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Thread: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

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    Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    I'm looking at getting a graphics tablet for the Mrs. She's addicted to Drawception and keeps hinting she would be able to do a lot better with a tablet.

    The only experience I have of using a graphics tablet was back on the C64 and was not all that good. I take it they have got a little better since then?

    So, with a budget of around the £80-£100 mark, what would someone recommend? She can draw very well with traditional drawing materials and is hoping that a tablet will give her a decent pen on paper feel. Is this realistic with the budget? I've had a quick look and seen you can pick them up for as little as £30 or upwards of £700.

    Thanks for any help

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    For that kind of money I'd recommend one of the new Wacom Pen Graphics Tablets (circa £70) about A5 in size. You can get the small one for about £40 if you just want to try it out, but it's really small, I think the work area is about A6 in size (at least the old bamboo was). The medium which is bigger again is about £150.

    The general consensus is to buy as large as you can afford so that you dont need to keep dragging the canvas whilst working on screen. With 1024 levels of pressure sensitivity the new bamboo matches the old industry standard Intuos 3 sensitivity-wise. (And that was a circa £300 tablet!) Of course it wont have all the capabilities of the tablet but tbh you'll still be using keyboard shortcuts anyway regardless of the tablet so I'd say go Bamboo!

    I bought an intuos 4 M myself and that is now superceded by the intuos 5 but it's pricey I paid nearly £300 for mine as a student! TBH I'm no good on it so I'm not going to embarass myself by posting work up. I've always been biased towards traditional media, and the leap to digital is proving difficult on me. So word of warning, drawing digitally is a different ball game if you're used to traditional work. But as with any artistic endeavour it's all about practicing!

    The new wacoms have a different work surface to mimic the feeling of drawing on paper but this has been detrimental in that it wears the nibs excessively, I'd recommend buying a pack of nibs too but I'm not sure on what the pens or surfaces are like on the new wacoms such as the bamboo.

    The only reason I recommend wacom is because well that's their bag. They've always been doing it and it's what makes them the industry leaders in the tech. There are other peripheral brands out there that dabble in the stuff like Trust amongst others, but they simply dont match it in terms of build quality or compatibilty in some cases. Wacom's the industry benchmark when it comes to digital artist professionals so for £70 I'd say it's a safe bet and fits right in under your budget too!
    Last edited by RichieLee; 08-05-2012 at 01:32 AM.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    As someone who's used both wacom and many cheap tablets, I'd agree with a wacom if you've got the money for it and you plan to use it alot.

    One thing to note the current teblets are actually smaller than paper size (ie A4, A5, A6, etc) because they are wide screen ratio, when the change happened, they didn't make them wider to componsate for the vertical loss, just made them smaller

    you're looking for around £45-50 for the A6 http://www.scan.co.uk/products/wacom...raphics-tablet Active area Pen (W x D): 147 mm x 92 mm
    They don't produce the basic bamboo in larger sizes anymore, you need to get the bamboo fun and the price takes a big jump, £145 http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B005TYVSA...SIN=B005TYVSAS Active area Pen 217 mm x 137 mm
    Also comes with a couple of bits of bundled software, Corel Painter Essentials 4, ArtRage 3.0 and Photoshop Elements 10

    Wacom do still do educational discounts

    Cheap tablets work, but they are not as nice to use
    I've got an Apitek tablet (this looks the same http://www.scan.co.uk/products/geniu...h-cordless-pen) they are ok, however as with most of these the pen uses a battery (something wacom doesn't) and they require a lot more pressure to get the full range of control, which can lead the surface to quickly get marked (you can see it but it doesn't effect the use or function.)

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    I had to use a cheap tablet at an old job for a year and it was infuriating. Lake of features, unreliable responsiveness.

    Get a Wacom and you won't get those issues :-)

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    Thanks for the suggestion guys.

    She likes the sound of the Wacom tablets, so we are going to get one of those. I'll let you know how she gets on.

    Thanks again.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    I have one of the older bamboos and its been fantastic for the money. Havent used it for a while but i did use it to make this:

    http://vimeo.com/4270374

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    If I had more room then I would probably plug in my Bamboo Fun tablet and use it instead of the mouse.
    I can use it with the pen, or use my hand, including smartphone like gestures.
    As well as being a very capable artistic input device, a pen and touch graphics tablet would probably be very useful to someone with RSI/OOS issues.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    Actually I think it would be well worth looking 2nd hand
    as some of the older models can be got far cheaper and they are still very good, if not better.
    an older intous 3 or bamboo one would be great.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    I sent you a PM Trashman, I have a Trust tablet for sale right now.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by g8ina View Post
    I sent you a PM Trashman, I have a Trust tablet for sale right now.
    Sorry, I missed the PM. I'll have a word with the Mrs when she get's home. Can you tell me the model you have for sale please?

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    It's a Trust TB-2100 A6 tablet with wireless mouse and stylus. £20 plus post.

    http://www.trust.com/products/product.aspx?artnr=12052

    Drivers : http://www.trust.com/products/produc...px?artnr=12052
    but isn't showing Windows 7 yet. Up to Vista only.

    I'll make a proper FS thread if she is interested.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    I just picked up a refurbished Wacom Bamboo Fun (successor to the old Graphire series) for £37 on eBay.

    So far it's a lot of fun and has pretty decent specs for the price - I'm a designer so I really am putting it through its paces. Well worth it!

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    One thing you should be aware of esp for 2nd hand, 4:3 ratio
    it's not an issue if you use it in mouse mode (so it acts like a big track pad with a pen) but if you use the direct positional mode then the tablet being a different ratio to the screen can cause issues.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    Mine is 4.5 by 6 inches, so aspect ratio of 1:1.33, not quite 4:3 but close enough.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by g8ina View Post
    Mine is 4.5 by 6 inches
    Fnarr fnarr!
    One thing I will say is that I've noticed ratio issues on direct positional mode are more pronounced the larger the tablet.

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    Re: Graphics Tablet Recommendations?

    I did have a play with one of the trust tablets - did a quick blog about it.
    http://jfvi.co.uk/2011/11/29/a-table...hat-you-think/

    problem I had was that the tablet was too small for the size of my monitors.
    my Virtualisation Blog http://jfvi.co.uk Virtualisation Podcast http://vsoup.net

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