Are you still using real paint and actual pencils to create artwork? Come on, this is the 21st century. We have no need for such rudimentary tools. Today, you can produce everything on a mess-free digital drawing tablet.
We jest, of course. Traditional art forms will always have their place. But if you’d like to try some new creative mediums to express yourself, perhaps you should check out the best drawing tablets on the market for the digital artist.
1. Best Drawing Tablet Overall:
Wacom Cintiq Pro 16
If you’re willing to spend a decent chunk of money on a drawing tablet, you should check out the Wacom Cintiq 16. It ticks all the boxes (except the price!) and is widely used by professional illustrators.
There’s a 4K 3840×2160 resolution display which measures 16 inches. It is also capable of displaying 16.7 million displayable colors, and has support for 3D images. There are multiple ways to connect the tablet to other devices (including USB-C and HDMI) thanks to the Wacom Link Plus hub (sold separately).
The price of the Wacom Cintiq Pro 16 might already be making your eyes water, but there’s also a 24-inch model and a 32-inch model. Both larger-size models come with increased price tags too.
2. Best Cheap Drawing Tablet:
Huion H610 Pro
A more affordable drawing tablet is the Huion H610 Pro. Some of the key specs you need to know about include a 5080LPI resolution, a report rate of 233PPS and a pen pressure sensitivity of 8,192. The screen measures 10 x 6.25 inches and has a smooth, paper-like texture.
The Huion H610 Pro is customizable. It has eight hard keys and 16 soft keys that you can set up with the shortcuts you use most frequently. You can expect complete compatibility with all the mainstream design apps, including Photoshop, Illustrator, Corel Painter, Manga Studio, GIMP, and Zbrush.
Unlike many tablets, this drawing tablet also comes with some extra goodies in the box, including a pen holder, a carry bag, and an artist’s glove.
3. Best Drawing Tablet for Children:
Boogie Board Play ‘n’ Trace
Boogie Board’s products are well-known for providing one of the most natural pen-on-paper experiences. With the Play ‘n’ Trace, the company has carried those attributes over into a fantastic drawing tablet for kids.
The tablet looks like an artist’s palette, complete with a thumb grip and oval design. The screen has been made extra durable so it can withstand the inevitable rough-and-tumble that it will experience.
The screen is also slightly transparent; your kids can use it to trace other images and then edit them. The twin-tip stylus has one end for tracing and one end for filling in.
4. Best Drawing Tablet for Beginners:
If you’re looking for the best drawing tablet for beginners, the Turcom TS-6610 is worth investigating. Its low price means it’s also a great drawing tablet for students.
Visually, it looks very similar to the Huion H610 Pro that we discussed earlier. Hard buttons are located down the left-hand side, and there’s a beefy bezel around the screen.
Like the Huion model, there’s a 10 x 6.25 inches display, though the LPI resolution is only 4,000. It also falls slightly below its competitor in terms of pen sensitivity, coming in at 2,048 instead of 8,192.
Again, all the major design software is supported, including Corel Painter, CorelDraw, Photoshop, Illustrator, Adobe Fireworks, ComicStudio, SAI, and Autodesk.
5. Best LCD Writing Tablet:
Boogie Board Jot 8.5
The Boogie Board Jot 8.5 is one of the most popular LCD writing tablets. From a drawing standpoint, it’s good for sketches and doodles, but it’s not going to let you create colorful masterpieces. It is mainly targeted at people who are looking for a digital replacement for pen and paper, sticky notes, and notebooks.
You can share your creations with other devices using the Jot app, attach it to the fridge using the rear magnets, and stand it on a flat surface using the stylus dock which doubles as a kick-stand. Three different colors are available: blue, grey, and pink.
6. Best Mid-Range Drawing Tablet:
So, which tablet do you go for if you want something that falls squarely in the middle of the range of products out there?
The XP-PEN Artist is a good choice. You can use the tablet to sketch, paint, and design illustrations. It has a 15-inch display with a resolution of 1920×1080, there are 8,192 levels of pen pressure sensitivity, and there’s also support for USB-C.
It also boasts an impressively large 178 degrees of visual angle And like some of the other products we’ve looked at, the XP-PEN Artist also has programmable express keys. In truth, the Wacom products are superior in terms of the wider ecosystem, but for non-professionals, it won’t be an issue. Again, all the major design apps are supported.
7. Best Tablet for Graphic Design:
Wacom Intuos Pro
The Wacom Intuos Pro drawing tablets are not as feature-rich nor as high performance as the Cintiq range we looked at earlier. However, if you want to enter the Wacom ecosystem without spending a fortune, they are a solid choice.
The tablet comes in three different sizes. The smallest screen size is 6.3 x 3.9 inches, the medium model is 8.7 x 5.8 inches, while the largest version is 12.1 x 8.4 inches.
Each of the tablets ship with a Wacom Pro Pen 2—that’s the same stylus as the one included with the Cintiq Pro 16. All the Wacom Intuos Pro tablets have 8,192 pen pressure levels, built-in Bluetooth, and support for the major design software on PC and Mac.
The Best Drawing Tablet for You
We’re confident that one of the seven tablets we have recommended will provide you with the features you need. For different reasons, they are all among the best drawing tablets you can buy.
If, after looking at these models, you decide a dedicated drawing tablet isn’t for you, there are still options open to you. Your smartphone can make a great alternative, especially when coupled with the best drawing and painting apps for Android.