The graphics design industry is now pretty challenging. Customers are more demanding and the designs are getting more complex hence the need for higher editing standards. Therefore, industry players are seeking the best tablet for graphic designer in a bid to enhance quality, productivity, and efficiency.
The graphic design industry continues to get digital alongside any other industry in the world. So, unlike a few years ago when an assortment of brushes, pens, and papers were the default tools in the trade, tablets for graphic design are now the basic normal.
They provide you with the right platform to run the essential graphics programs that can design, create, and edit artistic work. These programs will no doubt make your designs, photographs, and drawings look outstanding.
But not any tablet christened a tablet for graphic designer will do the work as you expect it. And that brings us to the objective of this article. We will discuss factors that you need to consider when shopping for a graphic design tab as well as provide you with a detailed review of some of the top products.
List Of Top Tablet For Graphic Designer
- Apple iPad Air 4/64 GB (4th gen)
- Apple iPad Pro 6/128 GB (4th gen)
- Apple iPad 3/32 GB (8th gen)
- Microsoft Surface Go 2 8/128 GB (2020)
- Microsoft Surface Pro 7 8/128 GB (2019)
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 6/128 GB (2020)
- Samsung Galaxy S6 Lite 4/128 GB (2020)
- Samsung Galaxy A7 3/64 GB (2020)
- Lenovo Tab M10 FHD Plus Gen 2 4/64 GB (2020)
- Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet 2/64 GB (2019)
Comparison Table For Top 10 Tablets For Graphic Designers
Best Tablets For Graphic Designers Reviews
1.Microsoft Surface Go | best tablet for ux designers
We start our review on a powerful note with a device that provides you with everything that you may need from a tablet for graphic design. The Microsoft Surface Go is arguably the most perfect PC option that graphic designers should consider.
It is a 2 in 1 device that is powerful, efficient, and versatile. You can conveniently use the device both as a tablet or as a laptop at your convenience. Simply achieve this by attaching or detaching the responsive keypad.
But more importantly, graphic designers will like the fact that the device provides both a drawing surface as well as a screen. It is a complete device that doesn’t need a further attachment to another screen to pair it with.
The 10-inch device features an interesting combination of a reliable operating system and a powerful processor. The device runs on a Windows 10 S operating system and a powerful Pentium Gold processor with processing speeds of up to 1.6 GHz.
The Microsoft Surface Go is an incredible device that you can carry anywhere. It is sleek, lightweight, and interestingly compact. It weighs a paltry 558 grams. The lightweight feature, coupled with the fact that it is a complete gadget with both screen and drawing surface makes it incredibly compact.
- You can choose between the 64 GB or 128 GB versions.
- It is lightweight, compact, and portable.
- It runs on the versatile Windows 10 S operating system.
- The surface pen features an incredible range of pressure levels.
- It features a long battery life of up to 9 hours.
2.Apple iPad Pro | best drawing tablets for graphic designers
Indeed, the Apple iPad Pro is a device that needs no introduction. Even if you aren’t familiar with this device, we are confident that you’ve heard about it. Of course, as an ordinary tablet for general use. But are you also aware that the iPad Pro also makes an incredible tablet for designers?
The tablet is compatible with an S Pen, making it an impressive gadget for designing, sketching, and drawing. Even more, it features a substantial active area of up to 11 inches. However, you can always consider a larger version in the 12.9-inch version.
Interestingly, the Apple iPad Pro is a complete system with an iOS 12 operating system. The implication of this is that the device provides you with a drawing surface as well as a screen.
But more importantly, a designing tab with an OS of its own is pretty versatile and ideal for a range of other general tablet applications. Thus, apart from artistry applications, the device is also suitable for web browsing, listening to music, streaming movies, watching videos, and an array of professional office tasks.
Most artists have a soft spot for detailed photos. The iPad Pro gives you a chance to capture moments as they happen, thanks to the high-quality camera capabilities. It features a 12 MP wide camera and a 10 MP ultra-wide camera both at the rear. Well, it also features a 7MP front-facing camera for detailed selfies.
- The edge to edge Retina display delivers amazing images.
- It features a powerful A12Z Bionic chip processor.
- A combination of three cameras delivers intricate photos.
- It is ideal for both design work and general tasks.
- The S Pen is very responsive.
3.Wacom Cintiq 16 | Best Wacom Tablet For Graphic Designers
There is no debate about the reputation and credibility of Wacom. The company is the indisputable pioneer of artist tablets, and it has stayed on top of the log for a long time. The Wacom Cintiq 16 Drawing Tablet is one of the company’s most popular products, and rightly so.
The device takes pride in a 4K resolution display to deliver immaculate images. So, the Cintiq 16 is no doubt a perfect took for professional artists, designers, and illustrators. Albeit being considerably affordable, the 15.6-inch screen delivers an unbeatable resolution of up to 1920 x 1080 pixels.
But that’s not all about the screen. An anti-glare surface makes up the drawing surface giving you a fantastic opportunity to enjoy clear and detailed images of your work devoid of reflections. Besides, the screen is reliably scratch-resistant and that gives you a chance to enjoy a natural feel for longer.
Reviewing the Wacom Cintiq 16 Drawing Tablet won’t make any sense without mentioning the Wacom Pro Pen 2. The stylus is pretty slim and provides a feel that you’d get from an ordinary pen. So, you won’t need to learn any new techniques.
However, the incredible pen features even make the pen a perfect selling point. It features an impressive 8192 pressure levels giving it the right versatility and precision. Moreover, the two buttons are programmable to meet your desires.
- You can choose between small and medium options.
- It features a screen size of 15.6 inches.
- The 1920 x 1080P screen guarantees clarity.
- The passive pen delivers accuracy.
- It features a range of hotkeys for customization.
4.XP-PEN Artist12 | best graphics tablet for fashion designers
If you are looking for a dedicated designer tablet, then the XP-PEN Artist12 is an incredible option. Firstly, it is worth noting that XP-PEN is a reputable company when it comes to the manufacturing of drawing tablets for designers. The company delivers and surpasses any promise that it makes to its customers.
The XP-PEN Artist12 is a unique invention. The phenomenal drawing tab delivers a combination of a wide color gamut, extreme image detail, and incredibly vibrant colors in every artwork that it displays. This feature ensures that you can conveniently handle highly professional assignments.
Well, Artist12 is pretty customizable hence helps to speed up most processes. It features buttons that allow you to scroll up and down with ease. The device also allows for easy zooming in or out as you deem appropriate.
But the highlight when it comes to usability lies in the availability of up to 6 shortcut keys for further customization. You can conveniently program them to perform the most frequented tasks of your design process.
The graphic designer tablet and pen are pretty versatile and ideal for designers in all sectors. You can use it for fashion, 3D sculpting, photography, sketching, and animation. Besides, drawing beginners will also find the XP-PEN Artist12 perfectly useful.
- It is compatible with both Windows and Mac computers.
- A protective film guards the display against scratches.
- The hotkeys help to shorten the workflow.
- It is versatile and ideal for an array of functions.
- The XP Pen features high-pressure levels of up to 8192.
5.HUION KAMVAS Pro 12 GT-116 | best tablet for graphic design students
If you are looking for a powerful device that will reliably run intensive graphics programs, the HUION KAMVAS Pro 12 GT-116 Drawing Tablet is a perfect bet. It is a powerful device that blends reliability and convenience in an unbeatable way.
It features an 11.6-inch display, which is an incredible way of bringing together the aspects of portability and an ideal screen size in a single device. And since it comes with a screen, this is a tablet that you can tag along wherever you go. You can use it in the backyard, at camps, or when traveling.
Still, on the screen, you will enjoy a high display resolution of up to 1920 x 1080 pixels. That’s perfectly sufficient if you are looking for detailed images. The colors have minimum bias and the contrast incredible.
But more importantly, is the fact that the entire screen is conveniently laminated to protect against scratching. Again, the lamination is anti-glare hence guarantees a better visual effect.
Like most modern pens, the HUION KAMVAS Pro comes with a battery-free pen. This ensures that you can enjoy consistent drawing without the need to replace or recharge the pen.
Moreover, the pen and screen combination takes immense pride in a high report rate of up to 266 reports per second. Such an incredible report rate ensures that you can conveniently craft your sketches smoothly and with remarkable fluidity.
- The pen features a pressure sensitivity of up to 8192 levels.
- The tab is durable and comes with an adjustable stand.
- A high report rate ensures smooth lines.
- The lamination improves the longevity and visual effects of the screen.
- The pen features a resolution of up to 5080 LPI.
Buying Guide For Tablets For Graphic Design
There is more to graphic design tabs than price and brand. So, while you will find it ideal to consider the aforementioned, also lookout for the following factors;
Standalone Or Monitor
Graphic tabs come in two types; standalone and drawing monitors. Certainly, the first call that you will need to make is whether you need a standalone device or a graphics monitor.
It is essential to note that monitor options are not used alone. You need to pair them with a PC or MacBook to get the best out of them. They act as drawing boards while you store your drawing on the computer screens. So, when you decide to choose a drawing monitor, look out for its compatibility.
On the other hand, standalone options are like any other professional tablet or computer. However, they also feature additional accessories that are necessary for artists and illustrators such as an active pen.
The display resolution is important for both standalone tabs and drawing monitors. It determines the quality of images that you can view on the screen. A higher resolution translates to more vivid and detailed images, a means to high-quality designs.
The most illustrious models take pride in resolutions of up to 4K, but that may not be necessary if you are just starting up. A screen resolution of 1600 by 800 pixels is good for most graphic tasks.
Type Of Pen
Is there a graphic designer tablet without a pen? That’s up to you to think about. But the basic line is that all graphics tablets come with a sensitive pen. Beyond that general consideration, it is essential to consider the type of pen as that will determine the reliability of the tablet that you choose.
The three types of pens that tablets come with are battery-powered, rechargeable, and passive options. Battery-powered models run on two AAA batteries. On the other hand, rechargeable options work as an ordinary smartphone. You will need to recharge it every time it runs out of power.
Passive, or EMR, types of pens are the most interesting. They will work for as long your tablet has power. Unlike battery-powered which will require a consistent battery to keep working or the rechargeable options that will run out of power now and then, EMR options work with unmatched consistency.
Pen Pressure Sensitivity
Well, there’s more to pens than simply looking at the types of pens available on the market. Whether you’re getting the best tablet for graphic design also depends on pen pressure sensitivity.
Pen pressure determines the accuracy of the device as well as the level of thicknesses that you can make. So, the tablet should deliver the required line thicknesses with utmost accuracy.
The highest pressure sensitivity rests at 8192 levels, while there are devices with pressure levels that are as low as 500. To get everything right on this. However, if you aren’t on a budget that is too comfortable, go for models with minimum pressure levels 2048.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. Do Graphic Designers Need A Tablet?
– If you’re a graphic designer who doesn’t like to sit still in the same place for a long time, a graphics tablet will make your life easier.
A good graphics tablet will aid you in meticulously retouch photos, create digital illustration. With a stylus, you can draw more naturally as if you were using a pencil. A mouse can’t provide so much flexibility.
So, if you’d like to work more smoothly with enhanced pressure-sensitive flow, opt for a good graphics tablet.
2. Is An iPad Good For Graphic Designers?
– Yes, an iPad is good for graphic designers. Its pencils can provide you with a more natural feeling. If you work on the go, its slim design will render you much flexibility. The battery life is also impressive.
Nevertheless, you must use some top-notch software for a better experience. Such an app is Vectornator. Even though you’ll have to spend a fortune to get this device, it’ll be worth it.
3. What Graphics Tablet Do Professionals Use?
– Well, it really varies from person to person. But a good graphics tablet should be handy, light, responsive. It should also have diverse electronic options. Some of the greatest options for professionals are Wacom Cintiq 22, Apple iPad Pro 12.9 (2020), XP-Pen Artist 15.6, Huion Kamvas Pro 24, Wacom Intuos Pro.
Nearly all illustrators, artists, and designers are on the market for dedicated drawing tablets for graphic design. This is not only to complete essential art projects but also to meet the high-quality required in the market today.
Ideally, you must get everything right during your shopping process. But what makes the best tablets for graphic designer? Well, as you’ve probably found out from our discussion above, opt for a lightweight, powerful, handy, and responsive option.