Surface Pro 3 - NTrig digitizer comments, questions & reviews

Discussion in 'Microsoft' started by mstoller, Jun 6, 2014.

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  1. mstoller

    mstoller Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I'm starting a few new threads to (hopefully) organize some of the Surface Pro 3 commentary.

    Please post your comments and questions on the Ntrig digitizer on the SP3 here (including the inevitable Ntrig vs. Wacom discussions)

    For a great overview of the SP3, please see the first post in the Surface Pro 3 Discussion Thread.

    Note: these new threads will include:
    • Surface Pro 3 - First impressions & hands on experience
    • Surface Pro 3 - NTrig digitizer comments, questions & reviews
    • Surface Pro 3 - Keyboard cover comments and questions - as well as case options
    • Surface Pro 3 - Battery Life
    • Surface Pro 3 - compare i3 vs i5 vs i7
    • Surface Pro 3 - I hate it because it doesn't work for typing in my lap (ok, maybe I wont create this thread....)
    • Surface Pro 3 - Dock options
    • Surface Pro 3 - Screen resolution, glare, pen calibration, etc

    .
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  2. tigner

    tigner Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Screen Protector for SP3 and the Feel of the Pen

    I purchased a SP2 in late February from a Kiosk type MS store in Portland. A few of the sales guys were upper level college students that had been using the SP2 extensively, including pen use, and were as close to expert users as I've seen. They highly recommended the Incipio Plex screen protector for 2 reasons: glare reduction and pen feel, and did a great job installing it for me. I love it. A version is cut specifically for the SP2.

    SP3s are now being demoed in local MS stores. I love them. But the FEEL of the new pen on this is pretty different than the Wacom on SP2 with the Plex protector. The friction feels somewhere between an SP2 with and without the protector. And the ink lays down slightly differently. Almost feels like the lines capture micro wiggles in some of the letter strokes that I do not sense in the SP2. I've ordered the SP3, but initially I have to say that I like the pen feel of the SP2 (with the Plex protector) better than the new NTrig system.

    But I am a believer in just getting the best of what is available and learning how to make it work for you. So I'm still stoked and waiting for my SP3 - but aware that the pen might involve compromises.

    Question: Has anyone yet tried such a protector on the SP3? Wondering if it might enhance the pen feel like it did for me on the SP2 (given a different pen nib on the SP3)....

    Thanks.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  3. surfaceproartist

    surfaceproartist Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    I'm not a fan of screen protectors (I've never managed to put one on without bubbles). But I do miss the soft nib on my Wacom Bamboo Stylus Feel. N-Trig and Microsoft are working on a replacement set with softer nibs.

    The "micro wiggles" you're seeing vary by software and can be eliminated by cranking up the pen stabilization slightly.
     
  4. spinedoc77

    spinedoc77 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    Going from a Wacom TPT2 and trying the SP3 I think I prefer the SP3. The SP3 has a tiny bit of a spongy feel to it, it makes for some very light resistance that feels natural, or as natural as writing on glass will ever feel I would think. Compared to the synaptics on my Dell 11 which feels like solid steel writing on the hardest slickest glass you can imagine, NOT a good feeling at all and I couldn't stand to write very long.

    I think it all depends on the setup as well. The Wacom on my Note 3 feels different than the one on my TPT2, it has more resistance and feels more natural. I would assume it's a difference in the stylus/nib. So I predict you will get different feels to please everyone once they start releasing some N Trig nibs.
     
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  5. tigner

    tigner Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Another comparison session and thoughts: hands on with SP3 versus SP2 - focus on the look and feel of inking.

    Setup:
    - SP2 side by side with the SP3 (both portrait and landscape)
    - MS OneNote (desktop version) opened to new lined page
    - I wrote about 20 lines on each. Going back and forth - but all in OneNote.

    Thoughts:

    - PEN COMFORT: I'm really used to the feel (size, diameter, texture) of a Wacom pen. The NTrig pen feels too slippery, and with a larger diameter I feel like I have to squeeze it harder to keep it secure. Besides roughing up the barrel, not sure what can be done on this.

    - WIGGLES: Micro wiggles: still getting these micro wiggles in my cursive pen strokes in the SP3. SP2 lines feel smooth and sweeping by comparison. I sure hope that surfaceproartist is right about being able to crank up the pen stabilization. I'm not familiar with that control. (maybe tell us how to do that and I'll have an MS tech do it in store on my next visit.)

    - FRICTION: I won't comment again on the friction again since nibs and protectors might allow this to get dialed in better. Right now still love the Plex SP2 setup.

    - ALIGNMENT: So this is funny, the NTrig alignment seems more consistent than my Wacom. BUT - the source of the alignment seems to be slightly beyond the tip of the part of the pen that holds the nib. The alignment is not to the tip of the nib itself. So the tip of the nib doesn't effect the writing (so it seems). If you hold the NTrig pen nearly horizontally (parallel to the screen) and bring it close to the glass, you'll see that the hover point does not line up with the tip of the nib. But it does consistently line up with a point on the nib that is about 1/2 or more than 1/2 way up the nib to the end point of the pen barrel. This is true no matter which way you point the pen. So the alignment is consistent, but not at the point. So when you write, the point of inking always looks "beneath" the pen, not at the point. I wonder if this can be calibrated differently. OR - is this an argument for a SHORTER NIB?

    - OVERALL FEEL: I really hate to say this, but the more I compare the FEEL of inking, the better I like my SP2 - this is not the outcome I wanted.

    Perhaps this will force me to wait a little and not buy it on the 20th. I do think I'd like an SP3 version of the Incipio Plex protector. Perfect amount of friction and non glare.

    But the screen size and device weight, and the improved trackpad - these are huge issues that cannot be denied. Even for someone who loves to ink.

    Thanks.
     
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  6. JoeS

    JoeS I'm all ears Senior Member

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    Nice writeup. About the pen comfort, this is actually one thing that bothers me about the SP2: the pen is slippery, has that uncomfortable metal part sticking out the side, and the clip at the top has a sharp edge. I always find it slightly annoying while inking. Just my two cents.
     
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  7. ships10

    ships10 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    That was my experience also on the SP3 regarding the pen
    compared to the wacom pens. I still feel, without reservation, the wacom pens, especially my Feel IT pens,
    are top-notch quality products when it comes to digital writing.
    At present, I have no inclination to go non-wacom. . . had enough aggravation with non-wacom pens.
     
  8. ile

    ile Scribbler - Standard Member

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    But there are plenty of alternatives on the market, which is not the case when it comes to Ntrig...

    [Sent from my HTC One]
     
  9. spinedoc77

    spinedoc77 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    That's the only bummer. With wacom you could have a tiny pen to just kind of stash, a full size one, etc etc. What options do we have for N-trig? I also think the pen is a bit thick, why did they make it so thick? If it was because of the battery then it's a shame that functionality follows form in this scenario as it seems that something which might be held for a long time in the hand should be concerned first and foremost with how it feels. Or are ball point pens/pencils made too thin?
     
  10. RubensGalaxy

    RubensGalaxy Pen Pal - Newbie

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