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[The Verge] Microsoft Surface Book - Page 26

post #251 of 260
Mmmm, yea, I think that rumor is just people being too hopeful. tongue.gif

Looking at picking up the i5/256GB/8GB model, though Best Buy's site doesn't list them as in stock till at least Thursday. I may call and see what's up.
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post #252 of 260
I really kinda want one. But I also really kinda want the New Dell XPS, which appears to have all the same features (except for being detachable) for a thousand dollars less.

Has anybody here actually gotten a Surface Book yet? And if so, how many times have you actually detached it to use as a standalone tablet?
post #253 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisnyc75 View Post

I'm guessing the "twice as fast" claim is based on the highest end Surface Book, which I'd wager has the new gtx 980 for laptops in it. .

So close. :>
post #254 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisnyc75 View Post

I really kinda want one. But I also really kinda want the New Dell XPS, which appears to have all the same features (except for being detachable) for a thousand dollars less.

Has anybody here actually gotten a Surface Book yet? And if so, how many times have you actually detached it to use as a standalone tablet?

I've got one, I actually had the Dell XPS 13 before moving to the Surface Book.

It's nifty to detach the tablet to show a coworker something instead of having them walk around the desk, it's also more comfortable to use in tablet mode when on the couch/bed.
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post #255 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisnyc75 View Post

I really kinda want one. But I also really kinda want the New Dell XPS, which appears to have all the same features (except for being detachable) for a thousand dollars less.

Has anybody here actually gotten a Surface Book yet? And if so, how many times have you actually detached it to use as a standalone tablet?

I've been looking at this same comparison, it's tough.
post #256 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by anti-clockwize View Post

I've been looking at this same comparison, it's tough.

Actually, I just this minute checked and Dell has finally released the pricing on the New [skylake] XPS models.... the 15" touch screen model costs about the same as the top end Surface Book, and the 13" touch model costs only slightly less, but isn't as powerful (no dgpu). I'm hoping that's just the day-of-release pricing, because at those prices I'm leaning toward the Surface Book if anything. The Broadwell XPS models are now drastically cheaper, but from what I've read about Skylake it's probably worth the premium to get the vastly improved performance & power efficiency?

When it was looking like the XPS would cost a bit less, I was leaning heavily toward the XPS because I really like that you get the 15" display panel in a 13" form factor chassis. But at the same or higher cost, I'm inclined to think the Surface Book might be the better value. The Surface Pro 4 prices are slightly more reasonable, but I don't think I'm a fan of the small display, or trying to render at that resolution with just Intel integrated graphics.

At the end of the day, I really don't NEED either one - I just need something portable for when I travel and to serve as a backup/alternate system if & when my main desktop is on the fritz. But time has taught me that it's a bad idea to skimp on buying a laptop because whatever I get is the one I'll be using for the next 7-10 years since it's not [currently] my "main" pc (for example, the one I'm just now getting around to replacing is a VAIO I've had since 2009, and I'm only now replacing it because the 230m gpu in it just isn't enough to power modern applications to my liking anymore). I'll probably just sit tight for another month or two and see what happens with the prices during & after the hype and the holiday shopping season pass.

I appreciate the insights from all, though. smile.gif
Edited by chrisnyc75 - 11/10/15 at 11:15pm
post #257 of 260
Anandtech's review is out. Shame Microsoft put a a gimped TLC SSD in half of the Surface Books:
Quote:
There is some bad news though. On notebooks, it is not uncommon to see components dual-sourced from multiple vendors. This can be for a number of reasons, and recently we have seen it in the iPhone 6s which sources it’s SoC from two vendors. Microsoft has gone down this road with the Surface Book, meaning there are going to be two versions of SSD available. The first is the very fast Toshiba that we’ve just seen, but the second is not quite what I would have expected in a high end device.

Microsoft has gone with the Samsung PM951, which is similar to the Samsung SM951 that we’ve reviewed in the past. It is still a PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe drive, but there is one crucial difference between it and the SM951. The PM951 uses Triple-Level Cell (TLC) NAND rather than Multi-Level Cell in the SM951. TLC has some drawbacks, which are lower durability and slower write speeds. I’ll recommend reading our TLC primer to get into the technical reasons for this, but I have some concerns with TLC NAND being used in the Surface Book in particular, mostly because of its position in the marketplace.

The Toshiba XG3 (MLC-based):



The Samsung PM951 (TLC-based, no SLC cache):



You can see that read speeds are still quite good, even surpassing the Toshiba some of the time, but write speeds are quite a bit lower. In particular, the sequential writes can be less than half the speed of the XG3 drive. This can be compensated for by using some SLC (Single-Level Cell) as a cache, but it does not appear that the PM951 has any caching available to it.

.....

It was a decision done for the wrong reasons. It’s great that Microsoft has paid enough attention to storage to move to NVMe based drives, but then they have created a headache for themselves by sourcing drives with such different performance levels. If they had used the more expensive Samsung SM951, I don’t think there would be a discussion here. Many customers may not notice the speed differences, but that does not excuse the decision. Some customers will notice. On a premium device like the Surface Book, I would expect only the best, and while the drive may meet their internal performance levels, a cacheless TLC based SSD in a premium device is not necessary.

Hope early adopters didn't get screwed with the Samsung. Hopefully I can inspect my SB before I buy.
Edited by ikjadoon - 11/11/15 at 12:33am
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post #258 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post

Anandtech's review is out. Shame Microsoft put a a gimped TLC SSD in half of the Surface Books:
Hope early adopters didn't get screwed with the Samsung. Hopefully I can inspect my SB before I buy.

I have a hard time seeing somebody being "screwed" with 1,500MB/s sequential reads and 600MB/s sequential writes.

That being said, if I bought a Surface Book and saw it had the Samsung SSD, I'd keep returning it until I got one with the Toshiba. Anybody else though....will never know, and certainly never know the difference.

I'm loving that screen though!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anandtech 
Microsoft has promised 100% sRGB coverage as well as individually calibrated panels, and it looks like they have done very well. The Core i7 model in particular, which is a retail sample, has no issues at all with the display accuracy. It’s interesting that they did not go with IGZO technology with the Surface Book like they did with the Surface Pro 4, but the Panasonic panel has amazing contrast, and the backlighting provides great brightness despite the amorphous silicon TFT. The black levels are very good on this display, and accuracy is certainly good enough for almost anyone’s needs. The high accuracy, combined with the high resolution, make the Surface Book one of the nicest displays around, and it’s a pleasure to use.

And that battery life for a 3000x2000 resolution screen. Very nice.
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post #259 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by lacrossewacker View Post

I have a hard time seeing somebody being "screwed" with 1,500MB/s sequential reads and 600MB/s sequential writes.

That being said, if I bought a Surface Book and saw it had the Samsung SSD, I'd keep returning it until I got one with the Toshiba. Anybody else though....will never know, and certainly never know the difference.

I'm loving that screen though!
And that battery life for a 3000x2000 resolution screen. Very nice.

That's the 512GB model; there's enough NAND chips to even make SD cards look fast, man. You should see the $1500/1700 128GB model:



From a 128GB Surface Pro 4, but it's the same drive. So, yeah, getting an SSD in the "ultimate laptop" that is inching towards $2k that writes slower than a 7200rpm hard disk: getting screwed.

Sure, it's just sequential writes and not 4K writes, but wait til that drive is half full. I think we'll start seeing below 100MB/s writes. On a 2015 NVMe SSD. thumb.gif
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post #260 of 260
Quote:
Originally Posted by ikjadoon View Post

That's the 512GB model; there's enough NAND chips to even make SD cards look fast, man. You should see the $1500/1700 128GB model:



From a 128GB Surface Pro 4, but it's the same drive. So, yeah, getting an SSD in the "ultimate laptop" that is inching towards $2k that writes slower than a 7200rpm hard disk: getting screwed.

Sure, it's just sequential writes and not 4K writes, but wait til that drive is half full. I think we'll start seeing below 100MB/s writes. On a 2015 NVMe SSD. thumb.gif

Oh it definitely sucks for BENCHMARKS for that 128GB model. (not that I'd ever buy a $1,700 laptop that only had 128GB to be with...)

But...with 128GB model, you may be looking at Microsoft Office users. Access Times are really ALL that matters. Does it boot fast, does it open Outlook quickly, does the battery last long. (I'm coming from a previous life where a company would buy these for System Administrators and IT managers to take with them to conferences...)

For that, especially the i5 model, it excel in.

It's not good for benchmarks, doesn't mean it's bad (or even noticeable) for day to day work. It's fast enough to not bottleneck almost every use case for your average user.

Heck, even moving your video library to/from the Surface Pro (from you media server or whatever) will be bottle-necked by your 1Gbps network connection before the SSD performance impacts anything.

Would I prefer nice and fancy benchmarks? Yes.

Would it matter to me if it was the worst performer in all benchmarks, but perceptually the same as the absolutely best? Nope.

This is still a premium product nonetheless.
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