Need something for notes, sloppy words and doodles?

Discussion in 'What Tablet PC Should I Buy?' started by Will R, Feb 13, 2021.

  1. Will R

    Will R Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I searched but theres a lot of information and I feel like im looking for something specific enough that I'd make a thread.

    I'm a developer and i love typing, but when I'm planning things I can't seem to get away from the pen and paper. I've tried various whiteboards and mindmap software but I can't bang something out quicker than with hand and pen. I scribble notes and make a lot of lists and boxes and shapes when I note things. I hate using paper though as I end up spilling something on it, using notepads as coasters or filing it to get the stack of paper off my desk so i can clean the desk and declutter. would like to write the note save it and have it sync to my nas for viewing on my workstation.

    anyway, what I'd like....

    a super light laptop/tablet that has amazing pen...ing... recognition. My wife uses an ipad pro for design and editorial work. She has a paper-mimick screen over it which feels very nice. I might go this route but im not an apple fan and i was hoping to find something that has a writing pad where the keyboard would normally be on a small laptop. I found a link to a lenovo one that looked cool but when I went to the site i got hit with a ton of "this is dicontinued" redirects til i ended up at their standard laptops section.

    I'm in Canada. I was partial to Lenovo literally just cuz theres a rakuten 9% cashback right now but really anything will do that fits the ask. Most important is the pen to pad/screen feeling as authentic as possible. Am I asking too much?
     
  2. WillAdams

    WillAdams Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The Remarkable tablet is marketed to your use case --- have you looked at it?

    I use a Samsung Galaxy Book 12 for pretty much everything, and when doing the sort of things you describe use Nebo.app
     
  3. Will R

    Will R Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Hey Thanks. Just checked out the Remarkable 2. Sounds like it would be perfect except its reviews are pretty mixed. It seems over priced to me as well. The main concern is I live sync all my docs to my local nas, seems that device requires using their proprietary Cloud sync software and storing docs in their servers which im not willing to do. If th edevice was $500 or under, I'd pick one up and try and mod it, but pushing $900... im feeeling like I'd be ripped off. I wonder if anyone that has one can speak to their experience with it.

    For $900 Im thinking its a better option to with the Samsung Tab S7 11''. The pen responsiveness seems to be reviewed well
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2021
  4. WillAdams

    WillAdams Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    The pen technology is the same --- the difference is the software and the screen and overall weight/battery life.

    The Tab S7 should work well if you can find software which meets your needs in the Android store and you're okay w/ a lighted screen and attendant shorter battery life and weight --- try Nebo.app
     
  5. violajack

    violajack Scribbler - Standard Member

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    If it's just for a scratch pad, and you're okay with Android, I'd go with the Samsung Tab S6 lite. For just whiteboarding/casual notes, I don't know that you need the power of the S7, thought the screen is a bit narrower on the S6 lite.

    If you want eInk, you can also check out the Onyx Boox series. Same Wacom pens, Android based, eInk screens. But you'll have to stick with the built in notes app. General Android drawing apps don't handle the eInk well and lag terribly. I think the Onyx notes app will be more locally accessible? Maybe? I've not tried it, I've only sent PDFs to the Nova Pro I have.

    I will say, my husband is a UI/UX designer and, while most of his time is spent in code, his workspace is an explosion of papers as well. He keeps trying to take various tablets of mine thinking it'll be like digital paper, and nothing has stuck for him so far. My 12.9" iPad Pro is currently collecting dust in his office. He just pulls more blank paper out of the printer. There was also the explosion of index cards we had when he was developing a mobile app and realized index cards were perfect for mocking up phone screens.

    I've had the Yogabook C930 you're likely looking at. It's a neat device, but the friction of opening, waiting for windows, waiting for the eInk screen, which is more like a peripheral device than a screen, and then dealing with how to transfer the notes is significantly higher than grabbing scrap paper and a pencil. If you're used to moving fast to get ideas out of your head, an iPad or Android tablet will probably get you there fastest, and using OneNote for your drawings will sync to something you can see on your workstation screen the smoothest. You can keep the OneNote notebook on your local NAS, or on OneDrive. A dedicated eInk device will be the next fastest, thought I'm not sure on the best way to keep those notes locally.
     
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  6. Will R

    Will R Pen Pal - Newbie

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    This pretty much described the situation lol. Last night I stole my wifes ipad 11 pro to try out for a couple days. Its got a "paper" screen over the glass that feels good. I'm using Good Notes 5 and so far its working well. I'll see if it sticks. The main issue and its common on Apple crap, is that I can't change the default location where it stores notes. Which means I have to go into a third party app, to open the file I want on my server in Good Notes, then export it when I want to save it and save it to the server locally which adds about 30 seconds on open / close. As opposed to having a folder sync to the NAS automatically. One of the main reasons I wanted to avoid Apple. But its not the end of the world. I'll work with the ipad for a bit and see if it sticks and make a decision then.
    Thanks for the info so far!
     
  7. daddyfish

    daddyfish Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Might also be worth it to look at a Surface Go 1/2 and than put a matt screen protector on it for that paper feel and will also protect your device (2 birds with 1 stone).

    Especially since note taking is not so heavy on the cpu side so you can get the cheaper pentium model and than get the model with a SSD (for fast Windows- and program start up and speedy save/loading of notes). An advantage of the Go compared to Android tablets is that with Windows 10 you will get lots of years of updates, even if the device you buy is older. IR camera (Windows hello) is also nice. Personally I also really like the Surface pen with its eraser, magnets and customizable button. And how pen support is integrated in Windows 10 (also in stuff like screen snip etc).

    If you do go for a Suface Go, I would recommend a Go 2 over a Go 1 because you get a bigger screen (/smaller bezels), better wifi & bluetooth, slightly improved cpu and slightly bigger battery. Getting a SSD should be priority.
    Since you only seem to need to do note taking you can skip the surface type cover and save money. And use Edge browser with swipe typing if needed.
     

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