4 GB RAM SP4

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 4' started by Empyre, Jan 24, 2016.

  1. Empyre

    Empyre New Member

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    I will very soon be in the market for a new surface pro 4 and I need to know how well the 4 GB performs with Windows 10. I plan to primarily use the SP4 in tablet mode (which I assume will be excellent with 4 GB of RAM) but really want to know when using it in PC mode how well it performs.

    1. I was thinking of using duOS android emulator and am worried about the RAM for that.

    2. Also how is light gaming with the 4 GB configuration?

    3. Performance using the Xbox app to stream Xbox one games to the SP4? I assume this will be fine but wanted to check.

    If anyone can address this I would be most grateful.

    My alternative is to buy a SP3 with i7 8 GB RAM. With the new touch type cover and Pen.

    Thanks!
     
  2. wynand32

    wynand32 Active Member

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    First, note that there's no performance difference between "tablet" mode and "desktop" mode. The user interface changes, but the OS remains the same and utilizes exactly the same amount of resources such as RAM. Desktop (Win32) apps still run in tablet mode, they just run as full-screen apps, and Windows 10 apps still run in desktop mode, they just run as windowed apps. I run my SP4 mainly in tablet mode just because I like the way it works on the SP4, but I run exactly the same apps in exactly the same was as when I'm running in desktop mode.

    Ultimately, I suggest buying as much PC as you can afford, because it's better to have more resources than you need than to not have enough. That's particularly true with RAM and storage space in a machine like the SP4, which cannot be upgraded. If you think you might need 8GB of RAM, then get it now because you can't add any later.

    Certainly, any kind of virtual machine use is going to benefit from more RAM. Gaming likely won't care about more than 4GB, because generally games don't need RAM as much as CPU/GPU and the games you'll run on the SP4 won't be anything terribly high-end. I'm not sure how much RAM is used by Xbox streaming.

    Personally, I have at least 8GB in all of my machines, wherever possible. I don't know that I use it very often, but when I need it, it's there.
     
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  3. Empyre

    Empyre New Member

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    Thanks for your input. I was thinking getting a SP3 might be the better buy, however I think I might be too drawn to the newer hardware especially since I likely won't be upgrading for another 3 to 4 years, which would also argue for higher RAM.
     
  4. cornieafamily

    cornieafamily New Member

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    I have the 4gb i5 SP4 and it works great. I play many gpu intensive Steam games such as CS Go and DayZ. No problem. You don't need the 8gb model unless you will be performing a lot of video editing or have MANY programs open at the same time. Don't forget, if you are a student or have a student in the house you get a 10 percent discount in the store or online. I walked in and received the discount at the Microsoft store.
     
  5. Empyre

    Empyre New Member

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    Thanks for your reply! This is definitely what I was looking for...I guess my hope is that the 4 GB lasts me throughout the next 3 to 4 years although I don't anticipate things making that big of a jump as far as RAM demands.

    And yes I have already priced out the discount. Unfortunately that discount essentially negates the 9.7% sales tax in the state of Washington...brutal
     
  6. hughlle

    hughlle Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Regarding ram and life span, prior to the insider launch of Windows 10 everyone was saying it daft to buy 4gb because of win 10. Windows 10 is here, and nothing has changed. I dint for a second believe that in 4 years time you will need 8gb to run an OS and typical user software. I mean heck, MS sell a 2gb surface 3 that average Joe appears perfectly happy with.
     
  7. jaydon34

    jaydon34 New Member

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    I currently have the 4gb model and I haven't had any issue. I've run everything from photoshop to tomb raider 2013. I don't think the average user will notice the jump to 8gb.

    I upgrade my laptop every year so I will make the jump to 8gb next year. If your the type of person that will have the laptop for a long time than it makes sense to buy the best model you can afford to future proof it.
     
  8. Empyre

    Empyre New Member

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    Just as a bit of an update, I went with the 4 GB Model...very smooth but I have run into problems running DuOS android emulator. I essentially max out my RAM when I use this - and its what I had expected. It's not essential so definitely not a deal breaker. Perhaps I'll regret my decision to buy the 4 GB down the road, but for now this thing is fire and runs wonderfully
     
  9. Zkyevolved

    Zkyevolved Active Member

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    I have the SP2 with 4GB and it ran VERY well. But the most limiting thing for me was the size of the screen, so I didn't use it all too often. Now I have the SP4 and I use it A LOT. I mean... A LOT! Like, right now for example. I often turn off my desktop and just use my SP4 since it's more comfortable to use, the screen is large enough and it's light. I originally got the 4GB model, but I often saw more than 90% ram usage. So I decided to return it and get the 8gb model, and even on heavy usage days I don't go over 75% :) I'm happy! I'd recommend the 8GB model if you're planning on keeping it for years to come. Think of it as an investment. :) but if you're not going to do anything intensive, then the 4gb model is more than enough.
     
  10. Arachas

    Arachas New Member

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    Considering the "investment" comment, though: if you're doing any heavy stuff on it, why would 4 GB suddenly be an issue in 3 years time?
     
  11. Empyre

    Empyre New Member

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    Update: So I started out with the 4GB and essentially spent 2 weeks trialing the device and while it was absolutely excellent for most portable purposes, I noticed that when I was using dual monitors with multiple apps open - invariably my RAM usage would be at LEAST 90% and I found myself closing things to open new apps (running multiple desktops), especially streaming a video on one monitor and then browsing the web on the other was just maxing out my RAM. consequently I returned my 4 GB model today and went with the 8 GB...I think in the long run will be absolutely worth the extra cash
     
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  12. Zkyevolved

    Zkyevolved Active Member

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    Sorry for the late reply. It's not that it would be an issue in 3 years, it's if your personal usage gets heavier it's an investment. If my usage stayed the same as with my Sp2 (basically, office documents, videos, etc) then the 4gb model for me would have been fine. But since within weeks of using the Sp4 i saw my usage spark... Well, it's an investment. I am planning on using it more for editing, especially over the summer when I travel abroad. I can't take my 25 kilo desktop! I'll take my 800 gram Surface haha.

    My partner's desktop just broke down and doesn't want me to fix it yet. So right now the setup is as follows: Surface Pro 3 4gb with MDP to HDMI to the monitor and wireless KB and mouse (the Microsoft kind, love the ergonomics). But with the usage the Sp3 is getting 4GB is very little (with all those windows and tabs and documents and music open all at once). I was told next time it'll be the 8gb model since 4gb isn't enough to replace normal usage, at least in my partner's case. For me, 8GB is more than enough... yet for others 8gb won't be and they'll need 16! All I did was foresee my usage and didn't want to be limited by the RAM or SSD. 300 more euros got me double the ram and SSD, which will keep me happy for years to come since my desktop SSD is the same and my desktop's ram is also the same. This means I can basically run the same number of applications as my desktop... basically...
     

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