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Surface Book or Surface Pro 4

DOS

Active Member
Hi all, tomorrow (Friday, December 16, 2016) the Surface Pro 4 goes on sale with a type cover included. So, which is the better deal?

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 - 256GB / Intel Core i7 (with Type Cover) = $1,400

Or

Microsoft Surface Book - 256GB / Intel Core i7 = $1,700

FYI: I have the Surface Pro (1), it's still working great, but I think I'm due for an upgrade...

Thanks for your help!
 

hughlle

Super Moderator
Staff member
They are completely different products. Without an idea as to the usage, then it is apples to parsley.
 
OP
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DOS

Active Member
Apples to Parsley? Is that like a joke?


I could see if I had inquired about a Surface Pro and a Dell XPS, that would be Apples to Oranges. But I inquired about two devices with identical hardware configurations; 256GB SSD Drives, Intel Core i7 Processors, 8GB RAM, Detachable Keyboards, and Tablet Touch Displays. In fact, the only real differences between these two devices are Price, dGPU, and Battery Life. And, you’re calling this Apples to Parsley?


You guys must be fussing with me…
 
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jnjroach

Administrator
Staff member
Apples to Parsley? Is that like a joke?


I could see if I had inquired about a Surface Pro and a Dell XPS, that would be Apples to Oranges. But I inquired about two devices with identical hardware configurations; 256GB SSD Drives, Intel Core i7 Processors, 8GB RAM, Detachable Keyboards, and Tablet Touch Displays. In fact, the only real differences between these two devices are Price, dGPU, and Battery Life. And, you’re calling this Apples to Parsley?


You guys must be fussing with me…
We're actually trying to figure out what your use case is...do want a tablet but need a laptop? Or do you want a laptop and need a tablet sometimes? Yes to #1 = Surface Pro 4, Yes #2 = Surface Book
 
OP
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DOS

Active Member
Well, thank you; however, my concern was not that of a laptop vs. a tablet, but rather the “value” of the added cost for the Surface Book. Although one may wish to quibble with the logistics of the designs, in general, these two devices serve the same general purpose; that being a laptop with tablet functionality.

In the event someone else happens along this thread in the future, I will give you my take on the research I did; again, assuming identical base hardware inside.

The Surface Book is larger than the Surface Pro 4, about an inch. So, if screen real estate is important to you, this may play a factor. This also allows the Book’s keyboard to be slightly larger than the Pro 4’s; so, if you have larger hands, the Book may be more user friendly.

The Book has an option for a dGPU, this is a Graphic Processing Unit. If you are planning heavy graphics use (i.e. Art, 3D drawing, CAD, etc.) or gaming, this could be beneficial. Although if you’re really seeking a heavy gaming unit, you may wish to look elsewhere.

The Book has a 12 hour battery life compared to the Pro 4 at 9. However; the Book has a battery in the keyboard as well as the screen (tablet). So, if you’re using it in tablet mode, you may not experience the full 12 hours.

The Book has 2 USB 3.0 ports vs. the Pro 4 at 1. The Book will support a full SD Card where the Pro 4 will only support Micro SD Cards. An important note is that the SD Slot on the Book is located in the Keyboard portion of the device; hence, you loose the expansion in Tablet Mode.

If you like to use your laptop in your lap (i.e. LAP top), the Book will work much better in this configuration vs. the Pro 4 due to the “kick stand” which doesn’t work quite as well.

Finally, when converting the Surface Pro 4 from laptop to tablet mode you either quickly pull off the keyboard, or wrap it around the back. The Surface Book requires you to “unlock” the tablet first; this is not instantaneous. In a world where we complain about every extra click it takes us to get to the final page, this second or two of “unlocking” the tablet, seems an eternity.


Good Luck!
 

hughlle

Super Moderator
Staff member
Great post DOS.

One thing which I think is more significant than has been stated is the surface book battery. While both devices can be a tablet, with the SB you are only going to get around 3 hours as a tablet. When I watched the live event, I was set on the surface book despite having been waiting for the SP4. However once I learnt of the battery life of the clipboard, this was an absolute deal breaker for my usage case.
 
OP
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DOS

Active Member
Thank you hughlle, and I agree regarding the battery life of the tablet.

Granted, the user could “flip” the screen and re-attach it to retain the 12 hour battery life; however, now you’re carrying around almost twice the weight of the Surface Pro 4. (Full disclosure: at 3.74lbs, it’s highly unlikely that carrying the Surface Book, in this configuration, will give you back pain.)
 
Really simply I like the configuration of the Book better; it works so much better for my needs of being able to write with it on my lap. Frankly the Pro that I have doesn't work well for that purpose with the flimsily attached keyboard cover. I ended up with the Performance Base unit upgrading my Pro (1).
 

eKeith

New Member
For my purposes I made the exactly opposite choice and chose the Pro 4.

I am a veteran user of ThinkPad laptops (Amongst newer machines I still have a legacy IBM T60 running Win 7 pro beautifully on a SSD). My laptops are always docked while at the office and always on a conference table or desk when at a client. I never use them on my lap. Lugging my Surface Pro 4 to meetings with a client is beautiful. It is completely functional on a desk or table and has added useful features such as the wireless display adapter. Back at the office I use my ThinkPads, now functioning more like desktops.

The added ability to have a device that I can use as a tablet that can run real apps was the deciding factor for me.

Soon I may just get a dock and use the Surface Pro 4 exclusively...

Sent from my XT1095 using Tapatalk
 
For my purposes I made the exactly opposite choice and chose the Pro 4.

I am a veteran user of ThinkPad laptops (Amongst newer machines I still have a legacy IBM T60 running Win 7 pro beautifully on a SSD). My laptops are always docked while at the office and always on a conference table or desk when at a client. I never use them on my lap. Lugging my Surface Pro 4 to meetings with a client is beautiful. It is completely functional on a desk or table and has added useful features such as the wireless display adapter. Back at the office I use my ThinkPads, now functioning more like desktops.

The added ability to have a device that I can use as a tablet that can run real apps was the deciding factor for me.

Soon I may just get a dock and use the Surface Pro 4 exclusively...

Sent from my XT1095 using Tapatalk

At work we are still using Win 7 due to legacy software. I would thing that the Book with its detachable clipboard would be even more versatile than the 4. Interesting.
 

eKeith

New Member
At work we are still using Win 7 due to legacy software. I would thing that the Book with its detachable clipboard would be even more versatile than the 4. Interesting.
I realize that I forgot to mention a couple other important factors for me: I like tearing apart my aging laptops and upgrading them and I like the engineering of the ThinkPads in general. Thus if I wanted a new traditional laptop form factor I would have chosen a new Thinkpad. However, I decided if going to exploit the tablet form factor I did not want a compromised fit such as Yoga but truly a tablet in my hand. Thus the Pro 4 over the Book or X1 Yoga.

Sent from my XT1095 using Tapatalk
 

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