One question we get asked a lot is whether iPad Pro or any Android tablet going to replace traditional graphics tablets. It may happen soon but it really depends on your need and habit.
In order not to confuse you with industry terms like graphics tablets/ drawing tablets/ art tablets, we are going to just call them drawing tablets and categorize them by looking at tablets which require computer connection and standalone portable drawing tablets which can be used anywhere. We will show you the best 3 drawing tablets available in the market for each of the category below.
Computer-connected Drawing Tablets with Stylus
Traditional drawing tablet, or previously known as drawing pad or touch pad, is a touchpad with no screens on it. It usually comes with a stylus that has high levels of pen pressure sensitivity. It requires users to connect it to a computer or a monitor before drawings can been seen and is therefore, considered as an accessory of personal computers. This type of drawing tablets aims to provide a natural writing/ sketching/ drawing experience, as if you are drawing on actual papers and they usually come with a large drawing canvas. They are long-lasting (especially those with no screen to break!) and easy to use. As technology advances, manufactures are beginning to produce drawing tablets with screen, even when it has to be connected to a computer, so users can draw and see the art on the same screen simultaneously. Professional artists tend to prefer drawing tablets to other multi-purpose tablets that support drawing and sketching.
Top 3 computer-connected drawing tablets in 2019
1. Wacom Intuos
Wacom is no doubt a leader in the drawing tablet industry, capturing over 80% of the market share since 2008. Its latest professional-grade pen tablet model, the Wacom Intuos Pro, is one of the best drawing tablets. The Wacom Intuos is one of the all-time best-selling drawing tablets. The compact 8-inch drawing tablet is easy to set up for both left- and right-handed users. Its 4k pressure-sensitive pen is battery free and delivers both precision and control.
If you have slightly more flexible budget, consider the Wacom Intuos Pro. A better version of Wacom Intuos, the 13-inch tablet comes with enhanced accuracy, tilt response, excellent pressure sensitivity (8192 pressure levels) and multi-touch features. The tablet is super slim and compact, with maximized active area and ergonomic design and its Wacom pen is battery free.
2. XP-PEN Artist12 11.6Inch Drawing tablet
The XP-PEN brand manufactures middle price range drawing tablets. Its latest model XP-PEN Artist12 gives you a large working area of 11.6 inch but weighs less than 2.2 lb. Although the tablet comes with a screen on it, it must be used with a computer. Similar to Wacom Intuos Pro, the XP-PEN Artist12 stylus provides 8192 levels of instant pen pressure sensitivity. The down side of this tablet is that it only supports Windows and Mac, it cannot be used with Linux OS or Chromebooks.
3. Huion H610 Pro
Huion produces drawing tablets at a much lower price than Wacom and XP-Pen but the Huion H610 tablet still gives the same level of pressure sensitivity of 8192 levels with its rechargeable stylus. The 10-inch drawing tablet gives you sufficient compact working space. Although it doesn’t come with any fancy features, it’s not a bad choice given its competitive price.
Standalone Portable Drawing Tablets with Stylus
The second type of tablets is a portable drawing tablet with stylus. The millennials grew up using tablets, be it the iPad or Android tablets. They use it to check emails, browse website, watch movies, play games and so on. In recent years, a number of tablets manufacturer saw an opportunity to incorporate drawing features into their tablets. By including a stylus, this type of drawing tablet is fully functional on the go – it allows you to draw while seeing the output on the screen and you can enjoy all the other functions it supports. Standalone drawing tablets are amazingly portable – you can take them anywhere and use them. No computer connection is required and you can enjoy a whole lot of entertainment supported by iOS and Android.
Of course, a coin has two sides. The life span of drawing tablets is usually shorter as people tend to use it more often for purposes other than drawing and its screen is more fragile. Their drawing capability is often weaker than drawing tablets which is understandable as they are positioned as a multi-functional tablet, instead of specializing in the drawing space.
Top 3 portable drawing tablets in 2019
1. Simbans PicassoTab 10-inch Tablet
As one of the newer brands in the drawing tablets space, Simbans produces drawing Android tablets at an affordable price, which is great for students or beginners. One can get the Simbans PicassoTab to get a taste of being a digital artist before investing more in professional equipment. The tablet runs Android 8.1 Oreo and comes with 1280x800 pixels of resolution and a quad-core processor. It supports multi-touch and multi-port output. The tablet set comes with a Simbans pen, high-quality tablet case, universal power adaptor and pre-installed screen protector for free.
2. Apple iPad Pro
The Apple iPad Pro gives you two size options – 11 inch or 12.9 inch. The tablet combines impressive power and a large, beautiful display. With iPad Pro, you enjoy every great experience Apple presents at a premium price (3-4 times more than Simbans PicassoTab).
3. Samsung Galaxy Tab S6
Samsung has always been famous of its screen/ display quality. The Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 is a 2-in-1 tablet which allows you to do almost everything – draw, sketch, work as if you are on a computer and enjoy all kinds of entertainment. The S pen can be magnetically attached to the tablet for easy storage and charging.