N-trig especially and generally active pen technology

Hey guys,

I googled already a bit about it, but I didn’t really find any satisfying answers about how exactly the active pens work. I know that they transmit some kind of radiation/signals to the metal mesh (I guess) of the digitizer.

I want to know, if anybody knows what type of frequency/signal they use for that and how the pen turns on and off. Is it sending all the time or just when I move it? I’m really interested in how it works exactly, but everywhere it’s just written that they send signals to the display and then it works. That doesn’t really satisfy my interest :sweat_smile:


I’m not sure if it’s in here - I tried reading it when Konsta first posted it but my brain exploded mid article…



Thanks @mlivesey for sharing this is exactly the right guide

So @SyrtakiVampr make sure to check it out!


Well I just tried reading it again. way over my head - but look around the page 150 mark (give or take)

Yes, that’s basically what I was looking for :smiley: thank you very much, guys! And sorry for kind of double-posting :expressionless:

but my question still remains how the pen knows, when it’s needed or if it just sends out a signal all the time. Since it’s radiofrequency I’m not sure, if it actually needs to turn off since it shouldn’t use much energy anyways.

I doubt it shuts off completely, or else how would it know when it is near the screen? (unless it has an accelerometer to wake it which is even less likely)


That’s what I’m wondering as well. Accelerometers aren’t really expensive and the pens are. So, I could imagine it. But on the other hand I have no idea, if energy saving even makes sense with radiofrequency :smiley:

That guide is for touch tech and @SyrtakiVampir wanted to know about pen tech (in this case ntrig - emr works in a totally different way). That said, I think @Qushery and @Mike should be able to explain how it functions :wink:

The pen technology of both of them is briefly explained in the .pdf as well :slight_smile: but I’m open to more info :grin:

See if any of these links is useful :wink:

[details=Warning link is huge!!] n trig technology explained - Google Search

Edit: the retract thing isn’t working (I probably messed up) but here goes the intention :joy:
Edit 2: thanks to @helios’s post I could see how he did and changed here :))
Edit 3: it shows correctly on the preview but fails to render correctly… :confused:

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Well, I googled it already, but thanks anyways :slight_smile:

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You didn’t actually put the link inside the spoiler :slight_smile: seems like there’s a bug with that, as people often do it…