Story image

Hands-on review: Microsoft Surface Book 2

So recently I’ve been lucky enough to be using Microsoft’s latest Surface Book 2 15” as my main computer, to say that I’ve been blown away doesn’t quite cut it. 

Now before I started playing with the Surface Book I had seen it a few times at Microsoft conferences and booths and for its price point, I was quite sceptical.

Sure it was hyped to be one of the best machines for designers and working professionals but to me, that did not seem to justify the price until I actually tried it.  

The first thing worth noting is the amazing specs that they’ve managed to stuff into such a small machine.

Some stand out specs are: 

  • Windows 10 Pro.
  • Up to 17 hours of battery life.
  • 8th gen Intel Core i7-8650U (quad-core) with up to 4.20 GHz Max Turbo.
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 discrete GPU w/6GB GDDR5 graphics memory.
  • 16 GB RAM 1,866 Mhz LPDDR3.

Now you can find better hardware in other computers of course, but to top it all off the Surface Book 2 is still pretty light and portable, despite all of the remarkable tech stuffed into it. 

But specs aren’t the only things that matter, so what’s it like using this laptop?

For Work

For working purposes, this laptop really does deliver everything you need and more. 

As an office computer, it can handle almost any task with speed and efficiency, while simultaneously still having ample storage space for all of your documents, music and video files. 

However, where this computer really shines is in graphic design and video editing.

I’ve been an avid content creator on Photoshop and Premiere Pro for many years now and I have used every computer from the highest to the lowest end of the spectrum to work on these demanding platforms. 

I can confidently say that the Surface Book is a solid challenger to the market and personally one of my favourite devices for this kind of work. 

Everything from the detachable screen to the Surface Dial and Pen is optimised for making editing a breeze. 

This was also true for rendering content, as an often tedious process was sped up significantly. 

Overall I can wholeheartedly recommend this PC to design professionals.

For Play

Now being a gamer and all I wasn’t going to not try and push this laptop to its limits. 

While not being specifically designed with gaming in mind I can say that the Surface Book 2 performed most admirably. 

I managed to run ARK at 60fps on its high setting, while World of Warcraft and Fortnite ran at maximum without even breaking a sweat. 

On average I managed to get at least 5 - 8 hours of battery life during intensive play, which is quite impressive, however, the cost would often be lowering graphics settings. 

This is a completely different story for streaming as I would often go days without charging when I was just using the computer for watching shows. 

Overall the Surface Book is a fairly decent computer for the purposes of ‘play’, however, I see this as more of a bonus than the main selling point. 

Product overview: 

  • Available in 13.5” or 15” PixelSense Display.
  • High-speed Intel processors (dual-core and quad-core available). 
  • Up to 17 hours of battery life. 
  • Powerful enough to run professional-grade software and play PC games.
  • New USB-C port. 
  • Starting at 3.38 lbs (1,534 g) including the keyboard.
  • Runs Windows 10 Pro.

In the end, I am very impressed by this PC and I think it is totally worth the price for business professionals especially if your job involves intensive editing on a daily basis.

Time's up, tax dodgers: Multinational tech firms may soon pay their dues
Multinational tech and digital services firms may no longer have a free tax pass to operate in New Zealand. 
D-Link A/NZ launches new home wireless surveillance kit
The Omna Wire-Free Full HD cameras and accompanying Wi-Fi Hub offer a number of new features, including Alexa/Assistant support.
Hands-on review: Audiofly AF100W MK2 wireless headphones
With wireless Bluetooth supporting aptX and AAC, and an IPX-5 water resistance rating, the AF100W aims to be a fitness game-changer.
LG's latest phone uses the display as an audio amplifier
If you’re struggling to get your head around the idea of a phone’s display as an amplifier, we can't blame you.
Vodafone releases phones with child-safe features
Along with the restriction capabilities, the Vodafone Smart N9 range also has a range of emergency and safety controls.
Game review: Crackdown 3 launches on Xbox One and PC
Crackdown 3 is an average game that may have come out 10 years too late, writes Damian Seeto.
WhatsApp users warned to change voicemail PINs
Attackers are allegedly gaining access to users’ WhatsApp accounts by using the default voicemail PIN to access voice authentication codes.
50 million tonnes of e-waste: IT faces sustainability challenges
“Through This is IT, we want to help people better understand the problem of today’s linear “take, make, dispose” thinking around IT products and its effects like e-waste, pollution and climate change."