Microsoft Surface Book 2 13.5″ Professional 2-in-1 Laptop with Detachable Keyboard

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The Microsoft Surface Book 2 is a professional-oriented 2-in-1 PC with a detachable keyboard. You can use it in laptop, tablet, or presentation modes. This is an overview of the ultra-portable 13.5-inch version of the Surface Book, with a starting weight of 3.4 pounds and a price of $1,499 and up. Microsoft also offers a larger and pricier 15″ version.

The 13.5″ screen of the smaller Surface Book 2 provides sharp picture thanks to available 3,000 x 2,000 resolution. Microsoft still sticks to the original Surface Book design with recognizable “dynamic fulcrum” hinge and 3:2 screen ratio. 3:2 is rather optimized for productivity than watching movies. The panel supports 10-finger touch, as well as active Surface Pen input with pressure sensitivity and work with Microsoft’s Surface Dial accessory. The Pen and Dial are sold separately.

Internally, the silver-colored magnesium-topped 2-in-1 laptop features Intel’s Core series mainstream processors – the dual-core 7th Gen Intel Core i5-7300U and quad-core 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8650U. The latter is noticeably faster when handling demanding tasks. RAM size can be either 8GB or 16GB. For storage, the Surface Book 2 13.5″ uses a solid state drive with 256GB, 512GB or 1-Terabyte capacity. For graphics processing, Surface Book 2 configurations with the i5-7300U CPU rely on its basic Intel HD 620 integrated graphics. For those who want more graphics power for gaming, CAD design, and other purposes, Microsoft has provided an optional Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 2GB discrete video card. The card is available in the i7-8650U-powered configurations and is housed in the keyboard base. So, it can’t be used if the base is detached. The same applies to the device’s secondary battery. Together with the battery located in the tablet portion, it can provide “up to 17 hours” of video playback on a charge, according to Microsoft.

Besides the optional Nvidia GPU and secondary battery, the base of the Surface Book 2 carries a chiclet-style keyboard with backlight and a spacious trackpad. On the sides of the keyboard deck, there are two standard-size USB 3.0 ports, a compact USB-C port with support for video output, an SD media card reader, and Microsoft’s proprietary Surface Connect port for charging.

The screen part also includes a 5-megapixel front-facing camera with Windows Hello face authentication, an 8MP rear cam, stereo speakers, a combo audio jack, 802.11AC wireless, Bluetooth, and another Surface Connect port.

Specifications

Here are the specs of the Microsoft Surface Book 2 with descriptions of its features. For comparison against other laptops, you can use the "Compare Specs" button.

Brand

Laptop Type

2-in-1 means the laptop can convert itself into a tablet PC.



The device can be used as a tablet, without a keyboard connected to it.



The light weight and small dimensions make this ultraportable laptop easy to carry around or travel with.
Screen Size

This is a small display size, typical for ultraportable laptops. There are however laptops with even smaller screens, with diagonals of 12.5" or less.
Screen Resolution

This resolution provides an excellent picture sharpness and a lot of space on the display for the user interface and apps. It's noticeably better than the popular Full HD and almost as good as Ultra HD 4K.
Touchscreen

The screen supports finger touch input, including multi-touch gestures.



The screen supports active digitizer pen input, besides the common finger multi-touch input. In comparison to simple capacitive pens you can use on any touchscreen, active digitizer pen input provides advanced features like pressure sensitivity. Check with the laptop seller whether the active pen is included in the package.
Other Display Specs

Displays based on IPS technology provide much wider viewing angles than the budget-class TN screens.
Processor (CPU) Intel Core i5-7300U 7th Gen (enables smooth home and office computing)

Intel Core i7-8650U 8th Gen (decent for heavier tasks, besides enabling effortless daily computing)
Graphics (GPU) Intel HD 620 integrated graphics of 7th Gen Core i3, i5, i7 (for light gaming)

Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 2GB GDDR5 dedicated video card (able to run all games, but may not be smooth on high detail settings in heavy games)
System Memory (RAM) Size

The 8GB RAM size is the standard one in 2023. It provides comfortable multi-tasking for the most home and office users.



16GB and greater RAM sizes are recommended for heavy multitasking, gaming, and specialized programs that require a lot of RAM.
Data Storage

256GB is a decent capacity. If you tend to download and store a lot of large files like movies and install many programs, 512GB or more is a better choice.



512GB storage capacity is recommended if you store a lot of large files and install many programs.



1TB is an excellent storage capacity. The sizes above 512GB, including 1TB, are recommended for those who store a lot of large files.
DVD Optical Drive

Keyboard & Input

The keyboard has backlit keys for easier typing in the dark. There's no separate numeric pad you can typically find on the right side of the keyboard on many laptop models.



The left and right click buttons are built into the surface of the touchpad, as opposed to separate physical buttons.







Speakers & Audio Stereo speakers

As usual, the device features a pair of built-in stereo speakers.

Combo microphone and headphones audio jack

This laptop has the ordinary 3.5mm combo audio jack that supports both headphone output and microphone input simultaneously.
Camera Front + rear

Laptops usually feature a frontal webcam located on the display bezel. This device additionally has a rear camera.

5MP front + 8MP rear

Besides the usual frontal camera, this device features a rear cam as well. The cameras feature 5 and 8 Megapixel sensors, respectively.

Face-recognition camera

The dedicated infra-red face recognition cameras in laptops are used for Windows Hello log-ins, without password typing.
Wi-Fi Wireless 802.11AC

The 802.11AC is the previous-generation wireless networking standard. It's also known as Wi-Fi 5. 802.11AC is succeeded by 802.11AX Wi-Fi 6 with data transfer speed and multi-device connectivity improvements.
Ethernet Network Port No

This laptop has no Ethernet LAN port for wired internet and networking connectivity.
Mobile broadband (4G LTE)

Bluetooth Yes

This laptop has a built-in Bluetooth module. It enables you to connect the computer to Bluetooth mice and other Bluetooth peripherals, smartphones, and other Bluetooth-equipped devices.
USB Ports 1 x USB-C

A compact type of USB port, commonly found in modern laptops and phones.

2 x USB 3.0

A pair of full-size USB ports.
Video Output Ports Video out via USB-C

The laptop can deliver digital video output via USB-C.
Media Card Reader SD card reader

The laptop has a slot for full-size SD memory cards, used in many digital cameras. You can also use microSD cards with a card adapter.
Other Features TPM (Trusted Platform Module, a security feature)
Battery "Up to 17 hours of video playback"
Weight 3.4 pounds
Height 0.9"
Width 12.3"
Depth 9.1"
Windows Version

Windows 10 Pro version adds some business-specific features in comparison to the standard Windows Home. Windows 10 Pro upgradeable to the latest Windows 11 Pro for free.
Warranty 1-year

A typical laptop warranty.

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