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Can anyone recommend a good tablet to look at purchasing?


Digital
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Thanks to @Pepper-Head, @runeowl, and @runeowl's wonderful replies to:

 The next logical question is what tablet or choice of tablet would you recommend to a complete newbie like me? I would be looking for something totally affordable, at this point in time, quality isn't terribly large as long as it is reasonable. Again, I am not a full out artist, so I am not going to be beating it to death, but casually using it to practice on occasion.

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Well, I like the one I use the most which is the Intuos wacom, size medium. It's about the size of a standard notebook. I think anything bigger might be a bit troublesome to a newbie, and the same for something smaller. This one at least is about the same size of a piece of paper turned sideways.

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I second what @Aminirus says - I started off with an Wacom Bamboo tablet (the really old one, like seven years ago old) and then moved to a Intuos Pro Medium. If I didn't break it during a dorm move I'd stick with it; sure you still need to practice hand-eye coordination drawing but it's versatile enough for most kinds of work. :) 

I wouldn't recommend a cintiq unless you're serious about going into the industry or just want to make your art process faster - I now use a cintiq for those reasons and I don't regret it, but the price tag for it is expensive. To me it's worth it since I can produce an artwork within 2~ hours with a cintiq that used to take me 5+~ hours - but just starting off I'd advise against getting a top of the line cintiq tablet. 

Also: do consider portability when you're looking for a drawing tablet - I could carry around my Bamboo or Intuos Pro Medium easily (they fit into my backpack and are light enough) but I cannot for the life of me now carry my cintiq around to class or elsewhere. Not to mention the cintiq weighs more than the other two options and is more expensive (so I'm nervous about commuting around with something like the cintiq in my bag, worrying it'll break or crack).

 

Edited by Cadence
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Do you have a tablet that's not a drawing tablet, like a ipad or something like that? There are a lot of cheap apps you can use to start out on that :)

Otherwise, I recommend a small Wacom Intuos tablet. Mine was only $200 or so and I've had it for over five years!~ 

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1 minute ago, runeowl said:

Do you have a tablet that's not a drawing tablet, like a ipad or something like that? There are a lot of cheap apps you can use to start out on that :)

Closest thing to a iPad I have is my iPhone 7 Plus, which would probably be a little small to draw on.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well I wouldn't really put the Intuos medium pro in the cheap category whether it's affordable or not depends on what price range you are looking to spend. But I have one as well. Mine is a Pro 5. You can get cheaper ones, even from Wacom that work alright, especially for an amateur. I hardly consider myself an artist at this point since I just don't draw enough with my limited time, but I started out on a Bamboo fun forever ago. Not sure what their equivalents are now. But it worked great and was more like $100 instead of the $300 dollars of the Intuos. The nice thing about wacom, or at least it did previously can't say for sure now, but both tablets came with software some of which I still use. Nice if you don't already have an art program, as they can be expensive.

As for my Wacom Bamboo it still works I believe though haven't actually tried it in years since I have the other one now. So they do seem to last pretty well. 

My Intuos is working as well. But I did have an issue with the cord and so can only use the the wireless kit now, which was an extra $40 dollars. For as much as it costed I do feel like the build quality should have been better for the cord portion specifically, the rest seems to be a fine quality. But it does cause issues since I can't just plug and go and have to charge it ahead of time. The drivers need reset if the computer hasn't been restarted in a while which is also a pain but not that big of a deal. Other than that though it works great and I love having it the times I do use it.

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Have had four tablets so far that I can remember.

My favorite tablet is my small Wacom Intuous that I got at Best Buy for $60. I LOVE that it has a little holder for the pen. Losing pens is a pain in the butt and so easy to do with these things. 

I've had a Bamboo tablet that worked well and lasted a long time, too, but that was a while ago.

My grandpa gave me a Wacom FUN he found lying around in a center he goes to, so I have no idea of its use history, but it works perfectly. It came with a mouse to use with it, but I personally never find myself using the mouse.

I bought a $200 Intuous once and personally never made use of any of the fancy features (like all the side buttons and buttons on the pen). I also learned that I preferred smaller sized tablets because I don't have to strain my hand as much to move the pointer. 

A lot depends on what you're looking for, but if you want something cheap and simple, I recommend smaller Wacom tablets. I've never had anything other than these four, so I don't have any experience to compare to, but all my tablets lasted years and worked great. 

I would make sure that, whatever you get, it should have pen pressure/sensitivity. That's the only 'tablet feature' I've ever really used and don't know anyone who doesn't make use of it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I know this topic is a little old, so I don't know if you already bought something, but:

I have a Wacom Bamboo tablet which I like! They're super affordable!

But I also have a Surface Pro 4 now which is way better. I like being able to see where I'm drawing (they do have Wacoms with this option, but if you're going to spend that much, then you may as well get a fully functioning computer with it and go the Surface route), and I also like the pen itself and pressure sensitivity. You can use full Photoshop on the Surface because it runs Windows 10.

Either way, on my Surface Pro 4, or with my Bamboo on my MacBook I use Photoshop for painting. I own CS5, but these days I just have the CC subscription.

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Hmm, I have been looking at the Surface's for a while, since I am a developer, I love the idea of having a full system versus just a tablet like I would have in the form of an iPad.

I haven't made any purchase yet, but I have been taking my time reading up on the options, although I never really put much thought into the Surface notebooks until now. Great suggestion, @hurricaneviolet!

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  • 2 weeks later...

buy a used intuos 3 or intuos 2. they're about $60.

the new "intuos" has less pressure sensitivity (that of a bamboo), and the "intuos pro" is actually the one with all the pressure sensitivity.

definitely get a 6x8. anything smaller and its going to be difficult to draw on, and anything bigger can be cumbersome. 

I use an intuos 1 9x12 from 1998 on my windows 10 laptop. I had to write drivers for it, but it still works.
I say intuos 3 is your best bet, as I dont know if 2 works on windows 10.

also they're easier to fix, than the new ones.

Edited by Zrcalo
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On 6/15/2017 at 0:54 AM, Digital said:

Hmm, I have been looking at the Surface's for a while, since I am a developer, I love the idea of having a full system versus just a tablet like I would have in the form of an iPad.

I haven't made any purchase yet, but I have been taking my time reading up on the options, although I never really put much thought into the Surface notebooks until now. Great suggestion, @hurricaneviolet!

I don't know if you have a Costco, or a membership (although, separate topic, but I always recommend one if you don't, haha), but they have them for a little less than you could get it at a regular electronics store. Basically you get the typecover and pen for free at Costco, whereas you must buy them separately at other stores. I got my Surface Pro 4 bundle for $750 on Black Friday last year!

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  • 1 month later...

I'm currently using a tablet/laptop hybrid that comes with integrated Wacom technology.  While new versions of my tablet laptop would cost a grand or two, the older models are pretty cheap on ebay.  My first tablet was a Bamboo which was clunky for me, but then I bought my first hybrid tablet from my step-brother, and being able to draw directly on the monitor like on paper has made me never look back.  The second one I bought which was an upgraded version of the same model but with more processing power was purchased from newegg.com  

If you are looking for a cheap tablet/laptop hybrid, my first one was the Lenovo Thinkpad x61 Tablet, my current one is the Lenovo Thinkpad X220 Tablet.  At the time my X220 was around $250 which is a steal for what it can do, and it might have gone down more since then.  The x61 now probably goes for less than $100 on ebay.  Check out newegg too if you prefer dealing with a company with a return policy and not unknown ebay sellers.  Lenovo does makes modern versions under other other model names, so you want to watch out for having a built in stylus and wacom technology.  I absolutely love it!

As for photoshop, I've been using Photoshop Elements 15 which is great for artists with a small budget.  It has all the main necessary features for digital art that Photoshop has, and so far I haven't had any limitations with my own art using it.

Edited by Kesstryl
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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 6 months later...

I wanted to update you all. I got an iPad for my birthday/xmas present this year, and have been fiddling with it. I was lucky enough to get the Pencil also, which actually has made it easier.

IMG_0005.JPGIMG_0006.JPG

 

I am still very much getting used to it and sketching again in general, especially as you can tell with coloring and lining. I have been using Procreate, if anyone has a better suggestion please let me know.

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Just now, Cadence said:

@Digital I like your art!

I have heard so many great things about the iPad with the Pencil & ProCreate. All my favorite artists have been using that and showing their work online haha. 

Thank you, it is mostly just me fiddling without too much attention to any specific detail. I have not sketched in many years (since middle school), so it has been a process of re-learning that on top of learning to do it digitally.

I have enjoyed it, although I find the pencils pressure sensitivity is rather delicate and takes time to get used to. No settings that I am aware of, but I seem to be getting better as time goes on.

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