Surface Book Owners Thread

mi7chy

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So close to getting a SP4. Keyboard is nucer than SB. Traded in an old Pentium III laptop at Best Buy for $100 off coupon and also qualify for 10% off. Definitely want the fanless Core M3 but hesitant about 4GB only and hope to get lucky with minimal backlight bleed. Only thing that will change my mind is someone releasing a SAMOLED equivalent.
 

heatlesssun

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So close to getting a SP4. Keyboard is nucer than SB.

Really? I've not tried the new Type Cover, will probably get one for my SP3 though with the finger print reader. I've really love the keyboard on the Surface Book. It's the best keyboard I've ever used on a laptop. I actually like typing on it more than my old Logitech G19 gaming keyboard which I've liked for some time. Keyboard preferences are very personal though I don't know if any two people really get the same experience from a keyboard. Trackpads I think are much more objective subject though still very personal. I kind of like the responsiveness of the trackpad on the Surface Pro 3 line of Type Covers more than even the Surface Book.
 

mi7chy

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Having come from mechanical switch keyboards and original Thinkpads I'm more sensitive to keyboards. Ideal is the right feel, resistance, travel and audible feedback which are better with the Type Cover 4 while the SB has very little. But what do you expect for a keyboard you have to buy versus one that is bundled for free. Fortunately it's not as crappy as the awful 12" Macbook or Yoga 900 with virtually no travel so you end up with missing input because you're pressing the laptop shell. One day when miniaturization allows fitting a dGPU inside the Type Cover the SP will be better than the SB across the board. :p
 
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RCGodward

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Finally got mine. i7/16/512 Can't say enough good things about the screen. Best I've ever seen. Keyboard on mine is a bit soft for my tastes, but I'm adjusting to it quickly. I need one of these SSDs in my desktop.
 

x3sphere

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Really? I've not tried the new Type Cover, will probably get one for my SP3 though with the finger print reader. I've really love the keyboard on the Surface Book. It's the best keyboard I've ever used on a laptop. I actually like typing on it more than my old Logitech G19 gaming keyboard which I've liked for some time. Keyboard preferences are very personal though I don't know if any two people really get the same experience from a keyboard. Trackpads I think are much more objective subject though still very personal. I kind of like the responsiveness of the trackpad on the Surface Pro 3 line of Type Covers more than even the Surface Book.

Been really happy with the SB keyboard too. Key travel is great and the buttons don't feel mushy to me. I've not tried the new type cover yet, but this KB is much better than what I'm used to on laptops. I still prefer the KB I use on my desktop (Corsair K70), but I wasn't expecting it to top a mechanical keyboard anyway.
 

Henri108

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Finally got mine. i7/16/512 Can't say enough good things about the screen. Best I've ever seen. Keyboard on mine is a bit soft for my tastes, but I'm adjusting to it quickly. I need one of these SSDs in my desktop.

It's a PCIe model. Around 1$/GB is what you can expect to pay for a consumer grade one.
 

Henri108

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The Intel 750's are 390$ for 400GB. But apparently the new ones are getting a lot cheaper. Still a lot more expensive than Sata SSD's.
 

tangoseal

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Having come from mechanical switch keyboards and original Thinkpads I'm more sensitive to keyboards. Ideal is the right feel, resistance, travel and audible feedback which are better with the Type Cover 4 while the SB has very little. But what do you expect for a keyboard you have to buy versus one that is bundled for free. Fortunately it's not as crappy as the awful 12" Macbook or Yoga 900 with virtually no travel so you end up with missing input because you're pressing the laptop shell. One day when miniaturization allows fitting a dGPU inside the Type Cover the SP will be better than the SB across the board. :p

Keyboard in Surface Book is not bundled for free.. the F'ing thing cost me $1899.00
 

TimothyB

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I'm considering a Surface Book to replace a Surface Pro 3.

I have questions regarding the pen calibration combined with different display orientations.

If I recall, on the SP3, there was only one calibration for the pen, for landscape with the Windows touch key on the right side. But if you rotated the display, it would be slightly off. I noticed this after attempting to rotate the display 180 due to the Windows touch key having no palm rejection. Same with portrait modes. On a Cintiq, like a Companion, if you rotate the screen, it will request a new calibration and remember it for that orientation.

Questions:
On the Surface Book, they advertise attaching the display backwards to close the screen facing outwards. At that point, the dispaly is technically used upside down. Does the calibration for the pen compensate for this? Any other noticeable calibration issues when using it in tablet mode in portrait vs landscape?
 

heatlesssun

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Questions:
On the Surface Book, they advertise attaching the display backwards to close the screen facing outwards. At that point, the dispaly is technically used upside down. Does the calibration for the pen compensate for this? Any other noticeable calibration issues when using it in tablet mode in portrait vs landscape?

I use my Surface Book like that all of the time and pen accuracy is fine for me. I'm strictly a note taker and not an artist so I wouldn't be as sensitive to exact calibration. I go with the default calibration but it can be customized for all four orientations I believe.
 

heatlesssun

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Another round of updates for the Surface Pro 4/Surface Book that are supposed to help the nagging sleep and power issues:

Surface Pro 4: Microsoft Surface Pro 4 update history | Surface firmware updates
Surface Book: Microsoft Surface Book update history | Surface firmware updates

The updates should be on Windows Update. Haven't done any sleep testing yet but on thing does appear to be fixed for the Surface Book that's been annoying. When my Surface Book had been detached when docked to the Surface Dock and then reattached, the Book continued to run on battery power, discharging the battery and not charging. Happened 100% of the time unless the device had been restarted before reattaching. That issue appears to finally be fixed so I'm hopeful the sleep power management issues have been fixed.
 

StryderxX

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Another round of updates for the Surface Pro 4/Surface Book that are supposed to help the nagging sleep and power issues:

Surface Pro 4: Microsoft Surface Pro 4 update history | Surface firmware updates
Surface Book: Microsoft Surface Book update history | Surface firmware updates

The updates should be on Windows Update. Haven't done any sleep testing yet but on thing does appear to be fixed for the Surface Book that's been annoying. When my Surface Book had been detached when docked to the Surface Dock and then reattached, the Book continued to run on battery power, discharging the battery and not charging. Happened 100% of the time unless the device had been restarted before reattaching. That issue appears to finally be fixed so I'm hopeful the sleep power management issues have been fixed.
If you apply these updates and reply back that the power issues are 100% resolved I'll go out and get a new Surface Book again.
 

heatlesssun

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If you apply these updates and reply back that the power issues are 100% resolved I'll go out and get a new Surface Book again.

I'll do some testing and let you know. Another issue that involves the dock that's not fixed from my testing. If I undock while the device is in the dock and the device is asleep, it will often crash unless given time to wake up. Only seems to happen when the device is docked, not just simply plugged in, and in my case I'm using an external monitor. That one isn't such a big deal but still obviously something that shouldn't happen.

It really looks like this more Intel having issues with Skylake than with the Surface Book/Pro 4 and Windows 10. Most of these updates were for Intel hardware and power issues are known across other Skylake devices. Not excusing Microsoft entirely as Edge seems to have had it's issues with the power problems. Maybe they and Intel should have let the mobile Skylake stuff back longer, it clearly has been buggy on the power management side. But if the sleep improves enough that will be the biggest overall issue for most.

But another quirky thing I just happened the other day related to the new Hulu Windows 10 universal app. For whatever reasons there's stuttering in playback and again it's got something to do with the Intel HD 520 because when I manually active the nVidia the playback is perfect. Fortunately there is the Hulu website, unfortunately it's still on Flash and not nearly as energy efficient as the app. That's one thing about video playback with Windows Store apps, WAY more battery friendly than anything on the desktop that I've seen. The Hulu app issue doesn't happen on my Surface 3. Haven't tested the Surface Pro 3 yet with the new Hulu app but it's running the latest Redstone insider build.

So Intel still has some work to do with Skylake drivers but things are much better than at launch when it comes to stability.
 

DeaconFrost

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Anyone have the Surface Dock? The one shaped like a brick? I have two Surface Books and both users have two docks...one for the office and one for home. Not one of them can output to two monitors at the same time, even with active mini-DisplayPort to DVI adapters. I opened a case with Microsoft and have to wait for the Engineering team to get back to me.
 

dpoverlord

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Hey guys!

How do you like your surface books? I ordered the 1tb $3,199 model and the new XPS 15. Debating which one I'll keep. The main drawback of the surface book for me is how people are stating the GPU is a POS and you can't run anything on it.

I don't plan on using this as my main computer, I just need a good laptops I love how it undocks and can be put on the go. It has everything I have always been looking for except a crap GPU (considering the $ you spend), and it makes no sense the MicroSD card does not insert fully like the surface Pro.

What are your thoughts?

I made another post New Laptop Surface Book VS Dell XPS 15 VS Dell Inspiron 7000(9550 skylake) for on the go and games
 

StryderxX

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Hey guys!

How do you like your surface books? I ordered the 1tb $3,199 model and the new XPS 15. Debating which one I'll keep. The main drawback of the surface book for me is how people are stating the GPU is a POS and you can't run anything on it.

I don't plan on using this as my main computer, I just need a good laptops I love how it undocks and can be put on the go. It has everything I have always been looking for except a crap GPU (considering the $ you spend), and it makes no sense the MicroSD card does not insert fully like the surface Pro.

What are your thoughts?

I made another post New Laptop Surface Book VS Dell XPS 15 VS Dell Inspiron 7000(9550 skylake) for on the go and games
You don't need a new thread for this. The Surface Book is a poor choice to play games on the go. Stick with the Dell XPS 15 or a true gaming laptop.
 

heatlesssun

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Thanks, it's just still so weird they only used a 1gb gpu

Yeah, there must have been some reason for it. Wouldn't think it would be cost related.

I wanted to have the new firmware installed for a while and see what the reactions were of others to get a feel for how effective the February was. Overall I've very pleased when not docking to an external monitor. Not only are the sleep issues resolved but I think overall battery life has been increased and stability around screen detaching has been improved. Very solid there now.

Docking with an external monitor is still not there. After a while the HP monitor I'm using simply won't wake and I have to reboot to get it to reconnect. I can use devcon to restart the HD 520 and that will get the monitor to wake but that seems to impact system stability and generally doing the HD 520 driver restart I'll get a blue screen sometime afterwards, generally when detaching the screen.
 

heatlesssun

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So Paul Thurrott whose been a very vocal critic of the Surface Book since its launch because of the power management issues is now glowing about it as it seems the power issues have been resolved in his testing: Microsoft Surface Book (Core i7/16 GB/512 GB) Review - Thurrott.com

Put simply, Surface Book is one of the best PCs in the market today, and one of the best PCs ever made. It is well-designed, powerful, gets great battery life, and is attractive in ways that don’t mimic Apple or other designs at all. It is a triumph, albeit a belated one.

I’ve waited a long time to write these words, but Surface Book is highly recommended.
 

TimothyB

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So I got my Surface Book a few days ago and really concerned about the latch mechanism.

Often I hear a prolonged ticking/clicking sound on the right hinge after the clipboard is released, usually when titled all the way back with the most weight on the hinge. Not to be confused with the normal initial click you are suppose to hear, again depending on the angle the display is at. It will continue clicking until it is removed or reattached itself.

Anyone give any feedback? Seems like a defect, correct?

At the moment I'm testing the device with the software I use to make sure it's a good fit before attempting any replacement.

This is an i7/16gb/512gb, and lot number 1603. All updates have been completed.

Here's a short video:

 

heatlesssun

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Anyone give any feedback? Seems like a defect, correct?

I have the same model and I've never heard such a sound with mine which I've had since launch. This is the first time I've heard of such an issue and definitely think it's a defect and I would swap it out.
 

TimothyB

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I have the same model and I've never heard such a sound with mine which I've had since launch. This is the first time I've heard of such an issue and definitely think it's a defect and I would swap it out.

Thank you for confirming that you never heard such a sound since launch on your model. It's easy to recreate over and over on mine. I've setup an RMA for it. Sigh, not a good start.
 

heatlesssun

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Thank you for confirming that you never heard such a sound since launch on your model. It's easy to recreate over and over on mine. I've setup an RMA for it. Sigh, not a good start.

Sorry to hear that. The biggest problem with the Surface Book is that it's a very complex device and it has it's rough spots for sure. But when it's working well, it's marvelous. It's the kind of thing it seems people really love if it's working well or really hate when it's not because of its price.
 

StryderxX

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So I got my Surface Book a few days ago and really concerned about the latch mechanism.

Often I hear a prolonged ticking/clicking sound on the right hinge after the clipboard is released, usually when titled all the way back with the most weight on the hinge. Not to be confused with the normal initial click you are suppose to hear, again depending on the angle the display is at. It will continue clicking until it is removed or reattached itself.

Anyone give any feedback? Seems like a defect, correct?

At the moment I'm testing the device with the software I use to make sure it's a good fit before attempting any replacement.

This is an i7/16gb/512gb, and lot number 1603. All updates have been completed.

Here's a short video:

That sounds like a time bomb! :eek:
 

TimothyB

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While waiting for RMA, might as well continue testing it.

Initial thoughts on performance, "I must be doing something wrong". The Surface Book i7/16/512 wih dGPU seems less smooth and responsive than my experience with a Surface Pro 3 i3/4/64, interns of using the pen with art programs.

I disabled flicks, disabled visual feedback, disabled long right click, installed WinTab. Did I miss something?

Photoshop seemed fine at first with 2B pencil test. It keeps up with the pen well enough, it's just the delayed start that ruins it. I couldn't do quick short strokes, or anything fast. Same results in Art Rage 4.5. Similar results with the clipboard detached too.

Modo, 3D modeling software, also was a sub-par experience over the Pro 3. On the Pro 3, using the pen to rotate, zoom and pan was very responsive. On the Book, it's jumpy or stutters each time before catching up to pen. Frame seems inconsistent on the Book and possibly lower, but I'll need to test that later. Not less than a minute in, I some how managed to corrupt the viewport, with red noise everywhere.

Going to do more tests tonigh hopefully. But is there something I need to do? The unit was on battery and in balance power mode.

Battery life estimates have also been all over the place. Often it keeps telling me 1.5 to 2.5 hrs left when there should be more than double that. Example would be just two minutes sketching in Art Rafe with basic pencil. Screen is at 72% during this.


One thing I was impressed with, while not so much a Surface feature, was using Steam to stream a game from my desktop to play games using a GTX 980 Ti anywhere in the house. It defaulted a game to 1080p and at what seemed like 60fps with no perceptable lag. Impressive.

Update: The Book is obviously faster than the SP3, but test after test, when the pen is involved, things start to act sluggish.
 
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