Surface Pro X vs. Surface Pro 7 - which to get?

Discussion in 'Microsoft' started by JoeS, Oct 3, 2019.

  1. desertlap

    desertlap Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Additionally. I was looking at one of my engineers notes from the meeting just now and he apparently went in to a bit more depth on the 32 bit/64 bit i86 emulation issue.

    So first of all it is possible to emulate a 64 bit environment, but it is neither practical nor directional.
    1. It would require two different emulation engines- So imagine a worst case scenario where a user has a 32 bit i86, 64 bit i86 and native apps all running at the same time. RAM requirements alone make that problematic.

    2. Related to that, since apps running in a fixed size memory partition went away years ago, RAM management with a 64 bit emulated app would be difficult, and multiple apps would make it ridiculous.

    3. The reason they even have 32 bit emulation is down to the reality that there aren't a lot of ARM native apps yet especially in the consumer space versus business. And 32 bit emulation can be reasonably contained within "standard hardware configurations."

    Their response to developers and key customers that ask about 64 bit x86 emulation is "let us help you make your app ARM native"
     
  2. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    One thing that's not clear to me is x64 support. If I recall correctly, x64 emulation is simply not going to happen, period - right? If true (seems like it, see @desertlap's post above), they're kind of painting themselves into a corner where some legacy apps (think 64-bit only engineering apps) will never work on their "Pro" devices.

    Maybe the message is "Do you engineering on an x86 desktop PC", which, you know, fair enough, but I've been very happy with x86 convertibles that run heavy simulation code well enough to be useful. I don't really want to give up that power to join the ARM revolution!
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2019
  3. Steve S

    Steve S Pen Pro - Senior Member Super Moderator

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    Seen at the Microsoft store:

    So, my local store may have not yet been blessed with an actual Pro X, but they've got the next best thing! It's a large white plastic frame that encloses a Surface Pro (possibly a 6 but could be a 7) so that all you can see is the display. The frame has its own pedestal so that the screen is held at a convenient viewing angle. The display is running a video loop that shows all the Pro X features; a price card sits primly next to the frame.

    The whole thing is kind of humorous and the frame is (relatively) massive. In fact, the size of the device was what first caught my attention; otherwise I probably wouldn't have noticed it. I can't imagine that this will be a very effective tool to help the store sell Pro X's...

    OTOH, @desertlap 's recent comments probably explain the problem; the Pro X's software load is still being worked on...
     
  4. Marty

    Marty Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    It's actually more than just engineering CAD applications that are 64-bit only. Affinity Photo/Designer, which are staple Adobe CC alternatives for artists, are also locked to x86-64.

    Despite numerous threads like this requesting an ARM-targeted build, the developers always respond with the standard line of "Currently, we only support INTEL and AMD processors. Thanks".

    I don't know what's with the x86 inertia, but it has the uncanny ability to trap developers in the desktop-exclusive mentality. Take the numerous threads calling for the Affinity Photo iOS UI being brought to Windows tablets. Again, it's met with a completely dispassionate: "We have no plans to re-create the iPad UI on Surface devices right now". No further comment.

    It's like developers are trying to say "You like x86 software? Well good, you can stay with your beloved and die."
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
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  5. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    In the case of 32bit vs 64bit I can't really blame the developers though. Moving from 32bit to 64bit was progress, asking developers to now go back to also compiling for 32bit because MS decides to release a top-tier device without 64bit support feels a bit silly.

    In a way it's lucky that there's still so much 32bit code out there, otherwise the Pro X would have been DOA. I guess the hope is that this thing is such a success that there's a drive to compile natively for ARM as well. That may be easy if code is still actively being developed, but for older software it's not going to happen. Interesting times ahead!
     
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  6. Marty

    Marty Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    That's why I think they should have reversed the pricing: it should be $749 for the SPX, and $999 for the SP7.

    That would trigger the impulse buy on all those guys/gals deciding. "Ooo, that black looks so cool...I'm definitely switchin' from that stuffy, over-priced old Surface." ;)
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2019
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  7. dstrauss

    dstrauss Comic Relief Senior Member

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    Am I wrong,or is not the ARM processor a 64bit devicein its own right? Constantly seeing the performance of the Apple Ax software on ARM, I have to wonder if the message being written by Microsoft isn't - get with the native ARM program or die.

    If that is what is happening, I may reconsider a pre-order on the Surface Pro X myself. Unfortunately I stil have my eye further down the road to smaller solutions.
     
  8. alextrela182

    alextrela182 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    I'm on the same boat.

    Neither.

    -Pro 7 those huge bezels +lack thunderbolt support is deal breaker.
    -X I'm not gone be experiment with those ARM questioble concept by MS.
    Without proper,friendly and functional touch UI,without proper and native app support and with such a poor app store.

    On the other hand all of those emulation for working exe app sounds to me like kids playing tools.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro
     
  9. desertlap

    desertlap Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The SQ1 and all of Apples chips are 64 bit as are current Qualcomm processors.

    Any native apps built now would be 64 bit and in fact Apple made the requirement for all apps to be 64 bit a few years ago.
     
  10. jhoff80

    jhoff80 Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    Just was looking at VPN options in UWP out of curiosity. Even though I'm not going to be getting the Pro X, Windows on ARM is still interesting to me. Looks like even AnyConnect is limited for some configurations, since the UWP version doesn't support SAML 2.0-based single-sign-on. The Android and iOS versions support this, but not the UWP version.

    Some other apps I was looking at that are x64 only are (in addition to the Affinity apps already mentioned): Leonardo, ArtRage Lite, Python, Autodesk Sketchbook, Photoshop Elements, Blender, Krita, Movie Edit Pro, and I'm sure there are others.

    Again, not stuff I'd necessarily expect to run on an ARM64 device, but for example it seems like most of the high-end desktop / Centennial apps in the store are x64 only.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2019
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