AuthorTopic: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist  (Read 13640 times)

Offline Vagrant

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Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

on: November 24, 2013, 02:15:09 pm
Hey everyone.

I became a vagabond world traveler only a mere year or two ago; my new lifestyle has me flying and moving often, with only a 26 litre backpack as home (Bold move but worth it). This year I went across northern Norway, then to the British countryside, to land in Spain, and finish off in Morocco for new years. Life is good, for I made the right choices.

However, my old 3.3 kg laptop (HP Pavilion Dv4) is becoming annoying to carry around everywhere, not to mention a tad outdated. But it's clearly a vital piece of equipment seeing as I need it to work on pixel art commissions/jobs, which pay for my now permanent travel life.

Right now, im working with mouse pad alone. Had to leave my old Bamboo tablet as it was too heavy. Both the laptop, electricity cords and the tablet went up to 5 awful kilos.


I got the money now though, and I've been thinking what would be the best combination to have, and im open to all suggestions and ideas on lightweight high-end tablets or laptops.

So far here's what I like.

------------------------------------



http://www.pcpro.co.uk/reviews/laptops/375829/asus-zenbook-prime-ux31a

Asus Zenbook Prime
Pros: 1.4 Kg, Linux compatible
Around 7-9 hours of battery life.

It's beautiful. If I go for this one it would have to be pixelling on the mouse pad as usual, or acquire a small, lightweight drawing tablet to go with it. But that means more weight.




And then there's this thing, which I saw just today.


https://store.wacom.com/us/en/product/DTHW1300L?

Cintiq Companion Tablet
1.7 Kg
Around 5-6 battery life.

It's got impressive stats, it's basically a computer, and it's a Cintiq, dammit. I haven't researched the weight or durability yet, but it looks so convenient and useful, I don't know what to think anymore. Is this what love at first sight feels like?

Cons: Fking Windows 8


Anyone here leading a life of adventure willing to offer some good advice? Even so, have you any ever given a thought to pixelling on the go? Im all open to suggestions. :D

I've heard about pixel art on Android tablets or smartphones, but honestly, that sounds just petty in comparison. Not interested in those.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2013, 03:23:19 pm by Vagrant »

Offline Crow

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #1 on: November 24, 2013, 04:00:27 pm
Cons: Fking Windows 8

Why is that a con?
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Offline Vagrant

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #2 on: November 24, 2013, 07:45:59 pm
If I put my personal preferences and feelings aside (Like the religion of supporting open source.), bad past experiences with it and the inevitable planned obsolescence bit, I don't think it should be a problem at all, actually.
As long as it runs Graphics Gale, Gimp, Blender, and others in that bunch, it should do.

Other than price or any other factor, both  the Intuos and the Zenbook are similar in weight (1.5kg-1.7kg), and their battery life is relatively around the 6 hours. The Zenbook would require a small tablet on the side, which means more clutter and weight, so the Intuos right now looks like the mandatory way to go.

I wonder if there's any other options out there.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2013, 07:49:21 pm by Vagrant »

Offline Crow

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #3 on: November 24, 2013, 07:50:14 pm
I can't really comment on your hardware options, but I can tell you that Windows makes good use of batteries. Almost always, you'll find that your battery life will longer using Windows compared to Linux. And Windows 8 is not as bad as many people say, so you'd be fine with that.
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Offline Kasumi

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #4 on: November 24, 2013, 08:19:57 pm
My problem with Windows 8 that is a valid complaint is that it doesn't agree with wacom bamboo tablets. I tap, have to move the pen around 5 to 8 pixels for it to actually register anything. This means I can't place two pixels next to each other. I can place one, or a line of five when Windows finally decides I've dragged the pen for a long enough. Same for scrollbars, have to tap and drag a long while. The scroll bar snaps into place instead of smoothly moving.

Here's a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qFEznOz-4c4

Imagine if that happened while trying to DRAW! GIMP (probably a few other art programs) seems to have overcome it, but all standard OS things are still crippled by this, as well as software that doesn't specifically program around it. Intuos tablets used to do it too, but they have since gotten updated drivers that allow one to disable "Windows Ink". Bamboo users are stuck. I've found a fix I haven't tried, which is a program that basically simulates a mouse click when the tablet touches down, which seems to interfere with whatever stupidness windows is doing and lets the tablet work as expected.

Anyway, I would assume the Cintiq thing wouldn't have that problem, (Then again, I assumed my bamboo would work fine...) and would also assume you could run linux fine on it. When I run linux on my Windows 8 computer,  my bamboo tablet works fine except the pressure values are off which doesn't matter much for pixel art. It's probably a thing I could tweak, but I don't mess too much with Linux.

I have many other problems with Windows 8, but I guess most of the others could be said to be, "Baawww, it's not the same." and are offtopic.
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Offline Crow

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #5 on: November 24, 2013, 08:50:30 pm
That move threshold sounds familiar, and I believe it's present in Windows 7 as well. Shouldn't have anything to do with Wacom's drivers, and can be disabled/bypassed by killing Windows' "Tablet PC Input Service".
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Offline Kasumi

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #6 on: November 24, 2013, 10:30:49 pm
It is present in Windows 7 as well. It can be killed in Windows 7. Windows 8 is a different animal. It's not a thing I tried once and casually decided didn't work. I looked for a while for a suitable solution. Perhaps some easy solution has come since I last searched, but there was no way to do anything about it when I first searched, and only the simulate click program the second time. There are registry edits that make things SLIGHTLY better, but no way I've found to disable it outright.

But as far as I know, it's only for Bamboo. Intuos used to have the same problems, but wacom added an option in its own control panel to ignore "Windows Ink." What magic this option does that can't be done with registry edits/similar, I couldn't tell you.
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Offline tim

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #7 on: November 25, 2013, 04:16:04 am
Yeah it is incredibly annoying and that's why I'm working on a Mac at home when clients are not asking me to work in their office like 90% of the time. Overall it's a lot more reliable, especially with video. Things simply work. I don't need updates, different softwares for 32 & 64 bits, drivers or updates for exFAT like I did today for Windows XP. The computer behavior is always predictable.

Anyway : it seems there are some solutions : http://superuser.com/questions/49465/disable-cursor-ring-for-tablet-in-windows-7-8
« Last Edit: November 25, 2013, 04:22:22 am by tim »
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Offline Gamer36

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #8 on: November 25, 2013, 04:33:09 am
I found a thread online, and it seem that someone was able to boot the tablet into Linux. http://www.insanelymac.com/forum/topic/292341-wacom-cintiq-companion/ I don't understand much of anything about how you boot up Linux on a computer, so I might be completely wrong, but it's worth checking out.
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Offline Vagrant

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #9 on: November 30, 2013, 09:48:37 am
I think they actually mean Mac OS?


So far, and after watching some reviews on Youtube, I really, really, REALLY want to acquire one of these fine Cintiq Companion specimens. 

The last straw was the concept art offers I've been getting lately, and here I am, tablet-less.

I figured it might just run a Virtualbox with Linux on it when im desperate, but even so, there will be plenty of experimenting when I actually get it. I saw other tablets, but it just doesn't match this one.

Offline surt

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #10 on: November 30, 2013, 02:36:03 pm
There are plenty more options when it comes to Tablet PCs than just the Cintiq Companion.
None of them has the top-of-range digitser of the Companion, but tilt and rotation aren't too useful for pixel work anyways.
The current gen is in the process of being released now. I've got my eyes on the Fujitsu Stylistic T704: 12" 1080p slate + keydock.
You don't mention any particular battery-life requirements but if you want good endurance then something Bay Trail based should give you a full workday and plenty to spare (not sure if any have been released yet though).
They'll all come installed with windows 8 preinstalled, but that's nothing an linux ISO on a flash drive can't fix.

Offline Vagrant

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #11 on: November 30, 2013, 04:32:32 pm
Have you seen the Surface Pro 2, coincidentally?

Has the latest Haswell processors and virtually the same specs as the Companion. Only, not as high-end when it comes to sensitivity, and the screen is a bit to small for it's huge 1920x1080 resolution: 10".
Pros: Longer battery life, 900Kg of weight.


Im going to check the Fujitsu one, nevertheless.  :y:

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #12 on: November 30, 2013, 10:53:01 pm
For my needs I want something that can double as a proper laptop, so need a convertible of some form. The Surface's kickstand + keycover doesn't do it, not to mention the tiny screen.
If Wacom gets their act together and releases a keydock for the next generation of Companion then that could be really sweet.

Offline YellowLime

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #13 on: December 06, 2013, 01:05:38 pm
Have you seen the Surface Pro 2, coincidentally?
[...]
Pros: Longer battery life, 900Kg of weight.
Doesn't seem like a pro to me :y

Offline Vagrant

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #14 on: February 14, 2014, 08:20:48 pm
Here's an update:

I went for the Cintiq Companion, it just felt superior in every way after I went out to several electronics stores here in Spain and did some test-runs on the Surface Pro 2. It was simply too tiny, and not as precise as I would wish.

It also had that cheap-looking tablet feeling that I somehow can't explain, but it might just have been me.

It's set to ship in a week or two, but when it comes I'll provide some first impressions and reviews if you all want to know. The thing came at like 2000$ or so, so yeah. I'll also go and test it with a Linux virtual machine and see how it operates.

Until then. o/ 
« Last Edit: April 02, 2014, 05:41:01 pm by Vagrant »

Offline Atnas

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #15 on: February 14, 2014, 08:34:37 pm
Sweet! I've had my win8 cintiq companion for about 2 months now. You will not regret your decision. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on it. We can compare side button shortcuts when yours gets to you. Do you use Graphics Gale?

I recommend switching to bluetooth peripherals. So far I've got a bluetooth audio transceiver so i pipe my music wirelessly from the cintiq to my speakers and I am getting a bluetooth mouse and keyboard this month. The less wires I have the more likely I am to continue my work in bed when I get too tired to stay at my desk. Oftentimes my productivity problems come from getting restless at my desk, the companion has helped me focus tremendously. I can keep my gf company in the kitchen while she makes dinner without having to stop drawing. Since you work while traveling you will want something small like this:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005EOWBKE/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pd_nS_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=O9N4WC5GL15&coliid=IM3HVCE7H65AD

Windows 8.1 is not bad. It's faster than Win7 and you don't ever need to use the metro interface if you don't want. Windows 8 had less customizability on that front but when you get it, upgrade and you will be happy. On the Companion touch is actually really nice and you'll find yourself using it more than you thought you would, and metro apps are preferable to websites on this thing, like the office apps and twitter and tumblr and facebook are all better in win8. Pinch zooming while painting and panning with your fingers, etc. You can also make customizable sliders that respond to touch even while the pen is active on the screen, a very good feature that gets around the clunky one-or-the-other input method.

Offline surt

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #16 on: February 14, 2014, 08:44:01 pm
I ended up getting a Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga. Good digitiser performance once I applied the blackhole fix. For the pressure to work in linux you'll need to patch up the linux-wacom driver. I think it's a good option if you're after a convertible.

Also ordered an Asus Vivotab Note 8 mainly just cause it's cheap (relatively speaking) which could be an option for those who want something more portable.

Offline Atnas

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #17 on: February 14, 2014, 08:49:52 pm
The Yoga looks amazing. How many levels of pressure does it get?

I do hope the next generation of Companion gets a dock.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #18 on: February 14, 2014, 09:08:55 pm
1024 but as far as I'm concerned pressure levels has negligible influence on digitiser feel or performance.
I'm certain I can't reliably control my hand pressure to with a granularity of 64 levels, let alone 1024 or 2048.

Offline Atnas

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #19 on: February 14, 2014, 09:26:34 pm
I've found pressure to be important for other reasons than the pure 1:1 translation. If that was the only usage case then you could get away with 256 levels of pressure, draw a straight line with a 256 px brush over the distance of 256 pixels and have it be the max resolution you can achieve at the highest fidelity.

With more pressure I am free to get more usage out of custom pressure curves and oftentimes the additional pressure helpful because I am very heavy handed. 256 is perfectly usable, I imagine 64 is too, but it's no replacement for the traditional feeling until it gets up to 1024. At 2048 I am closest to feeling like I can simulate natural media, however important that may be. You can map a really light pressure curve when doing watercolors and be really effeminate about it, or switch to a really firm one when doing more blunt media. That's a novelty though, and I could totally get by on 64 as I hardly ever use a brush bigger than that for detail work in the first place because my digital work tends to lacks nuance.

I think the surface pro has 512. I have one of those in my house and it draws just fine but you can tell it is less sensitive when trying to emulate natural media.

Offline surt

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #20 on: February 14, 2014, 09:44:18 pm
Good point. I've basically never bothered with customising the pressure curve.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #21 on: February 16, 2014, 02:17:40 am
So did you get that toy yet Vagrant? I'm a little concerned about that screen.
Here's why: I have had two tablets now and the first one was a bamboo (just your basic low cost drawing tool) and now I have an Intuos Medium size (it's great!).
The problem is the stylus scratches the surface up. My bamboo is almost completely worn through and I didn't even use it but to make 3 large pieces. The only reason my new Intous is in great shape is cause I learned to protect the surface with a sheet of paper while I work. I tape a sheet of paper down from a magazine or such and each sheet lasts about a week til it's scractched up or full of abberations then I replace it.
With that screen I fear avoiding that issue could be a problem especially since the abberations will be right on your working image. You may want buy some transparencies to save the product's life span.

Offline Atnas

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #22 on: February 16, 2014, 02:42:11 am
Since I have the Companion I can answer that question.

The screen has an anti glare coating adhered to it from wacom. It introduces fine grain into the display, only really visible at high brightness whites, but it is there. Looks like a 5% noise filter. As a result of this the surface of the screen is scratch resistant from plastic nibs and it has a paper texture.

Ironically you are told not to use felt nibs because the felt has a clingy surface and can grab a hold of hard dirt and CAN scratch the screen. But plastic nibs will wear down, not the screen.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #23 on: February 16, 2014, 02:58:21 am
Thanks Atnas.. sounds like it must be durable. I may press harder than most also. I used no paper with my Intuos Medium once for like an hour and the thing definitely doesn't look brand new anymore due to that one short session :/.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #24 on: February 16, 2014, 03:07:12 am
My intuos 3 from 2006 is beat up, yeah. I had a yiynova msp19, (cintiq competitor), and it had a plain glass surface. You don't have to worry about scratches on glass from a plastic nib. If anything the antiglare coating is more prone to scratching than the screen itself.

The Companion is very durable, since Vagrant will be travelling with it I guess we'll see just HOW durable ahha. Mine just travels between bed and desk and coffee shop.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #25 on: February 26, 2014, 10:41:31 am
Got my Asus VivoTab Note 8.
I'm really liking the form factor, can comfortably hold it one-handed in portrait for some notepad-like sketching action.
Installing Linux won't be easy due to 32-bit EFI but it's being worked on.
In windows currently the Wintab driver is broken so you can only really use stuff that uses the builtin microsoft tablet PC api (so no Krita or MyPaint, Clip Studio Paint seems to be the best painting option at the moment).
Once these software issues are fixed it should be really sweet.

Offline Vagrant

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #26 on: March 02, 2014, 01:12:56 am
It's here.

I got it working, and customized it thoroughly after some initial Windows 8 frustrations.

This Cintiq just blows my mind. Already I can feel my pixelling speeds increase dramatically. Screen is of the perfect size, weight is alright, and the cintiq programmable buttons incredibly helpful. Damn, where do I begin.
(First time I see a Cintiq, coming from a crappy Bamboo.)

I should get a review coming after I get more time and work done on it. And pictures.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #27 on: March 02, 2014, 10:33:11 am
Reading all this is making me jealous! I've been a nut about TabletPCs for a few years now. First started out with a Motion Computing M1400 that I used for a good 2 years that was found on eBay for $200, then upgraded to a Fujitsu Lifebook T731. The Lifebook was a great step up, since it's a convertible (can be used as a functional laptop with keyboard and trackpad, or swivel the screen backwards and fold it closed to be used more like a slate tablet) with multitouch and Wacom penabled screen. That one ran me $800 refurbished, but with a solid intel i5 processor and plenty of RAM it let me use basically anything I'd need to work with. Problem with it is that the screen is finally showing some wear from carving into it for almost 2 years, the touch functionality is limited since there are some deadspots that have progressively developed, and it has recently started becoming less and less accurate with the pen calibration no matter how much I recalibrate it - still very usable, but the cursor being only slightly offcenter under the pen tip in certain screen quadrants is enough to make you grit your teeth until you stop paying attention to it.

It has also always had a strange problem where it will entirely lock up unexpectedly (screen, pointer, keyboard, everything just stops responding entirely as if it all got entranced by hypnotoad and the only fix is to hold the power button until it shuts off then reboot it) and it happens anywhere from maybe 1-2 times a day while sometimes going almost a week without the freeze. Being that the warranty was nonexistent, I've just had to live with it and know that if I wasn't saving every 5 minutes then any work I'm doing could be wasted without warning. Not a bad thing to be insane about needing to save methodically, but still a misfortunate problem with an otherwise solid work computer. Battery is pretty huge if I powersave smartly while away from an outlet, sometimes getting 6 and 1/2 hours or more of life while in constant use with ProMotion and Photoshop.

But those Cintiqs are gorgeous and sound like a dream. Too pricey for my current situation and lack of an immediate reason to need it, but I can definitely see myself eventually selfishly blowing money on one if a more reasonably comparable, but more affordable, alternative doesn't present itself before that time comes.

I would definitely have to spring for some docking keyboard option though, as I find it too much of a boon to have it available when I can comfortably prop up with it.

Another accessory that I have found a real boon to have, which I rotate use with my TabletPC and my Desktop PC, depending on where I'm anchored, is a gaming keypad called the Razer Nostromo.



It's marketed for use as a gaming peripheral, but it works with any software. You can set all 15 keys (23 if you include each D-pad direction, scroll direction, and the side button) to be a different keystroke or recorded key combination/macro, or up to 66 different assignments if you make use of the toggled setting switch, and it's application specific so you can have the setup of all those key assignments be something different for every program you use and it will swap profiles to match whatever the active program is on the fly.

Might be hard to make use of it if you're not set up on a desk-ish area though.

Offline Doppleganger

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #28 on: March 03, 2014, 12:32:37 am
Don't have too much to add personally, but a friend and old coworker of mine recently reviewed the cintiq companion she purchased. It touches on some of the optional features, and how portable it really is.

Offline Mr. Fahrenheit

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #29 on: March 03, 2014, 01:28:15 am
I've been thinking recently about maybe doing the Appalachian trail after highschool or college, and thought it'd be cool to keep a drawing journal or whatever. It seems the only way one would be able to do pixel art is a lot of graph paper though  :P.

Offline Vagrant

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #30 on: March 03, 2014, 02:22:48 am
« Last Edit: March 03, 2014, 02:24:47 am by Vagrant »

Offline Tapsu

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #31 on: March 07, 2014, 08:40:50 am
Leap Motion looks very interesting, and is dirt cheap in comparison, small, lightweight, accuracy seems to be an overkill, and will probably be not just for drawing.
Therefore I wonder why no one seems to be discussing it here.
Solar charger anyone?

http://www.treehugger.com/solar-technology/5-best-portable-solar-laptop-chargers.html
What makes them so expensive? Are they special in some way? I have heard that some considerably more efficient solar cells are in development, but I doubt they are out yet. At those prices I guess some smart guys will start combining a solar cell with a parabolic umbrella with reflective underside, or something (to focus more light at a smaller cell, that is).
« Last Edit: March 07, 2014, 11:45:49 am by Tapsu »

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #32 on: April 01, 2014, 04:32:15 am
My Cintiq companion bricked after using it for three weeks, over what seems to be a hardware malfunction that will not allow the damn thing to charge, at all, whatsoever. It started slowly, until it got worse and worse, and now it won't work. It displays the dreaded "Plugged in, not charging" message, and I've tried everything.

http://forum.wacom.eu/viewtopic.php?f=12&t=18003

I knew it was a risk to invest in the company's first venture into the laptop realm, and damn, did I get raped by it.



Do not buy the Cintiq Companion.

Do so at your own risk.

A large percent of people who bought these Cintiq's have experienced this already, it seems to be a common thing. It's not worth the money or the effort. Wait for a better one, is my advice to all artists here, from my experience. It's also riddled with other problems caused by faulty components, dust under the screens from the factory, Windows is out of sync, ect. They also don't have worldwide warranty, something odd for a device marketed for travel. Don't fall for this bullshit, it's unacceptable for that high price tag and how it was marketed.  :yell:


Atnas, haven't you experienced any of this yet, or where you one of the 'lucky ones'?  :o
« Last Edit: April 01, 2014, 04:35:23 am by Vagrant »

Offline Atnas

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #33 on: April 01, 2014, 10:26:18 am
Aw, that's a shame :<

Yeah I started getting the plugged in not charging message about two weeks ago. My solution that works for me is to uninstall/reinstall the battery in device manager then it works for a few days. It's fickle, but it's not really something I think about anymore.  Also even if it says that, it will still charge if you uninstall the driver, turn it off(not sleeping), and plug it in, assuming you dont actually have physical damage. This has worked for some people online.

I used to get it to charge by wiggling the cord or squeezing the casing, which made me think it was physical. I think it might be a combination, it seems to stop charging if the machine is hot. and the power cord gets HOT. like right now it's painful to touch the plastic on the charging end of the cord and I'm plugged in, charging.so it might be windows detecting a dangerous temperature or something. Who knows?

Other than that it's still running great.

An artist on instagram had the same problem so she had wacom ship her a new power cord and it works for her, so in that case it was a physical problem. I suggest you get a new cord because from my experience it might be heat related on the driver side. so if you get a non faulty cord that doesnt overheat, maybe windows wont get mad.

I also am using windows 8.1 btw. They might have changed some things relevant to this problem that gets it to work for me.

I haven't experienced any dust under the screen, then again I give it a once over with a vacuum and cloth every few days to keep it clean, the only damage to the product is a small nick in the screen coating from my gf throwing something with a zipper on it, but other than that the casing and screen are like new after daily use. I've had it since mid december.

I'm not so sure I'm one of the lucky ones. The problems I have, as workable as they may be, shouldnt be there after dropping $2500 on it.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2014, 10:29:55 am by Atnas »

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #34 on: April 01, 2014, 05:02:03 pm
Oh crap, so you -do- have the early symptoms!


Mine was just as you described, beginning in the first weeks.. Indeed. Hot to the touch. It was charging well by that time, and then the not charging messages began.

By the second week the heat vanished or wasn't as present, and the symptoms were getting worse, it was getting too hard to wiggle the cable to have it charge. Drivers didn't do a thing.

Now it's bricked. Won't even turn on not even while on AC. Won't charge whatsoever.

Three weeks!


I'm trying to find out a solution for this, since in my position, being right now wandering through Europe, I would have to return to the US and wait there weeks to months until they return it under warranty. That's not doable whatsoever since plane tickets and transportation alone for me and my fiancee would end up at 2000$, easy. That's the price of the Companion itself.

Without the Companion, my money making ability is zero, so to speak, so this effectively hinders my travels now. Plus, the company I'm working for has the game coming soon and we've work to do. I'll be landing in Ireland in a week, and once there I don't know how the hell am I going to last long without my job.

Surely I could end up volunteering somewhere where there's a farm or so, but that's just time ''wasted'' so to speak, and it won't get me anywhere job-money wise.

I'll be having it inspected in a PC repair place to see if they can help.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2014, 05:10:34 pm by Vagrant »

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #35 on: April 01, 2014, 05:16:35 pm
I know travelling and wandering have their risks and uncertainty.. And I was sure I had taken measures against most possible pitfalls when making my life mobile..

But I never would've imagined bad luck would hit me in the form of an incredibly defective Cintiq.  :mean:

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #36 on: April 01, 2014, 10:44:48 pm
So you're saying mine will probably go totally defunct soon? If that's the case I'll be sure to keep all my files/settings backed up until it bricks. I hope the 2nd generation of these devices has a magnetic charger like the surface. I had to fight the companion to charge for like 5 mins this morning, that's not okay.

The surface Pro 2 btw is the next best thing to the companion. I have the original surface pro and it's not unusable for art, in fact its pretty good. If you can pick up a surface pro of some sort somewhere, it could service you well as a temporary replacement, if you have the cash. If you manage to get back to the US within the next year you can get a brand new Companion with your warranty... Not all of these have this problem, so I hope you don't get a lemon again.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #37 on: April 02, 2014, 07:39:15 am
I had trouble getting it going again. Tried my old methods, no luck.

Then I bitchslapped it, started charging. Gonna contact Wacom about getting a replacement cord before I send in my unit, also should give me some time to get an external drive to backup to.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #38 on: April 05, 2014, 04:44:26 am
dont really have anything to suggest but I have to say the whole traveling pixeler thing sounds appealing. have tried it before but it went sour....although for entirely personal non-tech or job related  reasons :p.

Also I'm wondering what you pixel with in Linux...? I found lots of neat apps like mypaint and whatnot but I cant say I found something fully functional like Ggale. or a Photoshop replacement that didnt in some respect feel like a step down

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #39 on: April 05, 2014, 06:11:14 am
GraphicsGale works quite nicely under wine. GrafX2 is the best native option.

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #40 on: April 05, 2014, 03:27:50 pm
thanks Surt I'll try Grafx2 next time. I did try running ggale on wine, I remember it was clunky because I couldnt do shortcuts, oh wait that was on MAC...but I'm pretty sure wine on mac was a lot more convenient than mac on linux :p it's tiresome how usability is the exception on linux...here's hoping SteamOS starts to change that.

OH  I forgot the part of the last post where I actually contributed to the topic :p

check frenden's tablet reviews
http://frenden.com/tagged/review

he has the perspective that there are worthy competitors to Wacom, and he's a guy who sells brushes he made himself so I think he would be aware of tablet quality...hope it can be of use for whenever you replace your cintiq Vagrant
« Last Edit: April 05, 2014, 03:56:45 pm by Conceit »

Offline Kasumi

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #41 on: April 05, 2014, 04:27:29 pm
There's also Aseprite for Linux. One thing is that you cannot resize the window on it while the program is running unless you build it yourself. You can change the ~/.asepriterc so it boots larger, but again it can't be changed while running. Or so I've been told. I... never bothered using a native build, I just used it through wine the few times I messed with Linux. Standard other warning: For whatever reason the dev likes it to use 2x2 pixels by default. To change this, open ~/.asepriterc and change ScreenScale = 2 to ScreenScale = 1.

Anyway, Aseprite's my main software regardless, I like it better than Graphics Gale and everything else I've tried. I dig the simple, single window interface. Supports animation and is free even if you're saving gifs. But of course... your mileage may vary, because basically no one I've recommended it to likes it enough to use.  :)
 
(Reason for the window trouble: It uses a modified Allegro library that allows window resizing, but for some reason the build you'd get if you searched for it in say... Linux Mint's software manager is built with standard allegro.)
I make actual NES games. Thus, I'm the unofficial forum dealer of too much information about the NES

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #42 on: April 06, 2014, 01:28:06 am
Vagrant, try bending the cord near the pc plug and seeing if the companion charges while its kept bent. This has fixed the problem pretty much entirely for me, its totally a cord issue. Once you find the sweet spot things should go well. Still need to get a new cord shipped to me.

edit: lol, yeah its totally the cord. bent the cord while it wasnt fully charged, says its been plugged in not charging for a few hours but its stayed at the same % while doing client work in photoshop for the past few hours on high performance.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2014, 06:28:19 am by Atnas »

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Re: Suitable Trinkets for the World-traveling Pixel Artist

Reply #43 on: April 06, 2014, 07:33:09 am
Ah, alright. I will try.

How exactly do you bend it? Pictures?


I went yesterday to several stores looking for some generic chargers, but none of them are in the same size as the Cintiq's charger.

My machine has been a brick for a few days now. Plugging the charger in won't even turn on the red light anymore. 
« Last Edit: April 06, 2014, 07:48:35 am by Vagrant »