Stylus-enabled art/graphics platforms - Surface, iPad Pro, etc.

Discussion in 'PC Hardware, Software and Displays' started by Cyan, Oct 26, 2016.

  1. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    Your range of functions are somewhat mutually exclusive. A Windows 10 tablet will be great for drawing, but not ideal for reading books in the same way a small 8" tablet would. You could consider a Samsung Android tablet. I think the S3 comes with stylus. I have an old 10 inch Samsung Note and it's been by far the best stylus-enabled device in terms of ease of use, so the later models are probably awesome. Software is a little lacking versus PC, but then also a lot cheaper.

    If your serious about your art, a Windows tablet is probably a must. But if just for fun and sketching, I'd suggest Android. There's a few options here that sound great quality and great value.
    http://www.faceofit.com/reviews/5-best-tablets-with-stylus-for-notes-and-drawing-in-windows-android/
     
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  2. eloyc

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    ^Thank you for the info!

    I would rule out devices with a little screen, and I concur that a Windows device is better if you want to use it to draw (because of the possibilities regarding software, etc., I guess). So, it seems that I should get a Windows laptop instead of a tablet, right? I'm not interested in Apple products, either, unless I discover a device which pros are convincing enough to me.

    Surface devices seem quite good, but I don't like the kickstand and the keyboard. :-S

    Maybe I should get a touch-screen laptop with good drawing capabilities, but I'm not sure which one.

    Also, why a touch-screen laptop is not ideal to read books? I don't have a clue on how a Windows reading app can work in these devices. I mean, can't you use touch controls to turn the pages? What are the other cons?

    Summing up:
    1- A Windows touch-screen laptop is a good idea, if I want to draw and paint? Has any of you used these devices, and which are best regarding accuracy, pen compatibility, price, etc.?
    2- What are the best options to read on a touch-screen Windows laptop?

    Thanks again. :)
     
  3. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    Touch screen laptops are no good for drawing on if you can't lay them flat. You could try a 2-in-1. I find the SP4 is great with its built in stand. I use a separate bluetooth keyboard instead of the keyboard cover - cheaper and more practical. The reason I say a laptop or SP isn't great for reading books is ergonomics. They'll do the job, but they aren't as nice and comfortable as a small tablet more book-sized. I can hold my Nexus 7 in one hand or lay on the bed to read, but I could only read on the SP4 with it sat on a desk or lap with any comfort.
     
  4. eloyc

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    Why? Because of the keyboard?

    Well, I said touch-screen laptops in a broad sense. Sometimes it can be confusing... :-S

    Thanks for the idea. BTW, are all 2-in-1 laptops sensitive to orientation (switch to portrait/landscape modes)?

    Can't you hold, say, a Surface without using the stand, of fully fold a Yoga and use it in portrait mode (one page full-screen mode, f. i.)?
     
  5. Silent_Buddha

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    No reviews yet, so don't get too excited. However, the just announced Acer Swift 7 uses Wacom tech for the pen (passive, no batteries) with the active digitizer located in the tablet itself.

    The pen is supposed to support tilt, 4096 levels of pressure, etc.

    It's has a 13.5" screen would definitely be better for drawing than for reading.

    IMO, get a dedicated reading device for reading. I still far prefer E-Ink devices for reading over an emissive tablet that is shining light into your eyes. It's more comfortable and less tiring on the eyes. I use a Kobo Aura One reader with a 7.8" screen (larger screen to allow larger text [old eyes here] without sacrificing too much in Text per page).

    Here are some alternatives talked about by Brad Colbow (I like his reviews/impressions of drawing devices).



    And the associated article that goes into more detail with links to more detailed reviews/impressions.

    http://bradcolbow.com/reviews/wacom-cintiq-alternatives/

    The Surface Pro line remains a solid, if expensive choice.

    Regards,
    SB
     
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  6. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    Orientation is wrong for drawing. And even if you lay it flat, the keyboard is in the way. Hence the invention of 2-in-1s.

    It'll be a Windows setting. I'm sure they all are.

    Sure, but it's a big screen and heavy tablet for holding. A Nexus 7 is 340g. iPad Mini 304g. eReaders re around 200g. SP4 is 760g. Lenovo Yogas seem to be over a kilo. And more than just the listed weights, you can hold a small tablet flat in your hand with the centre of gravity stable, whereas a large tablet is held on the edge and is constantly pulling on your wrist. I have walked around with it like a clipboard on one hand, but it's far from nice and a bit dodgy for an expensive machine!

    Good drawing tablets have large screens and decent power, so big, heavy batteries, which is directly opposed to the properties of a an eReader which is small and light, facilitated with a low battery consumption and smaller, lighter battery.
     
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  7. eloyc

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    Thanks for all your comments, guys. Now I won't buy two different devices at the same time, so maybe I'll get the drawing device first (even though it's more expensive, it's a higher priority, to me).

    But, as @Shifty Geezer said, the keyboard may be a problem, and you can't fold it below like the Yoga models. Or... are you comfortable or think it's possible to draw appropriately with your hand on top of a keyboard?

    But the devices in the article are just drawing tablets to connect to a computer, aren't they? I'm looking for a portable, stand-alone solution. :)

    Well, as I said now I better understand the need to have dedicated devices regarding the two purposes I mentioned (drawing and reading). I just wonder if Yogas are good for drawing and painting. There aren't lots of reviews, though. Lots of videos for the Yoga Book (separate drawing pad), but not for the non-Book devices.

    Here's one:
     
  8. Silent_Buddha

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    The keyboard is detachable just like a Surface Pro. You can also fold it under the tablet just like the Surface Pro.

    You can also use a BT Keyboard or any keyboard with the device if you need to access the keyboard while drawing (like Shifty Geezer does).

    I'm also guessing that there will be lower end models of the Switch 7 (similar to the Switch Alpha 12) that are cheaper.

    Whatever you do, do NOT get the Switch Alpha 12 for drawing. Its pen is absolutely horrible and just barely good enough for taking notes. The Switch 7, however, is using Wacom tech, so in theory it should be a good drawing tablet.

    Regards,
    SB
     
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  9. eloyc

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    Hm... I think I narrowed down the candidates to a SP (is the last model better for art or just better in other aspects?), a Switch or a Yoga.

    To begin with, I have the idea that I'll be more comfortable with a sturdier design, like the Yoga's, with a non detachable keyboard which I can fold totally or partially (to achieve a slated screen in a ^ shape). I also think that if I had to use screen+keyboard on my lap, the Yoga is better because the combination tablet+kickstand+detachable keyboard is less stable. What do you think of this?

    I think I need to try the devices myself, touch them and feel them, and check with which I feel more comfortable, once I clear up if their drawing/painting capabilities are similar. From what you said and I later read, the Switch 7 is the only one of these 3 which as tilt support. Does it really make a difference? Do the other devices compensate with other features/performance/accuracy?
     
  10. Shifty Geezer

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  11. eloyc

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    Well, that reminded me that I should add the Lenovo Miix... to the mix. XD

    Similar to a SP, but cheaper, while offering the same or better specs, depending on the model.

    If some of you reply the pending questions in my previous thread, it will be much appreciated.

    My next task is trying the devices at retail shops. :-D
     
  12. Silent_Buddha

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    Just to comment on those.

    Remember, do NOT get the Switch Alpha 12. It's a decent Surface Pro clone for everything that doesn't include pen input. I got one due to the price and because of that, I can accept its shortcomings (there's a lot of them). The Switch 7, however, should be better as it'll be using Wacom tech for the pen.

    Lenovo makes some great machines. But make sure to look up any forum posts regarding them. In the past Lenovo has included key loggers in the BIOS of some of their devices, including the ability to send that data back to them. Once people discovered it, it's believed that Lenovo has stopped doing that.

    One nice thing about the Surface line of computers is that it comes devoid of any software other than the OS. So you don't have to spend time removing the bloatware. That said, any computer or tablet that you buy from the MS store will likewise be devoid of any bloatware. OEMs are prohibited from installing bloatware on any machine sold through the MS store.

    The build quality of the Surface 2-in-1s are generally top notch these days and unmatched in the PC space except by Apple. But as you've noted, they come at a price premium. Compared to my previous Surface device that I accidentally destroyed, the Switch Alpha 12 has noticeably inferior build quality which goes along with it's very budget pricing for the components that it includes.

    Regards,
    SB
     
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  13. eloyc

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    ^Don't worry, I'll remember quite well that I have to stay away from the Swift 7 and get the Switch Alpha 12. Just joking! It's the other way around. :-D

    I have to decide what's more comfortable to me: a more tablet like solution with a detachable keyboard (SP, Swift 7, Miix) or the Yoga, which I could also use on my lap, unlike the other models.

    Also, I still have to find out if these 4 models are similar regarding the drawing capabilities. I have to correct myself, because I previously mentioned that the only one who supported tilt was the Swift, but now I know that the new SP also supports it. The thing I don't know is that if that's much of a deal and if the other models compensate the fact that they lack this feature with a better accuracy or whatever.

    Thanks for the other info regarding Lenovo, keyloggers and bloatware.
     
  14. Silent_Buddha

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    If lap use is important then a more tradition laptop like device might be best. Do note that with some practice you can use the Surface Pro like devices on your lap. It does require some practice, however and is never quite as stable as a traditional laptop design.

    If you have an MS store near you, you can at least try the Surface Pro devices as well as probably the Lenovo Devices. I believe the retail locations also carry the Yoga line of Lenovo devices.

    Regards,
    SB
     
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  15. AzBat

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    Or a Surface Book. :/

    Tommy McClain
     
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  16. Silent_Buddha

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    Yeah, I'd forgotten about that. I just wish the tablet when detached had a longer battery life.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  17. orangpelupa

    orangpelupa Elite Bug Hunter
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    @eloyc

    Microsoft hasn't enabled tilt from what i read on r/Surface
     
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  18. Silent_Buddha

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    Tilt has been working on the Surface Pro (5) since launch. It may or may not yet be working on Surface Pro 3 or 4 yet. They were planning to add support for that to those devices at some point.

    Tilt is also application dependent. So if an application doesn't support tilt functionality in a pen, then it won't work in that app.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  19. eloyc

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    @ultragpu , I use MyPaint. Very occasionally, though, since I don't have much time. I use it with a Wacom Bamboo tablet, but I'm thinking of buying a 2-in-1 with which I can draw. I like Lenovo's Yogas, and I posted some questions in this thread. Do you have any recommendations? Thank you! :)
     
  20. digitalwanderer

    digitalwanderer Dangerously Mirthful
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    I was hunting for a Yoga-like laptop thing with a pressure sensitive pen about a year ago, my daughter has been in love with it ever since. (And I got a better price on it than that!) She still prefers here Wacom over the pen on screen, but the pen on screen is good enough to do little stuff and touch ups so it is actually pretty useful and she likes it because she can still draw pretty good with it and not have to carry around her Wacom.

    Just my .02, you've given me enough great anime recommends. ;)
     
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