The Surface Laptop Go 2 has been updated and improved from the original model. The base model comes with only 4GB of RAM which should be ignored by most people, however if you can afford to get it go for the 8GB RAM and 128GB storage configuration otherwise known as “the sweet spot”.
For a laptop in this price range there are no other laptops that come close to its capabilities or features. Out of all the laptops on the market today, Microsoft gets most things right with their new Surface Laptop Go 2; it is one of our favorite budget-friendly options available! With that being said let us get into the nitty-gritty details in this Surface Laptop Go 2 review!
Surface Laptop Go 2: A Detailed Review
Design and Aesthetics
Physically, the Surface Laptop Go 2 is a compact, lightweight laptop whose display folds back to about 45 degrees. However, Microsoft shaves off just half an inch of keyboard space compared to, say, the Surface Laptop Studio.
On the left-hand side of the laptop you’ll find a conventional USB-A port (which can support up to two 4K displays), a USB-C port (which can support up to 10Gbps data transfer rates), and headphone jack suitable for connecting both modern and legacy devices.
The lower pixel density doesn’t seem to matter too much though it is noticeable in certain cases; while that display was rated at about 330 nits of luminance however we measured its displaying 358 nits on average which should be fine even under well lit rooms. This is all thanks to the lackluster color gamut when compared against other laptops like MacBook Air Pro.
The new CPU offers improved performance in comparison to the 10th-generation Core i5 found in the first iteration of the Laptop Go, particularly in terms of graphics. The performance of the i5-1135G7 is well-established, and it will maintain a comparable level in the Surface Laptop 2. In comparison to Dell’s XPS 13, Microsoft has decreased the power rating that its laptop requires (which uses an eighth generation Intel Core processor).
The graphics performance of this model is comparable to (though somewhat lower than) that of other laptops of the same price range; still, it should be sufficient for the majority of gamers’ demands while using the minimal settings. Games like Fall Guys, American Truck Simulator, and Deep Rock Galactic can be run at maximum settings without causing any problems.
However, our own tests found that it lasted just 7 hours before needing a recharge – still good enough for most day-to-day requirements though not as long as some competing devices like the Surface Laptop 4, which manages 9 hours or even longer depending on workload. Microsoft also placed an emphasis on battery life, making claims of up to 8.5 hours longevity under real world usage or PC Mark Modern Office tests!
Upgradability and Service
Many folks are curious about what is new about the Surface Laptop Go 2. According to Microsoft, this model contains more user-serviceable parts than its predecessor, making it easier for customers to repair and replace components. The service manual for the device provides instructions for changing the bottom rubber feet, top cover (containing keyboard and trackpad), display and lid assembly, battery, SSD, and “Surflink” port, which is utilized by Microsoft’s proprietary power connector.
Microsoft employs a regular but uncommon type of M2 2230 SSD in their Laptop Go 2 instead of NVMe, as most current laptops use nowadays. This implies that upgrading your drive will almost always need acquiring anything used or a completely new one, as there aren’t many accessible from merchants right now.
However, if you don’t want to go through the hassles of replacing/upgrading parts for your laptop, you may save money by choosing either the 128GB or 256GB edition of the Laptop Go 2 rather than the 512GB option simply because it comes with built-in storage capacity.
Battery life and Thermals
Next up on the Surface Laptop Go 2 review is its battery life and thermals! The Surface Laptop Go 2 is exceptionally battery life-capable for a laptop. On our video rundown test, it lasted 7 hours and 43 minutes, which is more than what you get with the $200 cheaper Surface Laptop 4 (15:25) or even some of pricier Windows laptops like the Dell Inspirion 13 7000 3.
I appreciate that Microsoft made efforts to reduce fan noise on this device as much as 10 decibels at max speeds – something that can be really helpful if you want an incredibly quiet computing experience while also staying power efficient.
Surface Laptop Go 2 Review: Final Verdict
So, what is the final verdict of this Surface Laptop Go 2 review? Well, if you’re only interested in getting the most bang for your buck, $700 may get you a better laptop than the Surface Laptop Go 2. But there is an appeal to the simplicity of Microsoft’s newest device – fewer moving parts mean less potential for problems and faster start-ups times.
That said, if portability (or weight or price are more important factors) then we recommend considering another option like Dell’s Inspiron 15 7000 Gaming Notebook which starts at just over $800 but offers much better value overall when compared to the Go 2!
It has an Intel Core i7 processor with 8GB RAM and Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 graphics – all standard features in laptops priced above $1,000 these days. Plus its beautiful design will stand out from any other notebooks around – making it ideal for business use as well as everyday computing tasks!