Best Tablet PC for Photoshop Artist? AKA What should I buy?

Discussion in 'What Tablet PC Should I Buy?' started by rjayx, Apr 4, 2007.

  1. rjayx

    rjayx Pen Pal - Newbie

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    OK,

    Before you all yell at me, I have read lots of posts about the best tablet pc for art, etc. and even after reading them, I still come away unsure and a little confused. I am hoping to get your opinions and advice on this planned purchase. I thank you all in advance for taking the time to sort through another "What should I buy/best art tablet pc" post.

    Here's my deal:

    I am planning a purchase of a tablet pc with a maximum price limitation of $2300 (spending less is always preferred, though!) in the next month or so to use for the following:

    1. As a digital sketchbook and painting tool (Photoshop/Ilustrator/Flash/maybe Alias Sketchbook Pro)
    2. For 2D texture painting in Photoshop for 3D model textures (will NOT be using as a 3D machine -ONLY for painting the 2D textures in Photoshop, although it would be great if I could simply open my 3D app (Maya) for a few minutes just to briefly examine the placement/appearance of the textures on a model. Again, I won't be doing any hardcore 3D modeling or animation on the tablet - I have a desktop for that.
    3. Flash animation
    4. General use - web surfing/e-mail/typing up documents in Word occasionally
    5. Playing the occasional game - I know tablet pcs are not good for gaming, but it would be nice if I could play a round of Battle for Middle-Earth II, hop on Lord of the Rings Online or maybe Second Life every once in a while, even if it has to be on the lowest settings.

    Ideally, I would like a tablet with the following features (in order of priority):

    1. Runs Photoshop well (as well as a tablet pc can, anyway - I am aware of the Intel integrated lame graphics cards in them)
    2. Wacom digitzer technology
    2. The highest resolution active display I can get (SXGA or perhaps one of the widescreens is good?), for size of screen I am OK with 12", although larger would be nice (not a deal-breaker though)
    3. Convertible (I will use this for other things, and need the keyboard)
    4. Runs Vista (either Home Ultimate or Business)
    5. Wireless is a must - currently have a "g" network at home, however, it would be nice to "future-proof" this tablet pc with pre-n though. I am assuming I could also upgrade the wireless card later too, so not the biggest deal.
    6. Can handle 2GBs of RAM
    7. DVD/CD drive either built-in or as add-on (so I can install Photoshop and other apps on it as well as burn the occasional back-up)
    8. Can get with a 7200rpm hard drive installed (60GB - 100GB is great)

    Other features that would be nice but are not deal-breakers:
    1. Firewire would be great, not a deal-breaker though
    2. A nice industrial design (it would be nice if it doesn't look totally ugly)

    I will be using this tablet pc indoors almost exclusively, transporting it between home and work (via car) and using it at occasional meetings. I would also like to be able to sit in a comfy chair or on a bed and sketch with it.

    I have looked at a number of reviews here and on Cnet and other places, and came down to the following models as my current top picks:

    1. Fujitsu Lifebook T4215
    2. Lenovo X60 (with the base so I can have an optical drive)
    3. Toshiba Portege M400
    4. The Asus R1F

    Here's where I'm at:

    - I am more familiar with either Toshiba or Lenovo as a brand, and I've used regular laptops from both in the past and generally had good experiences with them. I've never used anything from Fujitsu or Asus, so I feel a little more uncertain about them.

    - I like the looks of the Toshiba and the Asus best, but this is purely cosmetic, I know. Lenovo's laptop isn't the prettiest, but I can live with it. Fujitsu's is overall quite cool, although I'm not keen on where the pen is stored. Performance is obviously more important, and although I could potentially pick any of these, I thought I'd mention my preference in this area just as a side note.

    - It appears the Fujitsu and the Lenovo have the best specs/performance in Photoshop in some of the reviews. Is this true? Does anyone with an M400 feel that Photoshop runs pretty well on their M400? Or how about the Asus?

    - Although not a deal-breaker, I find having to buy the base and optical drive as add-ons for the Lenovo somewhat incovenient, as well as the fact that the optical drive won't be built-in. I guess the trade-off might be worth it, though, given the high performance marks this tablet pc seems to be getting. Also, I guess it might be cool to have a lighter tablet because of this.

    Based on my outline above of how I'll be using it and other observations, does anybody have any other considerations I should be aware of? Any horror stories with a certain brand or for that matter, stories of excellent customer service? Does anyone have any regrets with any of the above models? Or feel the one they bought is great? Which of those four would you buy and why? Did I leave a better choice off my list?

    Looking forward to any and all input. Thank you all in advance!
     
  2. P8RSON

    P8RSON Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Shogmaster is your man to talk to on art & illustration....... he is most suited to starting this off.
    It's his area of expertise. :)
     
  3. Shogmaster

    Shogmaster Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    You know, I faced similar decision recently and I ended up getting the already discontinued R25 because of these reasons:

    - largest screen (I find drawing on 12" screens too small for doing quality drawings)
    - Bezel free LCD casing design (snagging on bezel while doing large sweeping strokes drove me nuts on my old Cintiq 15X)
    - highest resolution screen @1440x900 (some apps like Painter just needs lots of screen space for it's palettes to be spread out to be efficient for workflow, and I found even 1280x800 too restricting)
    - Wacom digitizer
    - Core Duo/Core 2 Duo
    - 4GB of RAM max

    Now you are probably thinking, "alot of good that does me jerk. There are no more R25s out there!". Well yes and no. You can still find the business market cousin, the M7, still brand new ready to be purchased. You won't find Core 2 Duo, nor even faster than 1.66GHz CPU option, but I find my 1.6GHz R25 fast enough for all my art needs so it shouldn't be a big factor for your purchase consideration. Also, none of these M7s has the Quadro option included. But they are only around $1500 and you won't be doing 3D on the run so there you go. Here are some M7 links:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834114244
    http://www.euclidcomputers.com/frameset.cgi?finditem laptop Toshiba PTM70U-00D009
    http://www.alltp.com/store/detail.aspx?ID=361

    Also, if you happen to be living in the San Francisco area, downtown CompUSA store still has a R25 in stock for $1400!

    http://www.compusa.com/products/pro..._code=341678&Pn=Satellite_R25_S3513_Tablet_PC

    Good luck with your decision.
     
  4. rjayx

    rjayx Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Wow! Thanks, you guys. The M7 looks like a great option, especially for the price. I'd jump on that R25 if I could, but unfortunately, I'm down in southern Cal, so too far.

    I think I might go for the M7 you suggested, as it pretty much has everything I was looking for with the bonus of the larger screen as well! I do, however, have just a few last (easy, I hope) questions in order of priority before I determine to pull the trigger on this:

    1. Do you think I'll run into any problems if I try to upgrade the M7 to Vista (Business or Home Premium)? I've seen a number of posts that indicate the tablet experience is better with Vista (better responsiveness w/ pen, etc.), so if I go with the M7 I'd like to upgrade it to Vista right away if it won't be a nightmare.

    2. I've read a number of reviews and posts mentioning the graininess of Toshiba's tablet pc screens. As an R25 owner, what are your thoughts on this? Is the screen annoyingly grainy or bothersome when you are drawing/image editing? Or is it situation where you "just get used to it" to the point that it's not really a big deal at all.

    3. I know the M7 is a widescreen, so when the tablet is in portrait mode, does the screen still feel wide enough to draw on comfortably?

    4. I noticed the M7 has a Core Duo processor (vs. Core 2 Duo on the R25 and some of the other newer models I mentioned in my original post). Is there much of a performance difference between a Core Duo and Core 2 Duo? Will the M7 be noticeably slower because of this?

    That's it. Thanks again for all your help!
     
  5. DjNLes

    DjNLes Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi Rjayx and everyone on the forum,

    I found this forum very helpful when I was looking for my tablet pc so I chime in and help out a bit.

    At first I was debating whether to get the R1F or T4215. Similar to you, I wanted a tablet where I can use as a digital sketchbook and even do some 3D. So I ended up getting the T4215. The deciding factor was the bevel-free screen and also Fujitsu's experience in the Tablet PC market. So I ended up getting the T4215 from Laptop Authority with these specs: 7400 C2D, SXGA, 100gb, DL burner. Cost came out to be $2250 which is in your price range.

    This machine performed well in Photoshop, Painter and Alias Sketchbook Pro (excellent program and definitely designed for a tablet!) My only concern was the integrated graphics. I ran the latest version of Maya on it. To my surprise, it performed very well. I brought in a 10,000+ polygon model in and was about to rotate, scale, zoom, modify the vertices etc in shaded view with any lag. I brought in another model with animation and was able to play fine. Did some test renders and not problem at all. Of course the models didn’t have any textures yet. So it passed the 3D test. I’m just very surprised at how the integrated graphics card performed. Overall I’m very happy with this machine from a design and performance standpoint. Highly recommended and good luck with your search!
     
  6. Shogmaster

    Shogmaster Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    If you use any program that relies on Wacom drivers for digitizer input (i.e. Photoshop, Painter) it's essential that you load Vista ASAP. XP:TE's native drivers, as you've already read, indeed fights with Wacom's drivers to the extent that every input with the digitizer significantly lags. Toshiba has released enough drivers for R25 and M7 for us to safely migrate to Vista. I found the whole Vista install to be quite painless.

    I've been using Cintiqs since 2001 so I'm rather use to the level of "graininess" of the Toshiba TPC screens. It does not bother me doing art on the screen personally. Your mileage may vary, but it's not a big deal IMO.

    Feels fine to me. It should be about the same experience as drawing in portrait with 12" 4x3 LCDs.

    My friend (Edwood who posts here) bought the R25 identical to mine months ago, the only difference being that his is Core Duo instead of Core 2 Duo. They perform virtually the same. I couldn't tell the difference personally.

    Hope that helps.
     
  7. jiroscopic

    jiroscopic Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi,

    I was just wondering if you made a decision on a tablet pc. I am also an artist looking for the right computer. I'd appreciate your advice.

    Thanks! :)
     
  8. Shiggy

    Shiggy Pen Pal - Newbie

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    The biggest difference between Core Duo and Core 2 Duo is that Core 2 Duo is a 64 bit processor, whilst Core Duo is 32 bit (so no 64 bit Vista etc).
     
  9. Freeman

    Freeman Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Huh, that's weird, even my old Pentium-D desktop do support 64bit, why Core Duo only support 32bit?
     
  10. onedeep

    onedeep Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Pentium D is a fairly new processor. I just got a new desktop at work, and it has a P-D in it - dual core, running at 3GHz. If I am not mistaken, it is the desktop version of the Core Duo.
     
  11. thundermax

    thundermax Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I bought an R25 based on shogmaster's advice, and have been very happy with it.

    I'm beginning to enjoy Sketchbook pro. My kids really enjoy 'painting' with it too.
     
  12. evolved326

    evolved326 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I also have an R25 because my coworker had it and starting to kick my ass! My BIC pen and markers were getting left in the dust to his Tablet/Alias sketchbook. I bought it and it was one of the best purchases i EVER made. THANK YOU tabletpcreviewforums!!

    PLUS:

    big screen
    WACOM WACOM WACOM!!
    pretty fast with a C2D (I was amazed I was playin WoW smoothly)
    Vista compatable
    solid keybaord
    I sketch on it flipped around at a 75 dsgrees. I made an arm that fit into that little flip around latch thing and into the hole where the latch, um latches. Works great.

    HUGE PLUS: it has the directional keys for programming. In sketchbook; up: move page aournd, left: undo, right: redo down:forgot hehe... But this is HUGE when using sketchbook. If you are an Industrial Designer and want the perfect stroke, you know what I mean.

    MINUS:

    so much crap preloaded!
    unlatches pretty easily
    not best looking screen, although it may be all WACOMs
    fan is always on

    I got mine refurbed from EBAY. I wanted a new one but could not find it anywhere. I was lucky cause the EBAY store was close to me so I went there. First one he opened I rejected cause it was all scratched. 2nd was perfect!

    Programs running fine:

    Solid Works 2007
    Rhino 3D
    3D Studiomax 8 with Vray
    All Adobe stuff of course (although pen doesnt work in PS, who cares sketchbook owns all!)


    Hope this helps!

    EDIT: OOPS! Just realized that PS is in your title. Although it WACOM not work properly in PS, I think there is a driver you can get to make it work. This is WACOM thing I think and not Toshibas fault.
     
  13. evolved326

    evolved326 Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Actually if you are in SOCAL, check out the ebat store I went to . Seatch toshiba tablet on ebay. Find the listing that has a picture of the store front on it. Then call them. Make sure he opens it. The first one I got the bottom was scratched to the metal and it looked beat. The 2nd one was brand new with all original stickers! I think it was 1145 with no back up CDs but the code on the bottom for XP tablet is good. GOOD LUCK!
     
  14. Cristina O

    Cristina O Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hello everyone!

    Thanks to Shogmaster, as well, I have purchase the Satellite R25 for $1200. Should be here in the next few days. it seems for the price this Toshiba gives loads of features.

    I use my laptop like a desktop....but on the couch. So being plugged in and weight isn't too much of an issue for me. I am a teacher and grade a lot of electronic papers and am hoping the tablet feature will let me do this like in 'days of old' as the reviewers comments feature is a bit timeconsuming.

    I also do light web stuff (dreamweaver, flash, photoshop) and loads of email, so I think this will be all right for that.

    The 14.1 screen was a big plus for me...again, because I use a laptop like a desktop, but more comfortably!!

    I am a bit worried about the latch...as that seems to get a lot of mention, as well as the 'sparkle' behind the screen. Is there anyway to avoid this?

    Cris
     
  15. thundermax

    thundermax Pen Pal - Newbie

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    the latch issue can be annoying, but you can adjust the way you hold it to compensate. When I first read about this I was worried that the latch popping would trigger the screen to change orientation. It doesn't.

    What is the 'sparkle' issue?
     
  16. rjayx

    rjayx Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi again, everyone. I just wanted to thank all of you for the wealth of advice and opinions regarding my original post. I truly appreciate the time you've taken to answer the multitude of questions I've had to this point. I've been really busy in the last few weeks and have been unable to get around to posting responses and making a purchase just yet, so I apologize for not thanking you all earlier.

    After sorting through all the posts I feel I ultimately have one of three directions to take at this point and I plan on making a purchase as soon as this weekend if I feel I've "nailed it down" to "the one":

    The Fujitsu T4215 (bought new), the Toshiba M7 (new from Newegg or refurbed off eBay) or a refurbished R25 off of eBay. While I have a decent budget to work with, like many of you I simply prefer doing this on the cheap if possible since it frees up money for other things (like Adobe Creative Suite upgrades -arrrgh). However, I don't want to "go cheap" if the experience is going to suffer as a result. Also, from everything I've read about Wacom driver performance and issues, I definitely want to have Vista on any model I go with (whether it comes with it or I have to install post-purchase).

    I was pretty set on the M7 from Newegg that Shogmaster recommended until I saw the all the posts regarding the R25 - this looks to have even better specs with a slightly cheaper price tag if I get one from the eBay store evolved326 recommended (thanks!), although it would be refurbished.

    Anyone have thoughts on this - would one of these R25s be a better choice performance-wise than the M7? I noticed the R25s come with 1GB RAM instead of the 512K on the M7 (and are also Core 2 Duo vs Core Duo).

    Should I be too concerned about buying a refurbished model vs a new one? (evolved326, I've noted your advice regarding ensuring the case isn't all beat up if I get one from the eBay store you recommended.
    ).

    Additionally, it seems like a lot of you have R25s (Shogmaster - Toshiba should be paying you something for all the R25s it seems you've personally sold on here! Excellent concept art, BTW!), so I feel there would be lots of support and help from the posters in this forum in case I run into any issues with an R25.

    On the high end of the price range, I'm still considering the Fujitsu T4215 - I've read nearly all positive things about this one and would no doubt have already have bought one if the screen was larger like the Toshibas and the price slightly cheaper. I like that it comes with Vista pre-installed, making it ready-to-go out of the box. And honestly, I'd scratched it from my list based on price after hearing about the M7/R25s on here, but after reading DjNLes's convincing post, I'm still considering it now.

    As for the two Toshibas, they more or less seem to have all the features I'm looking for, with the added bonus of the larger screen. Unfortunately, it also appears that with either of them I'll have the ordeal of manually installing a Vista upgrade (one post had the installation process taking 11 hours on an M7!) and trying to get everything working again under Vista. From reading through many posts, it seems this isn't entirely as painless as it could/should be. It also ultimately adds to the total cost of either the R25 or M7 tablets if I go that route since I'll have to shell out an extra $150 - $200 for a Vista (Home Ultimate or Business) upgrade. The latch issue is also a slight turn-off, although not a deal-breaker.

    So anyhow, any last thoughts from anybody? Otherwise, I think I'll be flipping some coins here soon to make a final decision. I never thought deciding which tablet PC to get would ultimately be such a tough choice for me! Hehe...maybe you should all give me your vote and I'll buy based off of that...
     
  17. tlewis

    tlewis Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I recently went through this same agony.

    I finally got a loaded-to-the-gills Toshiba M7 off Ebay-
    CoreDuo 2.3
    128 NVidia graphics
    100gb hd - 7200rpm
    2gb RAM


    I was conflicted, buying something already retired from the shelves.

    My reasoning:

    I wanted a wide-screen tablet and the field is drying up.

    I wanted a dedicated graphics card and that field's dying too.

    I've had a Tosh M200 for 3.5 years. It's the best pc I've ever owned - and the M7 is compatible with its batteries and charger and extra power packs (probably $500+ worth of doodads).

    It was a good deal. $1500 less than the Asus or Fujitsu or Lenovo I was originally considering. For what I paid I can afford to use it for 2.5 years as my primary machine- then phase it out.

    Which brings me to the most telling point:

    I needed a new pc - like, now. But hovering ahead in the next year are 3 things that, I think, cumulatively will shake up mobile computing. Santa Rosa- flash drives - touch. I couldn't reasonably wait, but I didn't want to invest $3500 in a new machine and an escalating case of buyer's remorse.

    So I jumped on a powerful, Vista-capable machine that will bridge me into the New Age of Tableteering.

    I didn't hurt that Shog is such Tosh maniac, either.
    = = = = = = = = = = = = =
    So- my verdict?

    Plus side:
    Love the widescreen. Display is pretty. Vista is seductive. CoreDuo/RAM/HD make for swift work with my graphics apps. Sound's good. DVD's and games look great.

    Minus side:
    Build quality not quite up to the M200 standards - display's kind of wobbly. Protector's a little slick. As noted elsewhere - too much fan and the latch has a light touch.


    Bottom line: All in all - very sweet machine.

    T
     
  18. Shogmaster

    Shogmaster Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Thanks for reminding me guys, Toshiba seems to be late with my check this month.... ;)
     
  19. rjayx

    rjayx Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hi again everybody,

    After many weeks of trying to make a decision about a tablet PC, I finally pulled the trigger and went for a refurbished Toshiba R25 (you sold another one, Shogmaster!) from the eBay store evolved326 recommended. I drove up there (eritech in Glendale, CA) in person (about a 3 1/2-hour drive round-trip for me) before purchasing anything. The machine itself was in excellent physical condition, and I played with it for about half an hour to 45 minutes in the store before going ahead and making the purchase.

    I want to install Photoshop and Illustrator on this machine (my main reasons for investing in a tablet PC in the first place), but I recall Shogmaster's and others' comments about the Wacom pen drivers for apps like Photoshop fighting with the built-in Tablet PC XP OS drivers. I really need to have Photoshop and Illustrator on this machine, though, so I want to upgrade to Vista ASAP.

    I plan to post a thorough review of this R25 and some of the apps I'm using on it to my web site (complete with photos and maybe video) in the near future, which brings me to my next order of business. As part of the review, I would like to include my experience with the Vista upgrade process for this machine.

    So prior to jumping headlong into a Vista upgrade, I did a little research on the topic. I've searched through these forums and visited the R25 support area of Toshiba's web site, and so far it looks like installing Vista on this R25 is going to be a major chore.

    I downloaded the Vista upgrade instructions PDF from the R25 download area of Toshiba's web site and it appears I have to download and run an update to the BIOS on the R25, for which no download even exists on the Toshiba R25 download page-or at least not one that is designated as the BIOS needed for the Vista upgrade. What the heck is with that?

    Here are the instructions for installing Vista per Toshiba's own PDF:

    MANUAL UPGRADE:

    1. Download Toshiba BIOS and software components for Windows Vista

    (OK - where the heck is the BIOS update for Vista, Toshiba??? I see some BIOS downloads on the Toshiba site, but none of them mention Vista and the most recent one-1.70-is dated 10-24-2006 - is this the BIOS I need to download? Some clarity here would be nice).

    2. Update the computer’s BIOS

    3. Remove Toshiba software components for Windows XP

    4. Install Windows Vista

    5. Install Toshiba-supplied software components for Windows Vista

    CLEAN INSTALLATION:

    1. Update the computer’s BIOS

    (see my number 1. comments above)

    2. Download the Toshiba RAID driver (if required)

    3. Install Windows Vista

    4. Download and install Toshiba software components for Windows Vista

    Searching through the forums here, I found a link to a bios_tm7_sr20_intel_v3.1.0.exe file on somebody's web site and I now am wondering if this is the correct BIOS update I need for the R25.

    Does anyone in these forums know if this is the correct R25 BIOS update for Vista??? If so, why isn't it anywhere to be found on Toshiba's web site?

    After that, it appears I have to uninstall about two dozen drivers, install Vista, and then re-install Vista versions of about two dozen drivers on the R25 if I perform a manual upgrade. Sheesh! That's every bit as bad as those "I'm a Mac, I'm a PC" commercials imply...

    I can't say I'm looking forward to this process much but Photoshop (and Illustrator) are my primary reasons for investing in a tablet PC in the first place, so I'm willing to give this the ol' college try once I sort out the correct procedure for upgrading.

    The other option is to perform a clean install, although I'm certain I'll lose the Windows Journal, Microsoft Works Suite, and OneNote applications that came pre-installed if I do this (there were no back-up or restore discs that came with the machine). Same story here, though - I'm first supposed to install the mystery R25 BIOS update...

    Overall, I am pleased with the machine itself given what I've run on it so far, however, my ultimate satisfaction level will be determined more accurately after Vista is on here and I can test out Photoshop, Painter, and Illustrator with Wacom's pen drivers.

    Before going ahead with a Vista upgrade on this R25 however, I thought I'd first post here to ask anyone and everyone who's attempted a Vista upgrade on an R25 what experiences and issues they've had, whether or not they were able to find the mystery R25 Vista BIOS update, and any other advice they are willing to give me before I plunge into this task.

    These forums have been a world of help so far, and I hope you all can help guide this tablet PC newbie through the dark and dangerous waters of a Vista upgrade on a Toshiba R25 - my thanks in advance!
     
  20. Shogmaster

    Shogmaster Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    WOW! LOTS TO READ!

    OK man, the important thing is NOT TO PANIC! :D

    First, congrats.

    Second, ALWAYS DO FRESH INSTALLS. Upgrading is for the lazy who are asking for trouble! ;) You will NOT lose Journal. It comes with all Vista versions other than the plain Home. You will lose Works Suite, but you should really get the Office and not mess with MS Works. You will lose One Note 2003 but you can get it back if you have the keycode for it in the box (comes with a COA IIRC). I can send you install CD for One Note 2003 if you indeed have the COA and keycode.

    The reason I am pushing for fresh install is that even if you don't mind the XP:TE's hampering with the Wacom driver, Toshiba packs in so much crapware in their machines that I recommend fresh install of OS even if you were sticking with XP:TE. After I did frest install of XP:TE in my friend's R25 (before I tracked down the Wacom driver conflict) last year, the boot time was practically cut in half! The Toshiba installations from factory is a malware ridden slow as hell mess.

    As for the Vista BIOS update, I don't remember doing one on my R25. My guess is that the Vista upgrade instructions for R25 are cut and paste from M7's (which is practically the same machine), but M7 never officially had Core 2 Duo configuration before being discontinues from the Toshiba's site, and the BIOS update includes update for Core 2 Duo among other things. If you got R25 S-3513 (with Core 2 Duo) like me, then I think you don't have to worry about the BIOS update. If you got a R25 S-3503 (Core Duo version), then you might need the update, and the M7 one might do the trick, but I can't guarantee anything. I would personally go without it unless the Vista installation doesn't work.

    P.S. Since you don't use Painter, you also might not need Vista yet. The reason I say this is because the XP:TE Wacom driver conflict only annoys those of us that does fast sketching and drawing strokes. If you tend to do methodical and slow strokes with your tablet then you might not even notice the problem. Try using Photoshop on R25 the way you normally do with the XP:TE and see if you feel a lag with the brush stroke and pressure sensitivity. If you don't notice anything, you can certainly wait for SP1 of Vista.
     
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