Need help finding the right 2in1 for my artistic needs

Discussion in 'What Tablet PC Should I Buy?' started by Soulular, May 9, 2021.

  1. Marty

    Marty Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    Well, that list is very wrong (surprising, considering they are a well-known digital stylus company :p). Seems like whoever compiled it didn't know the difference between AES and EMR, and added any device with a "Wacom"-branded digitizer.

    And basically, "EMR compatible" = EMR. There are different types of EMR, but of the options you're looking at, it's all UD EMR, the most common type on consumer devices.
     
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  2. doobiedoobiedum

    doobiedoobiedum Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    I would buy a zbook again in a heartbeat even if it's just that bit big and heavy against your original requirements.

    When I was on the hunt, a UK national retailer was selling off the last of their Samsung Galaxy Book 12 stock for approx $560 each brand new and I was really tempted but I wanted the bigger screen and physical shortcut buttons on the zbook screen. Managed to get a zbook brand new from an Xmas sale at a US website and a friend brought it to the UK for me - $900+ with 16GB RAM and 4K Dreamcolor screen.

    It is ridiculously heavy though - but it has a reasonable selection of ports and the drawing experience is outstanding. That stylus with felt nibs (gray plastic nibs - I've been corrected) is outstanding if just a bit light for my tastes.
    There's a guy works at Disney who posts here and he bought one off Canadian ebay and he loves his. They are built like tanks and will stand a drop if you really want to try. Brand new on HP - they are still $2500+ but you can still get them new elsewhere for much less.

    Positives: Wacom EMR is gorgeous, zbook stylus is outstanding for drawing, ports and SD card expandability, physical shortcut buttons and it has a customisable Wacom control panel which is like the Mobile Studio Pro control panel.
    Negatives: heavy, ridiculously heavy, battery life is not great, 16:9 screen proportion and not great for heavy 3D work & it's no good on your lap whatsoever. Keyboard feels "fake" - a button press is like pressing on an upturned plastic sheet with mouldings - doesn't feel like a mechanical keypress. If you have Adobe Apps installed the Wacom control panel tends to default to Adobe settings.

    Don't know if it's a negative or a positive but I've never had a laptop that needed almost weekly update downloads from HP for all the HP software. BIOS is updated almost monthly sometimes - you just need to keep an eye that the BIOS sets battery charge limits to 80% or it will shorten your battery life.

    The detachable keyboard is pretty good for working with shortcuts when using CSP / Photoshop etc. I position mine on the side on my table when I'm using it.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2021
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  3. ticol

    ticol Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I agree with the different comments about the Galaxy Book 12 and the HP ZBook. These are the 2 drawing machines I use to do my work.

    I find the Galaxy Book to be the best to get with me everywhere and carry in a bag. It's not very heavy and not too big. Drawing is great on it, and the screen resolution is high enough to get very sharp images.

    The ZBook is heavier and has a shorter battery life, but I find it to be superior in term of screen quality (and size). The colors are nicer, and the textured glass makes the drawing experience a step higher while being non reflective (sometimes the ambiant lights reflections on the Galaxy Book screen can be very annoying).
    And I really love its stand. It's very convenient to be able to change the drawing angle so easily.
    It feels very robust, too, when sitting on a desk.

    If I had to keep only one, it would be the ZBook. It feels better and stronger. I like it more when I have to do some typing too. I see it more like a "very solid working machine" when the Galaxy Book is more a really cool device to have to draw everywhere without carrying a heavy bag.
     
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  4. Soulular

    Soulular Pen Pal - Newbie

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    That does explain why some of the laptops listed were said to have AES in the video reviews that I've watched. It confused me a little bit and started to think that some laptops can be AES and EMR compatible but it depends on the pen. Thanks for clearing that up for me :thumbsup:.
     
  5. Soulular

    Soulular Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Honestly as a stationary device and/or one where you can take it from point A to point B almost like a portable desktop it sounds amazing, but for something like using it to write/draw in bed or using it while traveling in a vehicle in between destinations it doesn't sound like it would work in those scenarios. I would definitely get a ZBook if I was looking for something to (somewhat) replace my desktop, but for what I'm looking for it's something to go in tandem with what I already have and not having to be stuck at a table to draw or write.
     
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  6. Soulular

    Soulular Pen Pal - Newbie

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    That's what I'm really looking for is being able to carry it everywhere and having a great drawing experience, something I can pull out at anytime and just work on projects.

    I have herd of some issues with the GB12 like it losing a connection to the internet when it goes to sleep, The keyboard skipping some letters when you start typing after it wakes up, The magnets on the keyboard cover aren't strong/wear down over time, and the device charging sporadically when plugged in or general issues with charging. Have you had any of these issues in your experience of owning the GB12 or would these be uncommon issues with the device?
     
  7. ticol

    ticol Pen Pal - Newbie

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    No, I didn't have any of these issues with the GB12. My only complain would be the USB C ports which became a bit loose. I have to be careful when I plug my power supply or a hub in them.
    Like I said, I like it very much be it doesn't feel as robust as the ZBook. But I still bring it everywhere with me :) It's very pleasant to be able to draw everywhere (in bus, train, while waiting for an appointment, when I meet some clients,...).

    Plus, I installed TabletPro on it. It helps a lot to have substitution express keys.

    And, I forgot to mention it, but the GB12 is perfect to draw in portrait mode. I never bonded with portrait mode on 16:9 devices. It always felt completely wrong to me, I don't know why.

    I didn't try them but I guess the other Galaxy Books should give the same kind of portable / great drawing experience devices. I am just wondering if their "only" Full HD resolution is enough.
     
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  8. Marty

    Marty Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    This might come as a suggestion out of left-field, but have you considered the Galaxy Book 2?

    [​IMG]

    It has the same EMR, OLED and 3:2 screen as the GB12, but with addition of a kickstand; so it would be great for "grab-and-go" sketching.

    And if you plan on only using CSP for light sketching, the Windows ARM OS limitation shouldn't be a big hindrance. And the upside is you'll get about double the battery life. :)
     
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  9. Soulular

    Soulular Pen Pal - Newbie

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    That's good to know, I was worried these were common things plaguing the device but I guess it's just uncommon issues, or maybe issues from refurbished/used ones are my guess.

    Also glad to hear portrait mode feels good to draw in, I didn't really get a chance with the surface pro 7 when I still had it so I'm still waiting to give that a go.

    @Marty brought it to my attention that the Galaxy Book 2 might be a good choice, so I may have another look around in the galaxy book section and see what options are there.

    I think I looked into it a little maybe a week or two ago but forgot about it, but I just read up on the ARM OS Limitations and I'm not 100% sure if they would be a hindrance or not. I know I want to do full on art pieces (so I can bounce back and forth from tablet to PC on any art piece) and to do some frame by frame animation.
    For context I don't do anything like digital painting, more on the side of cartoony line art, but I do use a lot of effects and layers.
    Outside of CSP I was also planning on using audacity for light audio editing and (maybe) Shotcut for light video editing, so I'm not sure if these programs would work with that OS but everything else you listed about the device is perfect :)
     
  10. Marty

    Marty Pen Pro - Senior Member Senior Member

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    I've only had limited first-hand use, but here is my experience:

    For now (until 64bit support comes out of beta), you're limited to 32bit applications, so you're stuck at version 1.9.11 of CSP. I'd recommend downloading this version and making sure all the features you need are there.

    I have a similar usecase to you, so I'm actually ok with even older ~1.6.1+ versions as they already have the animation features (EX version for unlimited frames).

    For performance testing, if you have an Atom tablet you could see if your workflow runs suitably well on that first. Personally I've found for 3000x2000 canvases of up to 20 layers to be ok on Atom.

    You might also consider running Paint Tool SAI as a secondary sketching app, since it has a super-lightweight and responsive brush engine. In general, think simple, efficient creative programs (ie. not Photoshop), with 1 or 2 background apps as a general usecase.

    Both Audacity snd Shotcut have 32bit versions, so they'll run but again think simple projects and expect longer processing/export times. This is primarily going to be an on-the-sketching and content consumption device, only dipping slightly into other usecases.

    Hope that helps. ;)
     
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