Opinions on Surface Pro 3

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by Skylitfly, Oct 22, 2014.

  1. Skylitfly macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    I'm planning to get one and I want your opinion.

    I have 15" rMBP which will remain as my main work station. I'm not going to sell it.

    Instead I'm planning to get rid of my iPad and buy the lower end Surface Pro 3 (Intel i5, 128gb) mainly as media consumption device but also as a secondary productivity device. When I travel I'm usually carrying my iPad but I often end up thinking that I can't do everything I'd like to on the iPad and it's very limiting experience. This is why I'm thinking about getting the Surface Pro 3. It can do everything my iPad can + it can run actual productivity programs like Photoshop and Illustrator which I'm going to use quite a lot. Basically I can run anything I want on it.

    Now I want to hear your opinions.
     
  2. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #2
    If your use of your iPad is very basic, then the SP3 will be fine. I've owned a Surface 2 and Surface RT and found them to be very good as a netbook, but pretty lacking as a tablet.

    I think that a 11" MBA + iPad Mini are a better combination. No compromises on the notebook side of things, no compromises on the tablet. The combo is highly portable. I traded my Surface 2 in for a MBA 11". It was a great decision. I supplement that with an iPad 4 and Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4.
     
  3. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #3
    I think you will love the combination. Any combination with an iPad is an exercise in compromise unless you really are limiting yourself to consumption. I think this is more true if you are going to leave the MacBook at home/work and ONLY carry a tablet, the iPad would disappoint you based on how you say you want to use a tablet. Additionally do you really want to flip open a laptop when you need windows? Same applies to a MacBook air for example, you still have to treat it as a laptop and that inconvenience can be a deal breaker.

    Of course you have a slightly larger, heavier tablet with the SP3 so I suppose that should weigh on your decision. This has never bothered me because once I get a tablet over 8" I HAVE to carry a man bag around anyway so it's a moot point for me. So I suppose the question is HOW much productivity will you need to do on a tablet versus pure consumption?
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #4
    I was at Oracle's Open World in San Francisco last month and was surprised to see a fair number of people using the SP3 (and SP2).

    I think your plans of using it as a content consumption device and backup/secondary productivity device makes a lot of sense. In one way, I was tempted to buy the SP3 earlier this year but opted not too, in part because I would have had to sell my rMBP to afford it. With that said, seeing how it was used in real world situations, I was a bit jealous and felt that it would have been a better option then lugging my laptop around all day.

    I think for many uses, the SP3 is a great device, in other tasks the MBP is a better device. I think if you go into it, knowing its strengths and weaknesses and don't have an overly unrealistic expectation on the device, you'll not have buyers remorse.
     
  5. nixiemaiden macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    I love my Surface Pro 3 and it has for the most part replaced most of my needs for a full computer. I still have a desktop (mac mini) in case I need a little bit more power but I have barely used it since I got the SP3.

    I like to use my iPad for whatever I can use it for. If there is something I can't use it for then I use my SP3. If there is something I can't use my SP3 for (or stuff like media management), then I would use my desktop. The stuff that I use my iPad for, the iPad does it better than the SP3 so I wouldn't consider getting rid of it unless it was the only way to get an SP3.
     
  6. Skylitfly thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    Thanks for this. This is exactly how I thought. And thats exactly the reason why I'll keep my rMBP as my primary computer.

    I think I'm pretty much set for the Surface Pro 3. It would make things quite a bit easier and I wouldn't have to carry my rMBP nearly as often as I do now.
     
  7. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #7
    I don't have the budge wiggle room (after buying 2 IP6 + for myself and the wife) to get an SP3, but I have some travel plans coming up shortly, and the SP3 would have been perfect.
     
  8. Skylitfly thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Nice share. I can clearly see your point.

    But anyways. I've noticed that my iPad usage isn't that huge. At home I prefer my rMBP most of the time and on the go I mostly prefer my iPhone since I can access it more easily and it's basically just as productive as my iPad.

    Surface Pro 3 would fit perfectly between rMBP and iPhone. As a media consumption device it's in many ways equal to iPad. It's a little bit more awkward to hold since it's bigger and heavier but in the other hand it has noticeably bigger screen. And Surface Pro 3 is a proper productivity device where iPad really lacks.
     
  9. MozMan68 macrumors 68000

    MozMan68

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    #9
    Since I used my iPad for web surfing 90%+ of the time, the switch to an SP3 was ideal. I have since found that it truely is a laptop replacement and functions well enough as a tablet for me.

    Traveling on a plane though, it is the BEST. No matter what plane or seat type, I simply remove the type cover and can utilize it for work or play on any seat tray without compromise.

    I love it more every day.
     
  10. jrswizzle macrumors 603

    jrswizzle

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    #10
    I have no desire to use any windows devices in my personal life. The Air 2 (based on benchmarks) is only roughly 27% slower than the new SP3 (and coincidentally my MacBook Air) and it does everything I need it to do - including productivity tasks.

    That being said, I'm still tethered to windows at work and I wouldn't mind at all if they were to allow us to use SP3s instead of our laptops. I travel a ton and I either have to go with a slow, small dell or a larger, faster dell.

    Both suck.

    I wouldn't mind going with a SP3 for what I use my work laptop for.
     
  11. kalex macrumors 65816

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    #11
    Thats just stupid. First of SP3 is not Surface 2 or Surface RT its a totally different animal. Why would u recommend 11" MBA and ipad mini instead of SP3? replacing Surface 2 with MBA is one thing but in my opinion going from SP3 to MBA is a downgrade. Also why would u say that if ipad use is very basic SP3 will be fine. Do u realize that SP3 is a full blown windows laptop and tablet which is infinitely more powerful then ipad?

    Actually i just did the opposite. I had 13" MBP retina and Mac Pro. Mac Pro is my main desktop with 3 x 24" LCDs. MBP was my travel laptop. I recently traded it for i5/8GB/256GB SP3 with type cover. I have to give credit to Microsoft, its as perfect combo of tablet and laptop. It runs full windows OS with full multitasking as well as split screen. I don't miss MBP at all
     
  12. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #12
    If you allowed your emotions to calm down before responding, you would've seen that I was addressing the individual aspects of the SP3. As a table, the SP3 provides a less optimal experience compared to the iPad. Modern UI apps are still works in progress and there aren't touch versions of the apps for specific purposes.

    Using desktop apps in touch-mode are a stop-gap, not preferred.

    It is my opinion that having 2 highly portable devices that don't compromise on their specialty are better than a hybrid device that makes compromises on both ends.

    You are free to disagree. But don't take it as a personal insult. :rolleyes:
     
  13. kalex macrumors 65816

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    #13
    There is no emotions. I was responding to your post which i found full of misinformation for the OP
     
  14. akuma13 macrumors 6502a

    akuma13

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    #14
    If you need a combination of a few tablet optimized apps and full blown programs, The Surface Pro 3 is a very capable machine. The icing on the cake is that it does content creation well with one One Note and Drawing. These two are important for me since i've decided to go digital and downsize on the amount of gadgets I have.

    5 years ago I would be the last person to recommend anything by Microsoft but they have put out an excellent machine. Yes it has its quirks which are being ironed out with occasional software updates, but It's getting there.

    In the past year, I've returned my ipad mini, sold my ipad and sold my macbook air. This is first time in 15 years i do not own a Apple product and i'm ok with that.
     
  15. burgman macrumors 65816

    burgman

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    #15
    How is lumping the SP3 in with RT devices valid and well not stupid ;)
    iPad limited to apps like RT. SP3 is not limited to apps. so the comparison makes little sense, Even form factors are different. You could load iTunes on it and sync your iPad to it, I do with my mini.
     
  16. MozMan68 macrumors 68000

    MozMan68

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    #16
    His original post and follow-up post were pretty clear in stating his reasons for having two devices and that it was his personal opinion.

    The iPad is clearly a better "tablet" since that is all it is.

    Like you though, I agree that for my typical use, the SP3 is a "more than good enough" tablet while giving me full laptop functions. Truly a dream for me as I travel quite a bit for work and love the capabilities with full MS Office and a separate display port and USB port.
     
  17. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    #17
    Calling my opinion "stupid" and claiming that the SP3 is "infinitely more powerful than an ipad" is emotional. Or are you claiming that the SP3 actually is infinitely more powerful than the iPad? :rolleyes:

    "full of misinformation" is another emotional response.

    My experience with a Surface RT and Surface 2 is quite relevant to speak on the Modern UI apps experience. Yes, the Surface Pro 3 runs legacy apps, but I wasn't referring to that aspect of the SP3.

    The quality and quantity of Modern UI apps is the same across the Surface tablet line. My criticism of Modern UI apps was not related to performance or aspect ratio (the two differentiators between the Surface 2/RT and the Pro 3)
     
  18. spinedoc77, Oct 23, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2014

    spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #18
    I kinda disagree with this, but it's based purely on how I use my tablet so it's not really a disagreement, just a discussion about how our uses differ. I find the sp3 a BETTER tablet than the iPad in many ways, if not most. The larger screen is much better suited for viewing and consuming content, as well as productivity. Not all desktop programs are touch friendly apps yet, but some of them are. Microsoft office is a big one, while we haven't received the modern version of Office yet they have optimized it to be touch friendly. The ribbon UI is nice and large and finger friendly and you can very much use Office as a touch program with the caveat of using a touch keyboard, which would be the same caveat as any other tablet.

    Not having a stylus/digitizer is a pretty big compromise as a tablet, as is not having a keyboard cover or kickstand, making the iPad an inferior tablet, once again based on MY needs.

    I see the iPad as a huge compromise, and the MacBook air is again another compromise, carrying around both of them would be yet another level of compromise, ie: adding 2 compromises together doesn't equal a solution it only equals an even bigger compromise. But as I've said before these are compromises for ME, so I suppose it depends on how the OP plans to use his devices. No one is wrong in this equation because it's all about
    personal use.

    Another thing to consider is future proofing. When we have the modern version of MS office, when we have modern version of Photoshop, etc. etc. in the very near future you're going to be glad you went with a windows tablet.

    Edit: reading your guys replies you all went kind of hard on sracer. He's just discussing how he uses his technology and the iPad seems to better suit his habits. This is why we discuss our uses, so the OP can make a decision with our experiences helping him.
     
  19. kalex macrumors 65816

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    #19
    HAHAHAHA so all of my responses are apparently emotional. thats just funny.

    ----------

    and with docking station it can replace desktop for some. I might end up doing it once windows 10 comes out and my upgradable Mac Pro bites the dust. I'm really not digging new Apple products that are pretty much becoming non upgradable.
     
  20. Liquorpuki macrumors 68020

    Liquorpuki

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    #20
    I'm probably one of the biggest fans of the device here. It's been my daily driver since release. Main thing you need to know before buying are your use cases. If you're gonna treat it like an iPad and just check email and play free puzzle games, it's a waste. If you're expecting a perfect laptop, it's a waste.

    If you need to have complex x86 software available in a really portable form factor, this is it. If you want the best digital note taking integration available, this is it. If you want to do digital art without lugging around a Cintiq, this is it.

    Things I use my SP3 for:
    - Digital Notetaking
    - PDF Markups
    - Matlab
    - eReader
    - Office
    - Manga Studio
    - Steam games
     
  21. TechGod macrumors 68040

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    #21
    MBA is better than a SP3.


    *runs and hides*

    ----------

    You do sound rather emotional...
     
  22. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #22
    There is no better device, there is a device that fits a person's needs better. In this case based on the OP's stated needs and desires, the SP3 is an excellent solution.

    I don't buy the fact that the SP3 is a poor choice and leave it at that. From some, it may be. For others its not.

    I think blanket statements in this case do a poor service to the OP who was asking for opinions.

    The MBA is a great laptop and has a number of advantages.
    The SP3 is a great tablet/laptop replacement and has its own advantages. You get the product that best fits your needs.
     
  23. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    #23
    I think that's the issue with these forums, and I'm just as guilty of anyone else. X IS BETTER THAN Y. No it isn't, a more accurate statement is "X is better for my wants and needs than Y.". Once you post up something is "better" then you get stuck in the rut of describing why it's better, and all you are doing it describing the way YOU use the device.

    But then again if everyone realized this we wouldn't have 99.9% of these forums as it seems like that's all they are based on. I suppose it's human nature... "I paid a lot for this device and I'm going to defend it and the company behind it until I die"
     
  24. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #24
    You know that's what I get tired of to be honest. I'm not throwing you under the bus, but we see the same old arguments and issues, without really looking into what the OP needs or wants.

    I did a lot of research, and analysis (really too much) on the SP3, I flipped flopped on buying it so many times, it would make your head spin. At the end of the day, I felt it was not a good choice for me. Yet as I look back through the lens of hindsight, I think I could have erred on a number of those points.

    I have had some situations where my MBP was a decent solution, but the SP3 would have been superior.
     
  25. sviato macrumors 68020

    sviato

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