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Advantages of upgrading to Surface 2 (from first gen Surface RT)

I looked back in the history and couldn't find a similar thread. And perhaps time would give this topic a different perspective than a discussion from back when the 2 first came out.

What do you think? How much of an upgrade will I get if I trade in my RT for the Surface 2?

I had the opportunity to use a Surface Pro 2 for three months. I liked it, but I somewhat felt that all the capabilities were wasted on me. The only app I used that I couldn't get on my RT was Chrome. Big deal. When I tried to add games I like (namely Sims 3 and Sim City) they were not touch friendly anyway. I might as well play them on my desktop. The Pro 2 was heavy and thick. I DID like the pen and I used it a lot, but I don't think the note taking I do is worth the vast expense of the active stylus. I'm becoming accustomed to using a capacitive stylus and it seems as if the technology on the stylus side is really coming along.

Sooooo. I'm considering the Surface 2. I was hoping for a new Surface 3 to upgrade to, but that didn't happen.

What am I missing out on by not having a Surface 2? I know good cameras. The Pro 2 had a horrible camera as well. I like to take photos of the powerpoints or other things I see at conferences and add them to my notes and on the RT and the Pro 2 those photos were just sucky.

Anything else besides the camera?

Thanks for any input.
 

leeshor

Well-Known Member
It's hard to compare the SP2 with RT. It's almost apples and oranges. The SP2 will provide much more flexibility and app options. Ultimately it's going to need to be your personal choice.
 
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LadyRaider

Member
I'm sorry. I meant Surface 2 vs Surface RT. I have already had the opportunity to compare the Pro 2 to my RT. And I actually think it's too much computer for what I need. And the things I *do* need... like a nice camera and a light weight chassis, the Surface Pro 2 does NOT have.
 

kristalsoldier

Well-Known Member
OK...You want to know how and in what ways is the Surface 2 (RT) better than/ an upgrade in all respects as compared with the first gen. Surface RT. If yes, then I can share my experience as I have used both the Surface RT and the Surface 2 RT before recently moving onto the Surface Pro 3.

Functionally, both machines pretty much do the same things in the same way. The difference lies in the experience that both these devices enable for the user (in this case, me).

The Surface 2 is physically different. It feels different when handled - though the physical dimensions and weight of the two devices are not that different. The Surface 2 also affords a much better user experience in the sense that it is much faster, less sluggish, and the screen is very good. The Surface 2 also has a two-step kickstand as compared to the single position that the kickstand of the first generation Surface RT machines have. This - to me - was a major improvement as the second level of the Surface 2's kickstand is very comfortable angle to work at.

In my experience, the battery life on the Surface 2 is marginally better than the original Surface RT.

Would I say that the S2 is a significant upgrade? Personally, yes, I would.
 
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LadyRaider

Member
Why did you move to the Pro 3? Do you not have a regular computer? I can't see anything that an SP3 could do that my Dell desktop couldn't do better. I DO like the pen though. I love using a stylus for notes and sketches (I am not an artist.) I like using my Surface on the couch and taking it when I travel.
 

leeshor

Well-Known Member
I'm sorry. I meant Surface 2 vs Surface RT. I have already had the opportunity to compare the Pro 2 to my RT. And I actually think it's too much computer for what I need. And the things I *do* need... like a nice camera and a light weight chassis, the Surface Pro 2 does NOT have.
My bad. Read it wrong.
 

kristalsoldier

Well-Known Member
Why did you move to the Pro 3? Do you not have a regular computer? I can't see anything that an SP3 could do that my Dell desktop couldn't do better. I DO like the pen though. I love using a stylus for notes and sketches (I am not an artist.) I like using my Surface on the couch and taking it when I travel.
Well, I moved from the Surface 2 to the SP3 because

- I found that I needed to install a few programs that have no app counterparts - not possible on the RT platform.
- I wanted to have the pen and writing and sketching capability
- I think the Surface 2 RT is optimized for media/ video playback while the SP3 is optimized for online work - browsing
- And most important of all, the aspect ratio. I prefer the 3:2 AR of the SP3 over the 16:9 (or, is it 16:10, I keep forgetting) AR of the Surface 2 RT.

I do have a desktop machine (i5, 4GB RAM) with two monitors.
 
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LadyRaider

Member
Okay... all y'all did was convince I needed the SP3! I know the cameras are improved. How is holding it? The SP2 was such an unwieldy hunk. I love my RT because it always feels so sleek and light.
 

kristalsoldier

Well-Known Member
Okay... all y'all did was convince I needed the SP3! I know the cameras are improved. How is holding it? The SP2 was such an unwieldy hunk. I love my RT because it always feels so sleek and light.
That is an interesting question: How does the SP3 handle? It is something that I paid careful attention to. The reason for my doing so stems from my appreciation of the form-factor of the Surface 2 RT. I really appreciate the slim profile, the balanced weight (albeit not as light as the iPad Air), the tightness of design of the Surface 2 RT. I also think the silver colour accentuates its elegance. When I had compared it with the Surface Pro 2 (this was when I was at a local store preparing to buy the Surface 2RT), the SP2 felt heavy, boxy...like a squat monster. In comparison, the Surface 2 (RT) felt like a lithe elf.

When I first saw the Surface Pro 3 and read the description, I imagined the SP3 to be just like the Surface 2 RT, just bigger (and with a more appropriate - can't seem to help but emphasize this - aspect ratio).

My first physical contact with the SP3 was again at a store. The money to buy it was in my pocket. As I entered the store, the first thing I did was to handle the SP3 on the display counter - my objective to see how similar were the two devices. The SP3, though a bit heavier than the Surface 2 RT, feels pretty much like how I expected it to - that is to say, like a larger Surface 2 RT. It is a well balanced machine; it has a slim profile, and the confounding thing - at least to me - was to find a way to convince myself that I had an approximate-equivalent of my desktop machine in a (somewhat largish) tablet form-factor.

I have only tried to use the pen a couple of times - but I will be putting the capability through its paces, particularly in the context of my work-flow. But from the little that I used it, it seems fine, especially after updating the NTrig-issued drivers recently.

I have only heard the fans come on once or twice - unobtrusively. Sometimes the device does get a bit warm in the upper-right hand side. But it is not overly warm or hot.

I haven't had an occasion to use the cameras - though I will probably be using the front facing cam for Skype conversations. My current phone serves as my digital camera (including video), I guess.

In sum, I think the SP3 is an excellent device!
 
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EddySnoozah

New Member
After the price drop, I bought a Surface RT last year and had it for about 4 weeks. I liked it and it showed me that it would do what I wanted, but to be honest - it did seem a little sluggish so I returned it and bought a Surface 2 RT and I was glad that I did. The Surface 2 RT is noticeably faster than the previous version and the two-position kick stand is a big bonus. The only regret that I have ever had has been over the 'phantom touches' issue that plagued it when I was using the Touch Cover 2 that I bought to go with my Surface 2 RT (see http://www.surfaceforums.net/forum/microsoft-surface-2/8499-problem-my-surface-2-a.html). But, since I bought a Type Cover 2 a few weeks ago that issue has completely disappeared and it works really well now.
 

compnovo

Active Member
I think krystalsoldier summed up the advantages pretty nicely as that has been my experience since I upgraded from the RT to the S2 (it's amazing to me how such subtle changes in the weight and thickness and feel so apparent). One other improvement I haven't seen mentioned is the upgrade from USB 2.0 to 3.0 --- it really does make a difference.
 

airwolfmanila

New Member
Bought an RT just four months ago. Was so happy with it that I purchased a Surface 2 the other day based on the excellent reviews on improvements over the RT. I'm still keeping the RT as a backup and as a media player over my WiFi network.

I love the upgrade in screen resolution and the overall snappiness of the 2 versus the RT. The difference is undeniable. The 2 is what the RT should have been. All the others are bonuses for me - the USB 3.0 the dual angle kickstand, the slicker housing, the better silvery finish.
 
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