Debating between i3 and i5

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 3' started by aspeks, Jul 16, 2014.

  1. aspeks

    aspeks New Member

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    Hello guys,
    I'm from Germany, so excuse slight failures in grammar or spelling, please. I am attending university in about 2 months to study bio technology and because i only own a 4 year old, quite heavily built laptop, i was looking for something better and decided on the surface.
    I will mainly use it for uni purposes like taking notes with the pen, Office, doing homework on it and maybe some calculating or very simple graphic programs i may or may not have to use during my studies, so i won't do the likes of video/photo editing on it.
    Apart from university usage, i'm goint to need it for surfing the web, watching YouTube videos/films on it, just the regular stuff. I won't be playing any games other than those that can also run on a mobile phone.
    So at this point i'm debating wether to take the i3 or i5 model. Storage isn't really a problem, i already own a 128g microsd card and an external 1tb harddrive.
    My questions now are:
    1. Is the i3 enough to watch HD movies/videos on it?
    2. Can i run three or four programs like Chrome, Skype, Office, OneNote on it without lag?
    3. Will the graphics of the i3 struggle with the rather big resolution of the SP3?
    4. I read that the i5/i7 models have struggles with cooling, so they clock down below/even level with the i3 until the SP3 cooled down, is that true?

    If the i3 is totally fine for my needs i'd rather keep the extra 180 euros for other things.
    Thanks for your help in advance.:)
     
  2. ctitanic

    ctitanic Well-Known Member

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    1- yes
    2- yes
    3- no
    4- the i5 cools very fast so I expect the i3 to behave the same way.
     
  3. aspeks

    aspeks New Member

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    Thanks for your answers. So, in your opinion, the i3 version is enough for use?
     
  4. ctitanic

    ctitanic Well-Known Member

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    Taking in consideration what you have told us about your needs, yes.
     
  5. bradhaak

    bradhaak Member

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    For most users, the biggest limiting factor of the i3 is not the processor, but the 4 GB of RAM. Most of my work is text editing, which the i3 would have no problem with, but I have enough windows and apps open at once that I need a configuration 8 GB of RAM.
     
  6. kristalsoldier

    kristalsoldier Well-Known Member

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    How many Windows and Apps would it take to bog down 4GB of RAM?
     
  7. drolem

    drolem Active Member

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    That really depends on the app -- I guess editing video files or big images are among those activities that may require the most RAM.
     
  8. kristalsoldier

    kristalsoldier Well-Known Member

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    Thanks.
     
  9. malberttoo

    malberttoo Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes I also would stop to consider the i5, for the 8GB of RAM. I have no cooling issues with mine by the way.

    Not saying you should get an i5, but we could probably assume that this is no small investment for you, and this will probably be your PC for the next 3 or 4 years of university? If so, my personal opinion is that the i5 with 8GB of RAM "future-proofs" you a little better than the i3. You just never know for sure what your PC may be called upon to do in the next few years.

    And by the way you've made an awesome choice with the SP3. I love mine so much!

    My humble opinion, anyways... :cool:
     
    ipanic likes this.
  10. wynand32

    wynand32 Active Member

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    I agree with malberttoo. I've always followed the adage, "Buy as much computer as you can possibly afford." The reason being, it'll become obsolete more slowly and hold its value longer, and with a sealed machine like the SP3 you can't upgrade it later.

    Personally, I'd rather buy a little more than I need than find myself needing more than I bought.
     
  11. malberttoo

    malberttoo Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah that's exactly it, buy as much as you can afford. If you won't have the luxury of upgrading every year, then yeah like he said, buy more than you actually need at the moment.

    Also if at all possible, leave some room to buy Microsoft's Complete accidental damage warranty, if they offer it in your country. It will replace your Surface in almost any case, for a pittance.
     
  12. Lenner Smith

    Lenner Smith New Member

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    I agree with malberttoo too. after use, a 4G RAM is really not enough for use, considering it is not for one year use, I5 will be better choice.
     

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