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Tablet PCs

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  • User profile image
    the-​laughing-man

    Anyone know anything about Tablet PCs?

    I've been thinking for a while I need to get a graphics tablet/laptop PC and I've been shopping around a bit and found that graphics tablets are insanely expensive and that isn't gonna change much.

    However I figured if I wanted to take the plunge and get a Tablet PC that I'd want to get it from a highstreet dealer (god forbid - PC World) just so I know where I stand with it if it goes wrong cause I don't know much about laptop repairs and would just want to throw it off to someone else.

    Any of you guys got any experience with Tablet PCs? Any suggestions on where the best buys may be?

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    I've got one (Tecra M4) and I've tried two (Tecra M4 and RM OneTablet).

    Having seen all the differences between Slate (RM) Vs. Convertable (Tecra) and Intel Integrated (RM) Vs. nVidia GeForce Go (Tecra) I'm going to say: Go with a Tecra M4.

    Yes, it cost's a lot, but it's well worth it.

    Sony Vaios that cost more than the Tecra come with a 1280x800 screen (96dpi), I've got a 1400x1200 behemoth @ 128dpi (has to be seen to be believed, and surprisingly, it doesn't strain your eyes)

    The only real problem with the Tecra M4 (and Portege M200) is the rather weak single joint, but you can easily open it up and tighten the screws every 6 months or so (and without the Warranty Názis even noticing).

    Since the Tecra uses the Wacom digitizer (I don't know about the RM One or some of the "lesser" tablets) you get all the functionality of a first-generation Wacom Qintiq display (pressure sensitivity and support for more advanced pens, woo!) which is great for airbrushing in Photoshop (warning: requires another driver download, and I've had some problems with it not recognising my stylus' eraser)

    So yeah: Tecra M4 For Teh Whin.

  • User profile image
    the-​laughing-man

    Awesome info, W3bbo. Mind me asking where you bought it from?

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    the-laughing-man wrote:
    Awesome info, W3bbo. Mind me asking where you bought it from?


    I got mine from BuyToshiba.co.uk, their price was £100 less than everyone elses (sometime in late January Toshiba raised their prices by £100, so eBuyer.co.uk et all sold them for £1,250, but I managed to get mine for £1,150, nifty (It seems they still have the old price, but they don't stock it anymore).

    Toshiba make two TabletPC models using the same chassis as the Tecra M4: The R50 and the M4, the R50 is the "home user" variant that comes with Intel Integrated graphics and a DVD burner in a white case (I don't know the material). The M4 comes with nVidia GeForce Go and a CD-RW burner (and a black metal case)

    The M4 is available in two variants, one with GeForce Go 6600 128MB/1GB RAM/2.0Ghz Centrio and one with a GeForce Go 6200 64MB/512MB/1.7Ghz Centrino.

    Unfortunatly the more powerful version isn't available in Europe. (And it's cheaper to buy the RAM elsewhere anyway). However the GeForce Go 6600 is a LOT more powerful than the 6200 (and with double the RAM). but the CPU's 300Mhz difference, however, is negligible in this day and age.

  • User profile image
    doncho

    The thing you'll want to decide is, do you want a "covertible" Tablet that will double as your notebook, or do you want a "slate" Tablet  that is lighter and thinner, but not so good as a full time machine (in my opinion). 

    The best setup - if you can swing it - is to have one Notebook/Desktop as your primary machine (non-Tablet) and a "slate" style Tablet PC for taking notes, drawing, etc. 

    For a convertible I think the Toshiba M400  looks good.  I had an earlier model of this and it was nice.  For the slate style the Motion Computing tablets are awesome.  I have a Motion M1400 and it is great. 

    I got a Toshiba Tecra M4 at work and did not like it at all.  It was nice and powerful, but I found it too big and bulky to use as a tablet, the fan was very noisy and on all the time, and the battery life was awful (1.5hrs)

    p.s. for most of the slates you can still get a docking station and connect a keyboard via USB ports.

  • User profile image
    alwaysmc2

    doncho wrote:
    have one Notebook/Desktop as your primary machine (non-Tablet) and a "slate" style Tablet PC for taking notes, drawing, etc.
    .

    I agree.  I love my Toshiba Satellite R15, but If I didn't have a more-powerful desktop to go along with it, well *cringe*
    However, I don't recommend my tablet, because it won't support Aero in Vista. [C]

  • User profile image
    SlackmasterK

    alwaysmc2 wrote:

    doncho wrote: have one Notebook/Desktop as your primary machine (non-Tablet) and a "slate" style Tablet PC for taking notes, drawing, etc.
    .

    I agree.  I love my Toshiba Satellite R15, but If I didn't have a more-powerful desktop to go along with it, well *cringe*
    However, I don't recommend my tablet, because it won't support Aero in Vista.


    Now, what I saw:
    Erroneous Output wrote:

     agree.  I love my Toshiba Satellite R15, but If I didn't have a more-powerful desktop to go along with it, well *cringe*
    However, I don't recommend my tablet, because it won't support Aero in chemas-microsoft-comfficemarttags" />lace wt="on">Vistalace>.

    chemas-microsoft-comfficeffice" />> >



    Bug?  I've been seeing this for a few weeks at least.

  • User profile image
    Harlequin

    alwaysmc2 wrote:

    doncho wrote: have one Notebook/Desktop as your primary machine (non-Tablet) and a "slate" style Tablet PC for taking notes, drawing, etc.
    .

    I agree.  I love my Toshiba Satellite R15, but If I didn't have a more-powerful desktop to go along with it, well *cringe*
    However, I don't recommend my tablet, because it won't support Aero in Vista.



    I also agree with the desktop/ tablet combo. I'm outside my house right now on my Motion LE1600 Smiley

    I use mine at home for play, and at work I use OneNote for all my documents, making me 100% paperless now.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    doncho wrote:
    I got a Toshiba Tecra M4 at work and did not like it at all.  It was nice and powerful, but I found it too big and bulky to use as a tablet, the fan was very noisy and on all the time, and the battery life was awful (1.5hrs)


    Yeah, it is a bit bulky, but I haven't had any problems with the fan nor battery life (I'm getting at least 3 hours out of it, maybe you had a faulty battery?)

    doncho wrote:
    p.s. for most of the slates you can still get a docking station and connect a keyboard via USB ports.


    Or just get a normal USB keyboard/mouse and plug those in

  • User profile image
    Kerberos Mansour

    But are they light? can you write something on them while standing for example (tablet resting on one arm) one of the reasons I am attacted to the origami is that it seems less cumbersome than Tablets

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    Kerberos Mansour wrote:

    But are they light? can you write something on them while standing for example (tablet resting on one arm) one of the reasons I am attacted to the origami is that it seems less cumbersome than Tablets



    Some of the convertable ones are rather too heavy in my experience and a little bit too bulky to use for any significant period of time. I've got a HP TC1100 and I still swear by it as the best designed Tablet ever, the detachable keyboard gives you all the advantages of a convertable and a slate at the same time.

    The best advice I can give you is to try it out and see how it feels. Buying from somewhere like PC World should at least give you the opportunity to hold it in your hands first and see how it feels.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Kerberos Mansour wrote:

    But are they light? can you write something on them while standing for example (tablet resting on one arm) one of the reasons I am attacted to the origami is that it seems less cumbersome than Tablets



    Despite being on the scrawny side, I can comfortably hold the Tecra in my arms like a clipboard (and write/play C&C on it) for a few minutes. But usually I'm sitting on a chair, cross-legged with the tablet resting on my legs quite comfortably.

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