Surface Book: The Hinge

Posted on October 23, 2015 by Brad Sams in Hardware with

Surface book hero

Microsoft’s new Surface Book is a high-end device that the company hopes will drive consumers to buy a premium Windows laptop. If you haven’t checked out my full review yet, make sure to do so here, and in this post, we take a closer look at the brand new hinge.

The hinge is a dynamic fulcrum (DFH) design that, when closed, creates a small gap at the base of the display which gives the Surface Book a tear-drop design. At first, I was a bit concerned about the device collapsing under pressure but after putting a considerable amount of force on the hinge when closed, thse fears are put to rest.

The hinge is made out of magnesium aluminum and stainless steel parts, there is no plastic in the external construction of it which adds to the premium feel of the device and also gives you more confidence that this part will not breakdown easily.

One interesting thing about hinge is that when you remove the clipboard, this is what Microsoft calls the display, the hinge is locked into whatever position you removed the display. While not an issue the majority of the time, if you do remove the display at an odd angle, it can be a bit harder to get it reattach the display. Again, not a huge issue here but something to be aware of as once the display is moved, you can not adjust the hinge until the display is reattached.

Attaching the display to the body is quite easy and is assisted by magnets in the base. The magnets, to a modest degree, align the tablet up correctly to make seating the device a simple task as long as the hinge is facing upright. The tabs that stick out from the base are sturdy and unless you really knock them hard, should not break off.

The hinge does not fold all the way back like the Lenovo Yoga devices and instead stops at, a rough estimation, 125 degrees. But, you can turn the display around, by removing it and reseating it, so that you get the tent-like-experience, as Lenovo calls it, with the Surface Book.

In practice the hinge works well and is gives no indication of being a weak point of the device. Time will be the true test to see how well the hinge (and the entire device) holds up but early indications seem to suggest that the Surface Book will be able to hold its own against the test of time.