Surface Pro vs Desktop + Surface Pro?

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro' started by mitchellvii, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. mitchellvii
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    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    When I first bought my Surface Pro I thought that I would give it a try as my Desktop Replacement. I ran into issues:

    1) One of the benefits of the Surface Pro is that it is hyper-transportable. That is unless you have to hooked up to an external monitor and USB devices.
    2) Because the SP as Desktop Replacement is hooked up to cords, writing notes on it on the fly is an awkward, clumsy experience.
    3) Although good for what it is, the SP keyboard just isn't up to the heavy lifting a normal-sized keyboard can do for office work.
    4) The zoom limitations can be problematic.
    5) Every time you want to grab the SP and run you have to unhook everything.
    6) Unless you have a wireless printer, you can't print unless you are physically attached. Having a desktop provides wireless printing through your Homegroup.

    WHAT I FOUND WORKS BETTER (FOR ME):

    What I found is working much better is to keep my Desktop as the primary computer and synchronize wirelessly with my SP using the most excellent SyncToy App (Download SyncToy 2.1 from Official Microsoft Download Center) from Microsoft. I prefer SyncToy to Dropbox as I don't want to rely upon some third party cloud to not screw up my data. Also, SyncToy syncs only when I tell it to, Dropbox tends to have it's own plans.

    So this means I can have my robust and powerful Desktop as my main PC and I can more easily use my SP as a tablet while still remaining synced to my Desktop in the exact manner I wish.

    Everything to it's best use.

    P.S., It is definitely a HELL OF A LOT easier to write on this thing with no wires attached to it. :)

    wpid-web_network_s32_34_part.jpg
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  2. Nuspieds
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    Nuspieds Active Member

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    First, how old is your printer?! :) I've been using network-attached printers for years now...when I started to have multiple PCs in the home, that's when I decided to switch to a network printer. It made life so much easier!

    On a more serious note, I'm curious as to how you are able to wirelessly print on your desktop via your Homegroup, but not so using your SP?

    Also, what would really turn up the notch for you is if it were possible to place your SP on one of those charging mats. Ahhh...freedom from the power cord. :)
  3. mitchellvii
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    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    You mean my trusty dusty LaserJet 3200? Don't talk too loud he will hear you. :) Have just never seen a need to buy a new printer since it works great and anything else in my home could use it through my Desktop's Homegroup.

    My point was that if you have no computer attached to the printer as your Homegroup Hub, you can't print from the SP wirelessly.
  4. EMINENT
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    EMINENT Active Member

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    Do yourself a favor and get a Netgear Push2TV or something similar for wireless display via Miracast now that it's supported in 8.1.

    No wires.
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  5. mitchellvii
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    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    Will that allow me an extended desktop?
  6. tonyz3
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    tonyz3 New Member

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    unfortunately for me i need the wire to support touch in my monitors. But may get one to use on the tv..thx. Is the setup hard to get it to connect. I thought jroach had issues.
  7. mitchellvii
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    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    Does it do extended monitors? From what I've read it just mirrors which is of no use to me.
  8. kayzee
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    kayzee Well-Known Member

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    Also interesting in finding that out!

    I'm about to start using my Surface as my main computer, I'll report back after using it for a while... if only it was easier to get hold of Mini DisplayPort to HDMI cables!
  9. tonyz3
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    tonyz3 New Member

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    I received the Belkin mini with hdmi from MS on launch in my bundle and it works great. have you looked for them.
  10. Nuspieds
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    Nuspieds Active Member

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    Can't you find them on Amazon? Worst case, let's say it is easy for you to get Mini DP to Full DP adapter, then you can get an HDMI to full DP cable.

    One cable is obviously better, though, and this is the most recent one I purchased.
  11. kayzee
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    kayzee Well-Known Member

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    Yes cheers, I did come across that one. But 6 feet is much bigger than I need. I know there's 3 foot, but only in white, why!? I know I'm fussy... I found a Mini DisplayPort to DVI cable yesterday (I don't require sound, it goes to an external amplifier) but it's DVI-I and my monitor's input is DVI-D! Typical.

    I don't know whether to stick an adapter on my monitor (won't look great sticking out) or just accept that I've got to use a Mini DisplayPort to HDMI adapter [​IMG]
  12. mitchellvii
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    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    I read up some on the Push2TV thing and it seems that that will only mirror your SP and not do an extended desktop. Could be wrong, but since they never come out and say it will do extended, I assume it won't. Sucks cause that would have been uber-cool.

    Still, I am really enjoying using my desktop as the main office machine and using SyncToy to keep my SP up to date. Much easier to take written notes on my SP when I'm on the phone if I can just hold it like a pad of paper without any cables hooked to it.

    For me, any device that uses a pen really almost needs to be an accessory because you need the positioning of it to be the most flexible.
  13. mitchellvii
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    mitchellvii Well-Known Member

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    So that cable you linked to works well for you with the SP? My current (incredibly overpriced) MS DP to VGA adapter doesn't work well with my monitor because for whatever reason the monitor looks like crap with anything but HDMI input.

    You have no connection issues without the beveled plug edge?
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2013
  14. Nuspieds
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    Nuspieds Active Member

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    I'm that fussy as well but, hey, at the end of the day you gotta go with what works. :)

    For example, with the exception of my iPhone/iPod charger cable, all my cables were black. I loved it! :) But then I fell out of love with my black Bluetooth keyboard and Wedge mouse. I eventually settled on two new products which I dearly love: The Macally Bluetooth keyboard and the Apple Magic Mouse. Both only come in white. Not my first preference in color, but they work the best for me and I love them, so I've had to learn and accept to look past the color. :)

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