Connecting Microsoft Surface to an external monitor

How can I connect the Microsoft Surface to an external monitor?

I use my Microsoft Surface mostly on the road, where it is practical, small and compact. At my desk at home, I have a monitor, keyboard and mouse. The compact companion quickly becomes a “Desktop PC“.

An external monitor, mouse and keyboard can be connected to the Surface via the USB ports. The easiest way to connect an external monitor is via a USB adapter.

USB-C to HDMI or DisplayPort

The cheapest option is an adapter for the Surface’s USB-C port. These are available in different versions, USB-C to HDMI or also USB-C to DisplayPort. The adapter or cable is available in various lengths and versions. The disadvantage of this solution is that the USB-C port is occupied and charging via this port is not possible at the same time.

Such an adapter is compact and can also be used on the road to connect the Surface Pro to a projector.

Docking station

If you want to connect more devices, e.g. more USB devices, network or charge at the same time, a docking station comes into consideration. These are available in many versions for the USB-C connection. In addition to the display, these usually also provide other USB ports, a USB-C port or a network.

The advantage: only one adapter needs to be connected. The prices vary depending on the manufacturer and the range of functions.


With the USB-C port, the Surface can be quickly transformed into a desktop. For simple cases, such as connecting to a projector or monitor, an inexpensive adapter is sufficient. For those who use the Surface as a desktop more often, a docking station is the best option.

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