The Surface Book has a lot of things MBP doesn't: Speed is not one of them.

Essenar

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 24, 2008
552
186
I'm sick of seeing the posts about the Surface Book being "twice" as fast or this and that over the MBP.
You want to say it's better because you can detach it from the keyboard and carry around a 1 hour battery life tablet? Fine. I'll give you that, the MBP doesn't have a tablet mode.
You want to say it's better because it has a surface pen? Fine, I'll give you that, the MBP doesn't have a pen/stylus built in.
You want to say it's better because it can play games better at a cheaper configuration than the MBP can? That's true. If, for some reason, you were buying these machines to play games or you needed GPU intensive tasks less than $2000, the Book is better because you cannot get a discrete card on a Mac less than $2500.

However... I can't stand people saying that, price vs price, the Surface Book is faster than the MBP because it's totally and completely not.
At $1300 the MBP wipes the floor with the Surface Book because a $1300 Surface Book doesn't even EXIST.
And don't say "Yeah well, for only this much more, you can get this..." Because it's not like a comparable MacBook will just STAY at the $1300 configuration.
The cheapest Surface Book that has a discrete graphics card isn't even $1500. It's $1700! And it only has a 128 and 8GB and i5 at that price. The worst part is, the i5 is lower TDP and slower than the 13 MBP i5. But what do you get in a MBP at that price? Pretty much whatever you want: You get the 256 SSD, 16GB of ram. You'll wipe the floor with the Surface Book in real world battery life, CPU related tasks, memory related tasks and storage related tasks. Notice none of the reviewers are testing single core CPU usage or storage speeds? They don't because the MacBook would dust the Surface book and modern tech journalism is highly influenced by advertisers and marketing.
And once you touch $2000, it's not even a real comparison anymore. The 15 MacBook is better in almost every way. The quad core is literally twice as fast as the low watt dual core i7 in the Surface Book. And at $2500 for the Mac, you get a real quad core i7, 16GB of ram and 512GB of storage. $200 cheaper and it's better in every way.


So in conclusion, if you want to say that the Surface Book is better because you ride on these strange airplanes that are for some reason unaccommodating to 15" MacBooks but super comfortable with a 13" Surface Book (I ride coach on Southwest and NEVER had issues with my 15" MacBook), then say that. But don't every say it's faster than a MacBook all around, because dollar for dollar, it's NOT. And it doesn't matter if it's more expensive by $100 or $500. You can NOT compare their speeds unless the price is the same.

Put the $1500 Surface Book up against the $1300 MacBook and you won't be surprised at how awful the MacBook beats it. At $1700? I'm sure if you threw a 3.1 i7 in the MacBook, it would beat the Surface Book even in GPU tests (remember, the IRIS 6100 is CPU speed dependent).
 

fieldsphotos

macrumors 6502
Aug 15, 2013
274
109
I haven't seen anyone argue that a surface book is comparable to a MacBook on a price vs price basis. Almost every review has noted how much more expensive the Book is vs ALL of its competition.

Comparing speed for speed in a laptop class (say, 13" notebooks) regardless of price is what all benchmarks do. How else could we figure out who has the best bang for the buck? So it is a perfectly legitimate way of benchmarking the surface vs a MBP, and the MBP comes out ahead in that regard just based on CPU performance per $$. Then you have to decide how much value the stylus and convertible format add to your particular needs, or if you want a dGPU in the 13" format that Apple doesn't offer anymore.

And we ARE getting some 13" MBP vs i5 Surface book comparisons. ARS did a bunch of them. They don't specify which MBP they are using, so the assumption is the base model (if it wasn't the base model, the MBP is NOT looking good in these tests)

So, below is some single core and battery life tests as well as some multi core stuff. I haven't seen the storage benchmarks yet, I am hoping Anand does some of those when they post their full review.

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2015/10/surface-book-review-the-laptop-that-replaces-your-tablet/






http://www.pcworld.com/article/2995599/laptop-computers/surface-book-vs-macbook-pro-it-isnt-twice-as-fast-its-three-times-as-fast.html

 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: dk206

Samuelsan2001

macrumors 604
Oct 24, 2013
7,682
2,103
You think that doesn't look good??? They are pretty much on a par and the rMBP is yet to receive the new silicon, once skylake is in you'll find very little difference between the two, getting in first with underpowered 15W processors does not a better computer make.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jermy4

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
63,857
30,379
Boston
I agree, price wise the SurfaceBook is expensive, I don't think anyone will dispute that fact. I will say that I fall in the camp that the SB is a better product because it offers a better battery life, touch screen the ability to use it as a tablet, albeit a heavy one, and of course the performance that comes with the inclusion of the dGPU.

Without using, or seeing one (I hope to today), I will say that the SB appears to be a solid computer and just because it doesn't have a fruit logo, people should dismiss it. Microsoft is looking to innovate and I think we see some of the results. Apple on the other hand seems obsessed with making things thinner even if that means making life harder for Mac users. Take the rMB, all in all a great design and wonderful computer, except that you only have a single port for both data and power.
 

fieldsphotos

macrumors 6502
Aug 15, 2013
274
109
I agree, price wise the SurfaceBook is expensive, I don't think anyone will dispute that fact. I will say that I fall in the camp that the SB is a better product because it offers a better battery life, touch screen the ability to use it as a tablet, albeit a heavy one, and of course the performance that comes with the inclusion of the dGPU.

Without using, or seeing one (I hope to today), I will say that the SB appears to be a solid computer and just because it doesn't have a fruit logo, people should dismiss it. Microsoft is looking to innovate and I think we see some of the results. Apple on the other hand seems obsessed with making things thinner even if that means making life harder for Mac users. Take the rMB, all in all a great design and wonderful computer, except that you only have a single port for both data and power.
The rMB makes me frightened for the next full redesign of the MBP lineup. I am afraid we will be losing ports in favor of thinness.
 

fieldsphotos

macrumors 6502
Aug 15, 2013
274
109
You think that doesn't look good??? They are pretty much on a par and the rMBP is yet to receive the new silicon, once skylake is in you'll find very little difference between the two, getting in first with underpowered 15W processors does not a better computer make.
I think these show the surface is on par with the MBP, and contrary to the OP's original post, the MBP is not wiping the floor with it at all. That was what I was showing in those benchmarks. I don't think the surface is the "value" proposition at all. MS has done a good job building the Surface lineup into a premium tablet brand and now they are going after the premium laptop market. They even have pretty good resale values, as I was just looking at picking up a surface pro 2 for "cheap" to try it out, and found that used prices are still pretty high.

Also, when you look at Skylake vs Haswell benchmarks, I don't think we will see lots of performance boosts, it will mostly be an advantage in a lower power chip, so better cooling and longer battery life.
 

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
The rMB makes me frightened for the next full redesign of the MBP lineup. I am afraid we will be losing ports in favor of thinness.
This is why I had no qualms about getting a 2015 rMBP recently instead of waiting for the next model which very well might get a redesign and lose some ports. I primarily use my rMBP as a desktop in clamshell mode and don't really want to deal with usb-c at the moment since there aren't that many options available yet. My fear is that apple redesigns the rMBP with usb-c and gets rid of the usb 3.0 ports and the thunderbolt ports as well as the hdmi port.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Moki808

xWhiplash

macrumors 68000
Oct 21, 2009
1,799
707
The rMB makes me frightened for the next full redesign of the MBP lineup. I am afraid we will be losing ports in favor of thinness.
Not going to happen. These are the pro computers, not the basic ones like the Macbook. I honestly do not know what people are wanting in a MBP redesign. It is already thin enough, light enough, and small enough.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Kiwikat88

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
Not going to happen. These are the pro computers, not the basic ones like the Macbook. I honestly do not know what people are wanting in a MBP redesign. It is already thin enough, light enough, and small enough.
I agree but apple does seem to have a fascination with making things thinner, lighter, more minimalistic so I'm sure you can understand our fears. I don't think they would put a single port on the pro model but I could see them putting 2-3 usb-c ports and maybe a headphone port and calling it a day just to make it even thinner and lighter than the current model.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Count Blah

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
I should add that I think usb-c could be great once it matures, the ability of a single reversible cable to deliver power, video, audio, ethernet, etc. is tempting but I don't know of any docks that would allow you to plug in a single usb-c and provide all of that at the moment.
 

xWhiplash

macrumors 68000
Oct 21, 2009
1,799
707
I agree but apple does seem to have a fascination with making things thinner, lighter, more minimalistic so I'm sure you can understand our fears. I don't think they would put a single port on the pro model but I could see them putting 2-3 usb-c ports and maybe a headphone port and calling it a day just to make it even thinner and lighter than the current model.
Can USB-C provide enough power on a Pro machine to charge it? So there still would be a dedicated power port.
 

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
Can USB-C provide enough power on a Pro machine to charge it? So there still would be a dedicated power port.
I've read that it's capable of providing up to 100 watts of power so theoretically it should be able to power and charge the batteries just fine.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Zirel

maxsix

Suspended
Jun 28, 2015
3,102
3,683
Western Hemisphere
Microsoft decided to take a page from Apples marketing strategy and put a premium price on the Surface Lineup.

I started with the Surface 2 upon its release and quite frankly found it far better than I expected. So good in fact, I immediately ordered a Surface Pro 3 upon its release.

Now after quite some time, instead of migrating to Surface Pro 4, I've decided to keep the 3. I then placed an order for the Surface Book.

Overall it's very encouraging to see Microsoft release some great products, liven up the market and offer variety for those like myself that make their living in a cross platform environment.
 

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
I really like magsafe and I hope it sticks around but it would be nice to have a standard usb-c since the replacement magsafe chargers are so expensive and you could use pretty much any usb charger with usb-c.
 

MarvinHC

macrumors 6502a
Jan 9, 2014
756
221
Belgium
Not going to happen. These are the pro computers, not the basic ones like the Macbook. I honestly do not know what people are wanting in a MBP redesign. It is already thin enough, light enough, and small enough.
The bigger worry is that they put that dreadful keyboard from the Macbook into the Pro in the future to make it 2mm thinner...
 

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
The bigger worry is that they put that dreadful keyboard from the Macbook into the Pro in the future to make it 2mm thinner...
I forgot about the macbook keyboard, I bet they do actually use that same keyboard in the next pro.
 

MarvinHC

macrumors 6502a
Jan 9, 2014
756
221
Belgium
I'm thinking they'll be doing that as well. Didn't they use that for the new wireless keyboard?
I didn't know there is a new wireless keyboard? I don't mind the new technology, but it has to have a bit more travel than on the Macbook, otherwise they might as well put a touchscreen instead....
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
63,857
30,379
Boston
I didn't know there is a new wireless keyboard? I don't mind the new technology, but it has to have a bit more travel than on the Macbook, otherwise they might as well put a touchscreen instead....
Yep Apple Launches New 4K & 5K iMacs, Magic Keyboard, Magic Mouse 2 and Magic Trackpad 2

The new Magic Keyboard, $99, features Bluetooth for wireless connectivity and a built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery that charges fully in about two hours using a Lightning to USB cable. The redesigned keyboard has a reengineered scissor mechanism with 33% more key stability and a lower profile for more precise and comfortable typing
 

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
I'm thinking they'll be doing that as well. Didn't they use that for the new wireless keyboard?
The new wireless keyboard isn't exactly the same as the new macbook keyboard. The new macbook keyboard uses a butterfly mechanism and the new wireless keyboard uses an updated scissor style mechanism which is supposed to improve the clickiness of the keys and reduce some of the key wobble over the older style wireless keyboard.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
63,857
30,379
Boston
The new wireless keyboard isn't exactly the same as the new macbook keyboard. The new macbook keyboard uses a butterfly mechanism and the new wireless keyboard uses an updated scissor style mechanism which is supposed to improve the clickiness of the keys and reduce some of the key wobble over the older style wireless keyboard.
I see, I didn't realize the difference. Thanks for the clarification.
 

Zirel

Suspended
Jul 24, 2015
2,201
2,985
Microsoft decided to take a page from Apples marketing strategy and put a premium price on the Surface Lineup.
Except that "premium price" on Apple isn't really there once you compare apples-to-apples (so to speak) with other brands...
 

jermy4

macrumors demi-god
Jun 27, 2010
528
282
Except that "premium price" on Apple isn't really there once you compare apples-to-apples (so to speak) with other brands...
Very true and I'm actually glad that microsoft is putting out "premium" products if for nothing else so apple has competition and so people have more options available.