SEC­OND OPIN­ION

PC & Tech Authority - - REVIEWS - Tim Dan­ton

There are two things that hit you when you first sit down with the Sur­face Lap­top. The first: its oddly sized screen. I’m so used to the 16:9 as­pect ra­tio that a 3:2 feels like a step back into an olde world of lap­tops that’s so olde we still called them note­books. The slim bezels give away this ma­chine’s 2017 birth, though, and there are ad­van­tages: with that su­per-high res screen, it’s easy to view spread­sheets side by side.

The other is that weird, much-talked about key­board fab­ric. If you’re ex­pect­ing some­thing that feels furry then you’ll be dis­ap­pointed. It’s al­most a half­way house be­tween plas­tic and short-haired car­pet, that feels firm and soft, solid but tex­tured at the same time. Weird, but not at all un­pleas­ant. And while I don’t have a time ma­chine to check if it will look as good in five years’ time, I sus­pect it will wear well.

One con­se­quence to its de­sign is that it feels as if the key­board should be de­tach­able – but to at­tempt such a ma­noeu­vre would be ill-ad­vised in the ex­treme. In fact, this screen doesn’t even flip round 180 de­grees to cre­ate a gi­ant tablet, in­stead hold­ing firm at around 130 de­grees.

The fact that key com­po­nents are sit­ting in the base means Mi­crosoft can cre­ate a su­per-slen­der screen, and with a bold, steel sil­ver Win­dows logo on the rear, this ma­chine strikes a pose like no Sur­face be­fore. For­get halls of res­i­dence: I sus­pect it will sneak into board­rooms up and down the land. But, aside from the price, there are two things that stop me lov­ing the Lap­top. The first is that stingy 128GB SSD in the base model, which will quickly fill no mat­ter what Mi­crosoft may claim about liv­ing in the cloud. The sec­ond is the omis­sion of USB-C, which strikes me as crazy in 2017.

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