5 Best Drawing Tablets (2017) – Buyers Guide And Review

Are you a graphic artist on the hunt for the best drawing tablets? Do you want to be artist and feel like that using a drawing tablet will help you practice the craft? Or are you just trying to buy a graphic tablet for a family or loved one who loves to draw? Well, you’re in for luck as this article discusses how to choose the best drawing tablet available that will fit your needs (or an artist’s needs) and your budget.

First, let’s discuss what is exactly a drawing tablet.

What Is a Drawing Tablet?

A drawing tablet is also known as a graphics tablet or a digitizing tablet which is an input device that can be used as a mouse, a trackball or a pointing device to be connected to your PC or laptop in order to draw or illustrate. It can also be used as a stand-alone device for graphics or illustration use.

It has two parts – a flat surface where you draw and a stylus or the pen for which you use to draw. There are also times that it comes with a pen holder.

Factors In Choosing The Best Drawing Tablet

One of the first things that you need to consider when buying a drawing tablet is size. Remember, the bigger the size does not automatically mean it’s better. In fact, most home graphic tablet users and hobbyists prefer their tablets to be at 4” by 5” or at 6” by 8”. While some artists and CAD users prefer larger screen sizes for work. The larger it is, the more need for your arms to move. So it still depends on what kind of artist you are or your needs are.

Next important factor to look at is the interface. It refers to how the tablet connects to the computer. Most graphics tablets these days utilize a USB interface which is really helpful since laptops and PCs contain several USB ports. Because of this, you will be able to move your drawing tablet easily which best fits your needs.

Now if your computer doesn’t support a USB connection, you might need to choose a drawing tablet with a serial interface. For this, make sure that your PC does have an available serial port which will not get in to conflict with other devices. Remember, a serial tablet will require a separate power connection, unlike the USB interface tablet.

You can also connect your drawing tablet to your computer using Bluetooth which is a wireless connection. Wacom is the most popular graphic tablet brand which offers a Bluetooth-capable tablet.

Another significant factor of a drawing tablet is the Stylus or Pen.  Make sure that the drawing tablet comes with a stylus that feels natural in your hand so you will feel comfortable drawing or working with it. Find out if it requires a battery as it will make it heavier and of course, will require replacements every now and then. The stylus can also come tethered or untethered, it is untethered, you have to be more cautious not to lose it.

Other styluses also have buttons or switches while others come with an eraser. These are great stylus features that you have to consider so it will be easier to perform tasks such as deleting or programmable hot keys.

Pressure level is another drawing tablet you need to consider. It refers to the sensitivity to pressure on the tablet surface. Most have 256, 512 or 1024 as pressure levels. The higher it is, the more responsive your drawing tablet will be and the more control you will have on transparency, thickness and even color.

Now that we have established the definition of a drawing or graphic tablet and the factors you need to consider in purchasing one, let’s now review the 5 best drawing tablets available today.

Drawing Tablet Price Dimensions Active Area
Wacom Intuos Draw CTL490DB $79.88 8.2 x 0.4 x 6.7 inches 6” x 3.7”
Huion 4 x 2.23 Inches OSU Tablet Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet $24.99 2.76 x 6.97 x 4.53 in 4 x 2.23"
Turcom TS-6610 Graphic Tablet Drawing Tablet $49.99 2 x 16 x 12.5 in 10" x 6.25"
XP-Pen Artist10S IPS 10.1-Inch Drawing Tablet $299.99 8.23 x 11.85 x 0.28 in 8.5 x 5.3 “
Ugee 19" Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet $409.99 18.66 x 20.71 x 7.09 in 15.83” x 10.04”
9.5 Total Score
5 Best Drawing Tablets (2017) - Buyers Guide And Review

5 Best Drawing Tablets (2017) - Updated for 2017. The ultimate drawing tablet buyer guide and reviews.

User Rating: 3.5 (4 votes)

Here are the Top 5 Best Performing Drawing Tablets:


Wacom Intuos Draw CTL490DB Digital Drawing and Graphics Tablet

Wacom Intuos Draw CTL490DB Digital Drawing and Graphics Tablet

 

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Price: $79.88

Weight: 12. 8 inches

Dimensions: 8.2 x 0.4 x 6.7 inches

Active Area: 6” x 3.7”

Wacom Intuos Draw CTL490DB drawing tablet makes sketching, drawing, illustrating and painting more fun on your computer with the use of a stylus. You have a full range of art supplies all in together in one tool and even comes in many colors.

Wacom Intuos Draw CTL490DB comes with ArtRange Lite which is an easy-to-use sketching and drawing software and online tutorials great for art beginners. The Draw Pack includes a free metal photo print. Its pressure sensitive pen can help you create variations in line width or unique brush effects depending on how hard you push it. You can even make customized cards and invitations or a sketchbook with your art creations. Since the stylus is battery-free, no need to constantly replace it. It also includes 4 customizable ExpressKeys for you to place in your favorite shortcut keys.

Wacom Intuos Draw CTL490DB setup with the PC is simple. Just plug in the USB to your PC, install the driver, register and then start downloading your creative software. What’s even great about this drawing tablet is that it can be set up either for left handed or right handed artists.

PROS:
  • Perfect for beginning digital artists – draw, paint, and edit with an easy to use pen tablet.
  • Replaces your mouse and turns your computer into a digital drawing canvas.
  • Battery-free, pressure sensitive pen helps you to draw thicker and thinner lines depending on how hard you push on the pen
  • Comes with a free Draw Pack including: Art Rage Lite sketching and drawing software, online tutorials, and a free 8×10 metal photo print
  • Four customizable Express Keys that put your favorite shortcuts like undo or copy/paste at your fingertips
  • Connects to Mac (10.8.5 and above) or PC (Windows 7 and above) via USB cable or wireless – wireless kit sold separately (B006MRAVFE) – and works with any software program.

CONS:
  • Unable to register product due to website freezes
  • Stylus is model-specific; if you lose it, you will need to buy the whole set


 

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Huion 4 x 2.23 Inches OSU Tablet Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet

Huion 4 x 2.23 Inches OSU Tablet Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet

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Price: $24.99

Weight: 4.48 ounces

Dimensions: 2.76 x 6.97 x 4.53 in

Active Area: 4 x 2.23″

Designed to inspire people’s creativity, Huion 4 x 2.23 Inches OSU Tablet is an entry level graphic designing tool which is perfect for budding artists and casual art works. You can also use it to sign or mark up documents in Microsoft Word or even Adobe PDF reader.

Huion 420 Drawing Tablet has an active area of 4 x 2.23”, a resolution of 4000 LPI and a Report Rate of 200RPS. It has a Pen Pressure of 2048 Levels and a Reading Height of 0.6”. It can support Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows XP and Mac OS 10.8.0 or above and a USB Interface Support. It has a USB Cable Length of 1.5 meter.

This Huion Drawing Tablet package contents include Huion 420 Graphics Tablet, a USB cord for the tablet, a Wireless Pen or Stylus with 2 programmable buttons (1 AAA battery needed), Pen Nibs x 4, a Removal Tool, and a User Manual.

PROS:
  • A mouse alternative, adequate for OSU! gaming, document signing, causal art work editing, inking, sculpturing, and more
  • Active Area: 4 x 2.23 inch, Item Dimension: 6.96-by-4.40 inches; Easily fits into a laptop case pocket or in a briefcase, portable carrying on the go or on a trip
  • Resolution 4000 LPI; Report Rate 200RPS; Pen Pressure Level: 2048; Comes with a digital pen that has two customizable buttons
  • Small and compact, easy to balance on your lap; Can be used for both left and right handeds
  • OS compatibility: Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows XP, and Mac 10.8.0 or above

CONS:
  • Pen lags
  • Problems connecting with computer


 

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Turcom TS-6610 Graphic Tablet Drawing Tablet

Turcom TS-6610 Graphic Tablet Drawing Tablet

 

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Price: $49.99

Weight: 2.2 lbs

Dimensions: 2 x 16 x 12.5 in

Active Area: 10″ x 6.25″

Turcom TS-6610 Graphic Tablet will let your creativity and imagination free. Whether you’re editing photos, coloring digitally or sketching, you can create intuitively with your computer with the use of this drawing tablet. It has an active area of 10 x 6.25 inches which will definitely give you a big canvas for your artwork.

Its advanced digital pen has 2048 levels of pen pressure sensitivity for a more real life pen and brush simulation. With varying pressures of the pen against the tablet, you can create variations in opacity and line width. The pen also comes with 8 express buttons and customizable 16 functional keys to allow you to use common commands and functions.

Turcom TS-6610 Graphic Tablet has a resolution of 4000 LPI, a Report Rate of 220 RPS, Pen Reading Height of 0.4”, a USB interface support, and a USB cable length of 5 ft. Its package contents include a TS-6610 Drawing Tablet, Wireless Pen with 2 Programmable Buttons (needs 1 AAA battery), a Pen Stand with 4 Nips and 1 remover, and a User Manual.

PROS:
  • Pro Graphics Design Art Pad for Artists, Students, Graphic Designers. Use it as a digital pen or for Manga, Anime, Photo Editing with Photoshop, Sketching, Drawing, Industrial Design, Architectural Design, Writing, Signing Documents. Replace your standard mouse and turn your computer into a digital drawing canvas with the natural feel of a pen on paper.
  • Compatible with Corel Painter, CorelDraw, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Fireworks, Macromedia Flash, ComicStudio, SAI, Infinite Stratos, 3D MAX, Autodesk MAYA, Pixologic ZBrushand, sketchbook.
  • The pen is pressure sensitive. 2,048 levels of pressure. Comes with wireless digital pen and pen holder. The pen uses 1 AAA battery.
  • Large Active Are of 10 inches by 6.25 inches provides you a sensitive platform to show your talent and creativity. Resolution: 4000 Lines Per Inch (LPI), Report Rate Speed (RPS): 220.
  • Compatible with Windows and Mac, Macbook Pro computers. Windows 7/Windows 8/Windows 8.1/Windows 10/ Mac OS 10.8.0/10.10.0 or higher.

CONS:
  • Instructions poorly written
  • Unresponsive buttons


 

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XP-Pen Artist10S IPS 10.1-Inch Drawing Tablet

XP-Pen Artist10S IPS 10.1-Inch Drawing Tablet

 

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Price: $299.99

Weight: 1.55 lbs

Dimensions: 8.23 x 11.85 x 0.28 in

Active Area: 8.5 x 5.3 “

XP-Pen Artist10S Drawing Tablet is known for its advanced battery-free stylus which prevents malfunctions occurring to the pen due to the usage of a battery such as potential hardware leakage and a limited life span. The XP-Pen Stylus does not require charging.

Artist10S Drawing Tablet is super easy to use and is compatible with Windows 10, 8, or 7 and Mac OS 10.7 and above. It is also compatible with graphic applications such as Photoshop, Painter, etc.

With a Pen Pressure of 2048 levels, Artist10S Drawing Tablet also has a resolution o  5080 LPI, a Visual Angle of 178 and an Active Area of 8.5 x 5.3 inches.

XP-Pen Artist10S Drawing Tablet package includes 1 Pen display, 1 Passive Pen, 8 Replacement Nibs, 1 Pen Holder, 1 Nib Clipper, 1 USB Cable, 1 CD Driver, 1 Manual, 1 Anti-Fouling Drawing Glove, 1 Cleaning Cloth, 1 HDMI to Mac Adapter Cable, and 1 Power Adapter.

PROS:
  • Most of the functions such as sketch, paint, design and edit can be executed directly from the tablet screen, work naturally and intuitively
  • 10.1” 1280*800 IPS 16:10 Display with 178°visual angle delivers even more lifelike colors, greater contrast, and sharper, more vivid images. The custom-designed anti-reflective coating reduces glare by 56 percent, more bright and beautiful, even if it’s bright out
  • 2048-level pen pressure sensitivity allows you to create variations in line width of opacity; suitable for both right-and-left hand usage; One-click toggle function between pen/eraser improves your painting efficiency..
  • 6 customizable Express Keys (Undo, Erase, Brush, Space, Ctrl, Alt). One-click toggle allows you to switch the function between Pen and Eraser instantly
  • New Artist10S has key upgrades over the original Artist 10. Features a 6mm thin design; included 3 in 2 cable, and a new Brightness adjust button

CONS:
  • Short power life


 

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Ugee 19″ Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet

Ugee 19" Graphics Drawing Pen Tablet

VISIT SITE

Price: $409.99

Weight: 15 lbs

Dimensions: 18.66 x 20.71 x 7.09 in

Active Area: 15.83” x 10.04”

Ugee Graphic Tablet has a pressure sensitivity of 2048 levels with 0.25mm accuracy. It also has a display area of 402mmx255mm and a resolution of 1440 x 900 with 5ms response time.  It has a Dual Channel LVDS electrical interface with a support color 16.7M(RGB 6-bit data + HiFRC data). It also has 4 replaceable CCFL edge-light (top/bottom) with 300 (cd/m2) @ 7.5mA brightness.

Ugee Graphic Tablet package contents include a 1 Graphic Tablet, 1 D-Sub Signal Cord, 1 Power Adapter, 2 USB Cables, 2 Digital Pen Stylus, 1 Pen Charging Cable, 1 Barrel Holder, 1 Installation CD, A User Manual, 1 Pergear Lens Cloth, 1 Pergear Cleaning Brush, 1 Pergear Antistatic Glove and 1 19” inch Screen Protector.

PROS:
  • 5MS TFT LCD panels, applies the new mirror design with smooth, bringing high definition and high brightness visual experience.
  • 2048 higher levels Pressure Sensitivity, Electromagnetic pressure sensitivity, Control line thickness, color, transparency conveniently.
  • Multi angle adjustable stand, flexibly setting the operation angle freely, fits various habits and needs of different artists.
  • 2048 levels Pressure Sensitivity

CONS:
  • Driver issues
  • Can’t use tablet monitor as an extension of your PC monitor


9.5 Total Score
5 Best Drawing Tablets (2017) - Buyers Guide And Review

5 Best Drawing Tablets (2017) - Updated for 2017. The ultimate drawing tablet buyer guide and reviews.

User Rating: 3.5 (4 votes)
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Conclusion

All of the products included in our list are definitely of high quality, and each one received 4-5 star ratings and reviews.

However, out of the 5 best drawing tablets reviewed, I would go for the XP-Pen Artist10S Graphic Tablet for the fact that it received many 4.5 and above reviews with only 1 issue – short power life. Now this short power life can easily be solved by charging it however, it can be a hassle when you want to take it outside for a long time. Still, it has amazing display with vivid colors with a pen pressure sensitivity of 2048 levels and comes with 6 customizable hot keys. It is also reported to be consistent and durable among the rest of the best drawing tablets.

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