Well, I finally bit the bullet and joined a forum. I've found that I am constantly coming back to these groups for info so thought it was time to join. Thanks to you all for the wisdom and help you provide. As the subject suggests, I have been pouring through these threads trying to discern if I should purchase the 8gb RAM i5 or i7 version of the SP3. I'm still a little confused and frustrated so thought I would start my own thread for some specific answers. A bit about me and my computing needs: I am a graphic design student looking for a machine to last for the next 2 years of college. I currently own the original Surface Pro and have been thrilled for the most part with this machine. It has restored my faith in Microsoft and turned this Apple fanboy back into a MS fan. I only had to do some very light work in Photoshop, Illustrator and Indesign this year and the SP was able to handle my needs in those fine. However, moving forward, I will be doing much more advanced work in these programs as well as After Effects. Also, I will be getting more heavily involved in photography and will also likely take some video editing courses. I'm not a big gamer but would maybe like to put on an emulator and play some old school Mario. Other than those things I use it to watch Netflix and all of my other school work. Don't often have too many things going at once--maybe one or 2 Adobe programs and several webpages. Again, this will be my only system--desktop and laptop/tablet. So, basically, I am just trying to weigh out if it is worth the extra money for the i7. As I am getting this with student loans, I can afford to get the i7, but want to make the smart choice. Do the throttling issues reported with the i5 interfere with my needs, or is that really just an issue for gaming? Will I see real world benefit from the i7 as I get more advanced in the Adobe programs? I'm starting to see all the tests and benchmark info on the i7 but, frankly, have no idea how that translates into real world use. Also, trying to find out if there are any major differences in heat and battery life. I'm fully sold on the SP3 as my school solution for the next few years, but would REALLY appreciate any insights into which would be the wiser choice and why. Thanks in advance for your time!