Same here, ordered my SP3 with bit of a fear reading about throttling and overheating on the web. Nothing unusual with my unit- I wonder if those very mixed opinions/experiences come from different usage habits or quite high percentage of faulty units being sold...
I think it's a combination of usage habits (I switched to IE from Chrome and am running cool more often than not now), different but improved ligher and slimmer build casing, and the i7 you would think does get hotter than the i5. My SP2 I could push really really hard before the fans even kicked in.
I'm debating on going i5/256 + 128gb micro sd. Only had my SP3 for a few days, but like I've said I've managed to get it to run cool but it certainly wasn't like this out of the box. Day 1 installing updates it overheated. lol. wife was not impressed with room fan to cool a $2000+ new purchase. I'm on about hour 4-5 of usage today - heard fan once for maybe 10 minutes while loading up some catalogs in lightroom.
There are several factors, the most prevalent being usage scenarios. Also, some processors just run hotter than others due to variances in the manufacturing process. Finally, the thermal paste could be poorly applied causing inferior heat dissipation.
ive got the baby i3, and i dont think i have ever had the fan come on for more than a few seconds, even playing my favourite MMO. it performs "perceptibly" the same as my Lenovo ultrabook with a i5-4210u. i honestly cant tell the difference. also, my battery lasts for AGES
I do not game. I do do a lot of image editing (Lightroom and Photoshop) and video editing. Will I notice a difference between a Core I5 or a Core I7 both with 8 gigs of ram and 256 gig storage? If the I7 will make any difference and not run significantly hotter, I will pay the extra bucks. But if there is no reason for me to do so, than I'll spend the money on the docking cradle........
I have an SP3 i5 256 and resize, edit, scale/crop, copy/paste, work with PDF insofar as editing, deleting pages/inserting pages with high graphic detail, and I must tell you, this thing is as snappy as it gets. It performs flawlessly, and you know its funny... all my co worker intimdating tower PC's are all inferior to my SP3. Save the $, get a dock/extra monitor, etc, and get the I5. Im sure itll be a perfect fit for you!
I originally had the i7, we my to i5 after fan issues and used the extra money for dock and accessories. Not much of a difference in performance but I do miss the 512gb storage I had. No buggy, happier with dock and accessories I think.