The rumored 12.5-inch Surface laptop may be faster than you expect

Data leaked showing that it is powered by Ice Lake Core i5.

Engadget JP (Translation)
Engadget JP (Translation) , @Engadget_MT
2020年09月22日, 午前 10:52 in egmt
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This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl.


The next product in Microsoft's Surface PC series is almost certain to be a 12.5-inch laptop, code-named "Sparti," which will be significantly cheaper than the Surface Laptop 3 (Above is the Surface Laptop 3)

This lower-priced Surface laptop will be announced in October. As for the price, it has been rumored to start in the $500 range, and so far we have found circumstantial evidence to say it's almost confirmed.

Reference Article (Japanese):

Microsoft is preparing a mid-range Surface Laptop? Priced between $500 and $600


Data found in the Geekbench database, a low multi-core score for the Ice Lake version of the i5, but...

This PC was supposed to "fill in between the Surface Go 2 and Surface Pro 7" due to its price point, but its basic performance is going to be more than the price against the Surface Go. If so, this new model will also be one of the best Surface series in terms of value for money.

The reason for this is that, based on the benchmark data, which seems to be a development prototype of this model, one of the CPUs available is likely to be the Core i5-1035G1, which belongs to the "Ice Lake" side of Intel's 10th generation Core i. Compared to the Core i5-1035G4 in the Surface Pro 7 and Surface Laptop 3 13.5-inch versions, this CPU grade is less fast in terms of graphics speed, but the CPU performance can be considered almost identical.

If this CPU is indeed installed (and it should be the mid to high-end model in the series that is actually installed), it can be called quite a bargain when considering the price difference with the Pro 7.

Detailed CPU data in Geekbench. Looking at this, it does indeed look like the Ice Lake version of the i5...

The data for this supposed Sparti device was found on the Geekbench database, a leading CPU benchmark. A model registered here called "OEMQN OEMQN Product Name EV2" may be the one (a link to the data is at the end of this article).

Proof of this is the similar naming convention of the Surface series development prototypes found so far in the same database. Another benchmarking app, UserBenchmark database, also lists the "Oemqn Product Name EV1" with the i5-1035G1 as of March (also linked at the end of this article).

On the other hand, what's interesting is the low score on GeekBench. The scores in this data are "973" for the single-core and "1775" for the multi-core, but other models with the same CPU typically have scored in the 1100s and 3800-3900s, respectively. In particular, the multi-core is about one-half of that, which is a huge difference.

The UserBenchmark summary data also shows a warning about the CPU throttling state (bottom row)

At the same time, UserBenchmark also reports a very long CPU throttling state (where the CPU is limited in operation due to thermal issues) of 83%, suggesting that this prototype has some sort of limitation in its heating mechanism.

Naturally, we can't use a score with unknown measurement conditions for comparison (especially if it's a prototype), but it's good to assume the possibility that it's a custom CPU with some sort of limitation.

UserBenchmark reports a screen resolution of 1536 x 1024, but it's highly likely that the settings have been changed. This is because the Surface Go 2 also has a resolution of 1920×1280, and it's unlikely that Sparti will be lower than this.

When it comes to the new Surface series, screen resolution is an inevitable concern. We're hoping to get more information on this.

Other data that we can see include the 8GB and 16GB versions of RAM, with an equivalent 3733 MHz operating clock, and the storage will be an NVMe SSD with a PCI Express x4 connection.

Since other manufacturers' laptops in the same price range are now equipped at a similar level, it seems likely that the actual product will have the same level of features. (However, the Surface series has always been very pricey when it comes to more RAM, so the price difference due to that is a concern.)


As such, the new low-cost Surface is likely to be a model with a reasonable increase in speed compared to the Go 2. There are a lot of unknowns at the moment, including the important price and model configuration, but in terms of value for money, this seems to be one of the most promising of the Surfaces.

(We wish they would take into account the price difference between Japan and the rest of the world, though we're not saying it should be on the level of Xbox Series X...)

Source: Geekbench database

Source: UserBenchmark database

Via: Windows Latest


This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl. The Japanese edition of Engadget does not guarantee the accuracy or reliability of this article.


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