M3 what good is it for ? Really

Ok , so I want the m3 version which even at 799 is pretty top of my budget for a student windows 10 tablet but every good hybrid starts around 700-800 , and adding a type c hub and micro sd would make it 900$ which I can spend at max… how much can m3 do without slowing down ? ( removing gaming and video editing and photoshop editing etc) , I want it for huge multi tasking with a lots of tabs open , YouTube playing and a lots of pdf open with some news and note editing apps and on top of that some music or lectures , this is the max requirement … is m3 that good for handling all this without much slow (some slow I can tolerate) , AND I AM REALLY SORRY THAT I AM ASKING SO MANY QUESTIONS

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The m3 should be able to handle all of that without breaking a sweat, really…


The Core M series has been getting quite a bunch of negative press at the beginning because back in the day (Intel Core 5th generation) there were 2 things: a) the thermal performance of the CPU itself was not too good compared to today. b) Manufacturer did not know how to properly passively cool the Core M.

I was using a Core M3 prototype for the better half of 2 weeks with our prototype cooling solution (not something any units the community received had inside them) and I could easily code, listen to music, have 1-2 notes open, and Chrome with 3-4 tabs without the prototype breaking a sweat (Ok, it did sweat a little when I was compiling, but that was purely due to the prototype cooling ;))

Long story short: The Core m3 should be easily able to handle the described workload :slight_smile:

Also - it’s no problem to ask questions - we all have to ask them to know more and be able to give answers ourselves :slight_smile:


Besides the great answeres you’ve already got, many of the things you mention is more RAM intensive that CPU. And since the m3 also have 8 GB of RAM none of it should be a problem :slight_smile:


If everything Joseph listed is perfectly fine for the m3, what would someone’s workload have to look like to justify moving up to the i5?

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Photo editing, light video editing, light gaming, or needing more storage capacity are what I can think of off the top of my head…

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And if you connect an e-GPU, the m3 would probably be the weakest link in most modern games.

Since we’re talking M3 performance, I’ll just post my use-case too.
I’m studying chemical engineering starting in the fall. We’ll have a few classes working with MATLAB, for example. I’m also planning taking my notes with the V (using Nebo or Onenote). Browsing the internet, youtube, etc is obviously also a thing. I’ll mostly keep gaming to a minimum on the V, though. If it works, it works. That’s not my focus.
Do you guys think the M3 is enough for the use I’m planning for it? Keep in mind I have a larger/more powerful laptop that I can use if absolutely necessary.

For most modern triple-A titles, so would the i5 or i7, or even a U-class i5 or i7.

@Conor_Forsythe, @Joseph_Mcqueen: For most uses, CPUs are plenty fast now, and have been for a while. An i3, or indeed an m3, will suffice for most home and office users. They’ll notice a bigger performance gain by upgrading the amount of RAM, or switching from mechanical storage to solid state storage.

Well, then what's the point of a faster CPU?

Once you make the computer work harder – photo editing, video editing, 3D rendering, that’s when the difference between certain CPUs will become noticable, because now the speed of the CPU determines how long a certain task will last. A photo filter taking a second to apply or two seconds, may not matter to someone who occasionally adjusts the color on a photo, but for a photo editing professional who does this all day, it may be worth upgrading to the CPU that does it in a second. Or even invest more in a CPU that can do it in half a second.


Thank you so much! You may end up saving me a couple hundred dollars now… Was looking into the i5, but I may not need it after all. I too have a pretty clunky but more powerful device to use if need be.
Much appreciated :smile:

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If you’re not sure, wait until the first backers have received their devices. I’m sure someone will be more than willing to film the device as they take it through its paces, and you’ll be able to get a much better idea of what the m3, i5 and i7 models are capable of!


You are exactly on point

A bigger chip does not necessitate to better performance. The CPU is one of the components that determine performance, if I look at the V in terms of it’s component ware, here is what people should understand.

CPU - Y Class PC that is kept cool through a well designed heat sync - cost from a U class, probably 10% (3.2 Ghz vs 3.5 Ghz) at full speed, assuming dual core vs dual core, and also assuming 75% of activity will be single core applications.

Disk - Normally the slowest component in the equation. Using the Intel 600 class SSD provides a faster than normal I/O processing speed. Microsoft only uses such a technology in their new PCs for 1 TB disks, otherwise they rely on slower technology. This gives the V a 15% boost for disk intensive applications, and a load time of 5% faster.

Network - Network is using a 2 x 2 wifi card, meaning that there will be two channels open for bidirectional network activity, meaning that network bound activity will not be hampered by the WiFi interface chosen. This is on par with many of the PC manufacturers today, but is significantly faster than WiFi implementations of only 1 -2 years ago.

Memory - A solid amount of memory has been chosen for the V (8 or 16 GB of memory, no 4 GB option available). With windows, a small amount of memory means you will swap to disk sooner, and if you have a slower disk, you will suffer more. The V chosen memory approach of delivering at least 8 GB will return a 5% boost in performance.

Graphics - The imbedded graphics on the newer Kaby Lake chips has improved vastly, but is in no way competition for dedicated cards. This is the price of tablets. The Iris graphics on the U class Kaby Lake has an edge, but the gap has shrunk from prior generations of product. For the i7 only, the V I would gather takes a 5% hit for graphic intensive applications, the i3 and i5 have no impact at all. If you are using non-graphic intensive applications (Most games are graphic intensive), there will be a difference, but you can marry the V to an external graphics subsystem for boosting graphic performance, which you cannot do with the surface because there is no thunderbolt technology in place. If the V is mated to a graphics subsystem, there is a 20% boost only if there is a need for heavy duty graphics processing (not photo processing or something similar, but rather if you are doing extensive video editing you will see a difference -this is really up to how you will use the V).

Guys, you can add to the list


I always forget 8gigs of ram. Which is quite needed for Windows 10… 4-6 is what phones have where most of the apps are in background. But Windows run multiple. 2 of not 4-6 apps on foreground. I have not seen a lot of newer m3 reviews. But maybe someone would review new surface pro m3 too. Thanks guys. Extremely helpful

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Please bear in mind with the new Surface Pro that it’ll feature 4GB of RAM in the Core m3 model :wink:

As actually most companies do for their m3 model (which I personally find irritating as usually the next “level” is also automagically the i5 and thus quite a bunch more expensive already)