your Surface 3. If this sounds like you, there’s really only one option you should consider – Urban Armor Gear.

The Urban Armor Gear case for the Surface 3 offers the best protection from drops of any case I’ve seen. It holds the Surface firmly in place and it just “feels†like you could run over it with a tank without hurting it.

Considering it was built to Mil-Spec, that’s not really a surprise. It also offers a pen holder (nice touch), and it doesn’t block the ports on the Surface too much.

Of course, there are some downsides. First, it adds a lot of bulk, and it pretty much doubles the weight of the Surface 3. In addition, like most of the bulkier cases, it blocks the use of the Surface 3 kickstand.

It does offer its own 3-position kickstand that works well, but I felt like it was more difficult than necessary to get the kickstand into the 3rd position.

Best Surface 3 Case Options: Portfolio Cases

In this section, I will be covering Surface 3 case options that look like business folios. As we have seen above, these offer good protection for your Surface in case it’s dropped and some add additional storage space for things like pens and paper, but they also tend to add a lot of bulk that you have to carry around.

Still, if you’re looking for a Surface 3 case to use in a business environment, you’ll want to consider one of these cases.

View on Amazon

Maroo Synthetic Leather Folio (Tested)

I picked up my Maroo case when I got our Surface 3 from the Microsoft Store, and I have to say, I’m pretty happy with it.

It looks good (I have the black one) and offers a couple of different places to store the Surface Pen.

It also does an outstanding job of keeping the ports free because it uses rubber corner holders to keep the Surface in place, as opposed to a “pocket with cutouts†like some other cases.

Of course, it blocks the kickstand, but it offers a passable (if not great) kickstand of its own. It also adds a lot of weight and bulk. However, if you’re going into a business meeting, it will help you make a good impression.

ProCase Folio Cover Case

View on Amazon

We’ve tested cases from ProCase for the Surface Pro 3 in the past and have found them to be well constructed and attractive.

This one is made just for the Surface Pro 3. It offers a nice built-in pen holder and quality Velcro and an elastic strap which are there to keep your Surface firmly in place.

We added this one in because of its 4.5 rating on Amazon and it’s more than a thousand (mostly positive) reviews.

Best Surface 3 Case Options: Light

This category covers cases that are lightweight and/or very slim fitting. A lot of people have asked us about Surface 3 case options that don’t add extra weight or bulk, so we included some options for your consideration below.

Trident Cyclops (Tested)

View on Amazon

This case almost went into the armored section with the Urban Armor Gear options. It is constructed of polycarbonate and thermo-plastic which gives it a “tacticool†feel.

However, it doesn’t add a lot of bulk or weight to the Surface 3, and it allows you to use the built-in kickstand which is pretty handy.

However, it is expensive, and it can be a huge pain getting the Surface 3 into it properly. This is because, unlike most cases which just kind of slip on, this comes in 3 pieces that have to be assembled around the Surface. Also, with the case in place, you’ll find that it prevents a keyboard cover from closing all the way. As a result, it won’t let you put your Surface to sleep by closing the cover; so, you’ll have to use the on-screen controls or top button to sleep your Surface.

All in all, though, once you get past the sticker shock and get the Surface into it, it works well and is probably worth the money for the balance of protection and low added weight/bulk. Oh, and it looks cool.

View on Amazon

Moko Slim-Fit Folio

The Moko Folio made it to our list because of its 4-star rating on Amazon (with 275+ reviews) and the hand strap feature, which lets you easily comfortably hold your Surface with one hand while using the on-screen keyboard with the other.

It also offers a pen loop and a 3-angle stand to compensate for the fact that it covers up the Surface’s built-in kickstand.

When closed, it holds the Surface firmly on all four sides but, when folded back or propped up, it only holds the Surface on three sides. So, I wouldn’t just fling the case open as the Surface could slide out but, as long as you’re just a bit cautious, it should work fine.

View on Amazon

Moko Smart-Shell Cover

This is another offering from Moko, and it also made this list, in part, because of the 4-star rating it earned with 320+ reviews.

The other reason it made this list is because of its light weight and the fact that it doesn’t add a lot of bulk.

It has a rigid tray that the Surface sits in and a PU leather outer cover that’s available in multiple colors.

Best Surface 3 Case Options: Skins

If you’re more concerned with keeping your Surface 3 looking new than protecting it from falls, you may want to consider getting a skin. Skin is just a sticker you place on the case to protect it from scratches and abrasions.

View on Amazon

Skinomi TechSkin – Carbon Fiber (Tested)

The Skinomi carbon fiber skin offers a textured design that looks and feels like carbon fiber (though I don’t think it’s actually made from carbon fiber).

It’s extremely thin and virtually weightless, so it doesn’t add any mass to your Surface 3.

It is relatively easy to install as you simply stick it on the back and sides of your Surface.

The adhesive is laid out in a grid pattern which makes it easier to avoid air bubbles during application and install correctly. That said, you should exercise caution and patience during the application. Otherwise, it won’t look as good.

As a bonus, it includes a screen protector as part of the package.

View on Amazon

Armorsuit MilitaryShield

This skin and screen protector combo is designed to be practically invisible when applied.

It has the advantage of letting your Surface look “stock†while still helping to protect the case and screen from scratches and abrasions.

Since it’s clear, you don’t have to be quite as precise during application of the film, but you will need to keep fingerprints and debris out from under the film during installation.

As a bonus, they include an installation squeegee to help you avoid air bubbles during application.

So, there you have it! That’s my list of Surface 3 cases. Now you have a slew of case options for your Surface 3 to consider. Do you have an option you like that I didn’t cover? If so, feel free to share in the comments.

Also, be on the lookout for some more hands-on reviews of the best Surface 3 cases because we have some manufacturers sending us new models to test soon.

See also:

Surface Pro 4 Accessories – What’s New?

Consider A Refurbished Surface Pro 3

How To Take A Screenshot With A Surface 3