1. garak0410's Avatar
    I currently have the top of the line Surface Pro 3 (i7, 512GB). I have a chance to pass it down to another user and get me a Pro 4.

    To me the most important thing is storage rather than RAM/CPU. I can't spend the full price this time but it looks like I can get a Core i5 with 512GB drive within budget. It is a step down on the CPU but do you think I'll miss much between the Pro 3's core i7? I didn't so much CPU intensive operations (video rendering from time to time) and playing what games I could considering the limitations of the Intel HD graphics.

    Just wondering if I'll noticed the performance difference if I go with the i5 over the i7 with the SP4. I could perhaps make do with 256GB. With OneDrive placeholders gone, it makes it difficult to have anything less than 512GB now and the 512 spoiled me!

    And bonus question...if I sacrifice storage, I am wondering if I should go Surface Book? I do use the tablet portion of the Surface Pro 3 about 50/50 between it and keyboard and I am guessing I may miss the battery life in the tablet portion. I'd love have the GPU when mobile but I really don't have time to play games...it would be more of a convenience than anything. But it would truly be a great portable MAIN PC.
    Last edited by garak0410; 10-27-2015 at 12:33 PM.
    10-27-2015 12:22 PM
  2. Hardcore1973's Avatar
    The 6th gen i5 will be faster then the 4th gen i7. I have the Surface Book but miss the portability of my SP3 so tomorrow I am going to get the SP4.
    10-27-2015 10:18 PM
  3. DCProjMgr's Avatar
    Re: SP4 or Surface Book?

    Keep in mind that the primary differentiation between these two computers is form factor (apart from the dedicated graphics option in the SB). The processing power is identical. The SP4 is just as capable as a primary PC (particularly with the dock, and adding your own monitor and keyboard). That is, unless you prioritize games or other GPU intensive tasks. As a matter of fact, there is a good case to make for the SP4 being the superior desktop replacement since everything is in the tablet. This makes its desktop footprint very small, since the keyboard portion does not need to clutter up your desk.

    Will you miss the SP3 i7 if you settle for an i5 and more disk space?

    According to the Anandtech benchmarks published last week, the new Skylake i5 outperforms the Haswell i7 across the board. So go crazy with the SSD (you know there is a 1 TB option?) because the i5 will likely be the SP4 sweet spot.

    As for the SP4 with the Skylake i7 (i7-66OU), information is just now starting to come in. Since the Surface Book uses the same processor and RAM, performance should be comparable (apart from graphics). Yesterday Anandtech put out their Surface Book First Look article with some preliminary assessments. Skip past the graphics and look at the second set of benchmarks half way through the article (beginning with the Google Octane) and you can see a comparison between the the i7-66OU (in the Surface Book) and the i5-63OU (in the SP4).

    While there will be more detail and analysis when the complete review is done next week, for now pay attention to the two Cinebench scores. In the single threaded tests the i7 enjoys a bump owing to its higher clock speed. But in the multi-threaded tests (and superior multi-threading is why the i7 exists) there isn't much difference.

    Why? It is the curse of the "U" family of Intel Core processors. This line is designed for high-end tablets and thin Ultrabooks. They are designed to balance performance with the need to control temperatures and boost battery life. In other words, if the processor gets to warm, they throttle back performance to stay within the limits of the weaker cooling systems. This behavior affects the i7 models disproportionatly. Because of their higher clock speeds, additional hyperthreading, and other extra features, they hit the temperature ceiling faster than the i5. So, in tasks where normally they would shine (like rendering video or compiling software) their little brothers the i5's are able to chug along at maximum speed for a longer period of time. In the end, if you are rendering or compiling for a couple of minutes or more, it's all a wash.

    This is why I advise that if you are doing work that is too slow on your i5 Surface Pro, the solution is not to upgrade to the i7 (or a Surface Book). You want a completely different computer that abandons the dual-core "U" processors and steps up to the quad-core i7 where the throttling won't be a problem. For example, the Dell XPS 15 or the Lenovo Ideapad Y700,
    garak0410 likes this.
    10-28-2015 01:45 PM
  4. garak0410's Avatar
    Re: SP4 or Surface Book?

    Keep in mind that the primary differentiation between these two computers is form factor (apart from the dedicated graphics option in the SB). The processing power is identical. The SP4 is just as capable as a primary PC (particularly with the dock, and adding your own monitor and keyboard). That is, unless you prioritize games or other GPU intensive tasks. As a matter of fact, there is a good case to make for the SP4 being the superior desktop replacement since everything is in the tablet. This makes its desktop footprint very small, since the keyboard portion does not need to clutter up your desk.

    Will you miss the SP3 i7 if you settle for an i5 and more disk space?

    According to the Anandtech benchmarks published last week, the new Skylake i5 outperforms the Haswell i7 across the board. So go crazy with the SSD (you know there is a 1 TB option?) because the i5 will likely be the SP4 sweet spot.

    As for the SP4 with the Skylake i7 (i7-66OU), information is just now starting to come in. Since the Surface Book uses the same processor and RAM, performance should be comparable (apart from graphics). Yesterday Anandtech put out their Surface Book First Look article with some preliminary assessments. Skip past the graphics and look at the second set of benchmarks half way through the article (beginning with the Google Octane) and you can see a comparison between the the i7-66OU (in the Surface Book) and the i5-63OU (in the SP4).

    While there will be more detail and analysis when the complete review is done next week, for now pay attention to the two Cinebench scores. In the single threaded tests the i7 enjoys a bump owing to its higher clock speed. But in the multi-threaded tests (and superior multi-threading is why the i7 exists) there isn't much difference.

    Why? It is the curse of the "U" family of Intel Core processors. This line is designed for high-end tablets and thin Ultrabooks. They are designed to balance performance with the need to control temperatures and boost battery life. In other words, if the processor gets to warm, they throttle back performance to stay within the limits of the weaker cooling systems. This behavior affects the i7 models disproportionatly. Because of their higher clock speeds, additional hyperthreading, and other extra features, they hit the temperature ceiling faster than the i5. So, in tasks where normally they would shine (like rendering video or compiling software) their little brothers the i5's are able to chug along at maximum speed for a longer period of time. In the end, if you are rendering or compiling for a couple of minutes or more, it's all a wash.

    This is why I advise that if you are doing work that is too slow on your i5 Surface Pro, the solution is not to upgrade to the i7 (or a Surface Book). You want a completely different computer that abandons the dual-core "U" processors and steps up to the quad-core i7 where the throttling won't be a problem. For example, the Dell XPS 15 or the Lenovo Ideapad Y700,
    Excellent info...I do need STORAGE more than speed but doggone it, I also want the IRIS...so I've about settled on the SP4, i7, 8GB of RAM and 256...yeah, I lose storage but I've had good luck installing and running things from MicroSD. :)
    10-28-2015 03:01 PM

Similar Threads

  1. Any issues with windows 10 and the Pro 4?
    By Rafaelcab in forum Microsoft Surface Pro 4
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 10-28-2015, 11:08 AM
  2. Surface Book i7 with Nvidia GPU - No Nvidia Control Panel
    By jomargon in forum Microsoft Surface Book
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-27-2015, 12:38 PM
  3. How do I delete these undeletable Virus files?
    By Windows Central Question in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-27-2015, 10:13 AM
  4. Where do I look for my saved documents?
    By WPCentral Question in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-27-2015, 10:00 AM
  5. How do I get rid of message threads on the Lumia 435 phone?
    By Windows Central Question in forum Microsoft Lumia 435
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-27-2015, 09:26 AM
LINK TO POST COPIED TO CLIPBOARD