Surface Book 2 review: Clean Looks, Clean Power, Dirty Secret

Microsoft Surface Book 2
  • Microsoft Surface Book 2
  • Microsoft Surface Book 2
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Great aesthetics
  • Solid battery life

Cons

  • Battery drain issues
  • Too big to realistically use as a tablet

Bottom Line

The Surface Book 2 is a product for a very specific kind of person. The kind of person who digs the glamor of the Surface range but needs more grunt than is offered by the other options on the table.

Would you buy this?

  • Price

    $ 2,199.00 (AUD)

The Pitch

These days, looks are probably the biggest point of difference offered by each brand - and Microsoft’s Surface hardware has always been exceptional at accentuating that difference. Put more bluntly, the Surface range is really nice to look at. Sure, the performance found in the company’s flagship foray into convertibles has also been really good too. However, it’s the slick and distinctive design sensibilities that’s helped the Surface range cut through the competition.

When every portable PC vendor is packing the same Intel core processor and 16GB of RAM, looks can kill. Unfortunately, those aesthetics have usually been let down by the limits of what portable PC hardware can actually deliver. At the end of the day, tablets, laptops, and everything in-between just don’t have that little bit of extra grunt to make them appropriate for all use cases things.

It’s into that unlikely niche that Microsoft’s new Surface Book 2 fits.

Credit: Microsoft

Envisioned as a marriage of the clean slate-like aesthetics that have worked well for Microsoft in recent years and an abundance of high-end specs you don't usually find in a 2-in-1, it's a veritable workhorse of a machine. Put more elegantly, it’s the Surface device that does the things that you didn’t think could be done on a Surface device.

Specs

The Microsoft Surface Book 2 is a 2-in-1 notebook that comes with a 13.5-inch PixelSense display (267 PPI) with a 1600:1 contrast ratio. The PC is available in four variants:

  1. 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor with 256GB of SSD storage and 8GB of RAM.

  2. 8th-generation Intel Core i7 processor with 8GB of RAM, 256GB of SSD storage and a discrete Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics card.

  3. 8th-generation Intel i7 processor with 512GB of SSD storage, 16GB of RAM and a discrete Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics card.

  4. 8th-generation i7 processor with 1TB of SSD storage, 16GB of RAM and a discrete Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics card.

It’s got Wi-Fi (802.11ac) and Bluetooth (4.2 LE) connectivity and, port-wise, packs in two USB 3.0 slots, a USB-C slot, a UHS-II SDXC card reader, a headphone jack and two Surface Connect ports (one used to charge when in tablet mode and one used otherwise). There’s also a 5.0 MP front-facing camera (1080p) and rear-facing 8.0 MP one (1080p).

Credit: Microsoft

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Read more on these topics: Surface, Surface Book, Surface Book 2
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Skywatcher Dobsonian 8″ Collapsible Telescope

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Whodunnit™ Duo-Scope MFL-007 Microscope Kit

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Logitech Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?