WACOM Intuos Small Graphics Tablet
A quick review of my first proper graphics tablet
I bought a cheap second-hand graphics tablet several years ago but never got on with it. However, circulation problems with my right hand on the mouse prompted me to look again at these tablets, especially as I'm left-handed anyway (but always used the mouse in my right hand). I was having lots of trouble too in trying to make selections of figures when processing photographs. Researching the whole area of graphics tablets shows what a minefield it is out there now. WACOM have been the brand leaders for many years but several alternative and cheaper makes are now available. They also come in several sizes, with and without displays, with wireless or wired connections, and so on. I opted for WACOM as reliable brand leaders with a very high rate of customer satisfaction. I did not want a built-in display as I wanted this tablet to mainly replace the mouse on my computer, and they were ridiculously expensive anyway. The size was the problem. I went for the smallest because of price and available desk space, but then agonised over whether or not I should have bought the medium size. I need not have worried. The movement area in the tablet is actually larger than the area I used to cover with my mouse. And the active area of the pad exactly matches the screen, so I know exactly where to place the pen - or I will do when my muscle memory finally settles down. I bought the cable version, saving a few pounds over the wireless model. £66.00 including postage from WEX. The "free" drawing or photo processing software with it is only a 90 day licence so hardly worth the effort of downloading it. As so many people say, why didn't I get one of these a long time ago? They're magic, especially the ability to vary brush size by pen pressure as I edit my photos. And using a pen is so much more comfortable and natural than trying to draw or select with a mouse. Still a long way to go. I'm still struggling with the buttons on the pen - what to press for scrolling up and down, what to press for a right click... But very happy so far. Update May 2021: Really getting used to it now. The only thing I still find frustrating is "drag and drop" - it all seems to go wrong when I use the pen for this, so I always revert to the mouse when I need to shift things about. But the editing with the painting tools, brushes and so on is fabulous, with the pen pressure automatically controlling the brush width.