Microsoft’s flagship review – Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

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Content

  1. Contents of delivery
  2. TECH SPECS
  3. Positioning
  4. Design, dimensions, controls
  5. Display
  6. Keyboard
  7. Chipset, memory, performance
  8. Battery
  9. Impressions

Contents of delivery

  • A laptop
  • Charger
  • Instructions
TECH SPECS
Dimensions and weight 343 x 251 x 15-23 mm, from 1.905 kg with keyboard
Body materials Magnesium alloy
Display 15 inches, PixelSense, 3240×2160 pixels (260 ppi), IPS, 3: 2, contrast 1600: 1, touch, up to 10 clicks simultaneously, automatic brightness control, maximum brightness 400 nits
Operating system Windows 10 Home
Platform Quad-core 10th Gen Intel® Core ™ i7-1065G7 processor
Graphics NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti with Max-Q Design w / 6GB GDDR6 
Memory 16/32 GB RAM (LPDDR4x), 
256/512 GB or 1 TB SSD or 2TB PCIe SSD
SDXC card slot
Wireless Interfaces Wi-Fi b / g / n / ac / ax, Wi-Fi 6, dual band, Bluetooth 5.0
Xbox Wireless
Sensors and connectors USB Type A (two ports, 3.1 Gen 2)
USB Type C (3.1, PD 3.0)
3.5mm headphone jack
Surface Connect Port (on keyboard and top) 
Light sensor, proximity sensor, gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer
Fingerprint sensor No, only Windows Hello
Камеры 5 MP front, 8 MP main
Battery Li-Pol 22.3 W-hours tablet, 59.7 W-hours assembled, runtime up to 17.5 hours in mixed mode
Degree of protection no
Color platinum
Sound Dolby Audio Premium – two speakers with a total output of 2W

Positioning

Microsoft tried to create the flagship of the Surface line as unusual as possible. The Surface Book is the answer to the MacBook Pro, in which the company has tried to highlight the strengths of such solutions. Obviously, it is striking that this device is two in one, the upper part can be detached, and it turns into a tablet. With the keyboard, the operating time becomes, if not a record, then very good, and this also distinguishes the laptop from its congeners. High performance, versatility and versatility. Of course, there is support for a touch screen, input using Microsoft Pen, here you can draw or draw, in a word, do whatever you want. This is not a reference design that was created to showcase technology and have others copy it. This is a complete device that arose out of Microsoft’s desire to be a hardware manufacturer. This is their vision of what a two-in-one device from Microsoft is.

On the Internet, you can often hear that Microsoft has no fans and a small loyal audience. This is a stereotype that wanders from year to year, since under Satya Nadella, the company has changed dramatically and gained a larger number of fans. And a lot of people are buying the Surface Book 3, although the main sales are in America, where the Surface lineup is doing well. In Russia, such devices are not officially sold, so we have an exclusively gray market.

Choosing a Surface Book is about choosing the device itself, no compromise, and from a manufacturer you trust (no laughing matter!). There are two models in the Book 3 line, with a screen diagonal of 13.5 and 15 inches, the latter we are considering. The ergonomics of these solutions are somewhat similar, but I found it interesting to look at this particular device, since it is the top of the line. This is the flagship Microsoft sees it as. Everything here is not as straightforward as it might seem, but the unit has its own face, unusual solutions.

In Russia, this model is suitable for those who want to stand out very much, to show the uniqueness of this choice and the availability of money. Since Microsoft partners produce hundreds of different laptops, the choice is huge, and why you need to buy the Book 3 is not very clear, it is expensive and offers a smaller set of features for its money. But the image component of this model is, of course, high, there are few of them, and this rarity makes the Surface Book exotic. At the same time, he has both charm and the ability to become a good desktop tool that you periodically take with you on trips. Let’s take a look at this and see what kind of model came out with Microsoft.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Design, dimensions, controls

For me, the word “platinum” means a different color, perhaps a platinum blonde has stuck in my head, so the body is perceived to be gray, light gray. This is the signature color for the Surface range and is used in many devices. Just like the magnesium alloy that this laptop is made of two in one.

It is important to say that in my mind any 15-inch laptop is relatively portable, its advantage is a large screen, it is comfortable when working in the office, but this affects the weight and how easy it is to carry such a device in a bag. It fits there, of course, but the weight is not as comfortable as in the 13-inch models. The weight here is not so huge – 1.9 kilograms, but the Book 3 should be worn separately from various objects, since the mechanism flap is made so that in this wide part there is a gap and anything can get there.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Angular edges, the feeling that the laptop was carved out of a block of granite, it has sharp edges, a minimum of rounding. Aesthetics of this kind are not close to me, but the design itself does not imply protective covers, only films on the lower and upper parts with which you can protect the surface. Why is it important? All previous Surfaces with a similar color easily pick up dirt from other objects, and it is corrosive and difficult to scrub off. This moment always annoys me, on a light case some stains or scratches are striking.

The two-in-one design is implemented here in a curious way. The heavy block with the keyboard has its own battery, some of the electronics have been taken out here, for example, graphics from NVidia are located here. To prevent the block from sliding on the surface, two rubber strips were made at the bottom. And does not slip!

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

The good old one-handed open test will pass this laptop. In an office environment, with a fair amount of dexterity, you will open it with one hand, but this is not a native movement, there is no ease. I caught myself thinking that I always open this laptop, as if it were a sink, using two hands. And sharp edges do not help here at all.

You can tear off the upper part by pressing a special key on the keyboard.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

After that, you can pull out the “tablet” with two hands or even one. You can also turn it over, then the keyboard acts as a stand, a kind of easel, and you can draw or call someone in the messenger.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

The tablet turns out to be huge, straight edges of the side surface, right there is a radiator grill in a circle to cool the processor.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Due to its gigantic size, holding the tablet in one hand is almost impossible, it is only under two hands. It’s hard even to watch a movie in bed, I would like a built-in stand, like in the younger Surfaces, but here it was abandoned, this is an increase in weight, plus there is a keyboard. Not that I find fault, but the tablet component of this laptop seems to me very far-fetched, you will not carry a tablet separately, this device is useful only as a whole.

Since you can use the two parts of the laptop separately, each has its own Surface Port for charging. When assembled, you will obviously use the one on the keyboard, in tablet mode – the one on the top.

Two regular USB ports, one USB Type C, and an SDXC card slot, which is definitely nice. The tablet part has volume keys (in normal mode they are on the upper left end, which is strange), there is also a 3.5 mm jack. The two speakers on the sides of the screen aren’t conspicuous, but they are loud enough that you won’t have any problems with how they work and play music or battle sound in the game.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

In the previous Book 2 model, when detaching the upper part and returning it to the keyboard, occasionally there were problems with the video card, it incorrectly picked up the software that was running, the screen geometry changed. Alas, in Book 3 this flaw has not gone away, sometimes a return to the base leads to the fact that the screen leaves, and the software starts to glitch. This is a design flaw that needs to be resigned to.

Display

Technical characteristics of the screen in one line: 15 inches, PixelSense, 3240×2160 pixels (260 ppi), IPS, 3: 2, contrast ratio 1600: 1, touchscreen, up to 10 clicks simultaneously, automatic brightness control, maximum brightness 400 nits.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Now let’s sort out the little things. The oleophobic coating of the screen is excellent, although the marks from the hands remain, they are not striking. Over time, of course, it will get worse, but the new device is excellent. The touch screen is responsive, and if you draw, write, then get the MS Pen, you will be happy.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

The brightness of the screen is enough for me for all situations, it is even excessive in the room. I can’t complain about the screen, I watched a couple of films and did not notice any problems. By default, the resolution is 4K, but in games it is worth lowering it, since the performance of the machine still does not allow you to play to its fullest, although it all depends on the game and your preferences.

As for me, there can be no complaints about the screen: good, bright, with high details.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Keyboard

Separately, I want to note the keyboard, I liked it, as it is very similar to my 2013 MacBook Pro, although the keys are slightly spaced apart. But the key travel and typing are very comfortable here (and the fact that there is a lot of space for them makes them even better). Those who write a lot of texts will like this typewriter. But on the other hand, it is impossible to say that the keyboard is somehow different from many models in this segment. The convenience of such a keyboard is already a kind of standard.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

The touchpad didn’t feel the most responsive despite trying to tweak it. It is flawed by the way it is implemented on the MacBook, it lacks a certain lightness, I attribute this to the general properties of the system.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Chipset, memory, performance

The Book 3 has an i7 processor, which, in theory, provides good performance, but as always, the devil is in the details. This is Ice Lake U-series, which means it is intended for ultrabooks, portable technology. Competitors use the H series, which consumes more energy, but also significantly more performance. Here the choice of such a processor is associated with the tablet component, but this is a shot in the foot. Yes, Microsoft says that this is the most productive Surface, but if you look at other laptops, it turns out that many use i9 processors (the same 16-inch MacBook Pro), the same picture in devices from Asus, Acer, Dell and others. That is, in its class, at its price level, Book 3 loses to almost everyone, it all depends on the tasks, but for this money you can buy a more powerful machine.

This laptop is not a gaming laptop (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 T graphics), although the video card allows you to play heavy games (not at maximum resolution, but play comfortably). Interestingly, you can connect an XBox controller to a laptop, playing with a joystick is much more pleasant (younger 13.5-inch models are deprived of such an opportunity).

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

You cannot expand the built-in memory, that is, initially you need to choose how much RAM you need – 16 or 32 GB. It’s the same story with SSD, there are different variations.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop
Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Battery

The set comes with a 127 W charger, this power is needed for those who will play on a laptop (in Book 2, a laptop connected to the network was still discharged during games).

The stated battery life of 17.5 hours in mixed mode plus or minus is achievable, it all depends on the brightness of the screen and what you are doing. In heavy toys, the laptop will sit down in about 5-6 hours. In normal office work, it will last 12-13 hours. It is in terms of the operating time that everything is fine here, it works for a long time, and there is no need to charge it constantly, life without an outlet is quite likely.

In tablet mode, the operating time becomes a flaw, so the tablet worked for me for about three hours! When watching a movie, the time increased a little, but not significantly. In a word, it is nothing.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptopMicrosoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop


Impressions

The device is very unusual, it differs both in design and in concept. There are no 15-inch Windows tablets on the market, some may need it. For an ordinary person, the presence of a tear-off top looks at least strange. Take a look at the configurations for the 15-inch model and their US prices.

Microsoft's flagship review - Surface Book 3 two-in-one laptop

Alas, in the absence of opportunities to change anything (RAM, memory), you need to carefully approach the choice of the model and not miss. This is a very unusual outwardly laptop, but it is difficult to call it ideal. This is a fashion toy that is good in this quality. But if you need a machine for work, then all sorts of limitations and disadvantages come out. This is not a gaming laptop. It’s not a one-size-fits-all laptop. But how many people need a large tablet complete with a laptop, this is a question, I think, not many.

I have doubts that a 15-inch laptop can be called portable (any of them). And here Book 3 is no exception. And if this is a stationary machine, then why make it collapsible? There are more questions than answers.

A very unusual device, unexpected technical solutions. But why all this? The rationality and rationality of the approach is incomprehensible to me, it seems that they created a flagship that is not like other devices.

I did not say anything about the cameras at all, since they are modest in this model, they do not at all pull on the flagship. It is clear that he also did not say anything about Windows 10, there are no peculiarities here.

We thank surface-pro.ru for the provided device.

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