Outdoor Viewability- comparison pics and discussion of tablet pcs being used outdoors

Discussion in 'The Tablet PC Life' started by MasterKuni, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. MasterKuni

    MasterKuni Pen Pal - Newbie

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    What are the major differences between these models other than differing cpu options? I might sell my x120e and try to purchase one model or the other for tablet functionality.

    Moderator edit-
    This thread has morphed into a more specific conversation about the outdoor viewability of various tablet pc screens, with a great deal of support material, user-provided comparison pics, and real life assessments. As such, I've renamed the thread, and moved it to the appropriate forum to be used as a community resource.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 9, 2013
  2. AndreR

    AndreR Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I believe that the x200 non multi-touch has the best battery life, if this important for you. And also the x201 has a trackpad. Another detail is that the x201 seems to have another screen/display solution where the screen is lowered a bit into the display casing. However, I don´t why Lenovo did this and therefore I can´t tell if it is a good thing.
     
  3. MasterKuni

    MasterKuni Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Thanks, I think battery life and price are my primary concerns, and I only ever use the trackpoint, so I'll probably be looking at the x200. Ebay primarily has models with either multitouch or a non-specified screen, which is unfortunate.
     
  4. Stan S.

    Stan S. Scribbler - Standard Member

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    officially the 200T doesn't support more than 4G memory. Unofficially if you have later build it might support 8G.

    200's with touch are only single finger. 201's could be singe or two finger. 201's have better outdoor screens (without touch).
     
  5. MasterKuni

    MasterKuni Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Good to know.

    I don't need more than 4GB ram for my usage, and I'd prefer an outdoor screen to a touchscreen. It's my understanding that the outdoor screen has much better viewing angles, color, and brightness compared to the touchscreen. I've read benchmarks on the CPU, and it looks like the x200's SL9400 is similar in performance to the ULV i5 used in the x201.

    I'm not sure that for my needs the 201 would necessarily be a better choice for price/performance.
     
  6. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    The x201t also runs much hotter for a minimal improvement in performance. Less battery life too. The Outdoor Superbright screen on both models is fantastic. It's what I have. I sold my x201t and got my x200t, and have never looked back. Put a SSD in, and run TPFC, and it's a silent cool machine. I have the 4 and 8cell batteries, and the option of 3.5 lb, less wide slate with 3 hours battery life or 4.0 lb extra wide laptop/convertible with 6-7 hours battery life is very flexible, and allows for a lot of uses. I wish it had onscreen buttons in a better location, and I wish the screen was 4:3 or 13.3", but other than that, it's been very good.
     
  7. AndreR

    AndreR Scribbler - Standard Member

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    The outdoor display on my computer is fantastic during intense light. But the anti reflective layer causes "light waves", meaning that the brightness differs from different viewing angles. I tried an x201 without the outdoor display option an the screen were more pleasant to use. However, so were instead the display more reflective and not as bright.

    Also I think that the "super bright outdoor" and just "outdoor display" ain't the same. You might have to look this up.

    *Edit
    I just confirmed that the superbright display (300 nit) and outdoor display (400 not and anti reflective layer) ain't the same. With the superbright display so won't you have the problems with "light waves", but it won't be as usable in very intense lightning.
     
  8. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    There's a Superbright screen and a Superbright Outdoor screen, as far as I know. I don't think there's just an Outdoor display. And, yep, the Superbright Outdoor does have these "waves" from a polarizing layer. It's my one truly legitimate complaint about the computer.

    This polarizing layer makes the screen wonderful outside. No matte screen protector needed, etc. Very readable, even colors are pretty good, IMO, when used at full brightness. Absolutely so in the shade. Not too shabby in full sun. Works fine as a slate in either orientation, etc.

    Indoors, I find it works wonderfully as a laptop, with bright vivid colors, as long as you tilt the screen at the correct angle. Tilt it at the wrong angle and an annoying "wave" of darker (though entirely readable) light descends across the screen, bit by bit, depending on how far you tilt the screen. There is a correct angle though, where you don't get any of this affect- you just need to tilt the screen to the correct angle and let it stay there. As a slate in portrait mode, I find it harder to work with indoors, as the anti-reflective layer runs top to bottom in that orientation, and it's hard to get it at the right angle when holding it so that there's no "wave of shadow" half way across the screen. This was definitely rather disappointing, though I have to say that I've never used it much in this orientation any ways, because of the 16:10 aspect ratio (compared to one of the Motion slates I owned, that were wonderful in portrait with a 4:3 ratio). As a slate in landscape mode indoors (the way I always use it when drawing, with the taskbar to the right), I find it works very well, as I'm usually either right above it while drawing, or I'm propping it on a stand to get a good ergonomic angle, in which case the polarizing effect goes away.

    It did take me a while to get used to the polarizing effect though, and I complained about it a bit on these forums when I got the computer. It would have been nice to know about it before I got it. It's not a perfect screen, you trade off one thing for another a bit, but it's very good, IMO. Perhaps a different screen would be better if I was only working indoors. I don't know. However, I can say that its the best I've ever used, indoors or out (although I've not seen the t5010, and many seem to think that's a very good screen as well, even outdoors). It is very very bright, works wonderfully outdoors, and is also wonderful inside if used at the correct angles, with good color for art, and virtually no paralax, as you're drawing right on the screen, unlike many tablets that go bezel-less. It also has no "sparkles" that are normally introduced by matte finishes, and yet, simultaneously, doesn't have the major glare issues you normally have from a smooth clear finish.

    The Superbright screen, comparatively, is also very nice, but I didn't like it as much, although it doens't have those "waves of darkness". It's not as bright and isn't nearly as readable outdoors, IMO. It has a hard plastic "cover" that goes across it, so you don't feel the bezel when inking. Some people really love this. I felt like it muted the colors, created opportunities for reflections, and introduced way too much parallax, as you're not drawing directly on the "screen" (which is an 1/8 of an inch below). I'm sure it's a good screen in its own right, but compared to the vivid colors, amazing brightness, lack of parallax, and impeccable outdoor viewing experience on the Superbright Outdoor screen, I had to sell it on ebay and get this one again. I was willing to forgive the Superbright Outdoor it's issues with the "wave of darkness" for all the other benefits. There was just no going back. ;P
     
  9. AndreR

    AndreR Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Steve B:
    You managed to describe exactly how I feel about my outdoor screen!

    To clarify for others about the benefits and drawbacks of the outdoor screen. I compared my screen to our smart phones (HTC Desire, iPhone 3Gs and iPhone 4) in sunlight and the outdoor screen was clearly superior.

    I also compared the outdoor screen to an MacBook Pro which has a 300nit display and no anti reflective layer (not even matte). The problem with a matte layer is that it also negatively affects the quality of the image from the screen, and by not having it they can offer better colors, brightness, contrast etc. But instead they get problems with reflections/disturbances from the environment. The problem can been shown as in this picture.

    [​IMG]

    My screen has an anti reflective layer which is supposed to affect image quality negatively but reduce disturbances from the environment. In my opinion so where my screen as good colors, brightness, contrast as the MBP in low light conditions (However, my screen could get brighter because of the higher nit, but we compared in similar brightness level). However, when light in the environment increased so did the problem with reflections accrue with the MBP screen, and very fast it turned worse. Even if we where inside so started the MBP screen clearly show it´s problems with the lights turned on. Finally it became useless when the sun started get into the picture while the outdoor screen still performed well.

    Here is also an video of the outdoor screen where you can see the problems with "light waves".
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHrDTV8EvNg
     
  10. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    Agent 9 was interested in some pics of the Superbright Outdoor in use, outside. I'm going to see if I can take a few pics. Perhaps I can get the "wave" in action as well, though I mostly see it inside. Cloudy with rain today, so I'll probably have to wait a little bit.

    This thread, and a few others like it, has actually has been really useful to me. I've been going through this faze of thinking of getting a new computer (a Stylistic slate? a Motion slate? a t5010? an older model Fujitsu? a x60t or x61t? etc) as I think about how I might want to use it different, as well as looking for a bigger screen and better placed onscreen buttons-- my 2 major complaints about using this computer for art. Talking about how awesome the x200t is though, and why I got it in the first place, helps to remind me of exactly why I ended up with this one after going through so many models. Who knows, perhaps, after all this talk, I'll be staying with this model.

    Btw, funny that the OP seems to be gone. LOL.
     
  11. AndreR

    AndreR Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Steve B:
    I noticed that too, it´s funny when the deeply interested starts to discuss everyone else seems to "give up". However, the sky i completely clear here so I ceased the moment and grabbed some pictures of the outdoor screen.

    The screen when the sun i shining on the computer, but not straight on. The screen works perfectly well.
    [​IMG]

    When the sun shines straight on the screen. I tried cover the screen as little as possible with my shadow to get the absolutely worst condition as possible. I noticed that the reflected sun is smaller in reality than on the picture, which could be because of my cheap camera. But the screen does a very good job and keeps the sun as a single spot and not over the whole screen.
    [​IMG]

    My cellphone at the highest brightness. As you can see so became the phone useless because of the reflections from the sun and sky, but the computer is still very usable.
    [​IMG]

    To show how well the anti reflective layer works so did i take a picture like the first one, but with the cellphone beside. You can barely see the reflections on the computer screen while the cellphone clearly shows the reflection of me.
    [​IMG]

    Finally, the "light wave" problem. I have tilted the screen to the angle when the light shifts is halfway through the screen. As you can see so is the bottom half lighter than the upper half.
    [​IMG]

    My verdict. This is the most amazing screen I have ever encountered during harsh light conditions! I have been doing all this with the sun shining on the screen and it works like the first picture, like a charm!

    But the problem is the "light waves". Especially noticeable is when using the computer in portrait mode. But as you said, Steve B. If you accept the light waves so will you probably have among the best screens on the market.
     
  12. AndreR

    AndreR Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I have heard a lot of people speak very high of the iPad 2 screen, so I managed to grab one and make some comparison.

    When the sun shines through the window. You can clearly see the benefits with the outdoor screen with it´s anti reflective layers, where my reflections is almost invisible. However, I´m still impressed how well the iPad 2 performed.
    [​IMG]

    In low light environment and at the same brightness so did they perform close to each other. For us, the x201 seemed to have a little richer colors. However, the difference became more clear during harsh light conditions.
    [​IMG]

    And I didn´t compare when the sun shines on the screen since the iPad 2s reflected the sun so bright it become unusable and blended the camera.
     
  13. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    Andre, it's very cool to see you put up those posts.

    This is a bit of a re-post, but I compared the t5010 to the x200t Superbright Outdoor last month in a different thread. Here are the pics. They're pretty self-explanatory. As an outdoor viewable screen, the x200t S.O. is the best I've ever encountered personally. I've recently been using an older le1600 View Anywhere for art as well (it's got lots of buttons!), and I took it to work outside some, as it's supposed to be outdoor viewable..... sadly, no. Perhaps to read text if you needed to. I've been very spoiled by the Lenovo screen. It really is spectacular.

    As before, the worst things about it is that it really makes using the slate in portrait mode practically useless to me because of the "valley of shadow" that cuts vertically across it. It's wonderful however in Secondary Landscape though- my orientation of choice.

    Here's the comparison pics. Lenovo on left, Fujitsu on right.
    Inside, with some glare coming form the window.
    [​IMG]

    Outside, facing up. Cloudy day.
    [​IMG]

    Held in my arms in secondary landscape. The "digital checkerboard" effect only appears in the photos- perhaps the anti-reflective coating at work? But you still get a sense of how clear and vibrant the screen is.
    [​IMG]

    Fujitsu in my arms. Readable if tilted, but with a lot of reflections.
    [​IMG]
     
  14. NamelessPlayer

    NamelessPlayer Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    That T5010's really reflective...I hope they fixed that on the T901, which could be my next convertible in a few years.

    I noticed the same "light wave" issue on my 2730p with AFFS+ panel (BOE098B, the supposed "indoor" variant), but that's the only real complaint I have with it. It's surprisingly readable and not as reflective outdoors, not to mention that it gets bright. Really bright. Almost eye-searingly bright at maximum settings.

    The X200t outdoor screen is another variety of AFFS+, right? Check the monitor hardware ID with the Device Manager or Everest/AIDA64, just to be sure.
     
  15. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    I believe it's a PVA panel? It's out at the repair depo right now, so I don't have it to check. Should have it back some time this week though.

    Btw, I'm looking into the HP's and their Multitouch Outdoor screens. Is there a 2730 that's Multitouch and Outdoor? Or is that something that only came along with th le 2740? Do you have any experience with these HP Outdoor screens?
     
  16. NamelessPlayer

    NamelessPlayer Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    No 2730p has finger touch capability. That was introduced as an option on the 2740p, and then standardized on the 2760p. (It would be nice to have, but it's not something I'm willing to pay the few hundred dollars of a premium that the 2740p still commands.)

    It seems that the 2730p had BOE Hydis AFFS+ panels fairly often along with the usual Samsung PVA panels, but the AFFS+ ones seem to be less common on the 2740p and 2760p unless you specify an outdoor screen. Even then, it seems like the AFFS+ option wasn't brought back as the outdoor screen option on the 2740p until later in its lifetime, which partly explains the rarity in its case.

    Panel lotteries are so irritating. At least the Fujitsu T5010/T900/T901 line is guaranteed AFFS+, though the changed monitor hardware ID threw some of us on this forum for a loop before.
     
  17. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    With my x200t in the depot for so long, I recently picked up a Motion j3400 slate, supposedly the king of Outdoor Viewability. I decided to shoot some comparison pics.

    My verdict? It is also very very good. They're both good, but both different.

    The x200t is smoother, clearer, and a bit brighter (and feels a bit like writing on glass; there's almost zero friction), producing more reflections, but you can easily see through them. It's AR coating produces the shadowy "waves" of which we've spoken much in this thread. They're a bit of a nuisance, but you can move the screen to the right angle, and when you do you have a gorgeous screen that works wonderfully outdoors.

    The j3400 is sort of matte (and even has a nice bit of texture when inking), with almost no reflections at all, but lacks the sort of clarity of color and image the x200t provides for indoor work because it has a sort of "sparkly" effect. I'm assuming this is how it's own AR coating reduces reflections, by refracting light in microscopic ways, or some such thing. My understanding is that this is an affect seen in many AFFS+ screens though, so it may not come as much of a surprise to others. It reminds me a bit of my Motion le1600 in this way, just with a brighter screen and more sparklies that make it more viewable outside.

    Both screens are very very nice. Easily the two best screens I've had. The j3400 is clearly my preference for inking, the x200t for clear graphical quality. The screen on the j3400 is Gorilla Glass and is rock solid, which is very nice to write on. The x200t is some sort of semi-hardened plastic, which has a reasonable amount of give if you press with any decent pressure, which I've never really cared for.

    The clasping hinge system that the x200t uses for closing the lid has a bit of give to it too though, and I think it was adding to this problem. This means the actual body of the screen (or the black "frame", as you will) will actually have a bit of up and down movement when you want to use it as a tablet and apply force with your hand. I recently solved this by attaching a thin (1/16- 1/8") black rubber "foot" on one of the outside corners of the back of the screen. This helps create a more consistent experience of pressure between the back of the lid and the body of the hand rest when the computer is used as a tablet. As such, there's less movement from the screen, and this has made the inking experience better on the x200t. Still, even so, the plastic of the screen has a bit of give, and isn't as "solid" as the feeling of the j3400. It's better though, and much improved. It had been one of my complaints about the x200t as a tablet, and this solution may have improved it enough to be considered a solution to me.

    Of course, the j3400 doesn't have this issue about "give" in the screen at all. I also have to say that I prefer a bit of tooth when inking, and might be adding a mild Anti-glare screen protector to the x200t to improve that experience. Of course, that'll probably create some noise, and it'll probably also slightly reduce the outdoor viewability on the x200t. And that may take away that "crystal clear" color experience you get on it comparative to the j3400. As such, it may be that the j3400 is the better all around screen.

    It's all about trade offs, and the major issue for the j3400 is that, regardless of how viewable the screen is outside, or how pleasantly firm or textured it is for inking, or how much I like the build or the onscreen buttons, the x200t still performs admirably in these categories (if perhaps not quite as well??), and is better, IMO, as an all around computer while still being amazingly viewable outside. It has the added benefits of being easily upgradeable, has better battery life, is slightly more powerful, and (most importantly for me) has a very good keyboard that's always available.

    I think that, for a person that really wanted an outdoor tablet/slate with a full array of ports that they could then dock at a real desktop and run their office from with a real external keyboard and mouse (not the crappy mobile keyboard that Motion offers!), the j3400 might actually be the better performer. I don't have a desktop though, and so really needed something that could be easily set up at the dinner table or at a cafe. The j3400 wasn't quite right for that usage and so doesn't seem to be a good match for me.

    Here's the pics, btw. As usual, any kind of weird moire pattern on these shots is really more about how the screen reacts to the camera. None of that is there in real life. In fact, both screens look noticeably better with the naked eye, and I have little to no problem reading either of them in the sun. Oh, and both screens are finger print magnets, IMO, but the fingerprints don't really affect either of them when really in use. Just thought I'd add that in.

    Side by side in the shade-
    [​IMG]

    Side by side, but the x200t has the 4 cell battery here-
    [​IMG]

    Side by side, comparing thickness. The x200t is 1.1-1.3", the j3400 .9"-
    [​IMG]

    x200t in partial shade on an outdoor table--
    [​IMG]

    j3400 in partial shade on an outdoor table--
    [​IMG]

    x200t in full sun, over the shoulder-
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    j3400 in full sun, over the shoulder-
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Hope that was helpful for you guys and gals.
     
  18. hohnir

    hohnir art hobbyist

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    Are all x200 touch screen?
    I saw one listing with 2.4ghz dual core. It didn't say that it was a touch screen.
     
  19. Steve B

    Steve B Moderator Moderator

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    That would most likely be the laptop. You have to search for x200t or x200 tablet on eBay to get the tablet of model. Theyre all 1.86 core 2 duos.
     
  20. beckyb

    beckyb Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Yes, you have to be careful on ebay. Some sellers list the laptop under the title of x200 tablet too. If in doubt, and if there's not a picture of the actual system, I would send a question asking if it is multitouch, or pen only. You can also ask for the model number and then google that to make sure it's the tablet.
     

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