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Thread: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

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    surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    I'm going to buy a surface pro 3 for tethering in field, and hotel processing...and replace my actual laptop...
    Few questions comes to my mind:
    - is i7 better than i5 for captureone and PhotoShop? ( I heard of overheating on the i7 which impact the speed and bring it to i5 performance...but this was using game, what about capture one or PhotoShop?)
    -how long can i expect to shoot tethered? Is there any external batteries options?
    -what the best support/clamp? I've seen many of you clamp directly to the same tripod as the camera, is it really vibration free(fan)?
    Thanks a lot for you kind help.

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    I have used both the S3 i5 and i7 and kept the i5. This was early in the life of the S3 and the i7's at that time did overheat and turn off, at least mine did. Microsoft ended up shipping me a i5 at my request. For tethering i5 is plenty of power with 8GB of ram. Actually the only thing I would improve on is the ram, and go to 16GB if they allowed it.

    As for daily laptop, if your eyes can take it, then it's not a bad machine. However remember that CC and LR will use the default resolution of the screen and thus all the menus and such are way too small, at least for my eyes. This is just like using a Macbook Pro 15" in windows as windows will only work well with the highest resolution, not like how the screen is viewed on the Mac side. Yes you can select the 200% view option in CC, but sadly that's too much on the Surface screen, unlike the 15" macpro screen. They need a custom or allow for a 150% view.

    Battery life on my i5 is about 3 hours when tethered. I actually went back to my S2 as it gets closer to 4 hours.

    Clamps, First and foremost, go to Ken Doo's website and read his blog, ton's of really good info.

    I have used now three different styles.

    Ken's no1,
    Wolfgang's no1
    Ken's modified Wolfgang.

    Right now I am on the Ken's modified Wolfgang and it's the best for me. Wolfgang's clamp is more secure, but much heavier and a bit too much in the field for me. Ken has a very light weight clamp solution that holds the S2 or 3 very well.

    Really by far the only issue is light on the screen, as in bright light trying to read the screen is next to impossible, so for my work, the clamp only holds the S2 while shooting, as I always take it off the clamp on a 4 foot USB cord so I can move around and get the sun to my back to see. The Ken's modified version is very easy to remove the S2 from and it's also very secure.

    Vibration, none of these solution have vibration issue when used with a solid tripod.

    Paul

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    I don't think there has been any definitive comparison for tethered performance between core i7 and core i5 Surface Pros. I would assume that i7 would be at least minimally better than i5 for processing in C1Pro8 and PS. For image preview, I doubt there will be much difference and I believe RAM is the bigger factor. Rumor mill is that the upcoming Surface Pro 4 may offer more than 8GB RAM.

    I doubt the fan will have any significant impact on stability or vibration, but I think Paul Caldwell will be the best one to ask here. If the possibility really bothers you, you can simply separate the SP from the tripod equation and hold it, set the SP on the ground (on your bag) or place it in a tripod sling/holder. I know there are a few that don't use the clamping options, but I don't think it is because of vibration fears.

    I think Microsoft's battery estimates are generous, but I think around five hours is a pretty good range---it really depends on what features you have enabled and what you are doing. Be aware of battery management features, as well as the ability to change charging functions to the MFDB: no charge, slow trickle, trickle me more). I use the no charge option.

    There are external battery options, but I think when you start going down this route, it really defeats the purpose of being mobile. That being said, the Vagabond Mini Lithium can be used as a charger. I assume that by now there are other small lithium battery packs that can be re-engineered to fit assuming the voltage matches. I recently purchased a small lithium pack for my truck (ok, didn't need it but it's really cool) that I can use to charge USB devices and it has enough power to jump start Don Libby's Ford Raptor. Cables included! Ok, I digress.

    I've been busy, but am about to write another blog article on the evolution of the Surface Pro clamp options. I have yet one final new clamping option---and I think this one really is a winner!! Small, lightweight and huge improvement over the first generation Arkon, Wolf clamp, and hiking Pig clamp. Super happy with this new clamp and will have the article up shortly.

    My original blog article has been updated to include shopping lists of items needed to tether with the Surface Pro, but future updates will be in separate articles, including the new clamping system.

    https://kendoophotography.wordpress....digital-backs/

    I'm looking forward to the new Surface Pro 4.

    Ken

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    I missed the fan = vibration.

    The S2 fan kicks in much less often then the S3 from my experience. The S3 seems to run the fan most of the time.

    I have not ever seen any issues from fan vibration with either device. The fan will get pretty loud on the S3, but still no issues.

    ONE OTHER ISSUE, be very careful when carrying either unit as the it's pretty darn easy to power them up inadvertently. I carry my units with no keyboard or case now and the power switch is an easy thing to hit. If it comes on the unit will not power off, but stay on and over heat. I figured it would sleep, but I have had this happen with both the S2 and S3. The S2 got too hot to touch and I though it was ruined, but I after sitting in front of my truck's AC for a while it came right back.

    I now tape a piece of mat board over the power switch to keep it from being hit and turning the unit on while in my pack.

    Paul
    Last edited by Paul2660; 21st May 2015 at 09:51.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    I've gone naked on my Surface Pro too, Paul. When going out to tether---no keyboard, no case, no accessories except for the pen. BUT, I did get an inexpensive thin sueded leather sleeve for the SP2 that provides minimal protection for the screen in my backpack. It was from Waterfield Designs for about $20, but it looks like they stopped producing it and only offer it for iPad now. SP3 designs are more expensive...

    You could probably almost just as easily make a sleeve yourself....

    ken

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    Ken,

    They still list a sleeve for the SP: https://www.sfbags.com/collections/s...-jacket-sleeve

    Are there different sizes?

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    That's it! I stand corrected. Stephen, you are the most sophisticated of enablers.

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    thanks for all thoses infos!

    i've just oredered the i7 version, price was really close to the i5 and sometimes it's better to ....

    Next week all the microsoft and Mac prices will increase quite a bit here in UE, for all european if you want one,go to shop this weekend!
    i bought a Surface pro i7 256go for 1406€ today in Paris but next monday it will cost 1800€ ;(

    Ken, i'll keep watching for your best clamp

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    Let me jump in here and add a couple thoughts...

    Used the SP2 early on and the biggest issue I had was the small screen. Went to the SP3 shortly after it was released deciding to go big or go home and went with the 7.

    Screen size is great as is the resolution both a big plus over the SP2. I've now owned and used the SP3 far longer than I had the SP2 (writing this on the SP3). Heat is an issue both in terms of how hot the unit gets and fan noise. Nothings perfect.

    I had tried using this to operate C1 and PSCC on a trip and afterwards now only use it for C! and tethering. No matter how you look at it the screen is small. Add into the fact that as far as I know you can't calibrate the screen so no major work should be done with it.

    I use the SP3 for 3-main reasons. The overriding purpose is to tether which is well worth it. This alone is worth the price of admission. The other lessor things I find myself doing with this is internet and reading. I still carry my laptop with me.

    That said I would carry only the SP3 if I were on a trip that weight was an issue knowing that I could still use it to preview the images shot that day to make certain I got what I wanted.

    Regarding setting up to tether - I've been using the "Wolf Clamp" for several months/trips and like it a lot. No issues with vibration or worry of loosing everything if I have to move from one spot to another. I did try Ken's newer solution clamp and found it didn't work well for me as I needed a longer bar but more importantly I like the ability of adjusting the screen up and down.

    In the end nothing is perfect however using a SP2/3 on a digital back with USB3 is very close to ideal. I've now used this setup on both a IQ160 and 180 and recently with a Credo WS 50. As much as I like the SP3 Im waiting for the release of the 4 to see if we'll be getting a 2nd USB3 port (which would be great) and somewhat iffy about additional RAM as it seems that 8 GB Ram suites my purpose.

    More thoughts later

    Don
    Don Libby
    Iron Creek Photography
    Blog
    Tucson AZ

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    Btw, the "newer solution clamp" Don is referring to is the "Pig" clamp that is a small lightweight hiking solution.

    I'm still working out the final kinks on this last clamping solution, the Capture Landscape Integrated Tethering Solution. There definitely is no free lunch. More to follow.

    ken

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    Testing done.

    My last efforts on developing the best clamping system for the Surface Pro:

    https://kendoophotography.wordpress....clamp-choices/

    ken
    Last edited by kdphotography; 29th May 2015 at 15:51.
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    Wow. Neat stuff. There is something about the name "rare earth" that gives it a bit of a scifi theme.

    Thanks for posting and the shopping list.

    Paul

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    It took me a while to work everything out, ordering different bits and pieces to see what worked and what not.

    The magnetic CLITS clamp option is ideal for me so far, and it is fairly small and light too. Much much easier to pack than the early clamp options! I think Don is more partial to the standard quick release.

    ken

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    The magnetic clamp is appealing for sure, and I guess both the S2 and S3 will work as both have the UAG cases available.

    Paul

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    The two magnets together work really well providing a strong secure hold. It's actually strong enough to move the tripod a bit when grabbing the SP. I found it's best to grab the Surface Pro from the bottom, and while holding the UAG leg, slightly twist the SP to the left or right to release the magnetic hold.

    ken

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    @ken
    I've seen You request on LL for the NFL surface pro case, You should have a look at "incipio capture surface pro" it looks exactly the same.
    In France we can even order it from the Microsoft online shop...
    I'll order one and let You know m'y feeling about it.
    Last edited by daf; 4th June 2015 at 22:56.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    Nice find, daf. You're an enabler for sure.

    But on further inspection/thought looking at the specs, I'm not sure about the handle on the back when using with the magnetic CLITS clamp. BUT, this is a great handle for those that don't want to use a clamp at all, and simply handhold. One drawback is not being able to use the keyboard or kickstand. I really don't want to take the case on and off---and a few reviews states to do so is a pita.

    Also, it's not clear what kind of screen protection there is----if it provides a good matte anti glare viewing experience.

    It'd be cool if the back handle had multiple plates---as we could snap on the handle and then swap easily to another one with the metal plate for the magnetic CLITS clamp.

    Deal killer for me is not being able to use a keyboard. I obviously don't use a keyboard to tether, but the SP still serves as my computer on the road, so I need the keyboard. The UAG case allows use of the keyboard.

    Good find, though----keeps me thinking of the options...

    ken

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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    From what i've seen you can remove the central plate, and cut you own metal plate at the same size...
    But you're right maybe keeping the keyboard option is a good idea...

    Being Honnest, i feel a bit nervous with both : Magnet and 3M Tape.
    As an architecture photographer, i'd like to be able to keep the tablet mounted when moving around with the tripod on exterior shooting.
    So i would like to find a very strong and secure solution.
    I'm now working with a basic leather case+metal plate (inside the case)+rapid clamp screwed by 2 point... strong enough for shooting but not enough protected (leather is too thin)
    Is there any room in the UAG cxse to put a thin metal plate inbetween the case and the surface?

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    I actually left the thin metal plates attached to the back of my surface pro, so those could give more rigidity as well as a stronger attachment point for attaching quick release on the UAG case.

    The other CLITS clamp option does that using a quick release plate and compatible top clamp on the ballhead. I believe the leg on the UAG case for the SP3 is metal. You'd be surprised how strong the 3M VHB tape adhesive is---it ain't cheap either. But yes, you could attach a plate with small screws (or both).

    The magnetic CLITS clamp option is more for speed/ease and portability on location. For your purposes, the quick release plate option might be more suitable. I think if you went this option, I would opt for the KPS Slim Plate (SU7) and compatible top clamp on the ballhead. The KPS Slim Plate is a much lower profile than the AS standard. This method might give you more peace of mind when moving about with the SP attached to the tripod. But you'd be surprised how strong the magnetic CLITS clamp is---you can actual move the tripod just holding onto the SP. It's best to hold onto the bottom of the UAG case (and leg) and twist the tablet left or right to break the magnetic hold and remove the tablet. The grip is that strong.

    ken

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: surface pro / model / clamp / vibration...

    FYI---the last variation of the CLITS Clamp has been added and updated on my blog. Thanks to Paul Caldwell for providing the inspiration. This version is perfect for those that like to hold the Surface Pro for use and be able to attach the SP quickly onto the tripod leg. This CLITS Clamp version 3 uses a Manfrotto Nano clamp and has the same quick magnetic attachment features of Version 1. No need for the pano rail or the RRS FAS clamp.

    I really like this small, light, magnetic clamp for tethering with the Surface Pro. Shopping lists for all three versions of the CLITS Clamp are at the bottom of my blog. This clamp system is integrated and modular.

    https://kendoophotography.wordpress....clamp-choices/

    ken

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