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Surface Pro 2 in Germany? Surface Pro for Artwork?

Tekn0

New Member
I'm looking to buy the 256 GB Surface Pro 2 in Germany.

It's currently out of stock in the stores I checked (Amazon.de and Saturn.de) in Germany (the 256 GB version) and the waiting time is "more than 4 weeks".

In the meantime, I'm wondering if anyone here is from Germany and has suggestions on any other place to check?

Also, it's impossible to get most Surface Pro accessories in Germany :( like Type Cover 2 with US layout, the Type Cover 2 wireless adapter...So I've given up on Type Cover 2 option and will probably get a Wedge US keyboard from Amazon UK. Anyone here knows if the Wedge keyboard works well with Surface Pro 2?

I'm looking to buy the Surface Pro 2 mainly for drawing purposes. Any tips on what accessories (like Screen protector, pen, keyboard etc??) to get from other artists using Surface Pro?

Thanks!

P.S. I cannot check the Microsoft Store German store, as i'm currently on vacation outside Germany and it keeps redirecting to a different local store.
 

da2tha3

New Member
Can't you visit this link for the Type Cover 2, or do you need the US layout (I don't actually understand German, there may be a US layout option)? Type Cover 2 - Microsoft Store Germany Online Store

I'd say the stylus that comes included is good enough for artwork, it's been absolutely fine for my use so far, but there are wacom options out there if you feel it comes up short. Be sure to properly calibrate your screen though when you do get one.
 
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Tekn0

Tekn0

New Member
Yes, I require a US keyboard layout. Tat link is redirecting me to a different store but thanks I guess I can check it using a proxy or just will wait till I get back to my German IP in a few days :)

I'm getting the 8 GB RAM version because I fear if my digital artwork gets a bit intensive (say Manga Studio, 3000x3000 pixels with 300 dpi with 30-35 layers) that I might hit a RAM limit with 4 GB version.

Thanks for the reply!
 

reach

Member
The SP2 stylus is so damn unprecise that painting/drawing is for sure the last thing its good for.
BTW, the german on screen keyboard is so damn rubbish that you must change it to english, if you want to write mainly english.
BTW2, its also sold out here in Austria

Apparently Wacom is working on a fix for the stylus precision, they wanted to have it ready in 2013. Looks like they are as diligent with their drivers as MS.
 
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Tekn0

Tekn0

New Member
Interesting point about Wacom drivers.

I plan to mainly use Manga Studio (Clip Studio Paint to be exact) and ArtRage, both of which supports the Microsoft Ink API (I am told) and therefore don't need the Wacom drivers. Perhaps I can skip installing the Wacom drivers?

Also, people seem to recommend the Wacom Bamboo Feel Stylus with the Surface Pro 2 than the default included stylus, but ofc, I will try it out before buying a 40 EUR stylus (without any eraser).

I am hoping that I an easily choose the Language as US English when I first turn on the Surface Pro 2... I'm also hoping that despite choosing english layout I still can use umlaut characters (ü, ö etc.)
 
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DragonGamer

New Member
The SP2 stylus is so damn unprecise that painting/drawing is for sure the last thing its good for.
BTW, the german on screen keyboard is so damn rubbish that you must change it to english, if you want to write mainly english.
BTW2, its also sold out here in Austria

Apparently Wacom is working on a fix for the stylus precision, they wanted to have it ready in 2013. Looks like they are as diligent with their drivers as MS.
Have you tried calibrating the pen with wacom's driver?
Yes, 4 calibration-points are far too little but I personally can draw well on it (well, I'm an ammateur but still I've spent probably a dozen hours at drawing since I have the device) after calibrating it once or twice. Only the borders and corners are noticably innaccurate.
As far as I've heard that also differs a lot from device to device.. dunno why, to be honest. But you might have got an especially worse one...

Anyways, if one can live without pressure sensitive in wacom-dependant software like photoshop, then there is a very good solution: [HOW TO] PROPERLY calibrate your PEN and fix those stupid corners (273 test points) - xda-developers
Installing wacom drivers overwrites this though :/

And yes indeed, Wacom promised a new version of their wacom feel drivers which should include better calibrating for the end of 2013 ><
 

DragonGamer

New Member
If this really works, it'd be awesome! o_O
Will try it just tomorrow.. when I'm actually wake enough to know what I'm doing XD


By the way, about non-local layout keyboards: The only way I found buying a non-german type cover 2 here in Germany was over Ebay.. I paid a bit extra unfortunately though :/
And yes, I agree, the german layout isn't the greatest.
 

jrapdx

Member
Re: Wacom Feel pens and driver...

Having used desktop workstations with Wacom drawing tablets and excellent 2-button + eraser stylus/pen, I wasn't thrilled with the standard MS pen, or the Wacom "Feel" pens sold at office supply stores. With some hunting around I found some good 2-button alternatives and bought one made for the Fujitsu Lifebook 5000 series for ~$30. Not perfect, but slightly thicker and easier to grip than the OEM model.

BTW the Wacom Win8.1 "Feel" driver remains at version 7.1.2-9 (unchanged since mid-December). While it offers more than the default Windows 8.1 configuration, the options provided by the Feel driver are sparse compared to desktop drawing tablet drivers. Perhaps Wacom doesn't perceive much demand for more sophisticated drivers for tablets like the SP2. OTOH judging from comments like those here, running graphics applications is a common intended use for SP2 and similar tablets.

I'll have to check out the links above, there's always something I've yet to learn...
 

jrapdx

Member
Read through that post, and the relevant posts before and after. I couldn't get the procedure to work for me. I did get the gridded calibration screen, and I carefully worked though it point to point. But three tries was all I had the patience to do--and not more accurate than when I started.

Finally, I hit the "Reset" button in the Tablet PC Settings dialog. Curiously, the pen stylus tip was nearly perfectly aligned with the screen indicator spot, even at the edges of the screen. Not sure what to make of that...
 
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Tekn0

Tekn0

New Member
Interesting, in any case I think if one uses programs like Manga Studio and ArtRage which don't need the Wacom drivers, there's no need to use Wacom drivers. Only apps like Photoshop require it as far as I can tell. Even Adobe recently updated their Adobe Illustrator to support the default (Microsoft Ink API drivers) and doesn't require Wacom drivers anymore.

Perhaps Wacom doesn't perceive much demand for more sophisticated drivers for tablets like the SP2. OTOH judging from comments like those here, running graphics applications is a common intended use for SP2 and similar tablets.
Maybe, but it seems even Microsoft are not marketing the drawing capabilities all that much, but there are a few people using Surface Pro 2 for artwork related purposes like:

SurfaceProArtist - a site dedicated to drawing capabilities of the Surface Pros.
Pens that work with Surface Pro

Some artists using Surface Pro 2:
Penny Arcade - Surface Pro 2
One of the johns
My Transition to Surface Pro and Manga Studio
 
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