Microsoft Surface Go + Mechkb?


#1

So there have been a deluge of positive Microsoft Surface Go reviews as it’s being launched as a entry level tablet/laptop. I’m wondering if any of you plan on getting one and using it with your mechkb. I’ve been looking for a powerful 2-in-1 or tablet that doesn’t require you buying a separate keyboard and the Surface Go, while not being a powerhouse, has a great screen and drawing capabilities (which as a designer I’d like but I realize might be useless with this being not really a powerhouse like the Surface Book 2).

I’m fine bringing my 60/65% with me and not buying the MS keyboard accessory, and using this device as a media/movie player as well as light drawing and productivity (browsing, word, excel, etc). Any thoughts from you guys?

One negative is that traditional laptops allow you to put them on your lap and type away. This obviously won’t be possible with the Surface Go’s kickstand and using a mechkb. You’d have to do it on a table. Also the screen is quite small … but it’s nice and if this is offset by significantly better battery life, I’m ok with it.

Here are some reviews for your reference:



#2

Over 4 years ago I bought a Surface Pro 2 with a faster processor than this, double the storage, same amount of RAM as the top tier Surface Go for pretty much the exact same price. It was a return (though practically new) and had already been made obsolete by the newly released Pro 3.

Obviously the Go is much lighter than my Pro 2 and probably has a better battery life/much lower power draw. But then if you plan on using it with a Mechanical keyboard then I doubt you are concerned with heft.

I use my Pro 2 on a daily basis, it’s well engineered and capable. I really see no massive benefits of the newer pro series tablets in comparison to mine.

The only thing that it is not great for is travel and using it on your lap (what Microsoft used to call “lappable” experience I think) I don’t tend to work while in transit so it’s not really an issue. What is great though is not having to have a keyboard in front of it if you do want to use it while travelling (or even lazing around the house) for games or movies, which is what I do!

Productivity wise, I have mostly used it like a portable desktop if I have to relocate for a few days for any reason.

My suggestion (if you think a tablet is right for you) is get a second hand Pro 4 for about the same price. But if you really want it smaller and you want to buy new, the Go might be right for you!

Edit: Oh! and surface peripherals are a rip off, I never bought the touch or type cover because It was way overpriced. Same for the dock, which I did look at getting.


#3

I’m curious and was wondering if you mind describing what you use your Surface for? Is it for some kind of development work, etc?


#4

Allsorts really. Productivity wise mostly writing (using LaTeX for the most part), research, and a bit of coding (JavaScript, Python and R) so also run a web server of off it for testing. I know, not very taxing for the processor. More taxing is the design bits I’ve done on it using Fusion 360, KiCad, and Adobe CC stuff, the Wacom digitiser can be pretty useful in some of those bits of software too. The small screen is not good for spreadsheets I’ve found.

Non work wise, I guess I use it for the same things most people do, browsing, watching videos, playing games. Obviously it can’t do AAA even from the last few years, but retro games, emulators and the like run great. Portal 2 was about the most impressive thing it can run smoothly and still looking ok. 8BitDo controllers are great btw, I have a NES pro

Oh! One thing I forgot to mention above was I have a Logitech K811 (no hear me out) that was great for taking notes at conferences and seminars, place tablet (or phone for that matter) on desk in front of you, put keyboard wherever is comfortable and take notes without all the other bits being a PITA (I guess this is similar if you plan to use it with a 60% or the like)


#5

These accessories were awful for typing, the touch cover more so than the type, and the type cover was horrendous. Way too much flex when typing, inconsistent tactile feedback, and a layout that never made sense to me.

Not much to contribute to this conversation, but I just had to grouse about these overpriced abominations :slight_smile:

Edit: The Surface Pro 2 that I used was pretty okay as a device, though. The problem at the time was that there were other equally capable touchscreen 2-in-1 laptops that cost much less.