Will the new Dell Venue 8.1 Windows Tablets run Logos?

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This post has 54 Replies | 4 Followers

Posts 1776
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 29 2014 4:55 PM


Posts 2917
Mike Childs | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 29 2014 5:58 PM

Michael Weber:

Surface Pro has the best pen experience.

I still like the Venue 11 as a cheaper alternative.  Also, the Venue 11 has a softer tip which provides resistance.  The Pro's stylus is hardened and slides across the glass - not in a good way.

Although - I used the Surface Pro for year and it was magnificent except for battery.  I think the Surface 2 fixed that however.

Believe it or not, I still like the Venue 8 - glitches and all - over both.  It's just small and easier to get out.  I agree, fat fingers need not apply :).

I don't disagree with that, especially if the price is better and the processor as good.  In fact, I tried to buy the Venue 11 with 8 GB of ram hoping it would cheaper.  I think it is a good option.  I didn't buy it because (1) it wasn't available for the home market with 8 gig of ram, only for the business market and I had no business account, and (2) I have some concern about its processor.  I like Dell products as a rule.  In fact, my last couple of laptops have been Dell.

As for the Venue 8, I wanted my Windows tablet to be able to do everything my laptop and desktop could.  Two gig of ram will never do that for me.  Eight gig is the minimum I could accept.  My Surface Pro 2 is really a full desktop replacement with no compromise.  So I could not consider the Venue 8.  I would pull out my hair just waiting for Logos to do something.  I guess that I just don't understand what the Venue 8 could do for me.

My battery life on the Surface Pro 2 is just a bit more than 5 hours of steady use.  Of course, I keep it plugged in at my office to have the battery for use at home in the evening.  Seems to more than meet my needs.

As for the pen, I have nothing else to compare it to, but it works perfectly for me.

Hey, it is what works for you.  God lead you and bless you, and I believe which ever you chose will be a wonderful tool for God's glory.  After all, none of us would exchange the Holy Spirit for any computer, tablet, or device. 

"In all cases, the Church is to be judged by the Scripture, not the Scripture by the Church," John Wesley

Posts 1776
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 29 2014 6:41 PM

so 4-8 megs of ram, a stylus, and a prayer of affording it?

got it?  I guess I am back to hoping an Amazon drone will one drop off a free Surface Pro 2 on my doorstep...on a parachute that lands softly of course.

Its nice to have a dream.Gift

Posts 602
Bill Anderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 29 2014 6:51 PM

Michael Childs:

Bill Anderson:

The problem with the Dell and the other Windows 8 tablets is that they don't have a Wacom active digitizer. On such a small screen you need an active digitizer to manipulate the Logos controls.

I am waiting for the Asus Vivo-Tab Note, which is an 8-inch tablet with Wacom digitizer and pen. Reportedly, the 64 GB verison will be $349 when it is released sometime at the end of the first quarter, 2014.

Bill, I am not a tech expert.  But I can speak from my experience on the Surface Pro.  I don't what kind of pen the Surface Pro uses, but I know it works very well.  It is really great for taking notes.  That thing even reads my sloppy handwriting and converts it to text.  Okay, it reads more of my handwriting than I can, and sometimes needs a little editing.  

I believe the Surface Pro and Pro 2 have a Wacom digitizer. As you say, the pen works very well in Logos on the Surface Pro 2. For my tablet wants, I like an 8-incher because it is light and easy to hold. If the Asus tablet comes close to functioning well, I may consider it.

Posts 602
Bill Anderson | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 29 2014 6:54 PM



That's been out for a while, Josh. I actually tried this tablet out for a week and took it back. It just didn't have enough power for Logos. Scrolling with the pen or a finger was very slow. Great form factor, though. If Lenovo comes out with the same tablet with upgraded Atom specs, it could be worth considering.

Posts 1776
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 30 2014 5:27 AM

Hi Mr. Anderson (Bill).

I look forward to your encouraging cheery posts (seriously).  Thanks for the great tip.  My wife and my wallet thank you.

Please remind us again what you are using well or looking forward to switching to...thanks.

Posts 23
Michael Weber | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Feb 13 2014 7:39 AM

Just got the new Asus Vivo Note 8 and the stylus is AMAZING.  I've been through some tablets and nothing has come so close to the experience on the Surface Pro.  And this in an 8" form factor.

I'll be selling my Dell Venue 8 on amazon for dirt cheap - comes with case and stylus.

If you care about stylus, do not get the Dell Venue 8 or Lenovo.  Asus is the first W8 tab to get it right.

I think I have 15GB free because they put the recovery partition on an included 8GB SD card.  Another nice touch.

Posts 1776
JoshInRI | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Feb 13 2014 8:35 AM

Did you retire your Surface Pro?  I just got one.

Posts 47
Brian Crawford | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 1 2014 3:19 PM

Here are some of my thoughts after getting the Dell Venue 8 Pro two weeks ago:

  1. I first got the 32 GB version with the hope to run Logos off a 64 GB MicroSD card. I had two problems with this. First, the MicroSD port on the Dell is very slow - no more than 10MB/sec writes and 15 MB/sec reads (there was an option to increase these speeds in an earlier Dell firmware, but they removed that option from the most recent firmware, A04). The slow speeds meant that the indexing of my Logos library took forever. We're talking days. But then I ran into problems. As users have reported on other forums, the SD card would dismount itself from the system during times of high usage, meaning Logos would crash. After many attempts and many dismounts, I decided that I could not rely on the SD card space for any important programs, and especially not Logos.
  2. I returned the 32GB tablet and got a refurbished 64GB for the same price. Came from Dell looking brand new.
  3. The 2 GB of Ram is not a problem at all. With 8 tabs open in Logos right now, it's only using 125 MB of my ram.
  4. Searches run very quickly, like <1 second.
  5. I installed the fantastic freeware TouchMousePointer, which enables a mouse pointer on the desktop. Single tap = click. Double tap + drag = highlight. Double finger tap = right click, etc. I couldn't do Logos by touch without this program.
  6. I'm a heavy highlighter and notetaker in my resources. I've set up my highlighter pens to use keyboard shortcuts. So to use Logos as a reader, I make sure that I have only one window in my layout, and then I activate the touch keyboard. I can highlight text by touch using the (virtual) mouse pointer, I can scroll with double touch + drag, and I can highlight selected text with a single tap of a keyboard shortcut. It takes some setting up, but it works great.
  7. Everything else on the tablet runs great. I installed Office 2010 because my refurbished tablet didn't come with a 2013 activation code. It doesn't matter that 2010 isn't as touch friendly because TouchMousePointer makes it easy to use.
  8. I have had problems with sleep mode. Sometimes the tablet drains a lot of battery when it is put to sleep (the power button defaults to sleep mode). Other times the screen doesn't turn on when I try to turn the tablet on from sleep mode. Users on other forums are reporting the same problems, but I've tried all of their fixes and they didn't work (Wifi drivers, uninstalling Windows updates, command line investigations, etc.). I have resorted to using a freeware program called Open PowerCfg, which allows me to remap the power button to Hibernate. So I always hibernate, and never sleep the tablet. Saves my battery, at the cost of having to wait 15 seconds when turning the tablet back on.
  9. I bought an IVSO case, a cheap USB dongle to connect a mouse, and a $30 foldable Bluetooth keyboard. With those and the tablet together, this thing is a full desktop experience. Wow!

All in all, I have had a very positive experience with the Venue 8 Pro, and it's mind boggling that this little thing can be so powerful with a full version of Logos running on it.

Posts 906
Brother Mark | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 1 2014 6:27 PM

Brian,  That was a well thought out, feature rich review!  Thanks for sharing your experience and especially the tips for add-ons.

"I read dead people..."

Posts 2917
Mike Childs | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Mar 1 2014 8:41 PM

Excellent, Brian.  Happy it is working well for you.  Many people will be glad to hear this.

"In all cases, the Church is to be judged by the Scripture, not the Scripture by the Church," John Wesley

Posts 466
Mark Nolette | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Mar 16 2014 1:12 PM

Well, I've been interested in a small Windows 8 tablet that would allow me to run Logos 5 and be very portable, so that when I wanted to simply sit in my favorite chair, I could do reading and light study in side-by-side windows. I didn't need a larger, more expensive tablet. I have my laptop for serious work. Last year, I bought the Asus VivoTab Smart, 10 inch and relatively cheap. It could run Logos 5, but whenever I did a search, I had the time to take a couple of very contemplative sips of coffee or practice the Jesus Prayer several times (better than taking the Lord's name in vain!) before the results came up. I then had issues with it, and Asus customer assistance is pretty rudimentary. Then, when I heard of the Dell Venue 8 Pro, with the newer Bay Trail processor, I was intrigued.  Then, Dell was offering the 64 GB model for the price of  32 GB one. 

So I drank the Kool-Aid. I bought one, along with a Targus case and the Dell stylus, for $350 all told. The Dell tablet arrived on Thursday, and the stylus came yesterday. 

Yes, the Dell is definitely usable with Logos 5. Logos loads and completes searches and other functions in less than half the time of my old VivoTabSmart, showing how much of a jump the BayTrail is over the CloverTrail.  If you are willing to make a few adjustments, Logos 5 can serve you well on the little Dell. 

Firstly, I'll say the obvious. You need to run Logos 5 in landscape mode. It isn't designed for a tablet in portrait mode. If you don't like holding a tablet in landscape mode, be warned! You can install the Logos Windows app and read resources in portrait mode with that. For reading purposes, that app is fine.

Secondly, in Logos program settings, I set the program scaling to 120%, and the default resource text size to 140%. Be aware that changing your tablet Logos settings may affect your settings on your desktop or laptop! These settings were a good compromise for me.

Thirdly, layouts are your friend. Customize your favorite layouts to work better with the more limited real estate. Save your changes with new names so you can have specific layouts for your tablet and your desktop/laptop.

Fourthly, some non-Logos-specific recommendations: If you prefer a cleaner start screen and Windows 7 start button, get Stardock's Start 8 and Modern Mix. You can boot to the desktop with Windows 8.1 as it is, but Start 8 allows you to set up a Windows 7-like start menu to access both legacy and Metro apps. ModernMix allows you to run Metro apps in a window on the desktop. Also, the text in the Mail app is pretty small on the little Dell. I mean, small. If you have Gmail, pin the site to your start window or to the desktop. If you have Outlook, you may be able to do the same with Outlook Web App. Worth it! You can also pin other sites like Instapaper, so you need not miss their absence in the Windows App Store. As for the screen, I like the brightness low. I leave on adaptive brightness or, if I disable it, I manually turn the brightness down, to under 40%.

Finally, the dreaded stylus. I heard that Dell had improved it, so I took a chance. When I had a chance to test it out, it was as bad as advertised. However, I discovered that the latest update for the Synaptics firmware hadn't been installed on my tablet. Once I finally coaxed the firmware out of the Dell support site (that site is painfully slow and inconsistent) and installed it, the problems were solved. I had a chance to use the first Surface Pro and its stylus for a brief time last year. This updated Dell one comes pretty close. Good enough for my purposes. 

Moral of the story? What are you looking for? If you want a nice, pleasant portable sidekick that can surprise you with its abilities, the Dell might work. If you want something that will be all things to all apps and programs, then at this price point you need a standard laptop or desktop. If you want all that in a tablet, you can find it - but it will cost you!  

Posts 1606
PL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Mar 16 2014 2:56 PM

Thank you for your detailed sharing, Mark.  A couple of follow-up questions, if I may:

1) What was the "dreaded stylus" problem before the firmware update?

2) How was Logos indexing performance on your Dell Venue?

Thanks again,


Posts 466
Mark Nolette | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Mar 16 2014 3:50 PM

Hi, Peter,

From the reviews I read, the stylus had a number of issues. The main ones were a delay in registering when you had stopped writing with it (if you were using One Note or something like that), which would cause tails to appear after the letters you wrote, and basic inconsistency. Sometimes it would work, sometimes not. I had the tails appear when I initially tested mine out. And using it as a mouse was hit-or-miss. The firmware update, so far, has eliminated those issues. I've only had it 36 hours, though, but it's working well.  

I don't know the answer yet about indexing, because I used one of the methods to install Logos on multiple computers. I copied my resources onto a microSD card from my laptop, and then copied them into the proper folders on the Dell's ssd. (If you search this forum and find the methods, I used method 2.) That eliminated the need to do an initial download of 8 gigs of resources and then the ensuing indexing. I'll only know that answer once Logos updates some resources I have or I buy something new. Sorry, but I can't be of help (yet) there. Other people on this forum have said that indexing was not unusually slow.  

Posts 232
Genghis | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jun 16 2014 3:07 PM


Floyd, I will have some trouble using that one in bed, Sir.

I suppose it will be warm and cuddly.  A little chubby for my taste!  [wink & LOL]

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