What's new

SP3 vs SP4

Johnny365

Member
specs.jpg


Source: Microsoft Surface Book vs. Surface Pro 4 vs. Surface Pro 3 vs. MacBook Pro - CNET
----------------------------------------------

Core M, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD: STARTS AT $899
http://amzn.to/1L5nOYh

Core i5, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD: STARTS AT $999
http://amzn.to/1hpxwfr

Core i7, 4GB RAM, 512GB SSD: STARTS AT $2,199
http://amzn.to/1LhhKes

----------------------------------------------

Surface Pro 4 Dock (Compatible with Surface 3 / Pro 3: $199

Microsoft's new Surface Dock is a smaller, yet still-potent docking solution

Surface Pro 3/4 2015 Dock: http://amzn.to/1jXt61l

----------------------------------------------

Surface Pro 3/4 Type Cover w/ Fingerprint Reader $159: http://amzn.to/1GEqFFM
 
Last edited:

GoodBytes

Well-Known Member
What is expected:
-> Better camera with auto-focus feature. Why? The Surface non-Pro 3 has one, if I am not mistaken.

-> Skylake CPU. only ~5-10% performance boost, but the GPU is expected to be more powerful (sadly, crappy drivers, remains crappy). Potentially reduce system heat, as the GPU should have easier time rendering things, and when not in used, the CPU is more power efficient. This should also increase in battery life (probably 30min at most, assuming identical batteries used from the SP3).

-> More RAM in the available options, and DDR4.

-> Improved pen tracking (Surface 3 has that)



If rumors are to be believed with my speculations:

-> Surface Pro 4 will have 2 sub model: Core M for the lowest end mode, replacing the Core i3 option, which will feature a fanless design, and be a bit thinner, and Core i5/i7 like now, with fan, and thicker (due to heatsink and fan. probably be the same thickness as Surface Pro 3). Alternatively: nothing will change, and the Core M rumor one, is a Surface Mini resurrected with Intel CPU.

-> USB Type-C 3.0 or 3.1. (probably USB 3.0, as Intel doesn't support 3.1, and putting a custom chip would cost space on the device)

My wish:
-> Custom Nvidia GPU, using the GPU of the Nvidia Tegra X1, which consumes only ~8-10W. This won't be this massive powerful GPU of course, but should be more powerful than Intel best offering, have proper and full DirectX, OpenGL, OpenCL, DirectCompute, PhysX and CUDA support, and most importantly, significantly better drivers. As for cooling. 8-10W chip doesn't need a fan solution to cool it off. It just needs to spread the heat it produces. It can also have switchable graphics to not affect battery life when not gaming or using any software that demand a more powerful GPU solution. Of course, I expect this Nvidia solution to only be with the high end mode of the Surface Pro 4, like the i7 chip.
 
8-10 W chip on Graphics does need a fan IMO.

I would opt for a Core M ( Skylake Y) than skylake U for more battery life and lower heat output if both chips exists e.g. idling at 400 MHz for the Y rather than 800 MHz for the U. Heat spreading on the whole device will cause a premature battery life deterioration due to higher surface temperature while SP3's design perfectly protects the battery from the heat in the surface and inside the chassis.
 

InspectHerGadget

Active Member
Premature Surfaculation, it seems. I suspect the flattening trajectory of mobile device development means it will be a much smaller step forward than the SP2 to the SP3.
 

GreyFox7

Super Moderator
Staff member
SP4 will not be available until sometime in November assuming no further delays and it relies on W10 Threshold 2 as Threshold 2 is already confirmed to be delayed until November. Given the device is intended to showcase W10 it cannot do that unless W10 is showcase ready. If this was going into the Smithsonian you could have cutaways of incomplete functionality in static showcases however you cannot very well showcase something in the real world unless it's complete. SP4 may have a somewhat rocky start. Delaying past November will mean purchases will go to competing devices and muted response when it finally launches while premature launching has it's own perils.

This will all make for an interesting Fall/Winter and holiday season, grab plenty of popcorn for the show. :)
 

hughlle

Super Moderator
Staff member
If MS were happy to release win 10 as it is, do you have any solid reason to think that they will then turn 180 degrees and be super sensible and not release the SP4 till the TH2 release is ready? Sure it would make sense to delay for a touch, but MS don't seem to like doing that it seems.

And if the release of the SP4 is TH2 dependant, then someone could come across one big bad bug and the SP4 might not come out until it is obsolete.

I think there is probably a correlation between the releases, but that they would not be set in stone. regardless of the state of TH2, as you say, if they do not release the SP4 by a certain point in the year, then they will have just seriously jeopardised the success of the model. Especially now there are copycat heading towards the market.
 

kristalsoldier

Well-Known Member
All fair...but would the SP4 - indeed, could a potential SP4 - be that much better than the SP3 or would that difference be at best marginal? I think, as @InspectHerGadget points out, "...the flattening trajectory of mobile device development means it will be a much smaller step forward than the SP2 to the SP3" and @GoodBytes provides us with some interesting info that supports this with specific reference to an expected SP4.

From a really lay perspective (mine, that is!), I see three key areas where any further improvement - hardware-wise - to the SP3 form factor could take place or even - stretching it a bit - possible. First is battery-life. This is - in a manner of speaking - virtually written into the very concept of the Surface. Second, screen and related matters. Perhaps a slightly larger screen (by reducing the bezels - at the cost of grip-ability?), a higher resolution, better digitizer and Pen capabilities etc...etc...And, third, perhaps try to (i) rethink what can be done about the KB - if any thing at all, and (ii) make sure Surface devices have a set of simple covers - like the existing KBs, but without the typing mechanism. Just a cover and only a cover. This would be very helpful for the non-Pro series - and the Pro series would also benefit by it. It would, among other things, reinforce the tablet aspect of the Surface line. Oh - and they should be bundled in with the device and included in the box for free.

Beyond that what? No fundamental change of chassis design is possible since the new versions have to be compatible with the SP3 (and potentially S3) dock. Change in colour? I would love MS to reissue the SP4 in that dark colour that the original Surface RT was released in!!!!
 

jnjroach

Administrator
Staff member
One thing I want to remind everyone is that this Product Team goes out of its way to befuddle and do the unexpected... don't assume we can predict what will be released....
 

GreyFox7

Super Moderator
Staff member
All fair...but would the SP4 - indeed, could a potential SP4 - be that much better than the SP3 or would that difference be at best marginal? I think, as @InspectHerGadget points out, "...the flattening trajectory of mobile device development means it will be a much smaller step forward than the SP2 to the SP3" and @GoodBytes provides us with some interesting info that supports this with specific reference to an expected SP4.

From a really lay perspective (mine, that is!), I see three key areas where any further improvement - hardware-wise - to the SP3 form factor could take place or even - stretching it a bit - possible. First is battery-life. This is - in a manner of speaking - virtually written into the very concept of the Surface. Second, screen and related matters. Perhaps a slightly larger screen (by reducing the bezels - at the cost of grip-ability?), a higher resolution, better digitizer and Pen capabilities etc...etc...And, third, perhaps try to (i) rethink what can be done about the KB - if any thing at all, and (ii) make sure Surface devices have a set of simple covers - like the existing KBs, but without the typing mechanism. Just a cover and only a cover. This would be very helpful for the non-Pro series - and the Pro series would also benefit by it. It would, among other things, reinforce the tablet aspect of the Surface line. Oh - and they should be bundled in with the device and included in the box for free.

Beyond that what? No fundamental change of chassis design is possible since the new versions have to be compatible with the SP3 (and potentially S3) dock. Change in colour? I would love MS to reissue the SP4 in that dark colour that the original Surface RT was released in!!!!
In a flat out benchmark of Skylake vs Haswell CPU speed maybe there's only a marginal difference although more significant the GPU difference. However, I don't expect that a Haswell CPU has ever achieved peak performance in an SP3 so the thermal difference throws in a big variable to SP3 vs SP4 performance comparison. Lower thermals in Skylake means less throttling which means if there's greater demand it may meet it or it may still throttle but at a higher performance level. This is a great unknown which will only be revealed when the two are compared head to head.

Then there are other components that will likely also be improved. Possibly faster memory, faster SSD, faster bus speeds and interconnects, faster USB speed, etc. etc.

With incremental improvements compounded the system as a whole could be much more than a marginal upgrade.
 
Search tags for this page
compare sp3 and sp4
difference of sp3 to sp4
dimensons of sp3 versus sp4
sp3 differences sp4
sp3 sp4 comparison
sp3 v sp4

sp3 vs sp4

sp3 vs sp4 comparison
sp4 versus sp3
sp4 vs sp3

Members online

No members online now.
Top