Just another "Looking for a sketching tablet" thread lol

Discussion in 'What Tablet PC Should I Buy?' started by Neve, Apr 11, 2017.

  1. Neve

    Neve Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I know there is a million of these threads, but... Having just bought a Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 today and using it extensively, I'm... sorely disappointed, to say the least, and wondering what my options are.

    1. What is your budget?

    700-1000 USD (or less, less is always great, would prefer not to reach 1000 unless it's the perfect machine lol)

    2. Would you consider purchasing used/refurbished?

    New. Manufactured refurbished only.

    3. Do you prefer a media/mobile tablet like the iPad, Windows tablet PC, or notebook convertible?

    Would prefer the mobile tablet form factor (light as possible), but with enough power under the hood to not have any latency or lag while drawing. So iPad-Windows Tablet PCish

    4. What size Tablet PC would you prefer?
    • 5 to7-inches
    • 7.1 to 10-inches
    • 10 to 13-inches
    • Above 13-inches
    9.7-12 inches would be ideal. More is great but it's not really portable for me anymore.

    5. Which country do you intent to purchase from [where do you live]?

    USA

    6. Do you have any preferences to brand loyalty or dislikes?

    As long as the quality is good, I'm willing to try them. I'm only a little leery of Dell consumer grade devices and any Chinese knock offs because of experience. If I'm spending this kind of money though, I expect the best.

    7. How many hours battery life do you require?

    At least 7-10 hours. Long as possible.

    8. What will be the primary usage scenario of this tablet? (Email/Web Surfing/Drawing/Word Processing/Entertainment/Notetaking etc)

    Sketching, drawing, doodling, creating plans for full illustrations, maybe inking. Then light email, web surfing, etc.


    9. Do you have an OS preference? For example, do you own an iPhone and a Mac, or are you a Windows fan? Do you own an Android device and use Google services frequently?

    I've mainly used Windows and Android. Not a big fan of Apple, but will consider them.


    10. What software and tasks do you intend to run? (Microsoft Office or other Word Processing Suite/Photoshop/3D Studio Max/Autocad etc)

    Mostly Clip Studio Paint, SAI, Photoshop, MS Office, and some other art apps if this is going to be Windows. Android/iOS would be their apps. Nearly all the Android apps don't satisfy my needs, however.

    11. Do you intend on playing Games? If so please list.

    Nope!

    12. Would you like to stream content through your home theater system?

    Nope!

    Screen Specifics

    1. Any preference on screen resolution?

    Higher the better as long as there are no scaling issues or they are easily resolved.

    2. Will you be using the tablet outdoors? Do you need to be able to see it through glare from the sun?
    See the above linked FAQ for guidance

    Nope, indoors only. Bedroom, kitchen, cafe, work, school, etc.

    3. Do you require a pen? With or without pressure sensitivity? Do you prefer Wacom or N-trig?
    See the above linked FAQ for guidance

    A pen with pressure sensitivity and eraser end. I have a preference for traditional Wacom EMR either in their devices or tablet pcs. I'm not keen on N-trig or Samsung's Wacom EMR at the moment. Haven't tried AES.

    Component Specifics

    1. What size Hard Drive and Memory do you require? Would you like expandable memory?

    I'm not too picky here as long as there is enough space to house the OS and have considerable breathing room for the tablet to operate smoothly. I'll be moving most of my images to my main rig which is a desktop set up.

    2. What sort of inputs do you require, if any? Would you like full-sized USB and SD card slots? Are microUSB and microSD ok? Do you require HDMI inputs?

    USB port is essential, microsd slot is a bonus.

    Misc
    1. Other non specific items ~ please add other items you require not covered above?

    2. Additional requests ~ anything other you wish to take into consideration?

    Will explain in detail in a moment.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    So, let me first start off and say that I've followed this forum for years and I am grateful to all the advice and knowledge I've gained from TabletPCReview. This is, without a doubt, one of my most favorite forums on the Internet! And now I come to you today because... I'm kind of at a loss of what to do.

    My tablet pc adventure brought me to used Fujitsu Stylistics quite before the media tablet boom and while the pen tech was lovely, they were heavy for me, hot, bulky, no touch, etc. As a result, their batteries drained more from inactivity as I went back to my old, trusty Intuos 2, never really believing I'd be able to afford myself a decent tablet with a screen. But here I am in a good position to do just that!

    So, after reading, I dove right in for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3. It's light, it's fast, it's clear, it's cool, has a long battery life. Should be a pretty perfect tablet, right? I wasn't really impressed with Samsung's Wacom iteration before, but since the pens were recently remade and improved and with the stellar reviews, I had high hopes only to be disappointed. I'm not sure where these 4,196 levels of pressure sensitivity are coming from, but it still feels like 20, palm rejection is spotty at best, and most of these apps offer really outdated brush systems. I mean, this tablet is lovely, but... At the cost, I think it might be wise to invest in something more useful for me.

    The thing is, I haven't really been impressed by much else. The Apple Pencil is on par with the Samsung Wacom pen, the former feeling softer, more slippery, the latter has more... ehrm, grip? I tried the Surface Studio at the Microsoft Store for kicks when they had Photoshop installed and all the lines were thick and blunt with minimal tapering, so, going to maybe try and bring in some apps to test it out to see if I can get something better since PS, CSP, and SAI all support Windows API now, but initial impression was also disappointing. Maybe I just notice it more than other people or something lol.

    Sooo... I'm not sure what to do. Is there a Wacom EMR tablet by Windows that's light and thin and somewhat portable? Or should I just invest in Wacom and call it a day? Wacom is not exactly good at portable lol. My ideas are:

    1.) Wacom Intuos upgrade + media tablet
    2.) Wacom Cintiq Pro 13 and ditch sketching tablet
    3.) Some tablet pc/media tablet of some sorts.

    Any other ideas or suggestions are welcome! I know it sounds like I'm being picky, but I'm willing to try again with any of these provided I get something that works out for me. Is there something on the horizon I should watch out for? Thanks in advanced. :)
     
  2. okieiam

    okieiam Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Cube Mix Plus + Dock + Pen + lather Case + 64GB TFCard + tempered glass + USB-c-HDMI + MacBook 2016 Charger 29W + Asus T200TA Battery = 420$ + 53$ + 20$ +10$ + 30$ +7$ + 60$ + 70$ +30$ = 700$++

    Full features, powerful, decent build quality
    Good user base support
    10.6 inch FHD Samsung IPS
    Wacom ERM
    1024 pressure level stylus plus eraser
    Kaby Lake 7th gen core m3 7y-30
    Intel HD 615 graphics
    4GB 1866MHZ dual channel DDL3R RAM
    128GB foresee M2 Sata SSD
    USB-c, micro-USB
    Windows 10
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2017
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  3. thatcomicsguy

    thatcomicsguy Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Mercury Retrograde ends May 3rd.

    Research and play and ponder, but don't buy until after that date. Even Microsoft and Samsung know the score I 'spect; we won't see any announcements from them regarding their new lines until after.

    Yeah, it's total wooo, sure, but seriously... Wait.

    With that being said...

    What was it about the Samsung iteration of EMR that you found off-putting? -I know when I tried the S-Pen with the Galaxy Note Pro 12.2" (at a box store display table), the rubberized tip felt... unusual and the Android drawing app it had loaded up wasn't very satisfying to draw in. I thought that maybe with one of the other S-Pens available, one with a firmer tip and a thicker barrel, (and better software) it might have been pretty good.

    The Galaxy Book looks intriguing.

    http://www.trustedreviews.com/galaxy-book-review

    It'll be neat when that thing starts shipping...
     
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  4. Neve

    Neve Pen Pal - Newbie

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    ...I was wondering if I should take what you said about the retrograde seriously lol!! I've been waiting with bated breath but I... want something now. orz I actually ended up settling on the Galaxy Tab A with S-pen. For 300 dollars and it being a generation older, I feel like I won't be too upset for whatever Samsung and Microsoft put out in, probably, a couple weeks lol.

    To answer your questions: I am big dummy and should have spent more time with the S3 before writing my post. Allow me to go into detail:

    Basically, palm rejection and, yes, even pressure sensitivity, can be art app specific. While the majority of the apps I tested didn't give me the option and it picked up the pressure sensitivity right away, programs like Medibang require you to set it up. After I did that and set up palm rejection/pen only mode in Medibang and ArtFlow, the experience was much better and was closer to the EMR we are accustomed to using. I didn't notice a huge difference between the S3 and A though, new advancements or not. S-pen EMR definitely doesn't have the latency that I experienced with Ntrig, so that's incredibly promising for the Galaxy Book.

    Samsung provides you with additional nibs. The rubberized ones feels closer to a Wacom felt nib. It feels stiffer, but it allows for more give on the the glass surface. There is one that looks similar to the standard plastic ones, maybe, but I haven't tried it yet.

    As for testing out the apps with the S-pen: Go to a BestBuy and ask a Samsung rep that you want to test the S-pen capabilities, just tell them that the apps installed don't help you. They'll let you install it for a brief amount of time if it's on Android. If it's going to be for the Galaxy Book, you could try and ask to plug in a usb with SAI 2 on there and test out the EMR pen on the Windows environment. All the Microsoft reps in both BestBuy and the Microsoft store let me do that no problem. You can also install Medibang/FireAlpaca to a usb drive and it should work. Mdiapp//MangaLabo are in the same software family as Medibang/FireAlpaca so the results of your test should be similar. Good luck if it you give it a whirl!
     
  5. Io-T

    Io-T Pen Pal - Newbie

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    How have you liked that one so far? I am debating picking up one myself for concepts, sketches for clients and studies.
     
  6. Neve

    Neve Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Honestly, it's a great tablet! For your needs, it will be perfect. Once you tweak the art software (I rec Medibang and Artflow), it's very smooth and accurate. Artflow in particular will be perfect for sketches and concepts because of its response time. It's also not that much heavier than the S3 so it's the perfect sketchpad, better, even, because it has a matte back. I don't know what Samsung was thinking with the glossy back on the S3, since it's a magnet for dust and fingerprints. The battery life is also impressive. I had it idling for two days and it only dropped a percent, when I was drawing for about two-three hours, it only dipped to about 80 when it was at 95 or so. For the price, it's the perfect sketching device: snappy, long battery life, EMR, light, you name it!

    However, some caveats that will most likely make me return it soon: the included S-pen is really thin and your hand can get cramped easily. And if it doesn't, going back to a normal, thick tablet pen will feel incredibly disorientating. You'll definitely want to invest in a Bamboo Smart Stylus whenever Wacom gets around to supplying it again. The included memory space of 16 GB is borderline a problem for me since I worry the updates will start slowing it down and taking up space, so I wonder if it will become obsolete very quickly even with an SD card. For me, I don't know if the Android art apps are really capable for me when there are sketching solutions for Windows like Mischief and MyPaint alongside SAI which are leaps and bounds better than what is available. When I was doing the Surface tests, I thought the lines SAI made were still overall better quality even at the expense of latency and Ntrig issues despite the actual EMR tech feeling more natural in both the S3 and Tab A for the included apps.These issues may not worry you though, and if they don't, take the plunge, because it's a very fine piece of tech. From what I understand, you have a solid set up already, whereas I'm still debating on what mine will be, so having the Tab A as a supplementary device would fit you well, I think.
     
  7. thatcomicsguy

    thatcomicsguy Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Heh. You're talking to an old hand with this stuff. Been there, done that.

    I did bring an old Penabled stylus with me to see if that would be a better tool than the rubber-nosed Galaxy Note Pro toothpick. -If it wasn't for the slightly different build standards, (where the antenna pickup in the pen is fixed at a different distance, creating a large offset), then it would be a great tool. There's nothing inherrently wrong with the EMR digitizer tech itself that I could find; it's the same reliable technology with the same known limits.

    For me it was the Android OS, the weenie software, and as we learned later from user reviews, the less than solid reliability.., that's what turned me off the last 12.2" Samsung offering. Maybe if it was only $200 or so.., but $900 for a weak-kneed Android device? No thanks. -I figure if they're going to try to sell us toys, they shouldn't price them as though they were grown up tools.

    Now, this upcoming Galaxy Book on the other hand... When that starts shipping, if it is priced right doesn't have any significant fail points; if it's as good in real life as it is on paper.., I think it might be a game changer!
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2017
  8. DRTigerlilly

    DRTigerlilly Tablet Lead Mod (Retired) Super Moderator

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    FYI They have been discontinued AFAIK, Best Buy (Though you have to check local stock) & ArtRage, Adorama have the Bamboo Smart Stylus for select Galaxy Devices (CS310UK) in stock right now
     
  9. stoneseeker

    stoneseeker Animator and Art Director Senior Member

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    My Sammy Notepro is a great supplemental device to my setup, but I sympathize with you that Android just doesn't quite cut it as a main device. I also have the Wacom Bamboo for Samsung devices, the larger one with carbonfibre made for my tablet and it feels much better for sketching, so it will at least help with that issue if you decide to keep your S3. Its available on Amazon which is where I got it... https://www.amazon.com/Wacom-Bamboo...=1492802215&sr=1-1&keywords=wacom+bamboo+note only $30.

    If your wanting a more reliable main device to work on and NEED EMR, then Wacom Mobile Studio Pro 13/16 still seems like your best bet, IMO.
     
  10. MrLucifer

    MrLucifer Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hello, i see your recommendation about the cube mix plus, but why are you suggesting to purchase an asus T200TA battery?
    Is it compatible with the mix plus? May I ask you where you got this information?

    Thanks :)
     
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