View Full Version : Microsoft Surface Pro 3: Review round-up

1st July 2014, 11:15 PM
Microsoft’s Surface series is leading the line for Windows-based tablets, and with the latest iteration show its desire to keep things competitive in an ever-improving market. The Surface Pro 3 comes with a number of improvements to do just this, and thankfully they’re not just restricted to barely noticeable performance upgrades.

Perhaps the most important is the larger screen – there’s a 12.1 inch display here, which is a significant upgrade on the 10.6 inch Surface Pro 2. Importantly this creates a clear gap between the Surface and other non-windows tablets, underlining Microsoft’s ambitions to make it a true laptop replacement. The aspect ratio has also changed, being 3:2 rather than 16:9, which may or may not appeal depending on its intended use.

With a bigger display you need better resolution, and Microsoft pushes past the 1080p barrier with a 2,160 x 1,440 display at around 214ppi – just about enough to ensure that there’s no drop in sharpness due to the increased size. The Surface Pro 3 is also lighter than the Pro 2, and with a slightly thinner bezel around the screen makes for a more immersive user experience.

Elsewhere speakers have been improved and are allegedly 45% louder, Microsoft claims 20% better battery life which should push nine hours, and yes there should be a performance boost, albeit a small one, thanks to an Intel Core i5-4200U chip (the top-end model gets an upgrade to Core i7).

So an impressive list of upgrades then, but how does it fare when you slap it all together? We did the rounds to find out.


Anandtech provides a typically detailed technical analysis of some of new features, with a focus on the display and performance. Though it admits there’s a lot more work to do before it draws any firm conclusions, there are mixed results from the early tests. The display varies from “Max brightness drops a bit compared to Surface Pro 2, likely due to the Pro 3 having 50% more pixels to light” and “Grayscale accuracy is the biggest issue with the new display, green levels are just way too high” to “Full saturation color reproduction is excellent”, so a bit of a mixed bag. Performance improvements seem significant though, as it reported “seeing a 3 – 20% increase in performance over the Surface Pro 2.”

Docking Station

There’s a fairly detailed review over at CNet, who decides that while the Pro 3 is somewhat stuck in the middle of the tablet/laptop space, “it’s more successful as a tablet than a laptop replacement. “ This is largely because of design shortcomings, such as some ergonomic difficulties when balancing it on a lap and various niggles with the touchpad. It’s also a fair bit behind performance-wise, as a trial of Bioshock Infinite showed. “We gave BioShock Infinite a spin at high settings and our standard 1,920×1,080-pixel resolution, and got single-digit frame rates. Running at the native resolution on low settings, the game still chugged unacceptably.”

It does offer praise for the optional keyboard upgrade, which is beginning to sound less like an option, and the digital pen. The battery life impressed when pitting it against rivals such as the Yoga 2 Pro and HP X2 hybrid: “The Surface Pro 3 did, however, best most of the competition in battery life, even if only by a small margin”, and comments on the slim design and display were generally favourable.

We’ll sum up with MacWorld’s conclusion in a comparison between the Surface Pro 3 and iPad Air. Although there are similarities in design and size, the consensus here seems to be that the Pro 3 will score more points with professionals who don’t want to carry around a laptop and a tablet (Microsoft says that 96% of iPad owners also have a laptop) where the Air will be better for consumers who really just want a tablet. This seems to be the overriding point, and surely one that Microsoft is aware of with these new improvements. Moving away from the tablet space towards the laptop with a larger screen and strong focus on a usable stylus and keyboard could be a risky move, and only time will tell whether there’s enough interest here to make it a success.

TechRadar’s hands-on is more focused on usability, and enjoys the new smarter cover, which “made for a much more comfortable typing experience” and “deeper travel and punchier rebound in each key, making for an experience quite close to that of a laptop”. The only problem here is that it’ll cost you an extra £76 ish. The Pro 3 also works very well with a stylus, or Surface Pen, which feels more natural in the hand and combined with the LCD screen being brought closer to the glass makes “writing feels more natural – plain and simple.” It concludes by admitting that this is still quite a pricey device, and questions the concept of a laptop-replacement tablet in general, stating “Price and barely optional accessories aside, I’m already bullish on what this hybrid device is capable of. And I’ve been skeptical bordering on critical of the category since it popped up a few years back.”

source: http://www.latestgadgets.co.uk/laptops-tablets/11231-microsoft-surface-pro-3-review-round

2nd August 2014, 09:33 AM
For creative working people, a tablet pc is no replacement for a true keyboard equipped computer. The usual tablet crap is a cheap receiver and reader device, but for those, who have to work with a pc, it's no solution. As usually ms focuses on the wrong interest groups.

2nd August 2014, 09:59 AM
Ghanachan welcome to the board. All your previous comments made you sound as a robot but this sounds as a decent comment from an actual human being. Lol

2nd August 2014, 10:54 AM
We can say: ms is one of the world's most evil company's. If not NO. 1 of EVIL companies. Not caring of customers complaints. Cooperating with gouvernements against consumers and citizens. Willingly integrating faults, glitches and backdoors in their products. It's an us firm: cooperating with us against all others of us. Not listening to customers complains or wishes. Selfish. Ms never hears what us or non-us customers want. Most ms apps are faulty. Simple minded ordinary humans cannot use ms products. Ms products are not for the commoners. Ms should be expropriated, if not in the us, then anywhere else. It's a common goal for all of us.

2nd August 2014, 11:00 AM
I disagree. Google is the most evil company now. Worst than.Microsoft

2nd August 2014, 11:04 AM
It HURTS to see how MS CUTS OFF OUR HANDS. IT's an amputation of fingers, hands and arms how they degrade users to receivers. U can see but not type your answers or comments. WE NEED and CLAIM: we want KEYBOARDS! Because whe have A SAY.

2nd August 2014, 11:10 AM
In the past decade us and ms have degraded the www / internet to a playzone for semi morons. Plenty of users have already said farewell to pc and internet. The cause: the computer soft- and hardware firms arrogance. They have done it - and they want us to pay for. Let us pray for holy Edward Snowden the Saint. The first Saint of The Internet. Edward is HOLY - Do NOT TOUCH HIM!!

2nd August 2014, 11:15 AM
I want to make sure that WAS the ONE who I SAID today that S. Edward is the first Saint of the INTERNET for us today. I (Ghana-Chan) was the ONE who declared S. Edward for Saint today. DO not touch HIM or you touch us. DO NOT TOUCH EDWARD THE SAINT.

2nd August 2014, 11:18 AM
It ws Ghana-Chan who declared Edward Snowden THE HONEST MAN to be the first SAINT of the Internet today (02.08.2014)

2nd August 2014, 11:22 AM
The pope should notice we have a new saint today. The one who is a real a true and beloved saint and he needs to be protected from the revenge of ordinary officers.

2nd August 2014, 12:51 PM
I may have spoken too soon.. You may actually be a robot contrary to what I previously suggested.

10th August 2014, 01:02 PM
I dont understand them. Really. At all. I use pc for work and 7 inch tablet outdoor. My pc is quite powewrfull, I need PC and it MUST be powerful cos I'm designer. This odd thing..Hm... I'd like to see how it will perform when I will work with 3dmax, CS6 and tools from the web at the same time. It's ridiculous

15th August 2014, 11:35 AM
Hmm, well finally this forum is coming to life.

18th August 2014, 12:43 PM
I disagree. Google is the most evil company now. Worst than.Microsoft ... Well, this question is worth a discussion. But nobody must use gooooogles products for business. But there are little alternatives to ms, if you're in business. Well, there are some - but not for everyone. Just ask network and it professional for the millions of work hours stolen by ms selfish marketing strategies. Ms forgot that millions of people must work and make money with their products. Just think of the daily "there is an update available today for...". Update hell. Don't bother us with updates.

18th August 2014, 12:53 PM
1995 I had computers, they are stored today, and dust covered, and if I would bring them back to life they would work today as well as in the 90s. If I blow the dust away. They were precisely already doing all the same things in the 90s just like I do today. No hardware issues and some of the fine control devices of those days are still missing. I had 100% fault free working computers. There were no daily security issues. They had less performance and power, everything took longer. But they worked. Today: PSU failures, mouse driver issues, software activation errors, daily fault messages, daily hardware errors, daily "please downloase the newest --- software update - press "ok". And so on. Graphic driver crashes. The girls have meanwhile retired from computing.

18th August 2014, 12:58 PM
One of the girls question? What is software activation? Do I need it? How can I do it? She was the one who threw her laptop out of the window, a few month later. Another girl - how old is your computer? "19 years?" Is this old? It is equipped with W95. Windows is nt made for everyone. If ms produces for the girls, the kids, the seniours, they'll loose contact to the professionals, who spent most money for the hard and software.

28th August 2014, 12:18 PM
No comments. So I'm right.

1st October 2014, 01:03 AM
Nice thread. (afriwap.com)