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Microsoft Now Selling Surface Pro 3 with i3, i7 Processors

By - Source: Microsoft | B 46 comments

Microsoft's Corporate Vice President for Surface Computing, Panos Panay, announced on Friday that the Core i3 and Core i7 versions of the Surface Pro 3 are now available in the United States and Canada. These two configurations join the Core i5 model, which can be purchased at Microsoft Stores, Best Buy and other retailers and resellers.

"Surface Pro 3 is the first generation of Surface Pro for which we've offered this range of configurations," Panay said. "This is the tablet that can replace your laptop, and we know that laptops and tablets are used differently by different people. The new range of products accommodates this with a different processor, memory and storage of options and price points."

The Surface Pro 3 tablets include a 12-inch ClearType display with a 2560 x 1440 resolution and 3:2 aspect ratio. Depending on the configuration, the tablet will have 4 GB or 8 GB of RAM, 64 GB to 512 GB of internal storage, Wireless AC or Wireless N connectivity, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, and a microSD card slot for additional storage. The specifications also reveal a 5MP camera on the front and a 5MP camera on the back, USB 3.0 connectivity, DisplayPort, and support for a stylus.

Panay adds that the Core i3 version is perfect for students who take notes and do research on the Internet and won't necessarily be running demanding applications. However, he uses the Core i5 variant as his "daily machine," which has been on the market since May. He even states that the Surface Pro 3 outperformed the laptops he has used in the past, but doesn't provide any hardware details. As for the Surface with the zippy Core i7, he says it's the fastest Surface Pro 3 tablet to date.

"If you are the person who uses your device for complex tasks such as photo, video, or music editing, then a Core i7 Surface Pro 3 will be brilliant for you," he said. "It will keep up with you when you're working your hardest, whether that's in the office connected to multiple monitors and peripherals or traveling. It will save you the trouble of carrying a separate tablet when you want to read a magazine, watch a movie, or play a game."

The Core i3 model with 64 GB costs $799, the Core i5 with 128 GB is $999, the Core i5 with 256 GB costs $1,299, the Core i7 with 256 GB will run you $1,549, and the Core i7 with 512 GB is $1,949.

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  • -1 Hide
    pjmelect , August 1, 2014 4:19 PM
    For the price I would expect an i7
  • -2 Hide
    hoofhearted , August 1, 2014 4:32 PM
    Can't you get a Razer Edge with an i7 for about $900 with an nVidia GPU?
  • -3 Hide
    anthony8989 , August 1, 2014 6:01 PM
    You're essentially paying a little more than twice the price of a laptop with equal specs plus a dedicated GPU. A %200+ increase of price because it's easier to carry around ? I can't wrap my head around these units.

    Effectively losing serviceability and a dedicated GPU and incurring a higher cost .
  • Add your comment Display all 46 comments.
  • 3 Hide
    jupebobpete , August 1, 2014 6:45 PM
    I would spend the money on a laptop, but my wife cares enough about form factor that she finds the Surface Pro appealing. Her comparison is to the MacBook Air and its ilk. I wouldn't buy one but I see the market.
  • -2 Hide
    jupebobpete , August 1, 2014 6:46 PM
    I would spend the money on a laptop, but my wife cares enough about form factor that she finds the Surface Pro appealing. Her comparison is to the MacBook Air and its ilk. I wouldn't buy one but I see the market.
  • -2 Hide
    Computer LVR , August 1, 2014 7:44 PM
    you could build quite the rig with 2k USD
  • -5 Hide
    TechyInAZ , August 1, 2014 8:21 PM
    Great tablet, but really $2000 for the top of the line model? I'd get dual gtx 780 tis, i7 4790K, Asus Formula VI for that price.
  • 6 Hide
    RazberyBandit , August 1, 2014 8:39 PM
    Quote:
    Great tablet, but really $2000 for the top of the line model? I'd get dual gtx 780 tis, i7 4790K, Asus Formula VI for that price.

    Don't forget to stop by Home Depot to buy a gas generator to power it and a couple hand-trucks to move everything so you can use it "on the go."
  • 2 Hide
    anthony8989 , August 1, 2014 8:53 PM
    Quote:
    I would spend the money on a laptop, but my wife cares enough about form factor that she finds the Surface Pro appealing. Her comparison is to the MacBook Air and its ilk. I wouldn't buy one but I see the market


    I could definitely see it's value if it were priced a little more modestly. Although I'm sure eventually they will be.
  • 5 Hide
    edogawa , August 1, 2014 9:02 PM
    It's best to stick with the i5 due to thermal throttling of this device. The i7 isn't really worth the investment.

    You don't like the cost for the form factor? Tough shit, this isn't the product for you. The Surface Pro 3 is an amazing device that can handle everything you need from a PC and more with the exception of gaming and heavy encoding. At least this isn't an iPad with very limited functionality. This device is perfect for students, people in the medical field, and people who travel a lot.

    Honestly, I don't understand why someone would even make the statement that you could build a better rig for 2000, no-shit, this device is not for gaming, but for mobility and high utility. This device is for a certain market segment, and damn useful, and MS has done a fantastic job improving it every generation.

    I suspect with the next generation of Intel integrated there will be a substantial improvement for energy savings, and increase for iGPU performance so that you can handle light gaming at 1080P, 60FPS easily. The Haswell chip is the main concern right now for this device.
  • -8 Hide
    edogawa , August 1, 2014 9:07 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Great tablet, but really $2000 for the top of the line model? I'd get dual gtx 780 tis, i7 4790K, Asus Formula VI for that price.

    Don't forget to stop by Home Depot to buy a gas generator to power it and a couple hand-trucks to move everything so you can use it "on the go."


    The device lasts roughly 8 to 9 hours with general use, charges fast, and besides we are near outlets 90% of the time. It could probably last a long longer if it wasn't for the limitations of the Haswell chip.

    Edit: Not sure why I have -3 votes for this. It does last 8 to 9 hours as stated which is quite good for "on the go."
  • 2 Hide
    edogawa , August 1, 2014 9:15 PM
    Quote:
    You're essentially paying a little more than twice the price of a laptop with equal specs plus a dedicated GPU. A %200+ increase of price because it's easier to carry around ? I can't wrap my head around these units.

    Effectively losing serviceability and a dedicated GPU and incurring a higher cost .


    I do agree that you could get a laptop with better specs for a lot less, but then you loose the whole point of the device. This isn't a device for gaming despite some claims, you do not need a dedicated GPU. You pay for the a PC in a tablet form factor capable of handling your tasks easily on the go with a pen and touchscreen. If I want to write down notes for my patient or take notes during a meeting it is perfect and portable.

    Typical laptops are just to bulky and a pain to carry around.

  • 2 Hide
    canadianvice , August 1, 2014 10:47 PM
    Quote:
    You're essentially paying a little more than twice the price of a laptop with equal specs plus a dedicated GPU. A %200+ increase of price because it's easier to carry around ? I can't wrap my head around these units.

    Effectively losing serviceability and a dedicated GPU and incurring a higher cost .


    Part of that is the tech in me, but honestly, I had a SP2, and it was just so amazing. The SP3 is significantly better I think. I hate laptops with a passion, I barely used my old acer ultrabook because it was so unpleasant.

    I'm still making sure I have 14 days to try this out when school starts though. I am somewhat cautious at least :p 
  • 1 Hide
    gopher1369 , August 2, 2014 12:22 AM
    Quote:
    Can't you get a Razer Edge with an i7 for about $900 with an nVidia GPU?


    With a a 720p screen....
  • 0 Hide
    Bloob , August 2, 2014 12:31 AM
    Quote:
    You're essentially paying a little more than twice the price of a laptop with equal specs plus a dedicated GPU. A %200+ increase of price because it's easier to carry around ? I can't wrap my head around these units.

    Effectively losing serviceability and a dedicated GPU and incurring a higher cost .


    This should be compared to MacBook Pros, and other ultrabooks. Not your general laptops. For what it is, it's a great device.

    Although it is quite common in this category of devices, I have to point out how ridiculous it is to have to pay $400 for 256GB more storage (256GB->512GB), especially when you never actually gain that (the actual storage is much more likely to be 226GB->460GB).
  • -1 Hide
    thor220 , August 2, 2014 12:48 AM
    The price is too high on the i7 model. One could just go and buy a convertible laptop / tablet for $900. Sure it may weigh a bit more but it'll be cheap and be able to do more. Most of the ultra-thin laptops are getting pretty light nowadays.
  • -2 Hide
    back_by_demand , August 2, 2014 1:02 AM
    The i7 variants sound expensive and the comparisons to other laptops don't really pass muster, as you may as well compare them to desktop PCs. The nearest comparison is an ultrabook with a removable keyboard or a tablet with an attachable keyboard. The first doesn't exist, the second has a few like the Asus Transformer. That sold based not on being a tablet but having the feature. Comparing a SP3 against a gaming laptop therefore is dumb, when you can detach the keyboard from that laptop and still use it then come back again.
  • 1 Hide
    back_by_demand , August 2, 2014 5:01 AM
    Quote:
    The price is too high on the i7 model. One could just go and buy a convertible laptop / tablet for $900. Sure it may weigh a bit more but it'll be cheap and be able to do more. Most of the ultra-thin laptops are getting pretty light nowadays.

    People already pay more just to get things lighter/thinner, the iPad proves that. Also, what exactly can that $900 laptop do more of than an i7 SP3?
  • -1 Hide
    Murissokah , August 2, 2014 6:17 AM
    Quote:
    you could build quite the rig with 2k USD


    Not to mention the fact that those are ULV CPUs. An U-series i7 is actually pretty much the same as a desktop i3.

    i7 4500u: 2 cores, 4 threads, 1.8Ghz-3GHz, 4mb cache, 5 GT/s DMI
    i3 4130: 2 cores, 4 threads, 3.4 GHz, 3mb cache, 5 GT/s DMI
  • 2 Hide
    ckaminsky , August 2, 2014 7:17 AM
    We have two i5 Surface Pro 3 in our office. Management loves them, although IT wishes they were more servicable (unable to add memory or swap/upgrade harddrive after initial order). Using miniDP > DVI adaptor is able to drive external monitor 1920x1080 extended while still its LCD with much higher resolution. Also tested a USB 3.0 powered LCD panel worked fine and so slim can easily carry along with Surface travelling.
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