View Full Version : Ok... I've narrowed my field to these three comp
06-12-2005, 10:54 AM
Ok... I've narrowed my field to these three computers.
My primary use for this system will be art... but I'll want it for web browsing and chat on the go, and probably light development.
I'm most used to paper and pencil, but I've really found lately that I'd like to just work purely digital... Need a tablet of some sort for that. So I'm thinking I want a big screen and high resolution.
So... the obvious choice would seem to be the M4... 14.1 inches of SXGA+ goodness is a good thing. Buuut... I hear they run hot, and the viewing angle's not so great. Hmm. Kinda pricey too.
So then there's the gateway which has a glass 14.1 inch screen. That sounds good, less worry bout my pen nib scratching the screen or pressing too hard and flexing it... But from what everyone says their service is crap to the point where you might as well not get a warranty.
Well... There's the TC1100... not as fast or as big but it's got that magnesium alloy case and a glass screen and their support is supposedly stellar.
Argh.. decisions decisions.
06-12-2005, 11:27 AM
"My primary use for this system will be art... but I'll want it for web browsing and chat on the go, and probably light development."
How mobile will you need to be?
In your post you didn't mention your thoughts on size/weight. If you out and about and thinking that you will carry your Tablet PC with you frequently then the TC1100 might move up the list.
06-12-2005, 02:21 PM
If you are considering the TC1100 for art, you may want to take a look at these threads first:
They describe a problem with the digitiser where it's impossible to draw straight lines slowly, even with a ruler - instead of getting a straight line, the line will have squiggles in it. This problem apparently isn't confined to the TC1100, but it seems to be more pronounced with the TC1100. It's been an ongoing saga for a while now, but there's no sign HP will provide a fix.
Other than that though, I must say a glass screen is a great idea - it's quite resistant to scratching and no matter how hard I press on it, I've never managed to flex it on my TC1100! I do find the small screen makes it not the best surface for drawing, but the portability you get with it means you can work just about anywhere. That's the trade off I guess!
06-12-2005, 04:28 PM
If you're going to be using it for art (on the go I assume), I think you have to look at weight, viewing angle, and battery life as three key criteria.
I realize this probably means going with an XGA screen rather than an SXGA+, which I did when I picked a Fujitsu T4010 for drawing on the go. At first going back to an XGA from SXGA on my desktop was quite painful, especially with apps like Painter and Photoshop. I also went with it because I have a CD/DVD drive with it which I can replace with a modular battery to extend mobile use. I'd love to have a 14" SXGA screen but 6 pounds or more is just too heavy for on-the-go use -- and until their viewing angles are improved, I don't find them compelling.
However, with constant use, and more importantly, the help of an external keyboard (for those left-handed shortcuts painting programs have), you'd get around these short-comings quite easily.
What I've been using for a couple of weeks now is a Belkin Nostromo n50 gamepad. The size is just right and with careful planning, I've programmed in just about all the shortcuts I most often use. One of the important keys (aside from undo) is the tab key, which gets rid of floating window clutter in most painting programs. I'm planning to attach a board and a strap on it so I can attach it to my hand so I can use it even without a surface to rest it on.
Anyway, if you can, I recommend comparing wide viewing angle screens against the rest of the lot before deciding to buy.
06-13-2005, 08:36 AM
Ok, to clarify... I'm not too worried about battery life or weight.. They're factors but minor ones. I'll be using it mostly around the house and office, not really "on the go" so much, and when I do use it on the move it's more likely to be as a notebook than a tablet.
See, I don't possess a cintiq or wacom tablet of any type. I used wacom tablets years ago in school, and while I found them better than a mouse it was ultimately frustrating to not be working on what I was seeing.
Basically I'm doing web development and trying to work up a web-based comic book... I need to be able to do both digital artwork and digital manipulation of photos and such... and the mouse just ain't cutting it anymore. What I'm going to be using this for is to be my *primary* art medium. The reason why I'm going tablet over a cintiq is that I also don't want to be chained to one specific desk, I need to be able to work at home *and* in the office, and because I need a notebook that I can carry with me around the house to remain in contact with my clients at all times, without having to go running back to my desk every time trillian beeps. Given unlimited funds maybe I'd get both a cintiq and a notebook, but I'd probably still get a tablet rather than a plain notebook because you never know when that itch to draw something will strike, but... Well who has unlimited funds? As it is I'll need to cut $100 a month out of my budget to pay for a tablet without borking my savings.
So I need to be mobile, but I'm going to have available power outlets and surfaces to set the tablet down on almost all the time.
The items of primary importance are therefore screen size and resolution, since I'm wanting it for artwork and coding.
06-13-2005, 10:48 AM
With the priorities you've shared, it sounds like you're a good candidate for the M4.
If weight and size are less important than screen real estate and raw horsepower, than it's hard to beat.
I wouldn't be concerned about the glass screen. I've been using my M200 for over a year and don't see any signs of excessive wear and tear on the screen.
06-13-2005, 09:52 PM
In that case, you really have just one choice... no sense really getting a 14-inch screen if it's just XGA.
Anyway I still would recommend you check out a wide-viewing angle unit and compare it to the SXGA+ screen, especially if you need some degree of color accuracy at various viewing angles. If only Boe-Hydis would come out with an SXGA+ wide-viewing angle screen...
Aren't they all glass screens anyway?
Most tablets use a polymer screen. Only a few of them use glass.
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