If you are not in the know, Microsoft’s Surface Book range is a flagship two in one laptop – quite literally with a twist. A patented hinge lets the touchscreen monitor open similarly to a normal laptop and then completely detach to become a standalone tablet.
The third iteration, released in June 2020, looks identical to the Surface Book 2. But as it was a premium design, to begin with, that is not so much of a problem. Under the bonnet, it is significantly upgraded with Intel 10th generation chips, and something that sets it apart from other high-end Microsoft laptops – a powerful discrete graphics card.
It is marketed as a powerhouse performer, and while it is powerful, it does not pack quite as much punch as some competitors. That is because its unique architecture means quad-core rather than eight-core Intel chips were used to stop it from overheating. However, we do find that the graphics card can step in and take some of the load on certain tasks.
We mentioned the unusual architecture and that’s because almost all the innards are behind the screen rather than in the base. This is so that the screen can act as that standalone tablet. An interesting side effect of this is that the base does not heat up like a traditional laptop, meaning that the palms of your hands (and lap if you are resting on it) do not get uncomfortably hot: a nice USP.
Unless you require extreme power the Microsoft Surface Book 3 will have enough for most business tasks. It is a bit of a style statement and comes with a price tag to match. If this is important to you (some businesses do find value in that) then it is a great choice for a Windows machine. If the graphics card or the tablet functionality will be useful, again it is a good choice. But if you just require a solid, stylish business laptop, the Microsoft Surface 3 or Dell XPS may be a more cost-effective choice.
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