Tablet PC for medical school

Discussion in 'What Tablet PC Should I Buy?' started by Mtnbiker, Jan 27, 2010.

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  1. Mtnbiker

    Mtnbiker Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I'll be starting school in the Fall, so I'm not in a huge hurry. Still, I'd love some feedback from the experts here so I can start looking for a good deal.

    General Questions.

    1. What is your budget? ~$2000 (that's what student loans are for, right?)

    2. Would you consider purchasing used/refurbished? No

    3. Do you prefer a Slate, Convertible or Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC)? Convertible

    4. What size Tablet PC would you prefer?

    * Mainstream ~ 12.1"
    * Large ~ 13.3"


    5. Which country do you intent to purchase from? US

    6. Do you have any preferences to brand loyalty or dislikes? No preference

    7. How many hours battery life do you require? 6 +

    8. What will be the primary usage scenario of this tablet? Note taking, some word processing

    9. Do you have an OS preference? No

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

    10. Do you intend on playing Games? No


    Screen Specifics

    1. What resolution do you prefer?

    WXGA - 1280x768

    2. Do you require the screen to be readable in sunlight? Yes

    3. Do you prefer your display to be glossy or matte? Matte

    4. Do you require Touch? I don't think so, it didn't seem like a huge advantage to have it.

    5. Do you require a Pen? Yes.


    Component Specifics

    1. What size Hard Drive and Memory do you require? At least 50 Gig storage and I'd probably max out the memory.

    2. Do you require an Optical (CD/DVD) Drive to be built in? Yes.

    3. Do you require ability to add a second Battery or Hard Drive (Modular Bay technology)? No.

    I have a Lenovo T61P, which I bought two years ago after hearing rave reviews about build quality. It IS solid, I'll give it that, but the screen is so dim that I can't use it near a window during daytime.

    That being said, I'm not necessarily opposed to getting another Lenovo... I understand the new LED-backlit screens are brighter.
     
  2. DRTigerlilly

    DRTigerlilly Tablet Lead Mod (Retired) Super Moderator

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    If you require an optical drive your options are the Fujitsu t5010, the Toshiba m750, Fujitsu t4310 or t4410. but you're not going to see the battery life you want without modular batteries.

    You need to evaluate how much you'll actually need an optical drive, or how often you'll use it. For a more portable solution with good battery life i'd be more inclined to consider the HP 2730p which should be replaced soon by the 2740p, but it has no optical drive.
     
  3. Mtnbiker

    Mtnbiker Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Thanks for the feedback... I think I would prefer an optical drive, just so I can also use it as a laptop (and get rid of the T61). The extra weight/cost wouldn't bother me too much.

    Of the 4 you listed, what has the best screen? I'm so disgusted by the dim Lenovo screen that I feel a need to compensate.
     
  4. galangl

    galangl Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I am a Kinesiology Therapeutic Exercise and Rehab student and I say go with Fujitsu T5010 or T4310. Buy it with the optic drive and think about purchasing a modular bay battery. I got my girlfriend to purchase the T4310 for nursing school and she is also satisfied with its notetaking abilities.

    I have went through three tablets and my Fujitsu T4220 came out the best in terms of notetaking. HP Tx ran to hot, Le1600 ran too slow, and Lenovo touchpoint drove me insane also lacked modular battery bay.
     
  5. Mtnbiker

    Mtnbiker Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I've heard Fujitsus have good screens. Are they pen only, or are they also touch screens? I'm pretty ignorant about tablets, I've seen some people use them in class and they seemed great for annotating class notes, googling, etc. Do I even need a touch screen if I'm going to just scribble notes w/ the pen?

    Thanks for the feedback!
     
  6. DRTigerlilly

    DRTigerlilly Tablet Lead Mod (Retired) Super Moderator

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    The t5010 has the option of a touch screen. You don't need the touchscreen for notes, but some people find it a nice addition for navigation, manipulating digital texts etc, and even some games.
     
  7. mmccord

    mmccord Scribbler - Standard Member

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    The t5010 has an optional indoor/outdoor screen which I highly recommend, but you can not get it with a touchscreen.
     
  8. Mtnbiker

    Mtnbiker Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I'm going to stop by an Office Depot tonight to take a gander at a t5010... thanks again!

    Edit: Okay, that's a pain... neither OD or BB keep tablet PC's on hand! What's even more ridiculous is the fact that the OD guy told me they can't keep them in stock because they sell so quickly, but they don't stock them because they're a "niche" item.
     
  9. duncanish

    duncanish Pen Pal - Newbie

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    Mountain biker, I am a third-year medical student at Virginia Commonwealth University. during the first and second didactic years I did not find a tablet to be all that helpful because we were given a paper syllabus roughly about 600 pages for one month, say cardiology or neuroanatomy. Most of my studying was done out of the traditional three-ring-binder on paper with some supplementary references. It was greatly helpful for setting for the USMLE step 1 and due to the ease of using USMLE world QBank with a tablet. Since that time, I have used the tablet for my clinical rotations in dictating my Notes using Bluetooth and Dragon NaturallySpeaking. I have an old Hewlett-Packard tc4200, but it gets the job done.

    I am looking at getting a new tablet for residency and beyond. The tablet that I'm most interested in is the Fujitsu T5010 or T900 because of its large screen its ability to add a second battery and its multi-touch capabilities. additionally the T900 will have the Intel IE 7 chip which should be significantly faster and stem the tide of planned obsolescence at least to some degree.

    You will see in clinical practice that using a standard desktop or laptop is a very cumbersome impediment to Dr./patient relationships and you'll find doctors looking at the screen while talking to a person not observing all the non-visual cues a person gives about their feelings etc.

    Since the Apple tablet has just come out on Wednesday, it may be wise to wait to see how the Windows partners respond to the Apple tablet. My guess is there'll be a great increase in functionality especially involving multi-touch capability and naturalistic user interfaces.

    Best of luck in medical school, it's a very fun but challenging time. Make sure to use your time wisely not only in studying but getting in the things you love I.E. don't lose your hobbies. Shoot me a personal message if you are more interested in a specific application like onenote or PDF programs with annotation as an added feature.

    PS: I don't know what kind of mountain biking you do, but I guess it's popular among medical students because I used to race downhill in Utah.

    Again, best of luck.
     
  10. DRTigerlilly

    DRTigerlilly Tablet Lead Mod (Retired) Super Moderator

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    @duncanish have you seen the Courier videos? the iPad has nothing on the Courier.
     
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