Microsoft unveils Surface Book 2

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From the early days of Surface Pro to the launch of the original Surface Book, we've had incredible feedback from photographers and artists who loved the ability to shoot tethered or draw on a super portable device that could also run Adobe Creative Cloud desktop applications.

That's a bold claim, but one that's well backed up by numbers. It's more powerful, with quad-core 8th-generation Intel Core processors across most of the line and GeForce 10-series graphics on all Core i7 variants. Microsoft calls it "twice as powerful" as the MacBook Pro, and the company seems to be targeting Apple even more aggressively than it did past year, retaining the Surface Book's USB-A ports and SD card reader while adding USB-C support.

Surface Book 2 (15-inch) with 8th Generation Intel Core i7, 16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 dGPU with 6GB GDDR5 graphics memory. Newer processors help the machine last for up to 17 hours in laptop mode, and 5 hours in tablet mode. I suspect that part of the reason is that Microsoft is essentially reusing its first-generation Surface Book design for these products. The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update came out, and Windows Mixed Reality headsets started shipping.

The new 15-inch Surface Book 2, along with an updated 13.5-inch model that starts at $1,499, can be preordered November 9 and will be available November 16. Nevertheless, all models feature USB Type-C port.

Microsoft has also finally seen the light and added a USB-C port to one of its Surface devices, in addition to a SD card reader and two USB 3.0 ports. For more information and specifications jump over to the official Microsoft website by following the link below.

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TechRepublic's sister site CNET praised the sharp display and high-end specs of the first-gen Surface Book but criticized the high cost of the premium models and quirks in the design. The 15-inch model has a resolution of 3240×2160 pixels, while the 13.5-inch model has 3000×2000.

At first glance, the Surface Book 2 and the current lineup of MacBook Pro are very similar, underscoring the fact that Microsoft is not going for the entire laptop market with its two new Surface Book laptops. Thanks to the powerful GPU inside, the Surface Book 2 can easily handle most games at 1080p resolution. The 15-inch model can also be outfitted with NVIDIA's GTX 1060 GPU, while the 13-inch can come with NVIDIA's GTX 1050.

Inside, both models are powered by the 7th generation Intel "Kaby Lake" processors as well as the new 8th generation Intel "Coffee Lake" processors. That compares to Apple's 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pros at 3.02-pounds and 4.02-pounds.

The Surface Book 2 will be available on November 16th, for a starting price of $1,499. The 15-inch version will have almost seven million pixels - 45 percent more than a MacBook Pro.

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