Surface Laptop Go 2 experience: an “affordable book” at $5,000

In 2020, Microsoft released a low-key entry-level thin and light notebook: Surface Laptop Go. Affected by the epidemic, the Microsoft Surface hardware new product launch event originally scheduled to be held in October was forced to cancel, so that this product could only be unveiled in the form of official Weibo.

Two years later, Microsoft announced the launch of the Surface Laptop Go 2. Compared with the previous generation, the Xiancha green color was added. The processor was also upgraded from the 10th generation to the 11th generation, and the battery life was increased by 0.5 hours.

The appearance of "beginning with appearance, loyal to appearance"

I have to admit that Microsoft color grading has reached the realm of perfection. This time, the color of fairy tea green, with the change of light and distance, is similar to the low-key and deep gray of MacBook Air from a distance.

The one-piece aluminum-metal molding process is perfectly matched with the silver-plated "Tianzi" logo on the A side, which also adds a bit of texture to this thin and light notebook at the price of 5,000 yuan.

In order to ensure that the body is thin enough (1.127KG), Surface Laptop Go 2 only retains one USB-A, one Type-C, one 3.5mm headphone jack, and one Surface connect charging port all over the body.

Although the number of interfaces is small, at least there should be all of them. The only fly in the ointment is that it is not equipped with an SD card slot. This may not be so friendly to photography enthusiasts or media practitioners. After all, you need to bring a card reader when you go out.

The magnetic charging port on the right side of the fuselage, paired with the 39W "small brick", allows the Surface Laptop Go 2 to quickly recover blood. However, compared to the 30W "small steel gun" of the MacBook Air, the "small brick" of the Surface Laptop Go 2 is slightly less portable.

The B side uses a 12.4-inch PixelSense touch screen with a screen ratio of 3:2, 1536 × 1024 resolution, 148PPI, and a peak brightness of 330 nits.

Looking at the parameters alone, this is not a good screen. In scenes with strong light, the screen brightness of the Surface Laptop Go 2 is somewhat insufficient.

The lower PPI, and the non-2K resolution, also makes this screen a little awkward, especially when taking screenshots, the content displayed on the picture will become a little blurry.

Moreover, the touch operation of the screen gives people a feeling of "superfluous". After all, the screen of Surface Laptop Go 2 does not support 180° flip.

In the actual experience process, I rarely use the touch screen operation. Generally speaking, keyboards and trackpads are the best ways to interact between laptops and people, while touchscreen operations are more suitable for mobile phones and tablets. In addition, the Windows system itself is not suitable for touch screen operation, so that I will subconsciously ignore the touch screen operation of this screen.

The front 720P camera, although not clear, is basically sufficient for some video conferences, online classes and other scenarios.

It should be noted that this front camera does not support the Windows Hello face unlock function.

Putting aside the screen problem for the time being, in addition to the appearance, another big satisfaction of the Surface Laptop Go 2 is the C-side keyboard, with a key travel of 1.3 mm. paragraph sense.

After careful observation, it is found that the material of the power button is slightly different from other buttons, and the surface looks smoother, similar to being covered with a layer of glass. In fact, this button integrates a fingerprint recognition module. When the notebook is in the locked screen state, the user only needs to place his finger on the power button, accompanied by a circle of surrounding light effects, to complete the unlocking.

To sum up briefly, Surface Laptop Go 2 is not equipped with a good screen and SD card slot, which is somewhat regrettable, but considering the price of more than 5,000 yuan, good appearance design, high-end computer texture, less than 1.2KG weight, and very good For the light office crowd, the two shortcomings mentioned above may not be important at the other end of the scale.

In scenarios such as indoor office, an external monitor can be used to make up for the lack of the Surface Laptop Go 2 screen. For outdoor use, you can bring an extra card reader or docking station to solve the problem that the fuselage is not equipped with an SD card slot.

Not a "vase", but a "productivity tool"

To judge the quality of a thin and light notebook, you can't just look at the appearance, but the focus should be on performance.

The Surface Laptop Go 2 is configured as follows:

  • 11th Generation Intel Core i5-1135G7 Quad-Core Processor
  • Intel Iris X Graphics
  • Supports Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 technology

In the stress test of CINEBENCH R23, the CPU multi-core score is 3154 pts, and the single-core score is 1282 pts. This score is not eye-catching in a notebook. For the i5-1135G7 processor, it is also quite satisfactory. Of course, performance is a relative concept. The 11th-generation Core i5 is not an incompetent person. It is difficult to go to Huashan on the performance list, but it is easy to deal with daily office work.

Unlike CINEBENCH R23, PCMARK10 is mainly aimed at comprehensive benchmarking of modern office scenarios, such as video conferencing, photo editing, document processing, etc.

We can see that the Surface Laptop Go 2 has a final composite score of 3856. The performance of this score shows the level that a mid-range notebook should have, that is to say, there is basically no problem with using this notebook for daily office work.

Of course, theoretical tests do not fully represent actual office performance. I also used Surface Laptop Go 2 for some text work. In split-screen mode, I used Word to write while using the Edge browser to view data. During the experience, the computer has been running smoothly without any stuttering.

I also used Photoshop 2022 to edit the pictures, such as adding filters, AI algorithm matting, etc. The whole experience is very smooth.

The performance of the CPU is mainly reflected in multitasking, while the GPU is more inclined to image rendering. Needless to say, the Surface Laptop Go 2 has integrated graphics, not discrete graphics.

In the 3DMARK Time Spy benchmark, the Surface Laptop Go 2's GPU finished with a final score of 1293. Compared with other notebooks equipped with independent graphics, this result may not be on the table, but if it is placed in the integrated graphics card, the overall performance is still remarkable.

Although the Surface Laptop Go 2 is not suitable for playing some AAA games, basic online games can run smoothly.

For example, the national-level online game LOL, even if the full special effects are running, the game frame rate can be maintained at more than 100 FPS. In team battles, the frame rate will occasionally drop to about 90 FPS. If the game is set to medium special effects, the frame rate performance will not be lower than 100 FPS.

However, I personally don’t recommend using the Surface Laptop Go 2 to play games without being plugged in, as this will result in an accelerated reduction in its battery life. Although it is officially claimed that the Surface Laptop Go 2 has a battery life of up to 13.5 hours, this does not mean that you can use it to play games for that long.

If the GPU affects the frame rate of the game screen, then the hard disk will affect the loading speed of the game. In theory, the read and write speed of solid-state drives is much higher than that of mechanical hard drives. However, solid-state drives are also divided into good and bad, and good solid-state drives will bring users a more perceptual experience.

The data measured by the AS SSD Benchmark shows that the Surface Laptop Go 2's solid-state drive has a maximum read speed of 2680.07 MB/s and a write speed of 1038.97 MB/s. In this way, the Surface Laptop Go 2's solid-state drive has excellent read and write performance, and there is no need to worry about the problem that the hard drive is not fast enough to read and write.

The "affordable book" at the price of 5,000 yuan

To describe the Surface Laptop Go 2 in one sentence, it is "good-looking", "light and thin enough", "sex can be used", and "reasonable price".

Compared with the netbooks of the previous generation, which focused on online education, this generation is more inclined to be all-around thin and light notebooks, becoming less obsessive. For daily office work and light entertainment, the Surface Laptop Go 2 can basically handle it easily.

Unlike in the past, Surface Laptop Go 2 is no longer limited to students, but also to users who like to pursue extreme lightness and thinness, but also need certain performance and a budget of less than 6,000 yuan.

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