Wacom tablet suggestions...

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by freeny, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. macrumors 68020


    Looking to invest in a wacom tablet to sketch directly in PS or AI. Any suggestions and or testimonials?

    Thanks in advance :)
  2. macrumors 65816

    if you do a search of this section of the forums you will find many people (myself included) saying the same thing basically.

    Intuos is best, size depends on the user - I personally like a5 wide.
    However bamboo (and the older graphire) are fine if its just for playing around with stuff rather than doing things on a more regular/pro basis.
  3. macrumors 68020


    Well that would involve work:D

    thanks Levi
  4. macrumors 68000


    I have both an A5 Intuos and an A6 Bamboo. The Intuos is connected to my 24" iMac & 21" Eizo setup in my home office and the A6 I take with me to work on the go with my 15" powerbook.

    The effective size of the tablet depends on the screen you are using imo. While the A6 size is perfect for a laptop or lets say 15-19" screens it becomes too small to work precisely when using a 20"+ screen.

    The sweet spot in terms of price/performance is A5 size. Big enough (and not too big, which depends on personal preference) to do serious work and cheap enough to not stress the budget.
  5. macrumors 68020


  6. macrumors G4

    I kind of disagree a little. I'd say that the Bamboo is OK if you are using Photoshop to correct and retouch photographs. None of the tools you use for that are sensitive to pen angle and rotation and pressure is not even all that importance if you are a photographer. But photographers do need the precision and speed of a pen. The bamboo can do all of that. But if you want to create images and simulate natural media like air brush and flat brushes then you will want the pen angle and rotation ability of the more expensive tablet It's not a pro vs. hobby thing. I depends on the tools you pick and if they can make use of rotation and angle.

    You could buy the $60 Bamboo and try it. Then you will know if you need a bigger tablet or not. If you like it you are lucky can saved yourself maaybe $200 and if you don't like it it would be easy to sell for $40 and you could right off the $20 loss to "education" If takes time to learn to use a pen for the first coule weeks you will not be able to control it and you will want to go back to using the mouse. At first you will not even be able to draw a circle where the ends meet. A bamboo is good enough for learning these new motor skillls
  7. macrumors 68020


    I plan on drawing and airbrushing, no retouching. Im looking for a digital version of a sketchbook...
  8. macrumors 6502



    Then the Intuos3 tablet or Cintiq monitor would be the better tool. They both support the airbrush pen (optional) and have twice the resolution of the Bamboo models.

    I started out with the Intuos3 and moved to the Cintiq 20WSX in January.
  9. jnc
    macrumors 68020


    I use the Intuos 3 A5, but you can easily get away with a Graphire A5 for sketches and AI use, it just has less levels of pressure sensitivity but at a lower price.

    Then honestly, this is exactly what you are looking for: http://www.wacom.com/cintiq/12WX.cfm Man I got to get me one of those :D

    A5 is 6x8 inches
  10. macrumors 68020


  11. macrumors 68000


    Intuos A5 is about 25x34 cm.
  12. macrumors 68020

    Artful Dodger

    I have and use the Intuos 3 tablet @ 9x12 and it works great with my 20" iMac at this time. I plan on buying the Cintiq 12" Pen Display very soon and the airbrush as well. One thing I really like is the feel of the pens for the Intuos as they are very nice if you are using it for some time.
    Whatever you buy just take the time to set the area up to match your screen size and it will work just right :)
  13. macrumors 6502

    I would try ebay. I got mine for 150 it's an intuos2. I'm on the tightest budget ever. so if your like me than I would try for an used, one seeing that you can find one cheap if you HUNT!
  14. macrumors regular


    I have a A4 sized Intuous 3 Wacom tablet and I cannot rate it highly enough. I use it for 3D work, painting in PS and even surfing the web. It's a really well made product and for drawing/painting a tablet is an invaluable investment.

    If price is an issue then you can sometimes get really good price reductions on Ebay for brand new Wacom tablets (I did).
  15. macrumors 65816


    Do people find that with a tablet they don't find the need to sketch with paper and pencil as much/at all?
  16. macrumors regular


    Sketching on the Wacom is cool, but I still like to use pencil and paper. A sketchbook you can take with you anywhere so you can practice anywhere. Plus, it just feels nice to sketch in a sketchbook.

    I have heard of some people sketching exclusively digitally, but I imagine they are the exception rather than the rule.
  17. macrumors 6502

    I still sketch all the time with pencil/pen and paper. I find that most of my good sketches are done one the back of homework or when I'm watching TV or something like that. I also like to paint!
  18. macrumors 65816

    Lone Deranger

    A word of caution for those considering a Cintiq.
    There have been reports from some users about mouse pointer jitter. Particularly in the lower areas of the screen. Some find it acceptable, others less so.
    There's an interesting thread over on CGTalk with a lot of users posting in their findings. Read about it here.

    Over the years I've bought many a regular Wacom tablet without trying them out first, but for a Cintiq...?? It would require a thorough testdrive to see if I can be convinced to hand over the money.
    As much as I'd love to have one, there are just too many potential problems and niggles I've heard about.
  19. macrumors 68020

    Artful Dodger

    I still sketch, scan my stuff in to my folder/workflow and then import to stage. I don't always stick to my sketch but 99% of the time I have a sketch scanned that I go off of. I think on my site there are only two items that aren't from sketches and they turned/worked out well. Also I'm not always in front of my iMac/tablet so pencil/ink and paper are a must for me :D
  20. macrumors 6502


    The report of cursor jitters is extremely exaggerated and seems to be limited to the 12WX model. Wacom states that this behavior is "normal" and is limited to the peripheral edges of the Cintiq 12WX display.

    I have not experienced this behavior with my 20WSX Cintiq connected (DVI-D)to the MacPro (ATI X1900XT video card).

    The Wacom Cintiq is an expensive investment but for Graphic Design, Photography or drawing it is the ultimate tool. It increases workflow, stimulates creativity and is the most accurate way of editing or creating design on a computer.

  21. macrumors 6502


    I also have a Cintiq 21UX and have not experience this either. I started with a Wacom Graphire, then I used an Intuos2 for YEARS, and have recently upgraded to the Cintiq. I love the Cintiq but I used the Intuos2 for so long that I think I got "too" good on it, and I don't find my productivity or quality of work improved much on the Cintiq. Basically I mean that I don't find much that I can do on the Cintiq that I COULDN'T do on the Intuos2. One thing I have noticed is how much more fun the Cintiq is to use. I love it.

    EDIT: I added this image of my setup. I couldn't believe how huge the thing was when I first set it up. That's a Apple 23" Cinema Display that it's next to.

    Attached Files:

  22. jnc
    macrumors 68020


    Yes, it's great to be able to just draw directly onto the computer. Means you don't have to redraw pencils digitally or scan them in.
  23. macrumors 68000

    Ive been a digital painter for around 8 years and love the size of the 6x8. Im still using an intuos 1 6x8, before that I had a 4x5 graphire and that was too small to draw but still totally useable for painting.

    I wouldnt want to go larger, larger=more arm work, and the 9x12 is freaking huge. I dont really have the desktop space for that monster anyways (9x12=active area, theres still several inches of extra space on the edges making it very very large). I havent used the 6x11 but I imagine those are a good size too, Im happy enough with just using widescreen proportions on the 6x8 though.

    If you want to save money then you can get a used intuos, like an intuos 1 or 2. These things last forever, my intuos still looks new and works like it did when I got it several years ago. The only things that need replacing are the nibs on the pen and the plastic overlay sheet since it might get scratched up, but both of those are cheap and you get a load of extra nibs with the intuos to last you forever (my intuos overlay is still fine, my graphire overlay was kind of scratched though).
  24. jnc
    macrumors 68020


    They dropped the overlay altogether with the intuos 3. :(
  25. macrumors 65816

    what, theres still an overlay (I assume you mean the bit of plastic over the 'tablet' area) on the intuos 3, its grey and you can buy a clear version if you wanted. It just peels up from the bottom and is stuck on at the top.

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