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This post has 266 Replies | 21 Followers

Posts 1700
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 5:40 PM

R. Mansfield....David Thomas almost had me a believer again but your honest assessment of the overpriced, overrated, overheated, one-should-really-wait-for-a-refresh or want to be a weight-lifter, before purchasing this machine - has given me pause.  It probably makes an excellent hand-warmer in your cold office in the middle of winter too.  This hardware is a hot brick imho.

The MS Surface Pro is a Turkey - a dud - a fizzle - a raspberry - a lame duck - a.....well you get the picture.  $100 off for this dud still isn't enough!  God bless everyone who bought this or the ATIV with the constant wifi disconnects.

Joshua (who sighs and returns to his corner again)

Posts 490
R. Mansfield | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 5:59 PM

Well, respectfully, having used the Surface Pro for over a month now, I believe I'd have to disagree with your assessment, Joshua.

I've never had my Surface Pro get hot like you describe. Have you actually used one--I mean really used one to do real work for an extended period of time? It gets warm, yes, but so does my MacBook Pro.

Is it too heavy? Well, I don't know. It's certainly lighter than my MBP and easier to carry into a coffee shop to grade papers for a few hours. People said the iPad was too heavy when it first came out. My response was "Go to a gym." All these devices are lighter than traditional notebook computers.

I don't consider the Surface Pro a dud at all. I bought it primarily for grading papers because I love using the stylus to write on Word documents--something I can't do on my Mac. The hardware is topnotch. This little computer is solidly built. The only downside I've had is that I wish the battery would last more than four and a half hours, but that's not the fault of the Surface Pro--it was just a victim of the processors available at the time. I'm sure that will be corrected whenever MS gets around to the second revision, but I have no real complaints.

The issues I've had with Logos may be related to Windows for all I know. I'm not the Mac zealot I used to be, but I may still be a bit biased. Or maybe I just now have better experience using both platforms everyday for the past month. Or the fact that Logos starts up faster on my MBP may relate to my having a faster processor and more RAM on that machine.

Tonight I used the Surface Pro to attend a meeting via Citrix GotoMeeting. It was the first time I'd attempted to use the Pro for this, and as soon as I logged on, I got compliments on my video feed. I would assume the camera on my MBP would be more powerful, but I don't know. Like I said, I got comments tonight when I was on the Pro and I haven't in the past on the MBP. I made no mention ahead of time as to what machine I was using.

Honestly, I believe the Surface Pro (and the Surface RT, for that matter) got a bad rap primarily from tech writers who often don't use computers the way other people do. People I know who actually have Surfaces, and use them for real work, really like them.

Would I recommend one? Absolutely. Is it too expensive? Maybe, but much of the tech I buy I believe is too expensive, and I buy it anyway. If MS were to release a Surface Pro 2 with a better battery tomorrow, I still would not regret my purchase.

RMansfield@mac.com
http://thislamp.com 
youtube.com/user/rfmansfield
twitter/thislamp
facebook.com/rmansfield

Posts 5270
Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 7:54 PM

The Pro is not a dud in my mind either, other than having a poorer battery life compared to the surface RT or an iPad or Galaxy tablet.

-Dan 

Posts 602
Bill Anderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 8:06 PM

Trying to be as charitable as possible, Joshua only posts the same negative points about the Surface Pro in the Logos forum. I have countered many of the same posts with a much more balanced view as an owner of one. It is interesting that R. Mansfield, an actual owner of a SP, shares essentially the same view as I do.

The Surface Pro is not perfect, but it is a great tablet/computer for running the full Logos experience.

Posts 7
Glenna Jackson | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 8:25 PM

I agree.  I think Joshua may be a Mac enthusiast, so his viewpoints will reflect that.  I use Windows at work and home.  Using the same format each place makes life simpler for me.  So that is why I bought Windows phone and Surface Pro.  I simply want to have access to my Logos program from anywhere, and for my purposes the Surface Pro works wonderfully.  I make sure I keep it charged and I have the settings where they don't use as much power, thus keeping it from heating too much.  That and avoiding blocking the vents on the edges.  I bought the wedge wireless mouse and the keyboards, and I am set!  I love the small, powerful wedge mouse!  So, I say, the Surface is a great computer!  And for those who want to use the lesser version of Logos with their Macs, go for it!  The best thing is that we are all believers, sharing the study and teaching of God's word!

Posts 490
R. Mansfield | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 9:17 PM

Well, Glenna, I still consider myself a "Mac enthusiast," too, but I'm not afraid to use or recommend a Surface Pro. 

I would even be interested in trying out a Windows phone, but phones are much more difficult and expensive to "try" out than computers and tablets. 

RMansfield@mac.com
http://thislamp.com 
youtube.com/user/rfmansfield
twitter/thislamp
facebook.com/rmansfield

Posts 602
Bill Anderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 5 2013 9:27 PM

For the following reasons, I have found the Surface Pro to be a compelling product for running Logos:

  • It runs the full desktop application, not a stripped down iOS or Android OS. This is important for folks who want a portable computer to do on the run what a desktop or laptop computer can do.
  • All of your resources can be downloaded to your computer. If you have thousands of resources, you could download all of your resources to an iPad (especially if you purchased a 32GB or higher iPad), but most people only put on to their tablets what they expect to use offline.
  • You have access to all of your resources and the functionality of the desktop application if you do not have an Internet connection.
  • For pastors who work at home and the office, it is possible to make the Surface Pro (or the Samsung ATIV tablet with the same specs as the Surface Pro) your one and only computer. Yes, multi-monitor scaling is a problem with Windows 8, but that will be fixed with Windows 8.1 which is now in public preview prior to release in a couple of months.
  • Highlighting books in the desktop application on the Surface Pro is less cumbersome than the multi-step process of underlining resources in the iOS and Android apps. For me, underlining on these other tablets requires an additional step.
  • While you must use a stylus to navigate some of the small controls of the desktop Logos application, unlike the underpowered Atom processors in lesser-priced Windows 8 tablets, you can actually scroll through windows in Logos with your finger.

Other users could add more reasons.

In the interest of being fair and balanced, IMO here are the negatives of the Surface Pro:

  • Battery life is low for what a tablet should be, but this is a problem with most laptops running the same generation of Intel processors. Haswell will probably help this.
  • The SP runs hot out of the box, but can be cooled by turning down the insanely bright screen to something like 25% and scaling down the processor to run a little slower. By the way, it is incredibly deceiving going into the Microsoft Store or Best Buy and forming one's opinion based upon the temperature of the display units. Display units are set to run at full tilt and in the case of the SP, will skew one to thinking that they always run this way. However, it takes all of five minutes to adjust the advanced power settings. Incredibly, I didn't find that this affected the performance of Logos, and it helped the SP run cooler and longer on battery. By the way, I found the iPad with retina display to also run unacceptably hot, but I also found that turning down the brightness also made a difference.
  • As I mentioned before, the scaling bug in Windows with multiple monitors will have to wait to be addressed in Windows 8.1. 
  • The SP is a little heavy for a tablet, but this is really a matter of personal preference. Some people actually like the "substantial feel" of the SP.

For a first generation effort, Microsoft has done pretty well in producing a well-made, well-running tablet. Did Apple nail the Macbook Air on the first generation? Heavens, no. But look at the Macbook Air now after what, three or so generations? Anyone who is fair ought to realize that first generation products never get it totally right. However, if you never buy the first generation product, you never experience the benefits that I have mentioned. Those benefits for SP owners are why they are satisfied owners of the product.

Posts 1180
Liam | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 6 2013 5:48 AM

Question for all you Surface Pro buffs: Is the SP able to run L5 in portrait layout? Or do you have to look at it in landscape when in L5, and just go to the windows app for portrait? The reason I ask is that portrait just seems better for reading on a tablet. I would like the ability to read in portrait layout, but also have all the functions of the full L5 program. 

Posts 1700
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 6 2013 6:52 AM

Dear Ms. Jackson:

I am not a mac enthusiast.  I am simply a frustrated, yes impatient (God forgive me), poor Divinity School student tired of waiting for cheaper better hardware.  For me the Surface Pro is and will ever be in its original format - a hot expensive brick.

Mr. Anderson is ever the voice of reason and restraint in here (I mean this as a compliment too) and others seem to enjoy their purchase and have no buyer's remorse.  God bless you all....you are apparently "..content in all things" Smile

I like the HP Envy Split X2 but it doesnt have enough memory on board when you detach it from the keyboard.  I want to be able to easily underline/highlight. like the MS Surface does too.  I just content myself with knowing that Logis is barely "touchable" anyway and make do with the silly Android version of Logos 5.0 which is really ONLY good as a reader.

The simple fact remains - there isnt a piece of hardware out yet that is made for Logos 5.0 viewers that works well, cooly, for a long period of time, and permits onboard TABLET ONLY access to one's whole library, yet. 

I hear refresh of the "hot brick" isnt happening until next year....that's a mistake.  Lowering the cost by a hundred dollars is simply not enough to make me buy this brick though.

 

Posts 602
Bill Anderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 6 2013 7:32 AM

Liam Walsh:

Question for all you Surface Pro buffs: Is the SP able to run L5 in portrait layout? Or do you have to look at it in landscape when in L5, and just go to the windows app for portrait? The reason I ask is that portrait just seems better for reading on a tablet. I would like the ability to read in portrait layout, but also have all the functions of the full L5 program. 

Yes, you can run the Logos application in portrait mode on the SP, but the columns will need to be narrow and the text size will be small. You could always bump up the text size in the settings. For me, running Logos in landscape mode works best.

Posts 1939
David Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 6 2013 8:01 AM

Bill Anderson:

Yes, you can run the Logos application in portrait mode on the SP, but the columns will need to be narrow and the text size will be small. You could always bump up the text size in the settings. For me, running Logos in landscape mode works best.

I concur with Bill. The reason I prefer the landscape mode is that I can open the highlighting palette, the book I am reading, and a Bible in 3 side-by-side panes. VERY similar to Bill's screen capture here - http://community.logos.com/forums/p/57269/481818.aspx#481818

Making Disciples!  Logos Ecosystem = Logos8 on Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (Win10), Android app on tablet, FSB on iPhone, [deprecated] Windows App, Proclaim, Faithlife.com, FaithlifeTV via Connect subscription.

Posts 25383
Forum MVP
Dave Hooton | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 3:25 AM

Bill Anderson:
While you must use a stylus to navigate some of the small controls of the desktop Logos application, unlike the underpowered Atom processors in lesser-priced Windows 8 tablets, you can actually scroll through windows in Logos with your finger.

Not sure that is a plus for any device, especially as you still need a stylus. I've been pleasantly surprised by the "underpowered" Atom processor as the dual core version on the Asus VivoTab Smart allows other functions whilst Logos is indexing (purely as a test of its effectiveness!). Using and paging a full screen (F11) for reading is a pleasant experience. Yes, the Pro will beat it for speed but the VivoTab definitely does not come across as underpowered and it is less than half the price of the Pro!

Dave
===

Windows 10 & Android 8

Posts 1700
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 8:21 AM

Mr. Hooten, won't you have buyers remorse soon if they come out with something like a cheaper cooler reader-friendly Surface Pro 8.1 Machine?

I wish the cost would come down.  I do not see anyone commenting on how readable the SP is seeing how its backlit and I would imagine tiring on the eyes after awhile.

I keep waiting and hoping and dreaming.

Posts 274
Mike W | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 8:45 AM

Dave Hooton:
I've been pleasantly surprised by the "underpowered" Atom processor as the dual core version on the Asus VivoTab Smart allows other functions whilst Logos is indexing (purely as a test of its effectiveness!).

Do you use Logos on the internal drive or on a SD card?  The MS store has a very good deal on this right now (especially when you consider Office 2013 comes with it) but with only 64g space for a decent sized Logos library would seem tight. My normal reading layout is two panes with a total of 10 tabs and I'm curious I would get acceptable performance on this device. (as a point of reference, I am happy with the performance of Logos on an ipad and normally use a 2 year old Macbook that I think runs Logos very well).                Thanks

Posts 25383
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Dave Hooton | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 2:51 PM

JoshInRI:
won't you have buyers remorse soon if they come out with something like a cheaper cooler reader-friendly Surface Pro 8.1 Machine?

No, Mr Leider. This is my wife's computer. When Ultrabooks / Touch Tablets get more realistic with their pricing then I'll consider replacing my Notebook.

I was impressed by the Pro, including its readability (ten minutes in the shop), but not by its price, nor by the price of its keyboard/cover.

Dave
===

Windows 10 & Android 8

Posts 25383
Forum MVP
Dave Hooton | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 3:29 PM

Mike W:
Do you use Logos on the internal drive or on a SD card?

My wife's Logos requires less than 1 GB, so the internal drive has 28 GB free. I could install my own Library and still have 14 GB free. Other programs include Firefox, some utilities and Office 2003, Word & Outlook.

Mike W:
My normal reading layout is two panes with a total of 10 tabs and I'm curious I would get acceptable performance on this device. (as a point of reference, I am happy with the performance of Logos on an ipad and normally use a 2 year old Macbook that I think runs Logos very well).  

With 3 tiles and 15 tabs performance is acceptable in terms of loading Logos after a computer reboot (always the slowest, but takes 45s) and overall responsiveness. Users with more than 2000 resources also report acceptable performance (presumably with more collections, bibles & tags).

Dave
===

Windows 10 & Android 8

Posts 1700
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 5:12 PM

I return often to a local branch of a nationwide chain of electronics stores and tried the Surface Pro yet again...this time going to Biblia.com 

The SP (not the RT version) would not permit me to grow the font and the slider bar to increase the font would only move so far - with difficulty.  Worse the backlighting and the overhead lighting made the screen hard to read and it tires the eyes quickly.

Also, I need a better dpi (screen resolution) and something I can hook up easily to my Samsung (non-touchscreen) larger horizontal widescreen monitor and I keep thinking thats not simple because of windows scaling issues.

My chief complaint is not the lack of volume on the SP and not even that it can heat up a bit and has inferior battery life - but is now primarily - it is just not readable as in not sharp enough to read my textbooks in Logos and things like Kindle or Googlebooks.

Before everyone suggests a Kindle, Nook, etc...I am seeking an all purpose Windows laptop replacement preferably with a detachable keyboard and one that functions primarily as an ereader - until I want the power and search capabilities of Logos.  Yup I want it all and affordable too.Big Smile

Still waiting and hoping.  (Light sigh)

Posts 1939
David Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Aug 23 2013 6:48 PM

My chief complaint is not the lack of volume on the SP and not even that it can heat up a bit and has inferior battery life - but is now primarily - it is just not readable as in not sharp enough to read my textbooks in Logos and things like Kindle or Googlebooks.

1920x1080 pixels is plenty sharp for me on a 10" Surface Pro screen. (And that is at 125% scaling. If I do 100% scaling the fonts look even sharper, but quite small for touch interaction)

Making Disciples!  Logos Ecosystem = Logos8 on Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (Win10), Android app on tablet, FSB on iPhone, [deprecated] Windows App, Proclaim, Faithlife.com, FaithlifeTV via Connect subscription.

Posts 1939
David Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Oct 5 2013 10:32 AM

JoshInRI:

I return often to a local branch of a nationwide chain of electronics stores and tried the Surface Pro yet again...this time going to Biblia.com 

The SP (not the RT version) would not permit me to grow the font and the slider bar to increase the font would only move so far - with difficulty.  Worse the backlighting and the overhead lighting made the screen hard to read and it tires the eyes quickly.

Also, I need a better dpi (screen resolution) and something I can hook up easily to my Samsung (non-touchscreen) larger horizontal widescreen monitor and I keep thinking thats not simple because of windows scaling issues.

My chief complaint is not the lack of volume on the SP and not even that it can heat up a bit and has inferior battery life - but is now primarily - it is just not readable as in not sharp enough to read my textbooks in Logos and things like Kindle or Googlebooks.

Before everyone suggests a Kindle, Nook, etc...I am seeking an all purpose Windows laptop replacement preferably with a detachable keyboard and one that functions primarily as an ereader - until I want the power and search capabilities of Logos.  Yup I want it all and affordable too.Big Smile

Still waiting and hoping.  (Light sigh)

JoshInRI, your wishes may be one step closer to reality. Dell appears to be offering a new Win8 (non ATOM option). By picking the specs that you want, you may be able to beat the Surface Pro 2's price if you are willing to compromise on certain specs - http://www.informationweek.com/hardware/handheld/microsoft-surface-vs-dell-venue-tablet-r/240162269 

Making Disciples!  Logos Ecosystem = Logos8 on Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (Win10), Android app on tablet, FSB on iPhone, [deprecated] Windows App, Proclaim, Faithlife.com, FaithlifeTV via Connect subscription.

Posts 1700
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Oct 6 2013 3:51 PM

Mr. Thomas....this looks quite promising.  Thanks.

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