Surface Pro 8 for Music Production...maybe

Anything about MUSIC but doesn't fit into the forums above.
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KVRian
1268 posts since 16 Jan, 2004

Post Wed Sep 22, 2021 2:12 pm

I've been waiting for a new Surface Pro (the tablet, not the Surface Book laptop), which was announced today. The previous versions seemed like they wouldn't be up to the task for music production, for my needs. I think the thermal throttling was the thing that I was concerned about the most, plus, I think the surface pro 7 was only a dual core CPU, if I'm not mistaken. I've never owned/used a Surface Pro. But I did own a laptop at one point that was dual core, and it didn't work well for me, for music production.

I currently run 2 laptops, and am usually working on the smaller one (Dell XPS 13), which has a i7-1185G7 CPU, which is quad core, 16GB RAM, and it holds up really well for me. It was bought in 2017 I think.

I think the specs on the new Surface Pro 8 (i7-8550U) quad core CPU will probably work well, possibly better. The CPU is better - I think it will come down to thermal throttling. The SP8 does have a new cooling system (active cooling/fan, vapor chamber, etc).

Anyway, I think we're finally at the point where, for my usage at least, I could do music production on a tablet. I tend to use a good amount of synths/vsts, and some sample libraries. I'm not trying to create a large orchestral template in my DAW and try to do sound track work or big scores. But I have done some tests on my current machine, and I can get like 50 Serums playing a chord with just a default/sawtooth patch... and so that's my typical test/benchmark. Not super scientific, but that usually lets me know if it's viable for what I do.

I've always wanted to be work on a tablet as my main machine - detach from monitor and take the thing on the couch for just noodling/surfing, but when on my desk, attached to monitor and power, have something that will keep up with music production.

I may decide to pull the trigger on one soon. I will probably wait for some performance articles/videos, and see how the thermals do.

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KVRer
12 posts since 22 Sep, 2021 from Kraków, Poland

Post Mon Sep 27, 2021 9:35 am

Surface is amazing for music production - especially with the usage of touch native DAWs like Bitwig. Definitely worth any penny.

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KVRian

Topic Starter

1268 posts since 16 Jan, 2004

Post Tue Sep 28, 2021 6:48 am

Hi Tomarkus - thanks for the reply. Are you using a Surface?

I've done a bit more reading, and the thing that concerns me is the thermal throttling that is being done in the SP7. It seems the throttling caps the CPU core temp to 60C, despite the fact that the CPUs are typically rated for 100C.

I'm waiting for performance tests and information from reputable sources on that very thing. If the SP8 resolves those throttling issues, I'll buy one.

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KVRian

Topic Starter

1268 posts since 16 Jan, 2004

Post Thu Oct 21, 2021 5:26 am

Well, I have one on its way. Reviews are very favorable, as it seems to be performing like ultrabooks in the same class more or less. Hoping to have it in house soon and explore the viability as as replacement to my current machine.

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