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Last post Author Topic: Graphics Tablets - opinions (nudone, hamradio, tomos etc. care to chime in?)  (Read 13552 times)

nudone

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As an outside observer in this thread, one who has never looked into all of this, my guess is that the dpi of the screen (like 96 DPI on today's average LCD) would need to be calibrated to the DPI of the graphics tablet. They don't need to be in a 1:1 relationship, but once that is calibrated, you should get your "absolute" mode, nudone. If you held a gun to my head and asked me to speculate further, the software you had, nudone, might have been calibrated to a 72DPI screen, or some similar disparity may have existed.

that sounds very likely to be the cause. i just wonder if the current crop of wacoms do allow for this disparity - possibly not as i seem to be the only person that seems troubled by it.

good luck with the tablets, Darwin.

uryan

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If you want 1:1 then you should get one of them Cintiq monitors with the tablet built into it. They would be sweeeeeeet.
In general, tablets don't offer a 1:1 mode although you could probably tweak the settings to get it if you really want. The scale factor isn't really a big issue though, and many new tablet users find a smaller tablet easier to control.

I have an AIPTEK tablet and also use a Wacom Intuitos2. The difference in smoothness, stability etc is fairly negligable. The biggest difference (apart from size) is the drivers. The Intuitos has much better drivers allowing just about every parameter to be tweaked, for individual applications. The AIPTEK driver is very basic, with little more than scaling adjustments and button assignments. I have heard that the drivers for the newer Graphire series (and presumably the bamboo) has been dumbed down and is also very basic.
The AIPTEK stylus however is utter crap, made out of thin cheap plastic that is very easy to crack (mine is bandaged up) It requires a battery, but battery life is around a year so that's not a big issue. The Intuitos stylus is solid, well weighted and requires no batteries. It also has tilt sensitivity.
For serious graphic work, nothing beats the Intuitos. For anything less, the AIPTEK is fine and is quite good value for money. I think the Intuitos cost about 7 times the AIPTEK. The Graphire was around double.

cranioscopical

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Darwin, how are you getting along with the Bamboo?

mikiem

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I've been using tablets since (OUCH  :o) before the pens were wireless! The biggest boost comes from actually drawing/sketching IMHO -- maybe it's because I'm an ol'fart, but I've never been able to duplicate the results of using a pen/pencil using a mouse. If you're doing something like re-touching, being able to taper the stroke using whatever filter or brush, I think just can't be done otherwise.

When/if you're just moving pixels, a hi rez mouse is usually less trouble, though some people just feel a pen is more intuitive. Personally I've found that if I've been using a tablet a lot, the mouse feels like I'm chipping away at one rock with another -- until I've been using the mouse again for a while.  :P Same sort of thing if I've been using a trackball, so a lot of what you might hear from tablet users is biased by what they're personally used to at the time.

A couple of versions of Vista have a neat  handwriting recognition program for tablets, but I've yet to find a practical use for it *for me*.

Wacom tablets are great, but pricey. Aiptek tablets (actually Waltrop I think sold under a LOT of names) are give-away by comparison... If you can catch them at Aldi's, they sell a Medion (identical to the Aiptek 12000U) for ~$30-40! The Aiptek's pen seems crude by comparison, and doesn't do the same tilt stuff like a Wacom, so if you're really trying to imitate paint in a program like painter, you'll probably not be satisfied. If you use it for photo touch-up or similar, that tilt stuff isn't going to matter. Personally I've never seen a huge difference using the Wacom's higher number of pressure levels, but maybe I'm just not that fine enough of an artist.  ;D Wacom has better drivers, but, most everything I've tried recognizes and works with the Aiptek as well -- there are probably zillions of these things out there under different names after all. Construction can't compare -- I can't help but feel the need to be extra careful with the Aiptek, but that's just a reaction to the way it feels so light. It's either on my desk or leaning under it, so how sturdy the tablet is is pretty irrelevant. At the end of the day for what I use it for I just can't justify hundreds of dollars vs $50, so I can't truthfully recommend Wacom unless there's something absolutely critical the Aiptek just won't do.

BTW... Aiptek.com sells pens for $10, and the newer style is supposed to be better.

Darwin

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Hi guys - I like the Bamboo a lot. After the first day of using the included mouse, I removed the batteries from my MS wireless mouse and mothballed both it and the mousepad. I've not really done much with the pen, but can't say that I am hugely impressed with it. I guess it comes down to expectations - whatever one may wish, using a tablet and a pen is NOT the same as drawing with a sheet of paper and a pencil. So, I would characterize my experiences with the tablet/Bamboo so far as good but qualified in the sense that I've not really "wrung" it out yet. I recognize that sketching with the tablet and pen may not be as intuitive as pencil and paper but I can see that retouching photographs and manipulating site plans (archaeology and palaeontology) will be much easier with the pen.

PS The Bamboo is very impressive in terms of build quality, finish, and feel  :Thmbsup: Despite the notes above, I feel that this was $99 well spent.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

OldElmerFudd

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My only experience with tablets is a little Intuous3 4x5 I bought about a year and a half ago. (It had occurred to me a bigger tablet would just mean broader strokes and losing a little too much desk space.) I'm more committed to photography, but the tablet pairs up nicely with Painter IX.5 and my old copy of PS7. I use it permanently attached to a machine that's dedicated to all my photo/graphics work. Admittedly, I'm no artist, but it's interesting to enhance some of my digital work.
(Note to Darwin) It did take a little work to get used to not looking at my hand, and the sensitivity levels initially dogged me after a third glass of petite sirah, lol! Still, I'm always glad to mess with it when the mood strikes.
 ;)
OEF
Always code as if the guy who ends up maintaining your code is a violent psychopath and knows where you live.

cmpm

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http://www.vistablet.net/products.html

Is one I just heard about, and it says it can use ms office.
Can't much on specs, maybe someone can better then me.
I was trying to see if it could be a reader as well.