"A tablet that will replace my notebook."4.5 starson by TigerJ8
Pros: - Fast, 6 seconds boot up
- Good looking screen
- Stylus - gotta love digital ink!
- Good Wifi performance
- Well made, feels special - rare, at the moment
- Can run all programs and apps I use (Office, Autodesk Inventor, Lightroom, etc.)
Cons: - Runs warm, despite having fans
- Need longer battery life
- Stylus off by 1 mm when used at a slanted angle (my normal writing posture)
- Touch cover does not magnetically stick on to the glass, nor the back
Summary: I was fortunate enough to be able to pick one up on the release day. So far, I have been very pleased with the purchase. I'm an engineering student looking for a machine that I can use like an iPad, but also have the option to run all my design and programming applications. The surface pro suits the need well. So I decided to give it a try. It's very fast, in fact it feels significantly faster than my 2 year old 15" MBP (w/ Intel SSD). With my software installed, and unnecessary start up programs disabled, the computer starts up in 6 seconds, and shuts down in 1. The user interface is butter smooth. The metro side is good for content consumption, like reading, browsing, listening to music, and watching videos. The traditional desktop is good for getting work done such as office, solidworks, inventor, matlab, etc. I don't mind the small buttons on the screen as I can always use the stylus, mouse, or touchpad. It's worth mentioning that the touch cover takes a lot of practice if you want to type fast. I'm glad to finally see the Apple-like butter smooth, colorful user experience brought to a Windows device.
Aside from my positive first hand experience of the device, there are a few issues I want to mention.
- The device runs warm. Although it feels cooler coming from a macbook pro, which also ran hot, i didn't have to write anything on the macbook. I use the stylus on the surface pro a lot, and having less heat on the glass could significantly improve the experience. It's tolerable, but I hope it ran cooler.
- The stylus is not 100% accurate in day-to-day use, even when calibrated. It is technically very accurate even on factory calibration settings - if the stylus is perpendicular to the screen, but the average person doesn't write like that. We usually write at a 45 degree-ish angle. At this angle, the point on the screen is slightly off - usually about 1mm off depending on the location of the screen. This takes some time to get use to, but once I got used to it, my writing definitely look nicer and cleaner on the surface than on paper. The texts are so smooth and bright that they literally pop out of the screen at you.
- The capacitive start button is annoying in portrait mode as my hand always accidentally hit it when I copy notes (unless i flip the device 180 degrees), or read. I understand that it looks good to place the button at the center of the device, but I wish that it was in one of the corners, or that it was a physical button
- I would also like to have a physical orientation lock. The orientation sensor is EXTREMELY sensitive. Leaving the orientation on automatic is impractical.. and WILL drive you insane! FYI, the lock button is usually 4 taps away
- Battery.. It's usually around 4.5 hours for me. I just plug it in whenever I do anything computational intensive. It isn't a big issue for me as I have access to plugs often. I do wish it lasts several hours longer though. So that I won't ever have to think about it.
- The magnetic power cord takes a little getting used to. Unlike the mac one, which will almost fly in at a distance. It seems that the tolerances on the surface are a little too tight and it definitely takes some getting used to.
- Finally, like all devices with a high PPI, initially a lot of applications not optimized for this will look slightly blurry. This should get better with time.
Overall, definitely one of my favorite computers. The things it can do well far outweighs the things it can't. I would recommend this device for anyone who value content creation as much as content consumption, appreciate good quality design. Also, don't stray away from the power grid too often.