Surface Book 2 Discussion Thread (13.5" and 15" models)

Discussion in 'Microsoft' started by JoeS, Oct 17, 2017.

  1. iatrou

    iatrou Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Is there a chance to see a Surface book 2 core i9?
     
  2. vmishka

    vmishka Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Is anyone using a Surface Book 2 with Digital Audio Workstation Software (DAW), particularly Cubase?

    I am thinking of buying a Surface Book 2 (15-inch, 1TB) and would be interested in learning more about "real world" performance in music production, specifically with Cubase.

    SurfaceProAudio.com has lots of information on other Surface products, but Robin has never been able to get his hands on a Surface Book 2 to test it.

    Thank you.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2018
  3. blarbles

    blarbles Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I bought the 13.5in SB 2 with i7, 16GB ram, 512GB SSD. Before I continue let me give you a brief history of my laptop ownership (does not include the many laptops I've tried out or tested), if only for your entertainment:
    • iBook PPC
    • PowerBook G4 15in
    • MacBook (intel)
    • MacBook Pro
    • MacBook Pro
    • Samsung tablet (Series 7 Slate I think) that ran Win7 or Win 8 preview - epic 2.5hr battery life on a good day (sold after 1 month)
    • MacBook Pro
    • Dell 13in Alienware (what was I thinking? sold it)
    • MacBook Pro
    • Surface Pro 2 (sold after 4? months)
    • MacBook Pro
    • Dell XPS 2-in-1 13in 9365 (returned for many reasons)
    • HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 (returned because fan was so annoying and no pen)
    • Dell XPS 2-in-1 13in 9365 (second try, stuck with it for 8 months, sold it because of variety of reasons)
    • MacBook Retina (you can see my defeat here, where I pick an underpowered ultra-light laptop and give up on doing what I really want to do on a laptop).
    • Surface Book 2 13.5in
    Before the iBook I had desktop Macs back to the Mac Plus. I like(d) Macs. I love MacOS. I love that their hardware works so well with the software. I love their efforts to minimize noise. I love that Candy Crush Saga isn't installed as a part of the OS.

    I hate HATE the new keyboards. As you can see from my history of fail I really want a mobile-touchscreen-2-in-1-laptop-thingy-preferably-with-a-pen and I am annoyed with Apple for steadfastly refusing to produce a computer that is similar to the 2-in-1 or Surface devices. I am annoyed that they use mediocre processors and charge top dollar.

    So here I am again. Will I sell the SB 2 for a huge loss??????? History says yes, but I don't learn from history so I bought it anyway. Here are some observations from a Mac person:
    • For the love of God why can't someone make a decent Windows laptop that wakes up when the lid is opened after extended sleep? I mean Apple has been doing it for how long?
    • At least the power button is clicky and you can feel it click so you know you pressed it (I'm looking at you, Dell 9365, and your squishy nonsense button).
    • It is silent but powerful (when not using the Nvidia graphics) - thank you!
    • While I would like a 360 screen I'll take the detach-reattach/remove
    • It feels kind of off balance even though it really isn't - there are some times in my lap where it is kind of pulling up at the keyboard end so my palms are holding it down, but on a flat surface it is never rocks up on the keyboard end.
    • Windows Hello is stupidly fast. Suspiciously fast. Maybe it's that good?
    • Trackpad is great, I have zero complaints.
    • Keyboard is fantastic! So much better than minimalist-click-hell that Apple is forcing on everyone. Bonus: there are no dumb key placements (I'm looking at you, Lenovo Yoga, and your stupid right shift key).
    • This is, by far at the start, the least problematic Windows laptop I've used (I realize this is not the case for some of you) that didn't need a year of driver updates to fix.
    • Detachy-magic-screen-thingy works really well so far, some engineer must be super proud.
    • It is heavier than I like, but I think the screen detaching will help me get over it and the fact that it can do so much more than other ultra-light laptops.
    • I like the unwavering commitment to the blocky design that seems so German, yet their commitment to the fulcrum hinge and not allowing the laptop to close completely, which is so UN-German. I can only imagine the yelling in the design meetings.
    • A windows laptop that doesn't randomly lose 3-8hrs after sleeping overnight? I don't know how this was so hard for some manufacturers, but thankfully Microsoft did it right.
    • The WiFi: it just works! I mean it should just work, but that has not been my experience with other Windows laptops.
    So this is close to my dream laptop. I want to do almost everything I can do on my Desktop PC. I want it to be capable of 2D design/art, 3D modeling (with limitations), notes, games, and DAW (FL Studio). On paper it can do all of that. It is clear from reviews and this forum it can handle most of the 2D stuff and more than I could want in terms of games. I'll update once I start really using the 3D modeling software and the DAW.
     
  4. vmishka

    vmishka Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Thank you for the all of the information regarding your laptop computer experience blarbles. Finding the perfect computer can be quite a quest (and is always a moving target). I am also considering a Dell XPS 9570 and the latest HP Spectre x360 15t with the i7-8705G. I have an 8-year old MacBook Pro that is still capable of getting some preliminary DAW work done when I travel but neither my wife nor I appreciate the MacOS anymore. Personally, I have never used "sleep" mode. I am in the habit of turning my computers off at the end of the day.

    I look forward to hearing your "detailed" experience with the DAW (and other software).
     
  5. perry59

    perry59 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    What kind of 3D modeling will you do? what software? solidworks?
    I am very interested in how it fares in that test
     
  6. blarbles

    blarbles Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Most of my modeling is for 3D printing, so I won't be rendering much. I mess around with other modeling, but it isn't my primary focus. AutoDesk Fusion 360, MODO, and maybe MOI3D when version 4 comes out and it still has good pen support.
     
  7. Azzart

    Azzart Late night illustrator Senior Member

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    just disable Hibernation after xxx minutes and it will wake up that way.
    it will also consume more battery during sleep though.
     
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  8. convergent

    convergent Scribbler - Standard Member

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    So can I get in line to buy this "huge loss" SB2? Just saying... :)
     
  9. lovelaptops

    lovelaptops My friends call me Jeff Senior Member

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    I concur that your observations were very enlightening, @blarbles . As a recent convert to a SB myself I concur in all respects with your comments. I am at the other end of the spectrum, having just purchased a closeout 2015 SB with Skylake Core i5/8GB/256GB, but in a testament to the amazing design talent in the Surface group they changed virtually nothing in the physical/functional design and even upgraded a large number of performance-related outcomes (especially when coupled with the 2017 Surface Pen - which I recently acquired and, wow, what an amazing improvement! - through copious firmware and OS updates over the past 3 years. You and I both benefited from the software improvements so that setup was a breeze (though time-consuming) and pretty much everything just "worked" from day-1. I find the Surface product line design philosophy - keep the form factors from changing much while improving everything inside tremendously - a refreshing change from the self-obsoleting designs for most laptops and, in this respect, more like Apple - except that MS has avoided making each model change worse in some respects while improving it in others. As you point out, the screen, keyboard and touchpad are so good, what would you want changed? But the difference between your Surface Book and mine couldn't be greater; yours is pretty much state-of-the-art (minus the - oops - lack of TB3, a Microsoft bad habit of staying 1-2 generations behind with ports) marvel and mine is just a 2015 mid-range ultrabook, that happens to have been designed and produced with such high end physical hardware so as to remain best-of-best 3 years later by upgrading core performance hardware, and wow, have they done so!

    Enjoy. I hope it does what you need it to because by all indications it will last you for a good many years. Welcome to the fold!
     
  10. lovelaptops

    lovelaptops My friends call me Jeff Senior Member

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    I know you're being facetious, @kneehowguys, but I can't figure out if you were ridiculing me - fwiw, I only paid $810 for my SB comic reader :p.
     
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