Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Discussions on various computer platforms and operating systems used to run Shapeoko mills.
halfnormal
Posts: 227
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Location: Flagstaff AZ

Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by halfnormal » Thu May 21, 2015 5:54 pm

Thanks Will for the info. Win8 Tablets are finicky about what will work.
I found the mother of all Docking stations for tablets http://plugable.com/products/ud-pro8#compatibility. It says it is compatible but costs 3X what the tablet cost!

xfredericox
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Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by xfredericox » Thu May 21, 2015 10:39 pm

what doyou guys think of this?

seems to check all the boxes
cheap, full windows and 2 usb ports 1 of them full size.

http://www.microcenter.com/product/4397 ... et_-_black
Visit my blog for updates on my current SO2/lasercutting/... projects.
http://www.manmademayhem.com

halfnormal
Posts: 227
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Location: Flagstaff AZ

Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by halfnormal » Fri May 22, 2015 1:28 am

xfredericox wrote:what doyou guys think of this?

seems to check all the boxes
cheap, full windows and 2 usb ports 1 of them full size.

http://www.microcenter.com/product/4397 ... et_-_black
This the tablet that got me interested in a Win tablet. Unfortunately it is only available in store and there is not a Microcenter out west. The reviews seem to say it is decent.

xfredericox
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Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by xfredericox » Fri May 22, 2015 4:34 pm

well I bought one on ebay.
100 euro shipped to EU, about double of retail in the USA...

Still it's extremely affordable and keeping that in mind it has been reported to be very good.

i'm curious...
Visit my blog for updates on my current SO2/lasercutting/... projects.
http://www.manmademayhem.com

Dave
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2015 12:51 am

Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by Dave » Sun May 24, 2015 2:02 am

Thanks for the heads-up! I snagged a pair of them right when I saw your post. 8-) Amazon said there were 6 available when I put them in my cart, then 5 available a few minutes later when I checked out. So I think they have a fluctuating amount of stock.

Mine were just delivered yesterday, and I got them both set up.
A couple comments:
  • The Amazon listing was a bit incorrect, as these are actually the Hipstreet "W8 Pro" units and not the basic "W8". :) So these have the 1.33GHz Atom Z3735F CPU (not the Atom D525 1.8 GHz that Amazon lists), 2GB of RAM (not the 1GB Amazon lists), and 32GB of storage. That was a nice surprise to find that difference. 8-)
  • One of mine came with a nearly fully charged battery, and one came with a nearly empty battery. Not knowing this, I started setting up the "empty" one first, not plugged in, and it was only after I got through the setup that I was able to see that the battery level was critical (2%!). So I would recommend plugging it in for a while (or before) setting one up, to avoid having it die at a critical step in the setup.
  • Unlike the retail (non-refurbished) units, these come "bare" in the box. No protective covers or anything, just the tablet loose in the top, and the charger and OTG adapter rattling around in the bottom. I didn't see any obvious damage from being unprotected, but for the price, I wasn't going to be a perfectionist. One of mine shows marks from the power adapter being installed/removed before, and both had imperfect boxes. So these are definitely refurbished units. ;)
  • The system info indicates that it is a 64-bit machine, but running a 32-bit version of "Windows 8.1 with Bing". Keep that in mind when you're deciding which software to install on it.
These aren't the fastest machines, but they're one heck of a deal for $45 shipped!! :shock: :D ;)

Brian Stone
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Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by Brian Stone » Sun May 24, 2015 2:36 am

Dave wrote:
bharbour wrote:These aren't the fastest machines, but they're one heck of a deal for $45 shipped!! :shock: :D ;)
I agree. I got mine yesterday and I'm not disappointed. It's a bit heavy, the front bezel is a little soft (doesn't have a really solid feel), but the display is sharp and there's plenty of computer here to run USG. Even Chilipepper runs fast enough in IE. I don't think I'll get around to testing it with the machine this weekend, all my time is going into finishing up some projects.
Shapeoko 2 #7353
1500x1000mm Shapeoko/X-Carve Hybrid, Nema-23's, Belt-Driven Z-Axis /w ACME Screw, Dewalt 611, Soundproof Enclosure
[Fusion 360 | Illustrator] -> Universal G-Code Sender

halfnormal
Posts: 227
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Location: Flagstaff AZ

Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by halfnormal » Sun May 24, 2015 3:54 pm

Dave wrote:
  • The Amazon listing was a bit incorrect, as these are actually the Hipstreet "W8 Pro" units and not the basic "W8". :) So these have the 1.33GHz Atom Z3735F CPU (not the Atom D525 1.8 GHz that Amazon lists), 2GB of RAM (not the 1GB Amazon lists), and 32GB of storage. That was a nice surprise to find that difference. 8-)
This was the case with mine when I first posted about the unit. I did not want to say anything just in case they shipped the other units out too and did not want to get anyone's hopes up. I am glad that they are actually the W8 pro model. I am still using mine almost everyday. I plan to build a tablet holder to go on the top of a spare monitor. I have also purchased an OTG/charging adapter from Dell that supposedly works with this tablet. I will update when I get it and see if it does work.

I am glad other people are able to get a usable Win8 tablet at a reasonable price and are enjoying it as much as I am.

halfnormal
Posts: 227
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 6:44 am
Location: Flagstaff AZ

Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by halfnormal » Sun May 24, 2015 10:40 pm

Forgot to say the best app for the tablet if you use the desktop mode is touch mouse pointer http://www.lovesummertrue.com/touchmousepointer/en-us/

It puts a touchpad with scroll bar and mouse buttons on one side or bottom of the screen.
twofinger1s.png
twofinger1s.png (148.32 KiB) Viewed 2753 times

Dave
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Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by Dave » Wed May 27, 2015 5:47 pm

halfnormal wrote:I have also purchased an OTG/charging adapter from Dell that supposedly works with this tablet. I will update when I get it and see if it does work.

I am glad other people are able to get a usable Win8 tablet at a reasonable price and are enjoying it as much as I am.
Absolutely. :D

When is your OTG/charging adapter supposed to arrive? I think that combined port is the biggest downfall of this tablet... I've noticed that on my units, the screen is still quite bright even with the brightness turned all the way down, so I know that the battery life suffers a bit from that. Being able to power it while docked and in use would be a huge help. ;)

Another thing I've noticed is that the power adapters for these get VERY hot when you're charging/using the tablet. So eventually I'll probably look into a different adapter that has a bit higher rating and runs a little cooler... with a longer cord as well. I just have to find one that doesn't cost more than the tablet! :mrgreen:

halfnormal
Posts: 227
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Location: Flagstaff AZ

Re: Mini tablet PC (Win 8.1) to use as dedicated controller

Post by halfnormal » Thu May 28, 2015 3:00 am

Dave wrote:[When is your OTG/charging adapter supposed to arrive?
Good news Dave, the dongle arrived and it works!

Here it the info

Dell Mocro USB Dongle for Data and Charging

http://accessories.dell.com/sna/product ... u=470-abes

Still loving the tablet. I did not think I would be using a Win8 tab at all. I am a die hard Android user but this tablet has changed my mind. I have a dozen other ideas to use it for now. I am sure I will be obtaining a few more in my future.

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