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Does Microsoft's new Surface Dock 2 work with all Surface PCs?

Surface Dock 2 Render
Surface Dock 2 Render (Image credit: Microsoft)

Does Microsoft's new Surface Dock 2 work with all Surface PCs?

Best answer: No, the Surface Dock 2 does not work with all Surface devices. It only works with Surface devices made in 2017 or later.Expanding your Surface: Surface Dock 2 (opens in new tab) ($260 at Microsoft)Supporting older Surface devices: Original Surface Dock (opens in new tab) ($200 at Amazon)

Expanding your Surface

Microsoft's new Surface Dock 2 features a plethora of ports to expand the functionality of your Surface devices. You can connect it to all your peripherals and then leave it on your desk. When you bring your Surface device to your desk, you just have to connect your device to the Surface Dock 2 with a single cable. It's an easy and convenient way to have your Surface remain portable while having the ability to connect to plenty of devices at your desk. The Surface Dock 2 has USB-C ports, charges your device, and features fast transfer speeds, but it can't work with all Surface devices. The Surface Dock 2 is expected to launch on May 26, 2020, but is available for preorder now (opens in new tab)

To use a Surface Dock 2, you generally have to have a Surface device made in 2017 or later. Specifically, it works with the Surface Book 3, Surface Book 2, Surface Pro 7, Surface Pro 6, Surface Pro (5th Gen), Surface Pro X, Surface Laptop 3, Surface Laptop 2, Surface Laptop (1st Gen), Surface Go 2, Surface Go, Surface Go, and Surface 3. Some of the data transfer rates vary depending on the Surface device you have. Surface devices also vary in how much resolution they can put out to external monitors through the dock. You can check Microsoft's support page (opens in new tab) to see a complete chart of features.

The Surface Dock 2 provides a wide variety of ports to connect old and new devices such as keyboards and mice. Here are the ports included on the Surface Dock 2:

  • 2x front-facing USB-C ports.
  • 2x rear-facing, video-enabled USB-C ports
  • 2x rear-facing USB-A 3.2 (10Gbps) ports
  • 1x Gigabit Ethernet port
  • 1x 3.5mm audio in/out port
  • Kensington compatible lock

The Surface Dock 2 is ideal for desktop setups. It can drive two 4K displays at 60Hz or two 5K displays at 30Hz. It also has enterprise management tools for IT admins to manage the dock with authentication.

In addition to connecting your supported Surface device to peripherals, the Surface Dock 2 can charge your Surface device. It supports up to 120 watts of power delivery to your Surface device and a total of 199 watts to all devices connected to the dock. The increase to 120 watts, when compared to the original Surface Dock, means that your Surface device won't run out of battery while plugged in. The older dock couldn't supply enough power to keep up with the device's power draw at times. With the Surface Dock 2, you can plug in your Surface device, use it all day, then take it on the go on a full charge.

If you're using an older Surface device and want some of the same benefits that you get with the Surface Dock 2, you can check out the original Surface Dock (opens in new tab). It's dated at this point, but it still has several ports and allows you to easily connect your Surface to several devices.

Sean Endicott
Sean Endicott

Sean Endicott is the news writer for Windows Central. If it runs Windows, is made by Microsoft, or has anything to do with either, he's on it. Sean's been with Windows Central since 2017 and is also our resident app expert. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com.

7 Comments
  • A comparison chart would be super handy in this article
  • I want one. But allthough all the other new stuff is listed at Microsoft The Netherlands the dock 2 can't be found. Strange...
  • Old and new have the same number of ports. The two old Display Ports changed to USB-C, two of the USB - A ports changed to USB-C, and two USB -A ports remain the same. Both have an audio jack and ethernet port. The new one is considerably more flexible than the old one as you can get a USB-C to almost anything adapter. You can do better on the price for the older one. Provantage has them for ~$155. https://www.provantage.com/microsoft-pf3-00005~7MSOZ026.htm I recall picking one up for $120 a bit back. That was likely when they had a lot and a new one was in the works. Now they are 'collectors items'.
  • Microsoft's chart only lists 'USB-A data transfer rate', which is 10gbps for the new SB3 and 5gbps for everything else, but it doesn't say what the USB-C transfer rates are. Can it be assumed 10gbps? I don't know why the ports usb-a would be different from usb-c so I'm starting to wonder if it's also only 5gbps on the type-c ports for everything except the SB3. If true then I think I'll stick with my old dock.
  • There are 100s of 1000s of premium Chinese usb-c hubs to choose from. Why did Ms choose to embarrass their customers
  • Hopefully this one won't require powering off when it decides not to display to an external screen.
  • Ha! I used to have that problem with the OG Surface Dock. Check that it's updated (updates in the last year have been a lifesaver - but didn't always automatically install) and make sure you're using a monitor (or monitors) that are listed as being compatible. Those two things basically fixed the dock for me. Now we're all in on Surface in our house, basically thanks to the dock now working reliably.