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Active Digitizer vs Dual Digitizer w/ Capactive Touch

Discussion in 'What Tablet PC Should I Buy?' started by Lupin, Oct 1, 2011.

  1. Lupin

    Lupin Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I could use some advice on which type of digitizer is more suited to applications such as photoshop, painter, and other art programs that support pressure levels. I'm looking at either a Fujitsu t731 or t901, so I've got some screen options to consider. I've seen a few mentions of the capacitive digitizer lowering the overall accuracy of the pen input and the pressure range.

    I wouldn't really want to give up the capacitive touch input on the device unless there's a significant drawback to having it rather than the pen only input.

    So, any experiences with this that can help me decide on which would be better for me? Unfortunately I couldn't find these models in any stores in town so I have to rely on others to try before I buy.
  2. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    Capactive digitizers seem to lesson the clarity of the image. They create a "sparkle" or dispersment effect that some people don't like- normally artists who are very interested in clarity and color fidelity. Othes who aren't artists usually don't mind as much. Also, I don't know why, but clearly many of the new slates are able to have capacitive touch and pen input and have remarkable clear screens- I think this has to do with a new bonding technology that they're using, versus what goes on in the tablet pcs. You might wait to hear from others though, as this is only hearsay to me.

    Also, my understanding is that most art programs don't use multitouch yet, or only in a very minimal way, unless you're getting an app on an ipad. The exception is Artrage, which can pan, zoom, and rotate using capacitive touch. I don't know about pushing buttons, though I would assume you could do so with your finger. ???? I think if Photoshop and Painter did similar things, and all tablet pcs had the clarity of the dual-digitizer in the Asus ep121 slate, that might make capacitive touch more interesting for artists.
  3. Fishface

    Fishface Scribbler - Standard Member

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    It's true about the sparklies. I have a dual digitizer T5010 and I wish I had got the active: almost no applications support separate touch and pen interfaces so usually when my pen is out, the touch is off. My wife has a HP2730p active only and it's a lot clearer.

    It's also true that it will probably vary based on manufacturer, so YMMV. But if you're considering a Fujitsu then consider my data point that as of the T5010 line (the precursor of the T901), I personally find that the dual is definitely noticeably less clear than it should be.
  4. Agent 9

    Agent 9 Scribbler - Standard Member

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    To pitch in my 2 cents

    There are actually three factors playing a role in all this:
    1) Touch layer or no touch layer (duh), the touch layer itself will bring almost no interference (only slightly with the quality of the image at a more extreme angle; and the only normally noticeable thing is the grid pattern of dots that is only noticeable with sunlight hitting it at just the right angle)
    2) Glossy v Matte: the touch version is only available with matte AFAIK, while the active only can have either (matte offering more 'noise' to the image displayed, and making it a bit fizzier at extreme angles)
    3) to a lesser extent Chemically Hardened Glass (active only) v Hardened Plastic (multi-touch): the plastic usually offering slightly reduced quality (especially so over time as the clear plastic ages, and double so if it is in direct sun light a lot) and usually the plastic one is matte finished which isn't the best for clear plastic


    At least I'm pretty sure the MT version is always matte plastic, which while not bad, isn't the best for viewing quality (EP121 for example uses MT on chemically hardened glossy glass so it has good clarity; the Tm2 had MT on hardened glossy plastic so the clarity wasn't bad -the screen itself is horrid though)


    And while it is true that matte can take away from image quality in good viewing conditions, the matte screen is IMO quite necessary if you want to be using the device often in high light situations (outdoors, at school/ work/ home where there are a lot of harsh lights)... so it is personal preference, but with the glossy screen you have the option to add a matte screen protector later and get 99% the same thing as if it were the matte screen in the first place


    EDIT: the 4th factor is the bonding technique used: a more direct bonding used will help with clarity at extreme angles, but not so much for straight on or from a slight angle... though this isn't that much of a concern as it is all pretty good, and thing is it isn't information that can be determined easily
  5. Lupin

    Lupin Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Thanks for all the info, I think the active digitizer is sounding more appealing at this point, but I haven't decided which model I'm going to get yet, so I'll keep watching this thread to see anyone else's experiences if they'd like to post them.
  6. Hashaholic

    Hashaholic Borderline Yadoo

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    Having used both (active only on T4010 and dual on my T730), I much prefer the dual digitizer. For my purposes (engineering student), the convenience of an additional input method in slate mode easily offsets the slightly more grainy screen (TBH, I don't notice it anymore). In Onenote alone, scrolling with a finger is much more fluid than using the pen or pushing a panel button. The touch input increases my workflow, so I prefer to have it.

    Just an opinion from a non-artist...
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