Am I making a mistake by not getting a tablet?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Ant6n, Jun 29, 2005.

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  1. the Jones

    the Jones Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Recently I have been looking at getting either a new laptop or a new tablet computer. Unfortunately, I have found that to get a tablet, you must sacrifice at least one or more of these things:

    Weight
    Battery Life
    Features (I consider built in optical to be a "feature")

    To get a tablet that would do everything I want, I would need to get the Tecra M4. Yet if I did this I would sacrifice both weight and batery life. If I were to get something like the IBM X41, I would have to sacrifice performance and an optical drive.

    After eliminating both of these options, I found the fujitsu 4010, but I cannot see myself buying it. My school has student discounts on notebooks from several major manufacturers, but not fujitsu. Thus, for a "loaded" 4010 I would end up paying around $2700 for a notebook that still isn't powerful enough to do everything I want to do. (I could get a $3800 IBM laptop for $100 more ($2800) after student discounts.)

    Now, I freely admit that taking notes on a tablet might be very useful, but for me, as a student, note taking is the only benefit. At this point in time I cannot see myself paying the premium of a tablet pc just for note taking.

    Currently, I am leaning towards getting a standard laptop, yet still using onenote in class.

    Something that I do not understand is why everyone vaunts OneNote's ability to record lectures as a tablet pc feature. Correct me if I'm wrong, but can't I synchronize typed notes with a recorded lecture in OneNote too?

    So I know I am loosing the ability to write equations and draw diagrams in my notes. But at this point I don't see that as a big enough feature for me to buy a tablet (especially sice I will be doing lots of programming which is definitely not tablet pc centric).

    Am I making a mistake by not getting a tablet?
     
  2. SuperRob

    SuperRob Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Typing notes directly into OneNote will work, surely, but OneNote doesn't deal with Text as well as it does ink, and the first few times you try to do that, I think you'll realize it as well. Also, as someone who has typed a lot of my notes, I get the facts, but I miss a lot of the nuance and other details that I might not have explicitly recorded when I read them back. Reading your own handwriting activates parts of your right brain, and there can be details that are recalled that were not necessarily written down. Plus, being able to draw diagrams and small pictures is very handy in certain types of classes. The short period of time I had a tablet (a loaner from HP for a review), I used it extensively in my Chem class to draw dot diagrams and other details that I couldn't type or draw with the mouse. Plus, I found that I remembered more when looking at the handwritten notes, things that it hadn't occurred to me to write down.

    Are you making a mistake? That, I'm not sure, and I don't think anyone here could tell you. But I will say that as a student looking for a new laptop, I'm waffling between something like the Inspiron 700m and laptops of a similar size, and a tablet like the IBM X41 Tablet PC or Toshiba M200 (or Tecra M4) series. However, I think I've pretty well settled on the Tablet simply because of the great experience I had with the HP the short time I had it. Yes, you're likely going to have to make a sacrifice somewhere, but overall, I don't think it'll be too bad.

    For what it's worth, I think I'll get the Tecra M4, and use a Kensington Saddlebag Sport backpack to carry it in. I don't think the weight will bother me too much, and my school has a lot of outlets in the classrooms to minimize the impact the battery life might have.
     
  3. Brian

    Brian Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    It sounds to me that you shouldn't make a lot of extra effort for the tablet, though if you had it, I think you would use it. You might think really hard on the need for integrated optical. I find myself using the second battery in my Fujitsu, much more than the optical drive, but your life is different than mine. It's not difficult to tote a small external if you need. Something like the HP tc4200 might provide a nice balance for you.
     
  4. astrofrog

    astrofrog Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Was the HP loaner a TC4200? If so, how did you feel about the performance and quality?
     
  5. Brian

    Brian Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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  6. SuperRob

    SuperRob Pen Pal - Newbie

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    The loaner I had was a TC1100 slate-style Tablet. I found I missed having some of the standard notebook features, but absolutely loved the Tablet part, and as a gamer, the power of the Tecra M4 is compelling.
     
  7. Barry J. Doyle

    Barry J. Doyle Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Rob,

    The Tecra M4 is a smoking gaming machine as well as a Tablet!
     
  8. Ant6n

    Ant6n Pen Pal - Newbie

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    The University purchasing is a very good idea - mine has ibm, toshiba and fujitu.
    But check out the prices:
    http://www.mcs.mcgill.ca/
    TOSHIBA M200 TABLET PM1.8G 12.1TFT 60GB 512 BUNDLE 3,303.07 $ CAN
    thats like 2700 $ - I think I can get it cheaper from Toshiba itself...
     
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