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Thread: Magic Trackpad

  1. #1
    Super Duper
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    Magic Trackpad

    Mine arrived yesterday and I've installed it.
    If you use a Mac notebook you will be right at home no learning curve.

    I have dual 30" displays and this is a much faster way to navigate. Nice that it can sit in one spot so don't need a lot of desktop space to move around the mouse.

    I love it so far!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Lisa's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Cool! I'd love one, but I'm a PC user. Does anyone here know whether anyone makes anything similar for PCs? I love the touchpad on my new laptop, and would love something like it but bigger for my desktop PC. My muscles get sore from too much mouse-clicking sometimes, and I love being able to tap or double-tap instead of clicking...

    Please keep us posted on how it works out for you, Terry!

    Lisa

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    I still have to use two fingers on my MBP trackpad to drag and draw in CS, cannot get the hang of one finger tap-click-drag so I doubt I'd like the magic trackpad with my desktop.

    Terry, did you also buy the magic charger?

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    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    Terry, did you also buy the magic charger?

    ,
    Silly question my friend

    Arrived today - good news is like most of the other products you can change from a US plug to any of the slide on plugs from the international adapter kit.

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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Hi Lisa,

    maybe - http://www.labnol.org/software/apple...windows/14158/

    but don't worry, in a month or three a better driver will be available, and a plethora of similar devices at a third the price will be around.

    Best wishes,

    Ray

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    Senior Member Lisa's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Thanks very much for the link, Ray. Your advice sounds good - I'll wait and watch for better drivers and/or similar Windows devices.

    Lisa

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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Quote Originally Posted by TEBnewyork View Post

    I love it so far!
    Feeling definitely sulky - 5th to 10th mine says

    Just this guy you know

  8. #8
    Member NotXorc's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Hi Terry,

    I also got mine yesterday. Haven't yet used it for photo work, but have some reservations. First, I found Apple's options a little too limited, so I installed Better Touch Tool. It's alpha and has crashed some, but I recommend it if you want to access custom gestures. (http://blog.boastr.net/)

    My main concern is that I lack precision in moving sliders when editing in LR and other software (RPP, QtpsfGui, etc).

    I really like the device for getting around the web and OS, the gestures do make for a fun experience. It would be a shame to get foiled by click-and-drag, but that may be the deciding factor for me. I have to try it again after work. :-)

  9. #9
    Member NotXorc's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    After some more testing I have the following observations about the MT:

    1) I find myself using keyboard shortcuts more. Ones I knew already, but did not necessarily have incentive to use. :-) Because the MT is at the same level as the keyboard, it seems like it is easier to make the transition to keyboard shortcuts than it would be to 'un-grip' a mouse.

    2) I don't have dual 30" monitors to test how the MT works across a huge desktop space – I'm just not that cool. No problems navigating a 20" cinema display.

    3) In PS, normal commands and adjustments seemed easy to implement on the MT. Burning, dodging and painting are better done with a mouse, and probably still better using a pressure-sensitive pen input device. I did not time frequently performed actions in PS to determine whether mouse or MT was faster.

    4) I am not using a keyboard tray, and have not noticed greater than usual hand fatigue.

    5) The most unexpected thing is that I did not have a preference which side of the keyboard MT was placed on. The non-dominant hand (left) is no good for penmanship, but it is just fine for operating the cursor and performing gestures.

  10. #10
    Administrator Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    I am working hard to use the MT with photoshop.

    First, its lack of pressure sensitivity, as compared to the Wacom tablet, made it a non-starter. As much as I hated working PS with a mouse, which reminded me of drawing with a potato while wearing oven mitts, the trackpad is even worse. There is almost no difference between its implementation and the built-in mackbook pro trackpad. Both fail.

    Next part of the experiment was to re-gain some of that pressure sensitivity.
    I purchased a Pogo stylus and their inklet app and gave that combo a spin with the MT.
    The tip of the Pogo is about the size of a pea, and it is covered with a fuzzy material to prevent scratching the surface of iPads and iPhones. The inklet app operates as an assistive device which must be enabled in system preferences

    Much of the utility of the tablet is restored with this combination, however I have some reservations. Note that I am using a pair of 30 inch displays, with a wide gamut display in use for photo editing and a Apple 30 inch display to support palettes and other information I might wish to display while editing.

    The good:
    Pressure sensitivity is restored. I can vary the size and/or opacity of a brush by varying pressure which I consider essential for fine quality photo editing.

    Although the size of the active surface is much smaller than the active surface of the Large Intuos 4, even when the active area is mapped to span both displays, there was enough lateral precision to be useful. Greater precision is available using the inklet app by constraining the mapped are to be a selectable portion of the display. This may be useful for some, but it then is unwieldy to also use the MT+inklet+Pogo for menu tool or palette operations. This is partially offset since inklet can be temporarily disabled by pressing the "~" key. The problem with this, of course is that the keyboard is essentially disabled since it is busy being used along with your spare hand to hold down the "~" key.

    I was also pleased that the brush re-sizing feature of CS5 was fully functional

    The Bad:
    A feature of the Wacom Intuos 4 tablet is that it can sense the pen position while it hovers over the surface without actually making contact. This enables its driver to differentiate between a positioning attempt and a "click" which occurs when the pen tip makes contact. The MT+inklet+Pogo does not have this capability, so that a bit of surface contact is required to detect its position.
    Although "Multi-touch" i a feature of the MT, it i really an issue should you happen to lightly drag a little finger while drawing. inklet at least in this revision cannot tell apart a finger from the stylus so the position would jump around. This is an area where the combo seems to operate a bit differently on the mackbook pro touchpad and the MT where stray finger detection seems to be a little better.

    The Ugly:
    The tip of the stylus is the size of a small pea, so the point of contact is a bit ambiguous. The driver does a good job stabilizing this and determining a steady point while the tip is touching the surface of the MT. The issue with this ambiguity is with initial contact. o matter how hard I tried, if the stylus were raised and lowered on the surface several times, each time, the detected position would be a bit different unlike the Intuos which was dead-on each time. This is not a problem for casual retouch, but it slows you way down since position confirmation needed to bee seen on-screen each time. This might have been aggravated by my mapping of the MT surface to span two 30 inch displays.

    A fingertip was detected as was the tip of the stylus, however fingertip use produced a very jittery response, almost too jittery to turn off the inklet app in its menu which took several tries.

    The MT clicks when its little feet detect enough pressure. Although the inklet app could detect and reject the palm-contact, when a click occurred it was a click even if not wanted. Be careful to not allow the hand to exert any pressure on the MT while using the stylus.

    There is no pen tilt detection. I use this occasionally in PS to add controllable jitter which is useful when drawing eyelashes and adding foliage.

    Bottom line:
    This combo is going into my drawer of curiosities for now, at least until there is another revision of the inlet driver. I may continue to use the MT as a mouse; it sits on top of my Wacom for now and is removed when I am using the pen. I still need to gain more facile use of it however, which might occur in time. On the balance, the MT seems useful enough for now but a week or two will tell the tale. I prefer it to the wacom mouse but not to the magic mouse, but the magic mouse has its own problems since it makes a very annoying scraping noise when the wacom is used as a mouse pad. In a while I will let you know if it also ends up in my drawer of curiosities.
    -bob

  11. #11
    Member NotXorc's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Thanks for sharing your usage habits and tests with the MT. I have been somewhat curious about the Inklet software, so that was especially nice.

    As I do not wish to expand my own 'drawer of curiosities', the MT went back to Apple today. It's not that it failed to perform as advertised, it just doesn't fit into the requirements of my photo workflow. I'm sure I'll miss it at certain moments; some gestures are truly useful (even fun).

    Apple's acquisition of FingerWorks back in 2005/6 was the factor that moved me toward Mac - some of their touch keyboards were truly cool. Priorities change, and a Wacom is now much more important than a touchpad cursor-shuffler. I can start saving my nickels and dimes for the former. Cheers!

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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Thanks for your report, Bob. Coincidently?, there is a mention of the Wacom tablet here http://kelbytv.com/layerstv/2010/08/04/episode-141/ and that still seems to be the better device for photo-editing.

    Best wishes,

    Ray

    PS LIsa - that works on pc or apple.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Per Ofverbeck's Avatar
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    Re: Magic Trackpad

    Personally, after getting the new MacBookPro a month or so ago, I found that I much prefer the trackpad to the Tragic Mouse contraption I use with my desktop Mac.

    Only, I canīt quite see how I would place it on the table together with the keyboard. The logical next step would be a keyboard with built-in trackpad in the same layout as on the MBP, but full size. *That* would send me to the Apple Store pronto!

    And, of course itīs not a Wacom, and it never will be. One needs both!

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