How does the new Intel Core M in the Toshiba Z20T compare to the the Intel Core i7 in the Surface Pro 3?

A host of new tablets are emerging with the new Intel Core M processor – Toshiba Z20t, Motion F5m, Lenovo Helix 2 to name a few. I had heard that the Core M was not as powerful as the Intel Core i5 or i7 processors of the previous generation (as found in the Surface Pro 3), but I wondered how much of a difference it really makes.

The Core M processor is built for better battery life and fan-less tablets. Those are certainly good attributes to have on a tablet, but for a laptop replacement tablet you don’t strive for these at the cost of speed and performance.

I’m not a fan of benchmark scores and battery run tests since they usually don’t reflect real use. So I thought I’d run my own test to see how the Toshiba Z20t stacks up against the Surface Pro 3 that I currently use.

So this video shows a quick performance comparison of the Surface Pro 3 (Fourth Generation Intel Core i7 – 8Gb RAM) with the Toshiba Z20T (Fifth Generation Intel Core M y5 – 8Gb RAM).

The questions I had was, “Could I really use the Toshiba Z20t with the Core M processor instead of the Surface Pro 3 with its Core i7?”

As you’ll see, the new Z20t with Core M booted up quite a bit quicker than the Surface. But when it came to a Photoshop test (opening the same RAW photograph) the Surface won the test.

This result would have been closer if I was using the y7 model of the Z20t.

However, the performance gap was close enough to live with. The upside to the Core M is as expected – far better battery life and no fan. The Z20t in tablet mode is also quite a bit lighter than the Surface (about 100 grams).

The Toshiba is a very impressive tablet. For now I’m sticking with the Surface because I prefer the keyboard (in particular its portability), but the lighter Z20t with 4G/ LTE is very compelling! Look out Surface! 😉

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The Surface Pro 3 has undoubtedly been the biggest Windows tablet of 2014. For the last 6 months we have been very busy working with Microsoft Australia and their partner resellers to deploy the Surface in large companies across Australia. Here are two YouTube videos that we posted about the Surface Pro 3. How I …Read more