Well, looks like I now have one of these.

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 2' started by oion, Feb 16, 2015.

  1. oion

    oion Well-Known Member

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    I was gifted a SP2 and Office 2013 for Valentine's Day, which...sort of thwarts my plan to build a $2000 replacement gaming rig and continue using my S2. I really like my "satellite" setup, but I can adapt. Probably (assuming my older games run on the SP2 with Win8). So I've been scratching my head the past couple of days figuring out how to handle my sudden growth in electronics (an increase of 1 to 4 total). On the plus side, after digging through the benchmarks, I think the SP2 is a bit better than my current PC for gaming so it'd still be an upgrade, though I'll miss the terabytes of storage. Maybe I'll convert it to a media server.

    So it looks like I'm a new SP2 owner now. I'll have to unload my S2 later (really can't imagine using both S2 and SP2 like Jeff did), but at least I can keep my Type2 cover.
     
  2. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to the SP2 club!
    You'll also enjoy something you can't with your S2, sadly, Windows 10 when it comes out :) It will be officially supported.
    The problem with Intel integrated graphics is the lack of full DirectX and OpenGL support, despite Intel claims. You'll encounter with games that works fine.. other would be "fine" (low fps), but you'll encounter games that will crash at some point where the only fix is to drop the visuals to avoid the DirectX or OpenGL call. Some games won't even start and crash immediately. Very sad. I wish that Microsoft join with Nvidia and bring the Tegra X1 GPU as stand alone chip to the Surface Pro 4. That GPU is more powerful than Intel best offering, and requires no fan or heatsink. Even, if the GPU is identical in performance to Intel, the simple fact that it would truly fully support DirectX and OpenGL, not to mention DirectCompute, CUDA, and OpenCL, would be a huge plus.

    You don't need 2000$ for a gaming computer. That is overkill.
    You can build a desktop with a sweet Nvidia GTX 960, Core i5, solid case, 80 Plus Gold certified power supply, and Noctua fans (last 2 for quietness), for well under 1500$.

    Very quickly I built you from Newegg.com:
    -> Case: Fractal Design Define R5
    -> SSD: Samsung 850 EVO - 250GB
    -> HDD: Western Digital 1TB Black 7200RPM HDD
    -> GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 660
    -> CPU: Intel Core i5-4690K (you can drop the price if you don't get the overclock-able model)
    -> Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-Z97X-SLI
    -> CPU Heatsink: Noctua NH-U12P
    -> PSU: Corsair HX 650
    -> RAM: G.SKILL 8GB DDR3 1600MHz

    Total: $1,139.91 U.S at Newegg, and I have not looked for prices at all. So you can drop the price further
    Add ~100$ for Windows OEM license

    Anyway, something to look at, this is not a forum related to building computers. If you join one, people will help you in finding you the right parts, best for your money (giving you more savings), and lowest price (even more savings), and even help you build your system (I think NewEgg offers a service for like 50$ and they can build it for you if you don't want to do it).
    Let me know if you want a suggestion for a forum that will help you and are nice, and I'll PM you one.

    Anyway,

    You may be interested in this software for your Surface Pro 2:
    http://www.surfaceforums.net/threads/surface-tweak-tool-for-surface-pro-2-release.8219/

    Hope this helps. If you have any questions just ask.
    The way I make my Surface Pro 2 an extension of my desktop, is that I use OneDrive. Both systems runs Windows 8 as well for account sync as well.
     
  3. malberttoo

    malberttoo Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I will enjoy the insights that you provide, going from S2 to SP2.
     
  4. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Hmmm, SP2, could this be the gift that keeps on giving? :)
     
  5. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Rodger that with the X1 although they do make some M chip versions of their graphics cards I don't know how they compare with the X1, haven't seen anything on it anywhere. There are other benefits you could derive from the X1 as well... but I don't see it happening... sadly :(
     
  6. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes Well-Known Member

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    M chips (although more powerful) requires a cooling solution, and the chip is larger, resulting in needing a second fan (already the Surface Pro 3 has cooling problems, due to it's single fan design, and thinner device, unlike the Pro 2), which would mean less room for battery, and warmer device under load. The GPU of the Tegra X1 or older brother K1, don't need any cooling solution.
     
  7. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    But think what a beast a Shield Tablet would be if they made a comparable graphics chip as in the X1 or K1 and paired it with the X1 or K1. Potentially a Two Teraflop mobile slate. :) GrrOwl
     
  8. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes Well-Known Member

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    The shield has the K1 already (and will be updated soon to X1, one can imagine), so you mean do SLI (GPU only) with another X1 chip? I am drooling now. Shame it won't run Windows.
     
  9. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Exactly ... just eliminate the CPU cores and extras from the SoC and make an X1 GPU. It would be the Best Console on the planet!

    Although I suppose you could add a bit and make it a Dual SoC solution then you'd have a 16 CPU 512 GPU monster. :)
     
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  10. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    You know... I seem to recall reading that the X1 automotive solution was a dual SoC solution so they may have already don that work.

    Then there was the announcement/rumor that they were going to revolutionize the gaming industry

    You put those two together and it could be they are going to release such a device as a gaming console.

    Then what is Microsoft to do... they may have to revive RT for a gaming platform on X1 hardware. Wouldn't that be sweet. :) and we could finally get our X1 based Surface 3 as a side benefit. :D

    Then the OP would have a real choice... vs no choice.
     
  11. Philtastic

    Philtastic Active Member

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    Just to add on to what GoodBytes said about $2000+ gaming PCs being excessive, I wanted to give an example of what happens when you do find the best prices for things while downgrading some parts to more budget friendly but still quite powerful hardware. Here's a build that's similar to one I put together for a friend just last week. In fact, for games, the following build will run about 25-30% faster than GoodBytes' (mostly due to the better GPU) but for significantly cheaper:

    http://pcpartpicker.com/p/GC8BWZ

    CPU: Intel Core i5-4460 3.2 GHz
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-B85M-HD3 Micro ATX
    GPU: Radeon R9 280 3 GB
    RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws X 2x4 GB
    SSD: Crucial M500 240 GB
    HDD: Seagate Barracuda 1 TB
    Case: NZXT S340 mid-tower
    PSU: Corsair CX 500 W Modular
    Includes Windows 8.1

    Price: $856.93

    You can expect that rig to play all currently released games at high/ultra at 1080p with at least 30 frames per second but usually closer to 60.

    Pre-configured computers are terrible value when you want a decent video card (thus the idea that gaming computers are $1500+). If you pick your own parts, not only do you generally get better quality but it's about 30-50% cheaper. If you yourself do not know how to pick parts (it's pretty simple with many guides out), you can do what GoodBytes said which is to find a forum that has a section for that where people can just make a build for you given your requirements and budget.
     
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  12. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes Well-Known Member

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    Yup. And the cool thing is warranty.
    Minimum warranty are like 3 years for parts
    RAM -> Life time warranty
    PSU -> Usually 5 to 7 years
    SSD -> 3 to 10 years
    Motherboard -> 3 years
    As all suggested components by me or Philtastic or what you'll find in computer enthusiast forum are only high quality ones. Quality that is superior than what you can get out of Alienware or other large computer manufactures.

    And like I said, you can have the retail store build it for you for a small fee. All you would need to do is install the drivers (I am not sure they do it), and you are ready to go.

    The only downside, is that you don't have a "1-phone number for support", and you need to do the basic diagnostic yourself to determine which part is the problem to know which manufacture to contact. But you have many forums filled with people who can help you. I even know a forum you'll start getting a replies in less than 1h, even 15min you'll start getting replies.
     

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