Larger, Faster Microsoft Surface Book 2 Hits Store Shelves

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After being announced last month, the second-generation Surface Book has just launched. This 2-in-1 detachable sports the latest Intel “Kaby Lake” Core processors and is available with a larger touchscreen than its predecessor. The new Surface Book 2 is a premium device with a price tag to match.

Although both the Surface Pro and the Surface Book can be classified as 2-in-1 tablet/laptop devices, their emphasis is different. The Surface Pro models are tablets that can be converted into notebooks with an optional keyboard, but the Surface Book models are laptops with removable screens that can be used as tablets.

Microsoft Surface Book 2

15-inch and 13-inch Surface Book 2 with Optional Accessories

Microsoft Surface Book 2 Externals

 The original Surface Book debuted two years ago, and was available  only with a 13.5-inch display. The second generation still includes a model in that size, with a 3000 by 2000 pixel resolution at 267 PPI. Joining it is a new 15-inch version with a 3240 x 2160, 260 PPI display. Naturally, both support Surface Pen and Surface Dial.

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Surface Book 2 Fulcrum Hinge

Beyond the obvious size change, Microsoft has made various tweaks. It says the fulcrum hinge in the latest model is more stable, for example.

The 13.5 inch version of the Surface Book 2 weighs 3.4 pounds, while the new the 15-inch version is 4.2 lbs. Without their keyboard bases, these are 1.6 lb. and 1.8 lb. tablets,, respectively.

All versions include a pair of USB Type-A ports, and one USB-C port. This doesn’t support Thunderbolt 3, instead being available just to charge the Microsoft Surface Book 2, or drive an external monitor. A Surface Connect port is the primary way to power this computer.

An SD card reader and a headphone jack are also on all versions. The tablet and its keyboard communicate over the proprietary Surface connector. A 5 megapixel front-facing camera support the Windows Hello bio-metric security system.

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Surface Book 2 in Tablet Mode

The keyboard is backlit, with 1.6 mm of travel.

Microsoft Surface Book 2 Internals

At the heart of Microsoft’s latest is Intel Core processors and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 or 1060 discrete graphics options.

The 15-inch model is only available with an 8th-generation  i7-8650U, 4.2GHz “max turbo” processor and 16 GB of RAM. It sports an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 GPU with 6GB of graphics memory.

The base model 13.5-inch Surface Pro 2 has a 7th-gen i5-7300U and 8 GB of RAM, or it can be configured with the same processor and RAM as the 15-inch iteration. Those who choose this second option get an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 GPU with 2 GB of graphic memory.

No matter the screen size, shoppers have a choice of 256 GB, 512 GB, or a 1 TB SSD.

Microsoft Surface Book 2

Surface Book 2 with Optional Surface Dial and Mouse

Microsoft promises a whopping 17 hours of video playback when used with the keyboard dock, or 5 hours as a tablet.

Surface Book 2 Price and Availability

The 13.5-inch version of this tablet/notebook is available now in the U.S. and select other markets around the world. The Surface Book 2 15” is available exclusively in the U.S. Orders can be placed only from Microsoft itself.

As discussed, this is a premium model with a premium price. The base model 13.5-inch version is $1,499. The 15-inch one starts at $2,499.


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