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Microsoft Surface Book 2: More Power and New 15-Inch Size

Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-Inch, Intel Core i7, Late 2017)
Microsoft Surface Book 2: More Power and New 15-Inch Size

Microsoft Surface Book 2: More Power and New 15-Inch Size

October 17, 2017 Microsoft unveiled the long awaited Surface Book 2. The fanless hybrid comes in two versions: a 13.5-inch display and a 15-inch one. All the previous models excluding the youngest 13.5-inch version are powered with Intel Core i7 CPUs of the eighth generation. The youngest model features just a seventh generation Core i5.

The hardware power is enough to render 3D images and edit 4K videos, Microsoft claims. This is an exaggeration because the i7 Surface Book 2 features 3240 x 2160 pixel resolution and that is less than 4K. The storage and the operating memory are still something to envy. The smallest storage capacity is 256 GB, while the largest is 1TB. The RAM is 8 to 16 GB, which is basically the innards of a top class laptop.

Moreover, the 15-inch models feature the discrete GeForce GTX 1050 video card with 2 GB of VRAM! The 13.5-inch models have an Intel HD Graphics 620 integrated GPU. Microsoft is ambitious enough to promise gaming support on the Surface Books 2, saying it can work with the Xbox One controller.

The highlight of the family is the detachable screen. Microsoft has honed the Fulcrum Hinge and it is now more robust and stable. Just like before users can still take the display off, clip it back, turn it 180 degrees and close the hybrid that way. The display/tablet part is lighter than that of its predecessor. It features the PixelSense screen with support of the Surface Pen and the Surface Dial. This gadget is heavier than an ordinary tablet let alone the iPad, though.

The Surface Book 2 overall, is heavier than its immediate competitor the MacBook. It weighs 3.38 lbs vs. 3.02 lbs because of the batteries housed both in the tablet and in the keyboard. Microsoft promised 5 hours of autonomous work and 17 hours of video playback with a full charge.

Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-Inch, Intel Core i7, Late 2017) with accessories

Microsoft Surface Book 2 (15-Inch, Intel Core i7, Late 2017) with accessories. Photo from Microsoft.com.

The ports include two USB 3.0 Type A, a USB Type-C, a UHS-II SDXC card reader, and two Surface Connect ports. Microsoft didn’t follow the other manufacturers’ book and the 3.5mm headphone jack still remains. The wireless communication is limited by Wi-Fi: 802.11ac and Bluetooth: BT4.1 LE plus Xbox Wireless built-in (for 15.5-inch models only). Even though many experts predicted 4G support on the Surface Book 2, it didn’t happen. There’s no SIM-card slot and 4G module in the hybrid. It’s a big cut down that somehow ruins the whole tablet-laptop crossbred idea. Tablets are great because they can work in two networks and smoothly switch between them in process, while Surface Books are tied to Wi-Fi only.

The Surface Book 2 runs Windows 10 Pro Creators Update 64-bit and features the Windows Hello face ID software. The front and the rear cameras are capable of 1080 HD video recording but obviously, the Surface Book 2 is not meant for picture taking or recording videos. The rear camera is 8 MP, while the front camera is 5 MP.

The price for the new hybrid will soar around $1,400 and this is pretty expensive, considering that the Surface Pen and the Surface Dial aren’t included. So, a buyer will have to shell out approximately $1,700 for a hybrid that hasn’t even proved its ergonomic values yet.

No matter how much Microsoft was trumpeting a ‘MacBook killer’, the first Surface Book failed to gained popularity. The second generation went even further in setting the standard for strange systems that still don’t identify as a laptop or a tablet.

Links

Introducing the new Surface Book 2 [Video]

Video uploaded by Microsoft Surface on October 17, 2017

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