Decided to get a surface pro 3, question i3 versus i5

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 3' started by surface139, Aug 23, 2014.

  1. surface139

    surface139 New Member

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    Hi, so I decided I am going to buy the surface pro 3 for school. However, I was wondering if I should get the i3 or i5? I am only using the surface pro 3 for school work (mainly one note) and netflix/ internet. I don't plan on playing games or doing anything extensive like using photoshop on the surface. However, I will be using onenote a lot and I am not sure if that will slow down the surface. I wanted to save some money and buying the i3 will save me a lot (at the store it was a 200+ difference! yikes). Also, how is the battery life on the surface? does it differ between i3, i5 or i7? thanks for the response!
     
  2. kundas1

    kundas1 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    definitely the i3 will serve you just fine for what you intend to use the SP3 i3 for... provided you don't and try to use it for other more intensive stuff... as for the battery it varies widely because each person uses it so differently that no two person has the same battery outcome...
     
  3. malberttoo

    malberttoo Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome to the forum surface139!
     
  4. Zog1971

    Zog1971 Active Member

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    Hi there, and welcome! I am also a student. I lamented for weeks before finally going with the i7 since I am doing a lot in the Adobe software. I am finally loving my i7 after some tweaking on my side and the latest firmware update. I also owned a SP1 and was amazed by how much I loved it. So, in looking at all the "tests and benchmarking" out there, the i3 scores a little lower than what my SP1 i5 did. That being said, for a student that is simply wanting an awesome note taking and browsing tablet, the i3 should for sure work for those tasks and you'll never even think that you need more time. Yes, the i5, and my i7 are definitely snappier when doing basic tasks, but I really feel you won't notice a difference unless you are already used to one. The deal with $150 off on the i3 is crazy good if your looking for a note-taking/web browsing device. I really feel the keyboard is a must, even if you just plan on using one note. Also, sincerely look at your storage needs. There isn't much free space left on the i3 64gb version but always remember that there is a micro sd slot for up to 128gb of expansion to the card. Good luck!
     
  5. mitchellvii

    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    I initially bought an i3 and was quite pleased with it but small things annoyed me. Occasional lag when typing, checkerboarding and scroll stutter when browsing, slow query calculation in Access, stutter when swiping from the left between desktops and the worst part, always worrying about SSD space.

    I just decided to go for the i5 and I'm glad I did. Every problem I listed above has been solved. The tab is noticeably faster.

    To make it cheaper, go online to the Post Office and complete a Change of Address application. Even if you haven't moved recently, there is a good chance your prior address is still getting mail for you. Doing this will catch those random mail giblets so it is completely ethical. I've lived here for 4 years and I STILL get random mail for prior owners. Anyway, complete the COA for your prior address and you will get some discount coupons, one of which is 10% off at BestBuy. That is $100 off on an i5 128 which means it will cost you only $100 to upgrade from the i3.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2014
  6. mitchellvii

    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    And of course don't forget the $150 student discount at BestBuy either. All you need is to search for BestBuy Student Discount, enter your .edu address and they will email you a BestBuy coupon for $150 off. Add that to your moving coupon and your are saving $250.
     
  7. Liam2349

    Liam2349 Active Member

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    I think it depends. I do some programming on my course and originally intended to get i5/128, but my SP2 of the same config is almost full and since I will probably be doing more advanced programming this coming semester, I managed to convince myself to get i5/256.

    If you're not going to do that then perhaps you will be ok with the i3, but space is tight. Although you can expand on it with a micro-SD card, you can't really install your software on the card, because it will be slow.
     
  8. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm curious which SD card you used?
     
  9. Liam2349

    Liam2349 Active Member

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    I haven't tried installing software to my SD card, but the read/write speeds of SD cards are far below that of the SSD as far as I know.
     
  10. FlySwatter

    FlySwatter Active Member

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    Unless you are supremely confident that you can get everything you need into 64GB (after the OS and including future security patch updates), then I don't recommend you go that route. 128GB is really the minimum configuration for any Windows machine IMO. If you can swing the 8GB/256GB, so much the better. Yes, you can get a good performing Micro SD Card, and mine reads at 87.51 MB/s sequential which is quite good. That's still far short of 509.9 off the SSD.

    Lexar600XNTFS.jpg

    SP3.jpg

    Edit to add SD Card Description: 64GB Lexar600X, formatted to NTFS
     
  11. wertzius

    wertzius Member

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    A UHS-1 Micro SD (600x) is still faster than a 2,5" harddisc, so installing programs on it is not really a problem.
     

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