Which Tablet to buy for my needs

Hi All,

I am new to digital art and through Krita I have really come to love the medium, but I have a dilemma.

Looking at all the beautiful artwork on the forum, I assume most of you are using a drawing tablet and I would like to buy one so I have researched the 21-22in tablets online. I have found that Wacom is the standard for tablets, but Kamvas 22 has its own tablet with pluses too.

Wacom has the pen with the various flavour nibs, and you can’t go wrong with that, whereas Kamvas has the one size fits all plastic nibs. Both support 8192 pressure points.

However, Kamvas has the laminated screen (I hear it is better for artist ) wheras Wacom only has that screen for their 24in pro which is far too expensive for me.

Wacom has the remote hot key control panel for an extra cost, the Kamvas has the hot keys built it. Wacom, being the standard bearer, is more expensive than Kamvas. Both are 1920 x 1080 resolution .

There are pros and cons on both sides, so I am putting it out there, which tablet do you use and why is it the preferred tablet.

Thanks,

Dazed and confused !

1 Like

What OS are you on? If you’re on Mac, you might get issues with Huion. In general Mac is awful and in general Huion’s drivers are a bit worse than Wacom’s ones, but on Windows and Linux they mostly work…

Thank you for the reply…I am on Windows 10.

So do I understand that correctly that you’ve never worked with a tablet?

In my opinion, bigger is not automatically better, in fact I regretted getting an A4 Intuos way back (a used one anyway), it turned out out way too unwieldy, so I deliberately use a smaller one now. It may be less of an issue with a display tablet, but unless you’re the kind of artist that draws more moving the forearm rather than the wrist, you might realize that you don’t really need that area and just have to move your hand a lot unless you just pan the canvas anyway.

The other thing is, 1920x1080 is a really low resolution for that size. You need to take into account that your normal monitor should be roughly twice as far from your eyes as a drawing tablet. And even at that distance, 1920x1080 is just okay, so you may find the lack of sharpness straining your eyes after a while.

So you should really try to find a place where you can give it a try before you dump the money into something that doesn’t meet your expectations.

To me the lack of resolution made those display tablets unattractive until the the 12-13" ones with 1920x1080 came up at affordable prices, the large 4k ones are certainly impressive but as I said, I don’t need or even want the >20" monsters. So that’s why the Wacom One 13 is on my personal wish list now, mainly because it’s the only affordable one with proper Linux drivers.

thank you for the reply…I am using my HP elite 360 1040 G5 laptop atm as my drawing tablet with their rechargeable tilt pen. I like the matte finish on the display and the pen has 2048 pressure points but overall its a bit difficult to draw on.

From what i see online drawing tablets are more intuitive. As to the size, I take your point on the resolution for a large display.

Ah, so that’s 14" at 1920x1080, right?

So what exactly do you find difficult?
I guess the lack of bezel is not ideal, and tiar is not really happy with the pressure curve and precision of her Yoga convertible (correct me if I remember wrong), though HP Elitebooks seem to use Wacom technology, in contrast to the cheaper variants that use N-Trig?

The parallaxing issue seems very subjective, some have no issue getting used to it, some don’t want to work with anything but the the thinnest laminated displays they can get…I’m afraid I’m not really qualified to judge the differences.

I get by on the HP…I mean I could do worse, and you are correct it’s using wacom technology for their pens. It’s actually that feature along with the tilt and the fact that the screen is matte that really appealed to me. I use the laptop as my work and play laptop and so the multi function of it makes it almost perfect. The parallax is actually really good on it albeit i have nothing to compare it too .
The constant recharging of the pen is a pain, but i can usually time it for when i am sleeping.

What is missing for me is the tactile feel of pen on paper quality but its almost there. I guess I wonder if getting a drawing tablet would give me a more immersive experience ? Like you said earlier, I should test run the tablets first. My original question was based on Kamvas vs. Wacom because if I do go the tablet way, which would be the better tablet for me.

well I got recently a wacom cintiq pro 24 and I highly recommend it acctually, but wacom wise there is the wacom one now that is 400€ it is like a smaller version of the one I got and so much cheaper and with a screen too. maybe taking a look into that one too?

wacom one had good reviews and seems to work with a cell phone too. looks crazy portable.

I read a bit more about the Elitebooks, while it uses Wacom tech, their AES solution is said to have similar issues with wiggly diagonal lines as N-trig, so it’s not quite the same precision as the EMR based tablets apparently. And the recharging of course…

The thing that holds me off the Wacon One is actually the feature-crippled stylus, and the tablet is incompatible with the “Pro Pen 2” stylus (on purpose, I guess).

An alternative might actually be the Cintiq 16 (non-Pro), it seems to have mostly the same specs as the 22, is much more affordable and the size seems more reasonable for “only” 1920x1080.

About Huion and XP-Pen, they give Wacom some good competition, which shows in the Wacom One and a drastic price cut of the Cintiq Pro 13 (~900€ -> 600€ in 6 months). However, for example XP-Pen doesn’t ship any ICC profile for their wide-gamut displays, nor offer an sRGB mode, so calibrating is your own issue apparently. Don’t know about Huion.

Other than that, not sure what a “more immersive” experience you want, most things are a matter of preference I’m afraid. I find buttons right on the edge of the drawing area disturbing, others like them. How slippery or grainy the surface shall be…actually, the one advantage of non-display tablets is that you can easily change covers, I myself can’t quite decide what’s best. Protective films from 3rd party vendors for different feels do exist though.

Thanks again for the replies. It does seem like there is a bias toward Wacom. I looked up the 24in Pro and can I say I am totally jealous of you …lol.

AS far as immersive is concerned, i guess I mean an experience as close to the real thing as possible without distractions. The Elitebook gives the tools but the pen to screen experience, for example, is like skating on ice, and as you said about the diagonal lines, i see that too. The idea of a screen film sounds interesting though.

I think I want a tablet to sit permanently in my studio so I would feel more comfortable with the 21 inch, but the 16 inch is worth looking at too. I need to ask around to see if i know anyone that can let me experience the Wacom, as I am leaning that way. There are a few art trade shows that I might try to see if Wacom shows up there.

Thanks again.

I’ll put my two cents.

Wacom is preferable because of drivers (especially for ability to give individual preferences for each app), hi-res tablet displays as @Lynx3d said, precision of pen-tilt recognition (in case it is important for you). But those weakness will disappear in matter of time. I think in near future Xp-Pen and Huion will produce something with Quad HD that will be enough for 14-20 inches tablets and obviously cheaper than 4K of Cintiq Pro.

Did you consider classic tablet (non-screen)? If you are looking for paper-like/texture feel try classic tablets. You can buy used Intuos4, 5, pro, pro2 or some of XP-Pen pro series or similar chinese alternative that are have really good prices today. My preference is large size (wacom and huion both have 14 inch tablets). Even now Intuos3 have no competitions in term of quality. Half year ago on the ebay I saw non-used A4 device just for 25$.
If you tend to tablet-screen type look for used Cintiq 13HD – now a price have to be affordable and device has buttons unlike of last cintiqs. For larger screen tablets for me there is no much choose only Pro series of Cintiq because of higher resolution.

Well I didn’t want to sound very Wacom biased, their hardware still is very expensive. The hardware of Huion and XP-Pen has come a long way according to everything I read lately. Probably has a lot to do with all key patents from Wacom having expired just a few years back.

Though the hardware also needs software support, and there have been more shortcomings with these upcoming brands, but that too seems to improve, at least on Windows. So really, I didn’t want to imply Wacom is the only option.

My bias mainly comes from Linux support. Huion doesn’t seem to care at all with their Kamvas line, XP-Pen at least has some beta software that however doesn’t seem to a real driver but some tablet app that needs to be running in the background, and no real documentation.

If >20" at 1920x1080 does not have too coarse pixels for you, why not, just I wouldn’t want that. Unfortunately 2560x1440 or 3840x2160 pixels currently seem exclusive to Wacom and Dell, and cost an arm and a leg :frowning:
Consider me totally jealous of EyeOdin too :stuck_out_tongue:

Thank you for the suggestion I9S. If I understand the Intuos line , they are the ones that you draw on a separate tablet while looking at your monitor. I’m not sure its for me though.

Lynx3D…

The 20" resolution 1920x1080 may (or may not) be problematic, but I won’t know for sure until I try one hands on. That is my next task. I am convinced that the Wacom experience will be better, only for the drivers and software support alone. Seems like all the other brands measure against Wacom so that has to count for something .

Well I am biased because I never tryed anything else really. When I got into Animation school after a long time in engineering I ask what should I get and they said “WACOM TABLET! :V” and then I said “ok!” and that was that. I got a Wacom Bamboo Pen and Touch (It sucked but I liked it) when it was about to be descontinued and I had it unitl I bought this new one, I only really had 2 tablets in my life soo I cant critique much. But if you get wacom you wont get it wrong I believe.

At animation school some friends had some tablets brands but they were not very good at the time but I think they have been doing a lot better lately but I have not tried any recently to know better.

I saw like loads and loads of review videos on tablets before buying this one and I made a list of good looking tablets and then took a look at their specs to compare. After I got this I think the most important thing to lookout for is the pressure levels, the rest is kindda “look and feel” and that has its own weight too but it is not where the magic is.

My Ex has a Intuos Pro I think or had a while back and it worked really good too but I cant speak for it.

OH! and NO TOUCH! that is my new rule!

Thank you EyeOdin…still jealous though :wink:.

The fact that you have stuck with Wacom for so long is a testimonial for me. If you aren’t happy with a product you move on…which you did not do soooo…

Also, yes NO TOUCH… From what i saw its over $500 more …um. ouch !

I guess EyeOdin was referring to unintended touch input when palm rejection fails.

@EyeOdin, I wasn’t really aware Wacom has at least 4 types of different nibs (standard, hard felt, flex and stroke), if you ever tried them, can you share your experience how they affect the friction on your Cintiq? Apparently hard felt and flex should give more friction, but also wear out a lot faster.

Seems Huion and XP-Pen only have one type of nibs per model, so experimenting with various protective films seem the only way to change the feeling if you aren’t happy (although at least the Huion ones seem make it even more slippery, XP-Pen frosted ones are said to give a nice friction but blur the image noticeably)

Also just because I’m genuinely curios, how much of your 24" 4k beast do you use for dockers and other UI stuff rather than canvas area?

with what I got I have the black ones and the grey ones that should be more rough. I have not touched it much yet honestly I have been trying to do code.

well that is a hard topic to say because of 4k support on the operating systems and their limitations still.
if I use the full 100% scale on my desktop it is like this.


it is quite crisp but actual surface area is important to actually be able to read so you need to adjust your windows scale, and I gravitaded towards 150% so it looks like this.

stuff is a tad larger than on a normal monitor but you have so much surface that it still has loads of space inside to have more things than normal, all 4k is kinda like that.

I always use things split in two now for some reason but I haven’t been drawing lately so I only use it in place of a monitor as I started with python learning before I got it. Strangely enough I have been making my dockers pretty small all around now that you speak of it, i use alot the min and max size for the buttons. When this one is finished it will pretty petite.

An odd thing to note with wacom and 4k is that I can’t use linux with it. I wanted to have good hardware but free software because I use blender, krita and atom now. So KDE NEON linux seemed a good choice but the tablet drivers for the cintiq control EVERYTHING D: and wacom does not give support to linux, so it becomes a kindda of a glitchy screen that with sensitivity of my old bamboo (the magic is in the pressure). linux 4k support and wacom drivers are very weak to justify using it. So you need to opt Win or Mac.

Oh yeah another thing that you need to take attention with this is the tablet is Massive and Heavy too, it takes up like 60% of the desk so you need something to acctually move it around. So I got the Ergonotron and it is worth it, hands down, the other one wiggled too much in the videos for my taste to be a good choice. I thought I did not have need for it but I was wrong and the ergonotron is like 26kg so yeah… it only has 2 positions but it is very stable and it keeps all the cables inside the metal arms and makes everything look nice and clean. I should take a pic the scale of it is a bit bigger than it seems on the videos, not to mention the boxes they come inside, the boxes are at least 3 times bigger than all of it. But one is for sure wacom can be expensive but the raw materials are good, you touch it and it feels “right” you know I never felt like that I dont know how to explain it better, and the unboxing quite elegant of an experience.

Some photos so you get the sense of scale that I did not get from the videos.

(just the tablet)
(as a monitor)
(layed on the table)
(smooth tilt)
(the massive ergonotron)
(you can do this too…)

my conclusion on all of this: I recommend getting a tablet instead of a 4k monitor you have a tad more vibrant colors and you do more stuff.

and my previous tablet XD

Regarding Linux drivers. I understand that the project for non-wacom tablet drivers has restarted work after a hiatus.

@EyeOdin, sad to hear Linux didn’t work out for you. Yes unfortunately Wacom doesn’t advertise Linux support anywhere and consequently let costumers figure out things themselves. Unfortunately that’s the norm really, having a vendor disclose the specs so Linux drivers get support on or near release is usually the best we can hope for.

I know screen scaling still needs some work on all major Linux DEs, though I thought the major culprit is actually Qt, which affects krita on Windows too (if I’m not mistaken it still only picks integer scaling i.e. 100%, 200%, 300%) because fractional scaling still causes plenty of glitches.

Reminds me, I wanted to finally try Qt 5.14, Qt company really should put a little more effort into that :roll_eyes:

Oh btw, I just remembered something that should also be interesting for @naloe, David Revoy has a summary of the experiences he made with all tablets used throughout his career:
https://www.davidrevoy.com/article332/tablet-history-log

Oh cool Lynx3d…thank you for the link . I’ll check it out.

Regarding Linux and Wacom… I hope you find a solution . Its a beautiful display !!!