kiteskiride

Windows Surface Pro 3

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Is anyone using the Surface Pro 3 with Chief? Are you able to draw reasonably quickly with the stylus?

We want to use it for as-builts. It is an expensive solution, but hoping it is the best. We looked at Redstick. That would be option 2.

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I've given up on the stylus for now, but I found the Surface itself very convenient for a number of tasks and Chief plays well with cloud storage such as Onedrive.

 

If you are considering a Surface Pro I would however wait until October 6th.

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I use a surface pro 3 for measured drawing, and in general for job site work, and meetings. It works well for these things, but there are a few cautions.

  • I use it with a miniature Logitech mouse, not the stylus
  • It's a small screen; it works, but things are easier on a larger laptop
  • You'll need to work on a flat surface so you can use the keyboard and mouse
  • The integrated graphics card can slow things down doing 3D work on a moderate size plan

I love the size and weight. It's no bigger than my clip board.

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I've given up on the stylus for now, but I found the Surface itself very convenient for a number of tasks and Chief plays well with cloud storage such as Onedrive.

 

If you are considering a Surface Pro I would however wait until October 6th.

Thanks for the advice. I did see the Surface Pro 4 may be announced on October 6th. I would imagine that would not solve the chief vs the stylus issue.

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I use a surface pro 3 for measured drawing, and in general for job site work, and meetings. It works well for these things, but there are a few cautions.

  • I use it with a miniature Logitech mouse, not the stylus
  • It's a small screen; it works, but things are easier on a larger laptop
  • You'll need to work on a flat surface so you can use the keyboard and mouse
  • The integrated graphics card can slow things down doing 3D work on a moderate size plan

I love the size and weight. It's no bigger than my clip board.

Thanks, That answers my question. The concept sounded so promising. But it sounds like we are not there just yet. 

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There's a new Intel chipset on the horizon that is touted as a game changer for tablets. I read about a month ago that  the projected release is 2016. Like yourself, I'd really love to have one running Premier CA.

 

I have an iPad 3 with Room Planner that is helpful measuring as-builts. It is limited to uploading walls, windows & doors to the cloud, though. The Room Planner development team is working on a new release, but I haven't a clue as to the release date or what new features it will have.

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The last several iterations of Intel graphics and low power CPUs have made it possible for some pretty impressive performance on tablets. I kind of expect that trend to continue. Intel has stepped up the quality of their graphics with each iteration to the point now where they are starting to compete well with ATI and NVIDIA. While we do still see from time to time driver issues on Intel, we also see them with the other vendors. I'm encouraged by this trend. I'm still not convinced that tablets, at least the way they are working today, are a good replacement for laptops, I am convinced that the future of CAD has to be stylus based. It is a very logical direction to go.

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..... I am convinced that the future of CAD has to be stylus based. It is a very logical direction to go.

 

So we have come full circle back to drawing with a pencil. Only this time it is with digital lead! :) At least it is much easier to erase and redraw.  

 

Mike

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I use a surface pro 3 for measured drawing, and in general for job site work, and meetings. It works well for these things, but there are a few cautions.

  • I use it with a miniature Logitech mouse, not the stylus
  • It's a small screen; it works, but things are easier on a larger laptop
  • You'll need to work on a flat surface so you can use the keyboard and mouse
  • The integrated graphics card can slow things down doing 3D work on a moderate size plan

I love the size and weight. It's no bigger than my clip board.

BIll, why exactly do you not use the stylus, is it because of lack of mouse button functionality?

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BIll, why exactly do you not use the stylus, is it because of lack of mouse button functionality?

 

That was my first thought, too. How is a stylus going to work without my familiar 6-buttons?

 

Mike

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Not sure the stylus should be viewed in the same respect as a digitzer. It believe it is intended as convenient way to take notes and mark-up docs versus a precision pointing device.

 

Microsoft is releasing a Surface 4 pro, most likely sometime in October or November. It will likely utilize Intel's new Skylake (6th generation) processor series. Compared with the current Surface 3 pro I would not expect a huge performance gain, maybe 10% at best. The bigger benefit will be longer battery life and possible fanless units (thinner & lighter). Just as with the current Surface 3 pro i5 & i7 processors there are Skylake processors specifically engineered for mobile use, not the same power as their desktop equivalent.

 

Graham

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I think part of the reason I use the mouse is that it is a familiar way to work with Chief; and also because Chief expects to see a mouse .

I must say, I've never really bonded with the stylus, except for handwritten (especially cursive) notes that are easily converted to text. 

 

Most things that you can do with the stylus, are just easier using your fingers (as Steve Jobs famously noted).  Viewing Chief can be done fairly well with your fingers; drawing really requires the mouse.

 

I just got a Galaxy Note 5 today, and it has a stylus; but it's not as capable as the stylus on the Surface Pro 3.  I've heard it will to handwriting to text; but have not yet been able to find that option. The best I can do so far is use OneNote on the Note 5, and convert it later on the PC.  There are rumors that the IPad Pro will have a stylus as well.  Perhaps we'll see a more capable stylus in the future.

 

And, don't get me started on digitizers.  First used one in 1984 on General Dynamic's mainframe computer in San Diego. It was necessary back then, but we have much better interfaces now.

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Touch based devices, regardless of whether one uses their finger or a stylus, have some significant limitations. From my experience the main issue is that currently a finger or stylus really only has one command (gesture) that being a "Left Click". Unfortunately, as most software is designed around a mouse many software functions require or react to more than just a "Left Click". This is highly evident where drop-down menus with pop-up submenus are used. The first drop-down menu contains "hover" activated links to call up the sub menu. You can't do this with only a "Left Click". Fortunately Chief does not use "hover" links, but there are many instances where you need for example to use the zoom function in conjunction with another activity, without a mouse this convenience is lost.

 

I'm all on-board with Microsoft's direction and use my tablet everyday, but for productivity based software they are just not there yet. Unless of coarse you buy a dock, keyboard and mouse.

 

Graham

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Has anyone got the MSP4 yet with X8, if so how are you finding it?

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Thinking about buying a surface pro. I can get a refurbished 3 off of ebay for reasonable price and see if I like it and could upgrade to a 4 later if I do. My thinking is I could sale it for little loss if I don't like it but would take a greater loss on a 4 if I don't like it. I would use it occasionally for chief but definitely not every day. My question is, would there be a definite advantage to buying a 4 over a 3? I know some have said a while ago that the stylus didn't work well with chief on the 3 and they expected that to change with the 4. Is that the way it still is? More then likely not an issue (probably wouldn't use the stylus anyway)

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MSS3 works ok with X8 and X9 Beta but I need to test it out more with the new touch screen functions added to X9. I am not happy with the down time on Windows tablets for them to update, as this stalls the internet browser. 

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I've been using my Surface 4pro I7 with X8 - for almost a year now, and of course, I use wireless - digi mouse and the keyboard.  Most of all the times I've used it in the field, I have had a flat surface so that hasn't been an issue. I do have a sketch program that I can use the stylus with making as built sketches and writing in dimension plus the benefit of taking photos etc for use when I'm back in the office.

 In the office I connect via an HDMI to a 27" screen and use the dual screen (the smaller surface screen) for incidental plan work, and the bigger screen for the main drawing work, and often tile the screen there, as needed.  Over-all I love it.

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