Best Digital Drawing Tablets And Displays
The best digital drawing tablets and displays for comic book drawing include devices that span the cost and capabilities spectrum.
I own each of these tablets and displays and I recommend each one of them regardless of some of the limitations and differences. I will explain all the nuances here,
Let’s take a look…
iPad Pro Tablet
I purchased the iPad Pro 12.9″ when it was first released in September of 2015. The 128GB Wi-Fi version is what I ended up with.
My youngest daughter was drawing a lot by now and I was inspired by her work and wanted a display tablet to draw on. The iPad Pro with Apple Pencil seemed to be a good choice for me as I have always loved my Apple products.
My first order of business was to locate a few drawing apps that fit my need for comic book drawing. I heard a lot of people talk about Procreate, so I purchased this app, first.
While the app was clearly for artists and provide a near natural feel for various mediums and brushes, it simply wasn’t for me. I needed something that worked well for comic book art. Perhaps something that was more specific to my style of art.
My journey wasn’t quite done yet when next I found Medibang. Medibang is a free app that was made for the iPad Pro and included support for the Apple Pencil. This was encouraging!
For those having used the desktop version of the drawing program, Manga Studio, then Medibang might seem familiar. The tools and features are very similar to one another.
Using Medibang on the iPad Pro feels natural. The plastic tip is smooth on the glass of the iPad, but the lack of latency or lag of the lines appearing on the screen as I draw provides a clean feel.
I really like the feel and flow, but ultimately Clip Studio Paint was by far my favorite comic book drawing app on the iPad Pro. The tools and lines you can create using the Apple Pencil mimic traditional pen and ink the closest for me.
Learn more about the Mid 2017 2nd Generation Wi-Fi Only 12.9″ iPad Pro, below:
Available Accessories and Apps:
- Learn more about the Apple Pencil
- MediBang Paint for iPad – MediBang inc.
- Comic Draw by plasq – plasq LLC
- CLIP STUDIO PAINT EX for manga – CELSYS,Inc.
Wacom Intuous Pro Medium Tablet
The premier digital drawing tablet manufacturer, Wacom, updates its popular top-of-the-line tablet by incorporating bluetooth connectivity.
This tablet has a smaller footprint than the previous Intuous 4 and 5 models, but retains the same drawing surface area size. It is also a little heavier. Not a lot, but certainly a bit more than the previous medium models we have had.
This device made our list for the best digital drawing tablets and displays because of its quality and amazing upgrades. Consider these amazing features:
- 8,192 Levels of Pressure Sensitivity
- Bluetooth Wireless Connectivity
- Improved Cable Connection for Reduced Risk of Breakage
- Optional Texture Overlays for Personalized Surface Feel
Formerly, the Wacom Intuous models only offered 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity. While this is much more than many of the alternative, “knock-offs”, it is far lower than what is now offered by Wacom’s latest Pro models.
The flexibility you get as an artist to manage your lines and get the look you desire for your style is unmatched by other tablets we have tried. There’s simply no substitute we have found yet. 8,192 levels of pressure sensitivity certainly provides the artist with the control over their work.
You can easily place the optional texture sheets on the surface of the tablet to mimic the feel of a pencil on paper. This design provides a more real world feel to artists looking for that traditional sensation when drawing.
That said, we use the standard overlay that comes with the tablet. Some reviewers have said the sheets shorten the life of the nibs on the stylus. We have not noticed shortened life, but several nibs come with the tablet when you buy it. They can be found in the base.
Learn more about the Wacom Intuous Pro:
Check out the optional texture sheets:
- Smooth Texture Sheet (Wacom Intuous Pro – Medium)
- Rough Texture Sheet (Wacom Intuous Pro – Medium)
- Large, Smooth Texture Sheet (Wacom Intuous Pro)
- Large, Rough Texture Sheet (Wacom Intuous Pro)
Learn more about the replacement nibs:
Yiynova MVP20U+FE(V2) Pen Display
We are talking about the best digital drawing tablets and displays available, and the list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the Yiynova product.
There are many alternative pen displays on the market that compete with Wacom. The problem is that most are nowhere near the quality. Many artists have been happy with the Yiynova and the Huion pen display tablets.
I have personally owned the Yiynova pen display. I still have it, but it sits in the closet now. It is a fantastic alternative choice for artists on a budget looking for the power of a Wacom.
The surface is smooth and glides across the screen. Used with the right software the price certainly makes you feel at home with your choice. The pen is weighted well. It matches the heft of the Wacom stylus, but this is likely due to the fact that it requires a battery to operate.
It isn’t perfectly matched to the Wacom, but it’s definitely for the artist with a smaller budget. This tablet is well worth the money. If you want a direct to screen drawing experience without impacting your wallet, this is the tablet.
Yiynova even offers a competing version of Wacom’s new Cintiq Pro Engine, which essentially makes your tablet a combo screen and computer all-in-one. They call this the Yiynova Cloud PC. Check it out, here. This is a Windows OS system only.
Yiynova has a couple displays for you to consider:
An awesome desk mount arm accessory:
Wacom Cintiq 22HD Pen Display
We’re down to the wire now with listing the best digital drawing tablets and displays. This one is my favorite of the bunch, but it isn’t for every budget, for sure.
The Cintiq 22HD doesn’t have touch capability (the 22HD Touch, does) but it provides 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity. This pen display is a fantastic digital drawing tool and proved to me why Wacom charges as much as they do for their devices.
The drag of the stylus on the screen is near perfect in producing the sensation of drawing on paper. It’s not exact, but there is definitely something familiar there.
The screen is well designed in every aspect. It is rich in contrast and colors look bold and fantastic. It is definitely screen glare-resistant. As mentioned before, the stylus doesn’t use batteries or require any charging.
The stand for the 22HD is versatile allowing for rotation and angling. This stand is capable of standing up nearly straight and collapsing to almost a flat position.
Other pen displays are too bright and hurts your eyes over time trying to draw that masterpiece. The Wacom is simply just right. The side panels are filled with programmable buttons for various software controls like zooming, in-app rotation, brush selection and more.
Is It Too Big For The Desk?
I was in search of a large screen for my pen display, but not too large. Having the 19″ Yiynova, I felt the 22″ Wacom would be marginally larger. The Yiynova display was not an overly obtrusive size. I wanted something just a little larger.
I resisted the 27HD from Wacom as I felt it might be too large for my needs. When the 22HD arrived, I was quite surprised by the size. The box was as large as any HD TV I have purchased for the bedrooms in the house. It was enormous!
Luckily, when I opened the box I saw that a good portion of the size was packaging. However, the unit is much larger than my former Yiynova. It fits on my standard-sized desk pretty well. The display uses a good amount of the width.
Adjusting the angle of the display I can free up a lot of my desk surface. Learn more about the various Wacom Pen Displays:
There You have It, The Best Digital Drawing Tablets And Displays
There are a lot of other options and more are entering the market to try and become the best digital drawing tablets and displays. We have only scratched the surface here.
I am pretty sure there are a lot more that could appear here. We will continue to add to this list as we find ones that merit a spot, so keep coming back and review this post.