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Wacom Tablet help...


thefridge
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Hi all,

I have just got some extra cash that I was not expecting so my immediate thought was to buy a wacom tablet, a decent one, instead of wasting it on something else that I probebly do not need.

I am thinking of getting an Intuos 3 A4 size, but seen some other sizes and got a little confused. There are a couple of widescreens and oversized tablets as well.

Could someone tell me the best one to get out of all Intuos3 range? And what exactly is good about the wide screen and the oversized ones?

I have found a really good deal acutally incase anyone wants to buy one, you can get an educational discount (student id needed!) which works out to be really cheaper than the original price. It can be found here:

http://www.mycomputerbits.com/acatalog/GraphicsTablets.html

Also my PC is a bit old, with only 256 mb of ram in it.. would that affect the performance of the tablet?

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A new PC seems like a good idea.

I really don't think you can go wrong with any wacom tablet. Esp the Intuous3 line.

The size is entirely down to personal preference. Some people like them small. Some big. A small one means you'll be using your wrist to draw which isn't ideal I think.

Widescreen just matches the aspect ratio of a widescreen monitor more closely which might make getting used to the tablet easier. If you have a widescreen monitor that is.

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  • 2 months later...

Bump this topic up for me... :unsure:

I'm looking to buy a wacom fairly soon for drawing and animation purposes..

Does anyone have any experience with the different models? The ones I use at uni are Intuos2, A3 monsters which are fairly good, but I sometimes struggle getting a good range of line weights. This could just be the way they are set up, and its something I'm doing wrong though.

The Intuos3 seems to be the most recent, but it also seems to be £250 for an A5 tablet. Are the cheaper models almost as good as the top of the range, or should I just piss my bank off more and go for the pricy wacom?

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Bump this topic up for me... :unsure:

I'm looking to buy a wacom fairly soon for drawing and animation purposes..

Does anyone have any experience with the different models? The ones I use at uni are Intuos2, A3 monsters which are fairly good, but I sometimes struggle getting a good range of line weights. This could just be the way they are set up, and its something I'm doing wrong though.

The Intuos3 seems to be the most recent, but it also seems to be £250 for an A5 tablet. Are the cheaper models almost as good as the top of the range, or should I just piss my bank off more and go for the pricy wacom?

With regards the cheaper ones (ie not Wacom), I really wouldnt bother, unless you're gunna grab a £20-30 one just to see how using a tablet feels. I used an A6 one like this for a few years, buts wasn't using it that much. Then I got to borrow a housemates Intuos2 (think it was the A4) and fell in love with it. When my crappy little one died on me I looked round and made the mistake of getting an Aiptek Slimtablet 600U. It does the job but the hassle Ive had from it is stupid (don't bother unless you're running Vista if you have dual screens). Also, the sensitivity just isn't right. With the Wacom I could use the lightest touch and get something. With this I have to press to get a reponse. Anyway, it's not very good but it's all I could afford at the time and for the meantime.

Been looking around a lot and I'd say go for the Intuos3 A5 (wide if you have a widescreen obviously). With the A4 I found it a joy to use, but a bit too big. This one I have has a very similar sized active area to the A5 and if it was a smooth to use as a Wacom would be wonderful.

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I don't know dick about them, but I have been toying with the idea of buying one. I can see why you ask, since the wacom models vary massively in price range. Still, you can pick up a Graphire4 for about 70 quid, so you can't go wrong really.

The thing is, I really can't imagine them being all that different. I mean, a tablet doesn't seem the kinda thing I'd imagine having many added features. Maybe little things like bluetooth, but the only major difference I can see would be the top-end one with the lcd display. Nice.

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The main differences are size of the active area, resolution (my crap tablet is only 1000 lpi, compared to 2540 lpi that I'd got used to with the Wacom, and the difference is very noticeable - curves don't come out as smoothly) and pen pressure levels. Low end ones (not sure about the low end Wacoms) tend to have 512 levels whereas better tablets have 1024. I believe the Intuos3 also supports pen types that the older generations don't, and then there are all the accessories to consider once you have the tablet, like felt tip style pens which can make it feel more natural, etc.

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The thing is, I really can't imagine them being all that different. I mean, a tablet doesn't seem the kinda thing I'd imagine having many added features. Maybe little things like bluetooth, but the only major difference I can see would be the top-end one with the lcd display. Nice.

It's not really 'features' your paying for its the sensitivity and range/ response. The issues I have with these (as I've posted before) is not wanting to fork out 300+ for something that I might never get used to, or use. Yet any time I've tried cheaper models they've been so shonky that it's put me off for life. Maybe when I've crossed off several things on my "shit I really need now" list I'll bite the bullet and spend around the 300 mark.

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Hmm.

Well, screen size isn't likely to be much of an issue to me, assuming these things let you scroll around, rather than representing the whole screen at once.

Resolution is obviously important. What would you say you have to spend before you can get something fairly sharp?

The Graphire4 looked fairly decent to me, but I've no idea how the screen res shapes up.....

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Well, screen size isn't likely to be much of an issue to me, assuming these things let you scroll around, rather than representing the whole screen at once.

They do represent the whole screen at once.. top left is top left of the screen, etc. Thats my issue with getting one smaller than A5 too. :unsure:

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I'm not quite sure what you mean by that. They do represent what's on screen at the time. The resolution mentioned is nothing to do with the screen, its how accurate the pen movement can be tracked by the tablet. The higher the lpi, the more accurate the movement.

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Hang on.....I just realised I mis-read the previous post.....

They represent what's on-screen at the time? Cool.

I thought they represented the whole image/document at once, hence offering less precision.

Yeah, apparently I can't read all of a sudden. ^_^

Hmm. How easy are these to find in the shops?

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Got my wacom A6 pad from amazon for 30 quid a year ago . Not sure where you`d buy in the shops apart from argoose but dont think they do wacom brand. By the way when i do get a new one i`d look for one with programmable buttons on the pad bit so i had a handy undo etc button .

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I got my Graphire a year or so ago - standard A5 one. It's great. It did take a while to get to grips with it, but very quickly you get used to it.

Dare I say it, I find it easier to doodle and draw on it now than I do with traditional pen and paper!

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  • 5 months later...

*Massive Bump*

) Ok, I'm looking to get a small, cheap Wacom (since thats the brand I hear from my arty mates which is worth getting) to help me do some painting/colouring. Since I have no idea what I'm really looking for, thought I'd ask here ;) I've been looking around Amazon and have seen, and am a little disheartened since I have a pretty tight budget (under 150 quid) and all the decent ones seem to be about 200 squids! Bastards!

Anyhoo! I've seen a Wacom 'Bamboo' A5 one on there for £135, here's a link. Is this any good? Shall I bite the bullet and go for a slightly more expensive one? (I'm thinking a Graphire 4 or something, for just under 200)

If anyone can recommend me somewhere better to purchase a tablet from, that would be ace too :wub:

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Hmm, I'm no expert, but I've just now purchased one (hasn't turned up yet), so I'll share what info I have.

As I understand it, the bamboo range is much less sensitive (in particular having only half the pressure-sensitivity), but may do the trick if you're just playing around with it. Though in my personal opinion, at these prices you may as well get something decent even if it is just a hobby.

The good news is that they're easily available.

Graphire seemed to be quite good (almost as good as the Intuos, from what I've heard) but have since been discontinued.

I've seen a few still available though, although if you ever need any parts it may be a bit tricky (admittedly I don't see this being likely. The technology seems fairly robust and self-contained).

The Intuos A5 which I just got was £235, you could very likely find cheaper if you looked around. TBH it's probably a tad pricey for a hobbyist, the alternative (Bamboo) had seen mixed reviews, so I played it safe. Even a professional would need a very good reason to get better than the Intuos range, though (as nice as the LCD ones look, it just seems utterly frivulous at that point).

Thing is, tablets seem like the kind of thing you'll only need to buy once or twice, so it may as well be a good one.

I hear Komplett are a pretty good trader. Beyond that I dunno.

For what it's worth, you'd probably want to consider more expert opinions more than mine.

edit:

Actually, a review I just read made mention of a strip along the top of the drawing-panel thingy that can be assigned to various functions/shortcuts.

Now, apparently the active area can be altered using the applet to get around the shortcuts getting in the way whenever you go near the top of the screen, but I wondered how this worked out in practice. Sounded fiddly, though maybe it was just how it was worded.

Also: drivers - worth looking out for updates?

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Bleh, got one now.

All very cool, haven't had a proper chance to do much just yet though.

But ANYWAY. Quick question:

Are there any considerations to take with power?

I mean, if it draws power through the USB, that means it's on as long as my PC is. So what happens if I leave my PC on all day (as I tend to do a fair bit)?

Presumably it's not the kind of device that's in danger of becoming damaged that way, right?

Almost certainly not, but I thought I'd ask.

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