Surface Pro 2 & AE


#1

I will be traveling soon & need to get something portable… Was wondering if the latest Surface Pro 2 would be capable of on the road edits etc… The one appealing thing is the wacom pen to create some traditional anim. I also wonder if it would handle Element 3D as some of my projects are E3D… If anyone has had any experience with it, I would be interested in your opinion…thanks.

I see a review here…in German… (don’t understand it) but around the 16;00 mark…he is displaying AE…interesting workflow with the pen.


#2

for element 3D GPU is important. It is not listed on Surface promo site but looks like it has an Intel integrated card.

Will probably work but don’t expect much


#3
bobach said

I will be traveling soon & need to get something portable… Was wondering if the latest Surface Pro 2 would be capable of on the road edits etc… The one appealing thing is the wacom pen to create some traditional anim. I also wonder if it would handle Element 3D as some of my projects are E3D… If anyone has had any experience with it, I would be interested in your opinion…thanks.

I see a review here…in German… (don’t understand it) but around the 16;00 mark…he is displaying AE…interesting workflow with the pen.

Hi, this is what he says while testing AE:

The pen works great overall, but he still needs some time to get used to it. He is not as good with it as with his wacom-tablet, but that is certainly the lack of experience and not because the wacom is better. Also, it looks a bit difficult in the video because he is not sitting in front of the surface pro so that the camera can record. It would be easier for him if he was in another position (like you normally sit with the tablet and not when recording it).

Doing simple projects in AE is working fine, but as soon as you add much layers and several video-footages he guesses that it will become really slow (It sounds like he hasn’t tried it).

It is useful for opening small projects and take a quick look at it. “Almost incredible.”

Then as he tries to interact with AE again while the ram preview is playing, he recognizes that it doesn’t respond to anything he does with the pen or his fingers. In the end, he needs to open the on-screen keyboard and press the spacebar to stop the ram preview from playing and getting access to the gui again.

He then says he believes this is a bug or he hasn’t understood everything right.

Then he goes on with Illustrator while he has AE still running (to show that the Surface Pro can handle it).


#4

Hey bobach, I thought I’d give you my 2 cents since I have some experience working in AE on a portable tablet pc… I don’t have the surface and so I can’t comment on that one specifically, but a few years ago I bought the Asus EP121 and I still use it regularly in my work flow. Here’s my opinion on the experience:

  • Drawing, typing and taking notes on these things: very enjoyable!
  • I never rely on my tablet pc as my main workstation. I use it more to develop ideas, take notes, sketch up drafts, start a project from the living room, watching movies and browsing the internet.
  • It's great for starting projects, but the more advanced the project gets the more tedious it becomes.
  • Anything I start on the tablet gets finished on my 27inch OSX workstation. But I also use the tablet to test my files when they are finished to make sure they also work in Windows.
  • Template customizations are very doable on the tablet since it's mostly just data input
  • I use the wacom tablet to do simple frame by frame animations in Flash and TV Paint: enjoyable!
  • Windows tablet+Xbox = media centre for TV :)
Because of the screen real estate, you'll be working at about 25% for the preview area. And get ready to start dragging the scroll bars in the timeline and project panel. Sometimes I plug in a wireless mouse that I can use on my jeans or on the sofa. The major downside is the battery life when you're working on anything serious. You may want to look into external battery packs if you want to use it on the road.

If you end up getting it, I’d recommend you get at least a 128GB SSD and 8GB ram… Windows 8 takes around 13GB of space and the Adobe Master Collection is around 25GB. What’s left gets used up very fast!

Take a look around the TabletPC Review forum before you buy, it has helped me many times. Good luck!


#5

wow, thanks Creattive & Andrenavarre & Doru for your translation & valuable input!! Great info! I am visiting a friend in Europe for a month, and just need something to respond to purchasers and my clients…etc… So it seems like this may suffice… Will look into the element 3D issue & Asus options.


#6

E3D will not run without a supported GPU. Not sure if tablets are using laptop gpus, butI’d rather spend my money on a laptop than on a tablet. But I actually never understood for what a tablet is good (besides Angry Birds of course, that one is just awesome)


#7

yes, it makes sense Creattive… I don’t think Element will work it… although the Surface is close to a laptop… I may go with a laptop that has a gpu that supports Element.
The pen tablet function looks like an interesting way to work however…(if smooth enough)


#8

testing the Surface Pro 2 out, I have a week to decide if I will keep it… So far so good. I am rather impressed by it. I loaded a latest client job, a relatively large project file at 70mb. My desktop, ( i7-3770k cpu, 16gb ram, 64 bit CS6) takes 8:44 to render full uncompressed AVI. The surface took, 14:34. The playback of the AVI is very smooth. I loaded up one of my Element 3d projects and although not a thorough test, all looks good in the ram preview. (One Mac pro user reported no Ambient Occlusion with the Intel 4000 but on the Surface its all there) The screen although small is very crisp and colors are vibrant. I need my reading glasses to read the interface, which isn’t the case for my desktop 27 inch monitor, but to be expected…comes with age. So as for a travel machine that can take care of client fixes etc…this seems to suit my needs perfectly…I really like the pen stylus, …will help keep the screen cleaner & might try out some traditional animation with it…So with a balance of portability & power… Looks like I will keep it.

*to note: I have the 256g, 8g ram Model…don’t go with anything less.