Graphics tablet

Category Archives: Graphics tablet

Tablet made of plastic that you attach to your computer. You draw on the tablet and see the image on your computer.

Graphics tablet turcomreview

Turcom TS-6610 graphics tablet review

Turcom TS-6610 tablet review, with art-program testing

turcomreview
Turcom TS-6610

Turcom makes audio equipment, security cameras, LED lights, and drawing tablets, including one pen-display tablet (as of 7/16).

Summary: The tablet is built well, and the pressure curve is great, but the driver can be difficult.

I tested it with various art programs on both Mac and Windows, and reported the results below.

Type of tablet
Graphics tablet (no screen), attaches to computer
What’s in the Box

Tablet
USB cord
Pen
Nib holder
5 nibs (one in pen and 4 extra; nibs are all the same)
AAA battery (Pardeer brand) for pen
disk with driver
Quickstart guide

Features

2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity
Size: 12.5 inches x 16 inches x 2 inches
Weight: 2.15 pounds
Active area: 10 inches by 6.25 inches
Report rate (RPS) 220
Plastic build
8 Hot Keys
16 customizable “functional cells,” on-screen softkeys
Pen included, takes AAA battery (included)
Resolution: 4000 LPI (Lines per Inch)
Driver available from included disk or from Turcom site
Pen takes AAA battery (included); no eraser tip
Pen weight with battery: 26g (battery alone is 11g)

 

turcomts6610tablet

Turcom TS-6610 tablet box

Portability

It’s pretty easy to take with you at a little over 2 pounds.

For Lefties

The driver has a feature that will adjust for lefties once they turn the tablet so the buttons are on the right.

Turcom was kind enough to send me this tablet. I tested art programs and installed the driver on different computers and operating systems. Overall the drivers worked best on Mac, then Windows 10 on laptop/desktop, then Windows tablet. The tablet and other items came safely packed in styrofoam . The quickstart guide doesn’t look professionally designed, but it has the basic information needed. There’s no larger guide on the TurcomUSA site (compare to Huion, which sends a more complete set of information in a booklet).

The Turcom TS-6610 tablet has a solid build quality, with eight customizable Hot Keys, including a two-button ring with a zoom in/out default function, and 16 softkeys you can program in the advanced driver settings. It looks a lot like the Huion H610Pro, but I weighed the two and the Huion weighs slightly more. The Turcom’s beaded surface is rougher than the H610 Pro’s, which is also beaded, but smoother. There are no Touch features.

turcomgraphicstablet

See the Turcom TS-6610 on Amazon

Some reviews say  it’s the same tablet as the Huion H610 (non-Pro), which has an AAA battery-powered pen. The specs and appearance seem to match. The driver for the Turcom is made by Huion. The download is on the Turcom site. I also tried the Huion H610/H610 Pro driver from the Huion site and it worked.

Turcom pen

turcom ts 6610

Penrest, nibolder, nibs. These parts attach.

turcompen

Turcom pen on penrest

The pen is chunky, about 1/2″ at the thickest part, with the grip part being a little thinner. It’s pretty heavy with the battery in it–this is an AAA battery, not a smaller AAAA. The pen has no eraser at the end. The gray grip is hard, but has a more graspable texture than the rest of the pen, which is smoother.

The buttons are placed so that you have to be a little careful to not press them by accident, but you can get used to it and avoid accidental presses. The build is plastic and seems quite durable. The weight of the pen doesn’t result in too-heavy lines. The penn makes a scratchy noise when drawing on the beaded surface.

Drawing on the Turcom tablet

Palm rejection and hover work fine. The beaded surface provides a rough area that’s pleasant to draw on despite the noise, and the surface may cause nibs may wear down quickly–luckily, they’ve provided extras. There’s a row of numbers across the top that visually correspond to the softkeys.

Setting the pressure curve in the middle produced the best results for me. The most sensitive setting still provided good variation.

The pressure curve works great. It’s responsive and snappy and goes from a very thin line to thick. Setting it at lower sensitivity still gives a good variation. Both lower and middle sensitivity feel comfortable to draw, and I’m not a hard presser. It’s quite comparable to Wacom, and some may even prefer the Huion. It doesn’t cause any blobs or sudden changes. I didn’t have a jitter problem.

The tablet shows the numbers 1-16, so you can access these softkeys while drawing.

TIP: Keep other tablets and other items with electrical components at least a few feet a way, as interference from them can cause odd hover issues.

Installing the Turcom/Huion driver

Both the 6610 driver from the Turcom site and the Huion H610/H610 Pro driver from the Huion site work on the tablet. Both drivers are made by Huion. It’s best to use the site ones because they are kept up up to date. The Huion H610 driver seemed a bit better than the 6610 driver, in that the 6610 would open up a page of what seemed to be developer’s notes. But otherwise they are similar.

Turcom/Huion driver on Windows 10

When it works well, the driver installs quickly and easily. It can be a breeze or a hurricane, depending what’s on your computer.

huiondriversettings

Driver settings

 

turcomdriveradvanced

Advanced driver settings

Troubleshooting the Turcom/Huion driver. If you’re having problems, these are things to look into: Install the drivers as Administrator. Delete all Wacom drivers and any other graphics tablet drivers. Even if they are not showing up in Control Panel they could still be there, visible in RegEdit (please ask someone for help if you are not comfortable going into your system and deleting files; deleting the wrong files can cause problems with your computer). Delete the Wacom Feel/Wintab driver if you have that (it can be redownloaded here). Delete all previous versions of this driver. Shut off all antivirus, including the default Windows Defender. Once all that’s done (and that is not the totality of possible considerations, but the main things I encountered after trying it on several different Windows 10 computers), you should be able to open the settings. Huion has a support thread on Deviant Art as well as offering other ways to contact them, including Skype.

Using a penabled Tablet PC will not interfere with the driver.
Turcom/Huion driver on Mac (El Capitan)
On the Mac, the driver installed beautifully, but I have less stuff on the Mac. The Mac driver doesn’t have the Pen Pressure Test panel, but that’s no big deal. 

I could not get Tablet Mapping to work.

Wacom drivers vs. Huion drivers

Wacom drivers are more robust with more ways to customize, since the Radial Menu with its submenus offers 64 different programmable shortcuts to the Turcom’s 24 (not counting pen buttons for either). Wacom has a more complex pen-pressure options, the ability in the Pro tablets to customize per application, and screen mapping as well as tablet mapping. They generally are easier to install (some will disagree). Some Wacom tablets have touch. Wacom offers tilt sensitivity, and in the Pro versions (Intuos Pro and Cintiq) also rotaton sensitivity. Wacom’s has a mouse mode and the Huion driver does not.

See more info on choosing a Wacom graphics tablet.

Not everyone needs to use a lot of customization (or any; they are totally optional), and the Huion drivers do nearly the same amount of things as Wacom’s.

Wacom’s tablets come with some art software bundled and some offer Touch.

Art programs in Windows 10
I got pressure in Photoshop and Sketchbook, though it took a restart whereas GIMP and Krita worked right away. The tablet worked in Inkscape, but I couldn’t get pressure in Inkscape’s Calligraphy tool with the pressure box checked. It works in Illustrator without pressure. Huion says they are working on pressure for Illustrator.

The product info lists CorelDraw and Painter, Autodesk Sketchbook, MAYA, ZBrush, Infinite Stratos, Photoshop, Illustrator, Fireworks, Flash, ComicStudio, and SAI as working with the 6610.

Art Programs on Mac
Same results as Windows but less fussing to get pressure in Photoshop and Sketchbook.

As with other graphics tablets, this one also works well as a rather large mouse substitute for opening programs, editing documents in Word, etc.

Customer support. Huion seems to have a bigger online presence than Turcom, and since the drivers are Huion’s, asking Huion or perusing Huion threads where they have responded can be helpful in troubleshooting. Huion is good about answering, and can be reached via email, Skype, or phone. The company also a support thread on Deviant Art here.

Turcom TS-6610 vs. Huion H610 Pro

The Huion H610 Pro specs are higher–it has a higher resolution (5080) and report rate. The H610Pro’s pen attaches by a cord, avoiding taking a battery, thus the pen is lighter. Other than that, the pen size is similar to the Turcom pen. The Turcom tablet is a little heavier and its surface somewhat smoother (all models may not be exactly the same). The Turcom’s resolution is like the Intuos, and the Huion 610 Pro’s is like the Intuos Pro.

User reviews

Most users are happy with this tablet, praising its affordability, size, and capabilities. Many see it as a good alternative to Wacom. Some had problems with the drivers and some reported hover issues, but overall, comment are positive.

Pros

Quite a few customization options
Good size drawing surface
Extra nibs and pen battery included
2,048 levels of pressure
Good value
Draws well
High resolution (less high than H610 Pro)

 

Cons:

Drivers can be fussy
Pen is heavy and takes a battery
Mapping not working (on mine anyway)
No additional instructions online

The Verdict

The Turcom TS-6610 graphics tablet is a viable starter alternative to a Wacom graphics tablet; you may want to upgrade after a while. The drawing experience is really good, with a large surface and good pressure sensitivity.  If you have a decent understanding of your computer and file systems, then potential driver issues should be manageable. If that kind of thing is overwhelming to you, you may be better off going with Wacom.

Free software such as Gimp and Krita actually worked better off the bat for me with this tablet than did Photoshop CC,  which took a restart to get pressure working. Using this with free software can get you going in digital art without a major investment.

The Huion H610/H610 Pro driver on the Huion site is a bit better than the Turcom driver on the Turcom site, so you might want to use the 610 one.

What the Turcom TS-6610 graphics tablet can do, it does well, and offers a lot of value. Good for students, beginners, or those on a budget.

See more reviews and info of the Turcom TS-6610 graphics tablet on Amazon

See our review of the Huion H610 Pro

See our review of the Monoprice graphics tablet

See our review of the Intuos Pro

See our review of the Intuos Pen and Touch Small

end of Turcom TS-6610 drawing tablet review

 

 

 

 

 

 

Graphics tablet wacom graphic tablets

How to pick the best Wacom tablet: Intuos graphics tablets

What are the best Wacom tablets for your needs? Understanding the Intuos and Intuos Pro lines

wacom graphic tablets

2016 Intuos lineup.

What’s the best Wacom tablet?

Graphics tablets are sometimes also called pen tablets, computer drawing pads, or digital drawing pads. Wacom, a Japanese company, is the leader in the tablet market. Wacom drawing tablets are the most popular, and considered to be the best quality. This article will help you find the best Wacom tablet for your needs.

In a rush? Our top pick is the Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Medium.

There are many Intuoses to choose from. In the non-Pro line, there are quite a few models, with the main difference being the art programs that come with them.

Graphics tablets attach to your computer and you use your pen on the tablet. You cannot draw on the screen as you do with the Wacom Cintiq. Most artists getting into digital art begin with a graphics tablet rather than a tablet with screen, since this category has the most affordable options. Still, there are some tablets with screens, mainly portable tablets with art capabilities, that are less costly than the top graphics tablets.

Wacom Intuos tablets: Intuos Pro vs. Intuos Art vs. Intuos Draw

The Intuos line is comprised of the Intuos Pro and the Intuos, which includes the Intuos Art Pen & Touch and Intuos Draw.

All (both Pro and non-Pro) come bundled with art programs, depending which package you get, so you’re getting more for your money than just a tablet.

All Intuoses, indeed all graphics tablets, have palm rejection. If the pen is touching or hovering over the tablet, it will take precedence over your hand.

All come with a pen. The pens are battery-free and pressure-sensitive. The digitizer is traditional EMR, which is top of the line, along with the Apple’s iPad Pro digitizer. (For more on that, see our introductory article about tablets). For more on Wacom, check out their site. Because I find their site difficult to navigate, I’ve gone through it and digested the main info here, but there is additional information there.

You can use a desktop or laptop, Windows or Mac, with the Intuos. There’s no best Intuos tablet for Mac or PC, they work equally well with both.

Intuoses come with customizable Express Keys that you program in the driver. You can add more customizable functions using the Radial Menu, which shows on your computer screen.

Intuos Pro: Features

Intuos Pros are professional-level. They offer advanced features such support for pen tilt, and rotation sensitivity. Intuos Pro tablets also have higher specifications, with twice the resolution of the regular Intuos line (2540 lines per inch or LPI, vs. 5080 for the Pro line). So the Pro line has the highest LPI of all Wacom non-screen tablets, equal to the LPI of high-resolution Cintiqs. 

The Intuos Pro’s Touch Ring functions as a scroll wheel, which can be useful to architects using design software such as CAD. You can also assign pen buttons to scroll.

All Intuos Pro have multitouch, so calling them Pro Pen and Touch is redundant, yet it’s still the name.

Here are the specs:

– 2,048 levels of pen pressure sensitivity in both pen tip and eraser
-multitouch, allowing gesturessuch as pan, rotate your artwork, zoom, and navigate
-Multi-function touch ring with 4 customizable functions
-USB
-Wi-fi kit included
-Customizable Express Keys are application-specific, i.e.., you can program them to different commands in different programs.
-Touch Ring with 4 programmable functions.
-battery-free Pro pen with tilt recognition
-corners light up to show active area

best graphics tablet

Intuos Pro Medium is considered the best size, as it gives you freedom and efficiency of movement while not taking up a lot of space.

See the Intuos Pros on Amazon.

Tilt sensitivity gives you a natural feeling. It’s when the tablet recognizes the angle you’re holding the pen at and changes the mark according to it, like a real pen on paper. The Pro allows this, as does the pen that comes with it.

Rotation sensitivity allows you to make complex, Spirograph-like patterns when you rotate the pen in various art programs.  The Pro tablet accommodates this, but the pen that comes with the tablet doesn’t have this feature, it only has tilt.

To get rotation sensitivity, you need to buy the optional Wacom Art Pen, which has both tilt and rotation. See it on Amazon.

Intuos Pro sizes:

Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Small
Total Size: 12.6 x 8.2 x 0.5 in
Active area: 6.2 x 3.9 in
Weight: 1.5 lbs.
6 Express Keys

Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Medium
Total size: 15 x 9.9 x 0.5 in.
Active area: 8.8 x 5.5 in
8 Express Keys

Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Large
Total Size: 19.2 x 12.5 x 0.5 in
Active area: 12.8 x 8.0 in, Touch 11.8 x 7.5 in
Weight: 4 lbs.
8 Express Keys
Resolution: 5080 lpi

he Intuos Pros are larger than the non-Pros because of the large grip area and the buttons, but the active area of the Intuos Pro and Intuoses are almost the same.

Top pick: Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Medium. It’s the most versatile and most comfortable to use. You can use with a small or large monitor,  and its high resolution makes it ideal for single or multiple displays. It’s large enough to allow comfortable arm movement and long strokes, but portable enough to fit into a laptop bag or backpack.

Of course, it’s what you’re comfortable with–some prefer the larger or smaller one. But the Medium is a favorite among many artists, designers, and photographers.

Pro Pen compatibility

The Pro Pen for the Intuos Pro line has an eraser end that also gets 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity. It has two programmable buttons and tilt sensitivity. It comes with a set of 5 standard nibs, and you can buy other nibs that vary your line, such as one that resembles a felt-tip pen.

It’s compatible with many Cintiqs and the older Intuos 4 and 5, but not with non-Pro Intuos tablets.

 

Intuos Art Pen and Touch tablets

best wacom tablet

Intuos Art Pen and Touch

The Wacom Intuos Art line (non-Pro) comes in four packages: Draw, Art, Photography, and Comic/Manga. It’s all the same tablet, but the bundled software is specialized for each creative practice.

Most of the Art line also has touch capability, but has 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity as opposed to 2,048, comes in Small and Medium (no Large), and does not come with the Wi-fi kit–that’s an optional purchase. The non-Pro line does not have tilt or rotation sensitivity.

The Photography tablet comes only in Small and the color black.

The Intuos Art comes in Small and Medium, and has software for digital painting. The Intuos Comic comes in Small, though there’s a Japanese Wacom tablet called Intuos Manga that comes in Medium.

Bundled software changes from time to time.

The Art, Photography, and Comic tablets all have touch. The Draw is the only one that doesn’t. (This is not true of non-Wacom graphics tablets, many of which do not have touch.)

Toggle off the Touch.

Touch speeds up workflow. If you don’t always want Touch, all the Intuoses have a toggle that let you turn off the feature. You may find you don’t use Touch at all.

Intuos Draw: the simplest: non-touch

The Intuos Draw comes only in small, and is blue or white. Like the others, It has four Express Keys. It doesn’t have touch.

Photoshop, Illustrator, and other art programs, as well as Mac and Windows operating systems, are increasingly integrated with touch. So getting one with touch prepares you for the future. But if you just want something simple, the Draw may be the best graphics tablet for you.

Intuos Pen

The pen that comes with the Intuos line does not have an eraser. You can erase using your art program instead. The Intuos Pen is different than the Pro Pen that comes with the Intuos Pro. The Intuos Pen is thinner and has no eraser end.

 

intuos pen

Intuos Pen

 

Best Wacom drawing tablet for beginners: Intuos Draw

The Intuos Draw is good if you’re starting out in the world of digital art. It doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles.

With Intuoses, most of the tablet is the active area. The buttons are in the top corners. The Intuoses have the benefit of saving desk space.

Small 6.0 x 3.7 in

Medium 8.5 x 5.3 in.

Most of the tablet is the active area. The dots on the tablet mark the active areas where you can map the tablet.

A note on Wacom Bamboo tablets: Many people still refer to Wacom tablets as Bamboo, since the Bamboo line was made for a very long time. Wacom still updates Bamboo drivers. The Intuos line was formerly known as Bamboo, and the Intuos 4 and 5 are now known as Intuos Pro.

Wacom still make a few Bamboo tablets, but they are not like the old ones–these are very basic ones meant more for signing documents. They are limited, and should not be confused with Wacom drawing tablets. Wacom also make some styluses bearing the name Bamboo. But those styluses are not for use with Bamboo or Intuos tablets! Maybe Wacom needs to come up with some new names. Many people still use Bamboo as almost a generic term for graphics tablets.

Ask yourself: What will you use it for? How large is your monitor? Will you use more than one display at a time? How much desk space do you have? Do you need to carry the tablet around? What’s your budget? Are you going to be happy with a tablet that does not have a screen? Do you have any problems such as repetitive strain injury (RSI)? If you do have RSI, a Small may cause cramping.

Choosing a size of Intuos/Intuos Pro

A good rule of thumb in finding the best Wacom tablet is that the tablet’s active area should be at least 1/3 the size of your computer screen, diagonally measured. So if you’ve got up to a 19″ screen, you need at least a 6″ in active area, which would be the Small size. Though it would work, you might feel constrained. When drawing on a small tablet, a small hand movement can cover a lot of space on the monitor, so you may find it hard to get good accuracy. You can zoom in on the drawing to help.

If you’re using a desktop or tablet with a keyboard, the keyboard is going to take up more room on your desk, so that’s one consideration. A desk with a slideout tray is useful to place the tablet or keyboard.

Using multiple displays? The settings will allow you to map the tablet to a horizontal area that works with more than one display.

Tablet resolution is much higher than monitor resolution, so you shouldn’t have resolution issues, unless perhaps you are using a small, non-Pro tablet on multiple high-res monitors.

A “too large” tablet, one larger than your screen, will still work if mapped to the monitor correctly.

See the Intuos Art and the other Intuos tablets on Amazon.

Intuos Art sizes

Intuos Art Small:
8.5 inches x 10.75 inches x 0.25 inches
Active area: 6.0 x 3.7 in

Intuos Art Pen and Touch Medium
Total Size: 10.75 x 8.75 in.
Active Area: 8.5 x 5.3 in

Only the Pro comes in large.

Pick a Small Wacom drawing tablet if: you’re using the tablet mainly to lightly touch up photos, scrapbooking, or drawing or coloring if you don’t mind drawing small. Or, you have a small desk space,  or if you need something really easy to carry.

Pick Medium if: you’re illustrating, or doing detailed photo editing or graphics, Medium is the best graphic tablet size, as you will be able to get more detail and precision. It’s the most comfortable for drawing, too. It will let you move your arms and shoulders, which is positive for drawing. It’s he best Wacom tablet for most uses. Like Goldilocks, you’ll probably find that the one in the middle is “just right.”

Pick Large (Pro only) if: you have a very large monitor or multiple displays. Large is not optimal for drawing. Your arm will be traveling a lot and it can get tiring.

This video shows a graphic designer using an Intuos with gestures (a small part of the video also shows a CIntiq).


Wacom drawing tablet with pen and multitouch

Wacom has an extensive YouTube channel with information and tutorials.

Conclusion: There are quite a few things to keep in mind in choosing an Intuos graphics tablet, including comfort, pen capabilities, desk space, and included software. Luckily, there are a lot to pick from, so finding the best Wacom tablet for your needs shouldn’t be too difficult.

Looking for a more affordable graphics tablet, or Wacom alternative? Check out our Huion 610 Pro review.

Or our Monoprice graphics tablet  or Turcom TS-6610 review.

 

end of Choosing the best Wacom tablet

Graphics tablet

Video: how to use Intuos Draw and ArtRage for a portrait

In this video by Wacom Americas, artist Barbara Leitzow shows how to use the oil paint tools in ArtRage to paint a portrait using the Intuos Draw. ArtRage is an affordable digital painting program with tons of fun features, such as brushes that look like real oil paint, and even glitter (can’t go wrong with glitter). If you don’t want to sink the money into expensive digital art software at this time, ArtRage is a great place to start (and you may even decide to continue with it)–it has mobile and desktop (Mac and PC) versions. The program supports Wacom features such as Tilt and Rotation, and even has settings for various Wacom styluses. It has layers and blending modes, and you can choose different canvas textures. ArtRage gives you a lot of control and customization abilities. It’s optimized for touch, with a lot of tools on-screen. It gives you the ability to mirror and duplicate strokes. The interface is simple and intuitive. It’s as easy as drawing with crayons.

Graphics tablet

Monoprice Tablet review, 10 x 6.25″ : A budget tablet pick


Monoprice Tablet Review: 10 x 6.25″ Graphic Drawing Tablet

by Tablets for Artists

monoprice tablet review

 

TYPE OF TABLET

The Monoprice Tablet is a graphics tablet. It attaches to a computer via USB 2.0. You draw on the tablet and see your art on the computer screen. This review is of the 10 x 6.25″ model.

 

OVERVIEW

The Monoprice tablet offers many features a Wacom does but is much more affordable, making it good for beginners and students ,and artists on a budget. Its stylus requires a single AAA battery (included).

Monoprice graphics tablets do not have a touch function, nor do they have the capacity to sense tilt and rotation like the high-end Wacom tablets do. While these features can be useful, not every artist uses them, and only some Wacom pens and tablets have these features.

The Monoprice tablet has the same high, 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity as the newer Wacoms and other premium tablets.

The Monoprice isn’t shoddy, but, unsurprisingly, it’s not as solidly built as the most high-end graphics tablets. Still, with normal use, it won’t fall apart on you.

WHAT’S IN THE BOX

Tablet

Wireless pen, AAA battery for pen, pen holder, 4 replacement nibs, pen clip tip-removal tool

Mini USB cable (4.9ft/1.5m)

Drivers and software CD

User’s manual

FOR LEFTIES

There are 6 buttons go along the left. The latest set of Windows drivers (v 9.0 driver) allows you to flip the tablet to move them to the right.

Note: The newest set of drivers for Windows (v. 9.0, linked below) features the ability to flip the tablet so that the Express Keys are on the right side.

 

DRIVERS DOWNLOAD PAGE

You may download the drivers as well as user Manuals from this page on the Monopricesite.

The drivers are for Windows XP and later, and Mac 10.4 and later.

The tablet is Linux-capable but doesn’t offer Linux drivers.

FEATURES

2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity
drawing area of 10 x 6.25 with a widescreen aspect ration of 16:10
6 programmable express keys on the left
16 preset hotkeys along the top
4000 LPI resolution
200 RPS report rate (determines how often information is sent to the tablet)

Note: the Amazon listing for this mistakenly calls it the 8 x 5″ model, but the specs other than the size are accurate for the 10 x 6.25.”

PORTABILITY

It weighs 2.5 lbs, fairly portable.

STYLUS

The stylus is a little flimsy and it’s worth it to buy the better one. Users trying to insert a new battery often had trouble getting the battery lead to make contact with the battery. The AAA battery that comes with the pen is not always fresh, so you may need to replace it right away.

TIPS: When inserting a new the battery, be careful that the battery and contact area in the pen barrel are matching correctly, and do not bend the metal strip inside the pen. To open the pen that comes with the tablet, pull the pen apart.

As a replacement pen, many users recommended buying this Monoprice pen, which is very affordable.

 

monoprice stylusIt’s lighter weight and thinner than the one that comes with the tablet. This pen unscrews. The build is sturdier and the battery replacement is less hairy, though the innards are still not as sturdy as they should be. A fairly comment complaint problems when screwing or unscrewing the two pieces to put in or take out a battery. Also, the buttons are a bit hard to find.

Both pens have programmable buttons. Neither has an eraser tip. To erase, use your art program’s eraser tool.

The nibs for these pens may wear down quickly, depending how hard you press. The plastic sheet over the tablet protects the nibs some, but you may prefer lifting the sheet when drawing, exposing the tablet’s textured surface, which wears down the nibs faster. You can purchase inexpensive Monoprice replacement nibs that will fit both. They come 10 to a pack.

 

TABLET

The surface has a slightly bumpy texture which gives you a nice bite while drawing, but as mentioned above, it can wear down nibs. It also comes with an attached plastic sheet over it to make tracing art easier. Tracing drawings is one way to get your drawings into your computer. Other ways are using a scanner or digital camera, or, of course, drawing freehand right onto the tablet.

When using the Monoprice tablet, you have to tap the pen on the tablet to wake it. If the pen is set to a brush tool, you will have to hit “undo” or use the eraser in your art program to get rid of the mark the pen has made on the tablet when waking it up.

The tablet attaches to the computer via USB 2.0. When attached, it’s on; there is no on/off switch for the tablet.

SOFTWARE

You can use just about any art software that’s on your computer with this. You won’t necessarily be able to use it on every other program as a mouse.

The Monoprice uses some UC-Logic components. The drivers can be found on the UC Logic site. They are also included on a CD in the package. Installing them from the UC Logic Web site instead of the CD will ensure that you have the latest drivers.

TIPS: If your your tablet’s light turns on, but doesn’t recognize your pen, check the pen battery placement. If the battery is OK but the tablet still doesn’t recognize your pen, try a replacement nib.

 

CUSTOMER SERVICE

There is both a live chat option and a place to post messages on Monoprice.com site. Customer support is responsive and offers replacements when people cannot get the tablet or pen to work. I did a chat with them to ask some questions, and found them to be helpful and polite.

USER REVIEWS AND RATINGS

Many digital artists, from hobbyists to professionals, loved this tablet. More than one Monoprice tablet review stated that the Monoprice was as good as any of the more expensive graphics tablets, including the Wacom Intuos. Some found the accuracy to exceed the Cintiq. This Monoprice has 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity, which is the maximum currently available, though authorities over at Microsoft say that the number of levels past 256 is not perceptible.

The Monoprice tablet received many 5-star reviews. But there was a fair amount of problems mentioned by Amazon reviewers, resulting in over 10% of the reviewers rating it one star, mostly out of frustration with the drivers. This could be from conflicts with previously installed drivers or services that are running. Also, the instructions are not written in clear English.

Some wrote in their Monoprice tablet review that even after working with customer support, they were still unable to get the device to work. This was not the norm, and if you get it on Amazon you can take advantage of their good return policy. (Not that you want to go through a frustrating experience, but you have probably an 80% of higher chance of having a good or great experience with this tablet).

Some like the larger size, but others find it makes scrolling difficult, as you have to move your arm while drawing.

PROS

very affordable
accurate with fine lines
performance compares with and sometimes exceeds more expensive tablets

CONS

Stylus sometimes has problems with battery compartment
Drivers can be difficult to install
The button icons won’t necessarily correspond to how you program them, which can cause confusion.
The decals that act as labels next to the buttons are not removable.

THE VERDICT

The highlight of the Monoprice tablet is the most important thing: its performance. Some digital artists feel it’s better than any other tablet. The tablet is sensitive and responsive, and you can get very fine line control even when zoomed out. Adjusting settings in each art program, when possible, can make a difference. Each artist is different and will have different preferences. Some professional artists would want the tilt and rotation features offered by the higher-end Wacom models, but those features aren’t important to everyone. And, you might just want an extra tablet that’s less expensive to travel with, so if it gets lost with your luggage it’s not such a big hit to your wallet.

Considering the price, the Monoprice really can’t be beat. If you’re just getting into digital art, this is a great starter tablet. It’s also a great backup or extra tablet.

Monoprice also makes a tablet monitor, where you draw on the screen, that has been well-received.

ACCESSORIES

Monoprice pen

Huion pen (will work with Monoprice 8×6, 4×3, 10×6.25)

huion-pen

10-pack of replacement nibs

OTHER SIZES

Monoprice makes their tablets in quite a few sizes. If you want a larger tablet, try the 12×9.

Monoprice offers good tablets for the money. They don’t have all the bells and whistles, but they are valuable digital art tools.

monoprice-drawing-tablet

The Monoprice 12×9″ tablet gives you lots of space.

 

end of Monoprice Tablet review

For more on budget tablets, read our Huion tablet review.

See our article about choosing the best Wacom Intuos tablet.

Graphics tablet intousartpentouch

Intuos Art Pen and Touch Small review

Intuos Art Pen and Touch Small review

by Tablets for Artists

 

 

intousartpentouch

Intuos Art Pen and Touch on Amazon

TYPE OF TABLET

The Intuos Art Pen and Touch is a graphics tablet, or pen tablet, that you attach to your computer via USB. You draw on it and see the image on your computer screen. (Click here for more info on types of tablets). Note that this is not the “Pro” version, which has more features (such as greater pressure sensitivity and tilt sensitivity) and a higher price. The older version of this tablet was called the Intuos Pen and Touch.

What’s included

Pen

3 extra pen nibs

black pen loop (attached) as well as extra blue pen loop

rings to personalize the pen’s look, that match the pen loops

nib replacer ring

CD with driver, documentation, online user manual

Artpack with Corel Painter Express and other freebies

USB cord

You can also download drivers from the Wacom site.

Requires Mac 10.8. or above or Windows 7 or above.

FEATURES

The Intuos Art Pen and Touch Small Tablet measures 8.25″ by 6.7″ with an active area of 6″ x 3.7″. Its resolution is 2,540 lines per inch (half that of the Intuos Pro tablets). It has four customizable Express Keys. You can’t see the Express Keys unless the Express Key display is toggled on; it’s a lit-up display. A handy pen loop on top helps keep the pen from getting lost. Three replacement nibs that come hidden in a compartment in the back of the tablet on top in the center, where the pen loop attaches.
A Wi-fi kit is not included, but can be purchased separately. (See under Optional Accessories at the end of this post). This line of Wacom tablets used to be called Bamboo, so if you are looking for a Wacom Bamboo review, you will see Intuos reviews instead. Bamboo is now Intuos, and the Intuos5 is now the Intuos Pro. Wacom still uses the Bamboo name for a stylus line.

TABLET

The tablet has multitouch. You can use your hands by using gestures to scroll, rotate, zoom, or flip through image files by tapping, swiping, clicking, and holding. It sports an attractive silver and black design. It attaches to your computer via USB. The USB cable is rather short, but as the USB can be detached from the tablet, you could use a longer USB cable if you choose.

The tablet surface has a rough, papery-like feel, which is nice to draw on because of the paper-like bite, but can wear down nibs. Besides its use for art, it has the ability to function as a finger-powered trackpad on any document, such as a Microsoft Word file. (The most popular tablet among artists is the Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Medium size.)

The small size is a bit small for drawing, and would be pretty useless if you are using multiple monitors and trying to stretch its resolution to cover all of them. You should not use too large a monitor with this tablet–up to 17″ would work well, up to 19″ is possible. The resolution on the regular Intuos line is only half that of the Pro line.

PORTABILITY

At its small size, thinness and weight of 12.8 oz. it’s easy to carry around. I recommend getting a case to protect it; it can fit into any laptop case.

STYLUS

The black Intuos Pen matches the tablet. Its 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity, while only half of the 2,048 the Pro line offers, are plenty. The battery-free pen has an eraser, which does not have pressure sensitivity. The pen is ergonomic for a comfortable hold. There are two programmable switches on the side. You have to click the buttons when the pen is within half an inch of the tablet for the buttons to work.

SOFTWARE

Corel Painter Essentials comes bundled with the tablet. Here are some other free or inexpensive suggestions:

Autodesk Sketchbook Express is a free art program for Mac or Windows (not an app) that is a bit limited. It is adapted for tablets and makes use of gestures in its menus. Pressing the space bar opens up a “puck” that lets you navigate around the canvas. There are preset tools, but you can’t customize them a whole lot as you can the full version. It lets you draw perfect shapes such as squares and circles. There are 6 layers, which, depending how you work, may be fine or not enough. The full program, which costs under $100, has unlimited layers.

ArtRage has interesting brushes that resemble real oil paint, glitter, palette knife marks, and such.

I like to use the above programs in conjunction with Photoshop or the much less expensive Photoshop Elements. Though you can do a lot with ArtRage, you might still want features such as Save to Web (which shrinks file size) and to not create artwork as a specific ArtRage file which must then be exported as another file type.

FOR LEFTIES

The tablet is reversible, so it’s fine whether you are right-handed or left-handed.

GESTURES

With gestures, the tablet can act like a trackpad, or perhaps a mousepad with your hand becoming a mouse. Though the same tablet without touch is a bit cheaper, it’s worth it to get the touch capability.

However, the touch does have some drawbacks. If your hand accidentally brushes against the tablet, the tablet may interpret it as a gesture. Be a bit careful to not put your fingers too close together–if the gesture calls for three fingers, having all your fingers touching each other be interpreted as one finger.

It’s kind of like learning to drive a stick shift–well, easier than that. If the pen is touching or hovering over the tablet, touch will be disabled. Touch can also be shut off via an Express Key.

INTUOS ART PEN AND TOUCH SMALL VS. INTUOS DRAW SMALL

If you don’t want multitouch at all, the only Intuos option is the Intuos Draw Creative Pen Tablet Small, the simplest of the Intuos line. It has the same 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity) and all else about the tablet is the same, but there’s no multitouch.

The pen has no eraser, but you can easily use the eraser tool in your art program instead. You don’t need multitouch to use this tablet as a mouse replacement; you can select text with the stylus just as with a mouse, through a series of clicks or by clicking and dragging.

 

artist-with-intuos-small

This photo actually shows the older Intuos Small, which is about the same size.

CUSTOMER REVIEWS AND RATINGS

This pen tablet is popular among users, who praise its response time and say they get much more work done than with just a mouse or trackpad.

Many report switching from mouse to pen helped their repetitive strain injuries, though if someone is suffering from RSI from drawing already, it can exacerbate it. In general, wrist injuries are common, so a stylus is much less likely to cause or aggravate injuries to the wrist than clicking a mouse would.

You may have trouble finding the replacement nibs. Wacom should try to do a better job of showing them.

PROS

USB cable is detachable from the tablet, so you can use one that has a longer cord if you want Great response time.

Accurate pen.

CONS

The tablet and pen may be a bit cramped for large hands. Some complain about the Wacom Web site registration process. Others find the tablet difficult to use. You do not have to use the Express Keys or gestures, they are there for your convenience.

Once you’ve tried an Intuos Pro tablet with 2,048 levels of pressure, you do feel the difference.

Nibs can wear down quickly due to the textured surface of the tablet.

TIP:

Try using a screen protector (see link below, under Optional Accessories) or even just a sheet of regular paper over the tablet.

 

THE VERDICT

The tablet is quite small and would be better to use with a monitor of no larger than 17″, 19″ at the most. Because of its size, moving the pen, mouse, or hand on the monitor even a little can move the cursor quite a lot.

I find small tablets best for basic photo editing or coloring small drawings that I’ve scanned in or created on a larger tablet. It’s not that easy to draw a larger picture on such a small tablet; you have to keep zooming and panning.

I end up zooming and panning even on my Cintiq, but most of my drawings are not much larger than the Cintiq 13HD screen, so some of the zooming is just because I like to do that with detailed areas.

The Intuos Art Pen & Touch small tablet is fine for doing small drawings that don’t require a lot of hand movement, as you can feel cramped on a small tablet both mentally and physically. It’s more ergonomic to use a larger tablet. This one is OK for drawing, and excellent for crafts, basic photo editing, and scrapbooking.

In my opinion, the best size for art is the Medium, which is also the most popular of the Wacom pen tablets among creative professionals. This size tablet is also find if you want to use it and the pen as a mousepad replacement. Multitouch gestures let you select text.

The Small it’s a good tablet for beginners who aren’t sure they’re going to commit to digital art. It’s fine for lots of other uses, too, but I wouldn’t recommend it for professional artists because it’s too small; it can be a good, portable backup tablet.

Looking for the Pro version? Here’s the Amazon page for the Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Small. And here’s our review of the Intuos Medium Pro–similar to the small but a bit larger.

If you find the USB cord to be too short, we recommend this USB extension as a simple solution.

 

OPTIONAL ACCESSORIES

You’ll have less cord clutter with the wireless kit.

 

end of Intuos Art Pen and Touch Small Review

Graphics tablet

Huion H610 Pro Review – 6 x 10″ workspace

Huion H610 Pro Review: lightweight, heavy on features

by Tablets for Artists


huion610prohandsonreview

 


Huion H610 Pro Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet

 

 

The Huion H610 Pro is a graphics tablet made by a Chinese animation company. The 610 has a generous 6 x 10″ active drawing area and features that rival the Intuos Pro while being cheaper than even the lower-cost Wacom Intuos series. But what about the quality?

 

TYPE OF TABLET

It’s a graphics tablet that connects to a computer via USB. It is not a screen that you draw on–if you want that, please consider a tablet PC or tablet monitor such as Cintiq or Yiynova. For more on tablet types, please see this post.

 

FEATURES

The H610 has 8 Express Keys down the its side, and 16 hot cells on the tablet screen. Its workspace is 10 x  6.25 inches. It’s only about a quarter-inch thick. It works with Mac, PC, and Linux/Ubuntu. You can use wireless mice and keyboards with this tablet. The resolution is 5080 lines per inch. The battery-free, rechargeable pen has 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity.

 

PORTABILITY

 

It’s lightweight and easy enough to carry.

 

WHAT’S INCLUDED

It comes with 4 replacement nibs and one inside the pen, for a total of 5. The nibs are all the same. Also included are two USB cables, one for the tablet and one for the pen, as well as a pen, pen charger, pen rest, and paper user manual. Their site, huion-tablet.com, has all the up-to-date driver.

 

FOR LEFTIES

This tablet now has a left-handed driver, so you can choose to draw in left-handed mode.

 

TABLET

The surface is mappable; you can decide how much of the tablet you want the pen to work on. The surface has a grip to it that eases drawing. It is hard plastic, not rubbery like the Wacom Bamboo. It feels not quite as slippery as glass, more like thick, smooth paper.

The surface of  this tablet is hard plastic, less prone to scratching than Wacom Intuos, partly because the pen nibs are rounded. If you are getting scratches it may depend how you are holding the pen, some people “sharpen” nibs as they draw. It also of course depends how much pressure you apply.

 

STYLUS

huionh610propen

The stylus is lighter and thus easier to handle than previous version. The company says the rechargeable pen lasts 800 hours after every 2-hour charge, though some say it lasts for far less time. The pen rest is not a pen holder per se, just something to balance the pen on.

The pen’s buttons let you right click, left click, or double right or left click, as with a mouse. They don’t let you add further commands.

When drawing with the Huion pen, the pressure curve is slightly harder than it is in Wacom. It does not create a “blob” as easily (unless your Huion driver is acting buggy). You can adjust pen sensitivity until you find a comfortable place; the default around the middle is good. Setting it high makes it too stiff. The 610Pro does not feature pen tilt or rotation recognition.

drawing-tablet-for-pc-with-pen

CONTROLS

The 16 programmable hotcells on the tablet allow you do macros, things like Photoshop operations like “tone/color adjust.” They are easy to program, though they only work with one software application. You would have to reprogram them if, say, you switch over from Photoshop to Illustrator.

The hotcells are right on the tablet surface along the top, and have the same texture, so if you are using the entire tablet rather than mapping part of it, remember the keys are there or you may end up drawing on them. The express keys on the left of the work area can zoom, scroll, erase, undo or whatever you want, but they don’t allow as many operations as the Intuos does.

The surface is mappable, so you can just pick part of the tablet to draw on. An LED indicator light lights up in the pen when you are drawing, though this is annoying to some and may only happen with some computer systems. If you find it annoying you might want to put opaque tape over the light!

 

SOFTWARE

You can use this tablet with any software your PC uses, such as Photoshop, Word, Toon Boom etc. At this date, the driver does not provide pressure sensitivity in Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape, though you can use the tablet with those without pressure. Huron says they are working on this.

The resolution, 5080, is the same as the Wacom Intuos Pro. The driver lacks some features of Wacom’s, such as screen mapping, radial menu, and the ability to customize by program that’s available in the Cintiq and Intuos Pro.

TIP:

Before installing the drivers, you should disable any other Wacom drivers and mouse drivers, then the Huion, then restart. Turn off Internet and don’t turn it on again until after the tablet is connected and working, or else the computer’s plug and play driver may automatically be installed. Plug the tablet into the USB port of your computer only after you boot up the computer.

huionpenpressure

You can the pressure sensitivity using the driver.

You should install as Administrator. Shut off any antivirus programs. If you’re reinstalling, delete the old drivers. More discussion of the drivers at this post about the Turcom TS-6610 tablet, which can use this same driver.

 

PROS

Can recognize multiple monitors and you can choose which ones to use.

Value

Thin (just about 1/4″ thick)

Sleek design

Large work area (make sure you have enough desk space)

Lightweight pen

 

CONS

Edges get jitter, just as Wacom digitizers do.

Delicate USB ports (also a common complaint regarding Wacom products)

Makes a bit of noise when drawing on the tablet due to the hard plastic surface

Buggy drivers

Have to press hard at times

No wireless option in this model

 

CONSUMER REVIEWS AND RATINGS

Most customers were pleasantly surprised by the quality and the many features this tablet offers. Many  really liked the way the pen felt, though a few did not. The worst thing about the Huion is that the drivers are a bit fussy and sometimes buggy.

More than one Huion H610 Pro Review complained about these oversensitivity and the pen making marks even when not touching the surface, such as when hovering half an inch over it. I have not experienced these problems myself. You should keep other electronic devices, even if they are not turned on, at least a few feet away, as they can cause interference.

It’s advisable to get the Amazon service plan. You should deinstall all other tablet drivers before installing this one. If you can get pressure sensitivity in one program but not in another, such as Photoshop CC, check to see if you have the Wintab (Wacom Feel) driver installed. If you do, delete it. You can use this graphics tablet with a tablet PC.

 

CUSTOMER SERVICE

Helpful and responsive, and they stick with you til the problem is resolved. They sometimes ask for videos of problems you report.

 

THE VERDICT

If you are patient and have some computer savvy, this could be a great art tool. But with quite a few reports of buggy drivers, many users end up being frustrated and spending time talking to customer support. So, when coming to a conclusion while writing this Huion H610 Pro review, we cannot give a 100% recommendation–the tablet is for those who have some patience and ability to troubleshoot. Remembering to remove other drivers on the system beforehand would save trouble.

Other than that, the quality of the product is solid. A couple of reviewers state it is superior to Monoprice. A tablet is something you may use for years, so, if you want top of the line, then going with Wacom is recommended. But,as long as you have a bit of tech know-how, this is  a strong choice that has the features of the Wacom Intuos Pro line, except for tilt and rotation sensitivity.

If you’re looking for a professional-quality drawing tablet  that’s a great value, the Huion 610 Pro is worthy of consideration.

OPTIONAL ACCESSORIES:

Huion’s soft carrying case will protect your tablet.

Manga Studio 5 is truly versatile, affordable drawing software.

See our review of the Monoprice graphics tablet.

See our article about choosing a Wacom graphics tablet.

Read about the Turcom tablet, similar to the Huion H610 non-Pro.

 

end of Huion H610 Pro Review

 

Graphics tablet

Wacom Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Review (Medium size): gesture and more

Wacom Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Review (Medium): powerful graphics tablet

by Tablets for Artists
wacom intuos-pro-pen-and-touch-review

 

Type of Tablet

Graphics tablet that you draw on while you look at your computer monitor. Comes with pen. Also called the Intuos Pro. All Intuos Pros have touch (and pens). The regular Intuos tablets have touch and non-touch models, and fewer high-end features than the Pro line.

Features

The Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Medium Tablet is a professional-grade tablet that lets you draw, design, or edit photos or use in place of (or alongside) a mouse in any program. It features 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity. The medium size is Wacom’s most popular tablet among creative professionals. It combines pen and touch and is wireless and customizable.  It comes with 10 nibs of varying sizes, and the pen has tilt recognition. The tablet is 14.9 by 9.9″ with a usable area of  9 x 5 1/2 inches. It weighs in at 10.9 oz.
Compatible with Windows Vista SP3, 8, and 7 (32- or 64-bit), and with Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later (with Intel processor).

 

Intuos5  Touch vs. Intuos Pro Medium

The Intuos Pro Medium is pretty much the same as the older Intuos 5 Touch with some differences to the form factor. (To make things even more confusing, what used to be called the Bamboo line is now called Intuos, without the “Pro”). Its express buttons, rocker ring, and gesture controls all give you easy shortcuts for common operations.Also, the Pro comes with the wifi kit, and you had to buy it separately with the Intuos5 Touch.

The look and feel of the tablet is more Cintiq-like now with Express Keys that are designed to be easier to press than in the Intuos5 Touch. The buttons are actual buttons rather than buttons that look like indentations. The inner surface and buttons are all beaded. The plastic is harder than in the Intuos5 Touch, but it still gives. The pen is a little thinner and lighter.

intuos pro pen and touch review

What’s Included

Tablet, Intuos Grip Pen

Color identification rings

Assorted replacement pen tips (total of 10 nibs of varying shapes and sizes)

Pen stand

Wireless kit

mini USB cable

Quick-start guide Installation CD with driver Online user manual Product information documentation

>Bundled with Software:

Adobe® Photoshop® Elements 11 (sells for $79.99) Autodesk® Sketchbook® Express (tablet version based on complete version, features gesture-based menu)

Anime Studio® Debut 8 (sells for $49.99)

Corel ®Painter™ 13 (30-day trial)

Nik® Color Efex Pro 4 Select Edition (tablet version based on complete version)

The bundled software adds about $180 of value. (Ballpark estimate–not counting the free trial as anything.)

The Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Medium Tablet comes in three sizes: small, medium, and large. We’re reviewing the medium, since it’s Wacom’s most popular and also the most practical. The small tablet is not much cheaper and is less comfortable to use. It’s best if you have a small desk space. The large can be a bit too large–so the medium is rather like what Goldilocks might choose.

Unlike a mouse and mousepad, you can map Intuos tablets to your screen. So to move from one part of your screen to another, you need to move your hand around a bit, rather than making several swipes with a mouse. The large size may be a bit awkward to use spacewise. The Medium is good for monitors of up to 30″.

 

For Lefties

Good for righties and lefties. For left-handed use, the manual tells you how to make a small loop in the cable so it will go in the correct direction.

 

Portability

At just 10.9 oz., this is fine for on the go, and fits into most laptop cases.

 

Tablet

The 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity offer a great deal of control over your digital art. The tablet is very responsive and you can adjust pressure sensitivity. It has a single USB cord and  a dongle for wireless access. You can map how much of the tablet you want to use as a live workspace. OLED lights surround the active area so you stay within your bounds. The medium’s size is good for working with multiple monitors.The medium is an excellent size to use with multiple monitors as well as for general work. It’s large enough to not feel cramped, but not so large as to be overwhelming.

Controls

The eight Express Keys and 4-function Touch Ring let you program custom shortcuts in your favorite programs or browser functions. If you happen to touch while using the pen, palm rejection will kick in and give preference to the pen. A nice feature is the Express View Display, where you can rest a finger on theExpressKeys and a reminder of its function will light up on the screen. You can toggle between pen and touch. You can use hand gestures to pinch, pan, and zoom, such as pinching to zoom and swiping to navigate. You can use the built-in gestures or program your own under the on-screen “My Gestures” menu, which lets you choose 3, 4, or 5 fingers. There’s also a handy radial menu you can bring up to give you 8 more customized commands.

 

Compatibility

Windows Vista SP3, 8, and 7 (32- or 64-bit), or 10; Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later (needs Intel processor).

 

Pen

The included Intuos Grip Pen comes with 10 extra nibs that will give you lots of control over drawing. It’s a little bit of a hassle to change the nibs, but I love that there are so many nibs, and it’s fun to try them out. On the other hand, I tend to stick with one, instead, I change the brushes in the art program. The nibs come hidden in a  handy holder, the base that holds the pen (you have to open up this holder to find them). You can change brush size by using the ring.
The replacement nibs offer a fun array of tips with 5 regular, 1 flex, 1 stroke, 3 hard felt for a total of 10. The stroke nib is spring-loaded to give you more tactile feedback.

I really enjoy having my choice of nibs for different effects. Using a stylus or pen instead of a mouse really seems to ease wrist strain and carpal tunnel caused by the mouse. The Grip Pen offers tilt recognition from -60 to +60 degrees, as well as rotation sensitivity which greatly expand your drawing and painting options in not only the lines, but also the textures and patterns you can make. You can also use the tilt sensitivity when drawing industrial designs that must be exact and follow angles and curves.

TIP: Try rotating the pen barrel while drawing for exciting effects.

 

 

Software

Bundled software:

Adobe Photoshop Elements 11

Autodesk Sketchbook Express (a tablet-optimized “mini” version of Sketchbook Pro that’s free anyway)

Anime Studio® Debut 8

Corel Painter™ 13- 30 day trial

Nik Color Efex Pro 4 Select Edition (tablet version based on complete version)

You can use this with any software on your computer. The driver will automatically install for Windows, but with OSX (Mac), you have to install it from the disk or download it off Wacom site (wacom.com). Remember to deactivate any antivirus programs before installing, then reactivate them when finished. You can use this tablet with any programs on your computer (e.g., Photoshop, Illustrator, Maya, or as a mouse replacement in Word).

Remember that not all art programs support pressure sensitivity, and you may have to adjust tablet settings within programs, for instance, Photoshop allows you to choose which tools and functions (such as opacity) you want to respond to pressure.

For Linux Wacom drivers, please visit this Sourceforge page.

The Intuos Pro Medium detects the software you’re using and offers optimal short cuts and selections.

The tablet is useful for handwriting, with its Windows capabilities-you can take notes in Windows Journal and use the search function to search your handwritten content. You can also convert handwriting to typed characters. There are digital ink tools that mark up documents in Office 2007 and later, if you’re not only using this for digital art. There is a standard mode and a recognition mode for handwriting recognition that is only necessary if the recognition software you are using isn’t working well because it is using a lot of memory. Recognition mode will maximize the data rate.

Pros

Good customer service

Ring lets you change brush size

Lightweight (10.9 oz.) and fits in most laptop cases

Comes bundled with 5 art programs including Photoshop Elements 11 and Autodesk Sketchbook Express

Intuos pens also compatible with Cintiqs

Cons

Some complain of loose USB port. You only need to use the USB while charging. Some say the included mini USB is too large and needs to be jammed into the port, and had better luck with a replacement mini USB.

Some people compained in their Intuos Pro Pen and Touch review about problems with wireless and touch connectivity

Battery doesn’t last long

Nibs wear down quickly and can leave pits in the tablet

TIPS: Decrease pressure sensitivity  in the settings, and you will not need to press very hard. Also, laying a sheet of paper over the tablet while drawing can protect the tablet and pen nib. Or try the Posrus cover, link below, under Accessories.

 

User Reviews

Customers overall were very satisfied with this tablet. They remarked that the many small improvements made it more pleasant to use than both the Intuos5 Touch and the Intuos4, which did not have touch. Some got buggy drivers in the Pro, leading to loss of pressure sensitivity and other issues. Drivers have to be downloaded from Wacom’s site.

Old Wacom drivers should be deleted before adding the new ones, and there can be other software conflicts as well when it comes to drivers.

 

Customer Service

I have always had good experiences when calling Wacom, even if the product is past warranty. They have been patient and helpful. Their online forums often provide answers for issues. It does seem that they stonewall a bit when it comes to drivers not working right with software. Drivers relate to software made by other companies, for instance, Adobe, so if there are issues it may not be solely Wacom’s fault. Things sometimes seem a bit awry between the two companies.

 

The Verdict

The Pro Pen and Touch Medium is a professional artist tool that provides excellent results. It’s designed to be a cousin to the Cintiq. Nonetheless, some users have had issues with the USB and connectivity. We hope Wacom will iron out any connectivity and USB problems soon. Our Intuos Pro Pen and Touch review concludes that this is a high-quality and solidly built tablet that could easily become an artist’s primary tool.

Video: Mapping the Display

This video from Wacom shows you how to map the tablet to your screen. It shows the Intuos 5, since Wacom doesn’t have a video for the Pro, but as I said above, they are the almost same tablet, with some differences in the form factor.

 

Optional Accessories

Art Pen with Stand

Cintiq-compatible Art Pen has a markerlike tip for a painterly texture.It is rotation-sensitive, to deliver unique effects. Compatible with Intuos

 

POSRUS Wacom Intuos 5 Touch Medium Pen Tablet Surface Cover – New Larger Size

Protects the surface of your Intuos Pro tablet.

 

Intuos4 / Intuos5 / Intuos Pro Medium Case

Features loop for pen. Case can fit into laptop bag.

 

Other Sizes of the Intuos Pro

Wacom Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Small

Wacom Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Large Tablet (PTH851)

 

 

 end of Wacom Intuos Pro Pen and Touch Review (Medium)