Some comments on Surface Pro 3

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 3' started by ozstar, Jun 17, 2015.

  1. ozstar

    ozstar New Member

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    I am looking at buying a Surface Pro 3 128 or 256 i5.

    On another formum I asked if thgere were any cons and I got this..

    Any comments please?


    oz



    I have had the SP3 with desk dock for a fortnight now. Lot of good things, but my current list of negatives:

    Surface Pro 3 – No Where decent to attach stylus
    Surface Pro 3 – Type Cover can detach allowing SP3 unit to fall on floor when resting on your lap
    Surface Pro 3 – No very Lap-able (see above).
    Surface Pro 3 – Certain apps dont play well. Chrome browser – Cursor disappears spontaneously, never to be seen again. Opening on screen keyboard shrinks chrome window to fit but does not re expand window when closing keyboard again.
    Surface Pro 3 – Chrome scales really badly in external monitors. Blurry fonts while IE and MUI apps are crystal clear.
    Surface Pro 3 – No full size SD slot
    Surface Pro 3 – Not totally silent aka iPad but OTOH not a lot of noise when fan fires up.

    Docking Station – Fixed angle no adjustment
    Docking Station – Stylus magnetic mount on left side only. No good for right handers.
    Docking Station – Undocking SP3, Powers up Dock hub, waking external HDDs causing them to spin continuously.
     
  2. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Those are pretty minor issues. Seriously.

    Right up there with the color doesn't match my nails.
     
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  3. logger

    logger Member

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    The worlds most popular web browser not working particularly well on the Surface Pro 3 is right up there with the color doesn't match my nails? That IS something I would be interested in knowing about pre purchase if I was a heavy user of Chrome.

    If something Microsoft market as being "The tablet that can replace your laptop" is problematic to use on your lap (ie Lap Top) that is something I would be interested in knowing about pre purchase. Sure it has the HP to run everything, but it is not very lappable.

    But hey that's just me. I agree they are mostly very minor, but whats minor to some, bugs others.
     
  4. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Google finally admitted they have a problem when it comes to battery life and they are working on it, this and other real problems (acknowledged or not) are problems for Google and they are not specific to the Surface even if you don't realize it.

    If minor issues bug you that's ok, just know it's not an issue for others and you'll likely have to learn to deal with it or find something that suits your foibles.
     
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  5. smar

    smar Member

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    Each user's usage pattern and therefore experience is of course different. For myself, I have been using my SP3 since it first came out. I've lost track of the number of long haul flights I've used the SP3 on, without ever having either the type cover or the SP3 fall off. Although definitely not as sturdy as a normal laptop, I would still say that is very 'lappable'. The compromise comes down to whether you want something thin and light with nearly the full horse power of a normal laptop but with reduced 'lappability' or whether your need for the full stability of a normal laptop is greater.

    Chrome is my main browser at the moment. The issue you mention with the on-screen keyboard shrinking the window is a Windows 8 issue and not specific to the SP3. Thus it is there with any laptop using the touch keyboard. However, if you turn off the auto-resize, and just have the keyboard pop-up over the lower part of the screen, there is no resizing or shrinking issue. There is a small box on the top right of the keyboard to make this selection.

    With regards to fuzziness on external monitors, this is again a Windows issue and not specific to the SP3, as this is due to the DPI management. The Technical Preview of Windows 10 has certainly improved the independent DPI management of multiple screens, though is still not ideal. However, even with Windows 8 (or 8.1), if you log out and then log back in with the external monitor connected, the display is very crisp even with Chrome. There is no blurriness. The blurriness is there if you plug in an external monitor without signing out/back in. Another way around the blurriness issue is to use an external monitor with the same DPI as the SP3 screen (e.g. one of the newer 4k monitors). This way, no scaling is necessary and the image is crisp even when an external monitor is first plugged in. Neither solutions are perfect, but as this is a Windows limitation, not a lot that can be done about it until a new version of Windows addresses the issue fully.
     
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  6. Telstar1948

    Telstar1948 Active Member

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    Smar is correct. Each user's experience and expectations will vary widely, and many of the items listed by the poster on another forum are not SP3 issues.

    I find using the SP3 on my lap, with various leg positions, has not been an issue for me. I am particular how I perch it on my knee when I cross my legs, but you get the hang of that sort of thing pretty quickly.

    The pen is excellent for it is the right size for extended use; however, there is simply no room within the case of the SP3 for a silo. I use the pen loop attached to the left side of my SP3 just above the kickstand hinge. I've found, for me, that this location is preferable to attaching it to the type cover, and it doesn't get in the way of the various buttons/ports as it would if the loop was attached to the right side. Some users simply use the clip on the pen to attach the pen onto the type cover above the upper most keys on the right side - this requires removal of the pen if you use the type cover flat rather than inclined, but some still prefer it.

    Some use their SP3 at their desk to write notes on. If that's the case, don't use the MS dock when doing this, or if you need it docked to use various peripherals then use a USB dock from another source - they're not quite as slick as the MS dock, but some prefer them.

    Try the SP3 out: typically you have a return window of a couple of weeks or more, depending on your retailer of choice, so you don't have to be stuck with it if it just doesn't work for you.
     
  7. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    Answers inline

    Pen Loop works for most, Groove in the cover for others, non issue as we have kept track of pens for our portfolios for at least 120 years. The sacrifice required to get a pen barn into the device is a non-starter
    Never had this happen personally, lapability is very subjective and individual, I'm able to use it in my lap without an issue
    same as above
    This is due to Google using XP GDI Scaling to maintain backwards compatibility (I hope, or they are being very lazy) instead of Vector Scaling that has been available since Windows Vista, this is true with most legacy Win32 Apps
    Same as above, IE and WinRT Apps use modern scaling. Chrome really is one of the poorest quality applications next to iTunes....
    No room....It has a MicroSD slot which is more than an iPad has...
    Its a Core i5 or i7 Ultrabook and Tablet form, not a phone in tablet form, the SP3 is a real productivity computer.

    By design, also an optional component, I don't use one personally other do...
    very minor....
    Happens with older enclosures or controller firmware

    I've been using the SP3 as my daily driver since last June on launch day and wouldn't traded it for any other device on the market....
     
  8. Redguard

    Redguard New Member

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    Physically speaking, I think that the SP3 is a solid device and I'm happy to own one. Only "small" complaint would be the frequency at which the fan kicks in and the accompanying noise and heat.

    If I were to offer construction criticism about the SP3 (and other Surface products), it would be on the software side.

    - Windows Store: I know a lot of people fight tooth and nail to defend it, but it's cluttered with a lot of garbage apps that dilute my search results. On the other hand, when you compare the same app side-by-side to its Android/Apple counterpart, it lacks many of the features. Thankfully, Microsoft has announced that a clean-up is currently underway.

    - Pen: I won't complain about storing the pen because my folio solves that problem. But on the software side, I would like to see Microsoft evolve more of their apps/programs to allow improved/additional functionality for the pen. For me, the pen was a huge selling point, but I feel like my uses for it are restricted to OneNote and Sudoku. Even the ability to mark up PDFs should be a built-in feature that would help to make this a huge selling feature for students. Exporting a PDF into OneNote is a nightmare in terms of the amount of memory the resulting page consumes.

    Basically, Microsoft has to accept the reality that very few 3rd party developers want to create apps on the Windows platform. They need to invest in creating their own apps for basic things.

    - I haven't tried out the Calendar/Email app in the Windows 10 beta yet, but I'm hoping for big improvements.
    - I'd like a Reader app that is as functional as iBooks... meaning that it can read all manner of epub files (with or without DRM) along with other ebook formats.
     
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  9. hughlle

    hughlle Super Moderator Staff Member

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    While I thik the windows store is pants in terms of available apps, with regard to worthless clutter, this is the case for all app stores from my experience.

    As to the pen. Greater functionality would indeed be great, as would the pen buttons being customizable on an app by app basis. However, I just tried and I can annotate pdfs on the native windows pdf reader without an issue.
     
  10. jrioux

    jrioux Active Member

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    BTW, what color are your nails?
     
  11. logger

    logger Member

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    Yes I found exporting PDFs to OneNote to be a pain as well. My naivety had me going for this inbuilt annotation application app to sign PDFs as well.

    You did not look very hard. Try annotating with blue or red ink if you want to see an issue with that.
     
  12. hughlle

    hughlle Super Moderator Staff Member

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    You did not specify that. You said mark up, I can mark up. but no, not in blue or red. Now i know your requirements, i ceetainly agree that it should just be built in. Same pen dock thing as on MUI onenote.

    As a student though, i cant perceive not just using onenote and having everything neatly organised in one notebook. I paid for drawboard, and end up just using it to import. it may not be as resource friendly, but the benefits ive experienced far outweigh that. But hey, each to their own. No harm.
     

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