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Need some graphics tablet advice

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Postby xonenine » April 12th, 2009, 11:13 pm

Lately it seems there are ideas I have that I can't realize w/o a tablet. I've never owned one, so I'd like to ask:

a)What tablet would you recommend?

and

b)What would I have to spend?

thanks, xonenine :)
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Postby WinstonGFX » April 13th, 2009, 1:06 am

I have an Intuos3 6x11 widescreen tablet. I love it. I think it set me back around $300. Wacom just release the Intuos4 though, getting great reviews around the web!
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Postby Jikaru » April 13th, 2009, 11:50 pm

the intuos4 is the newest from Wacom, I would say stick with the Wacom name because they just simply are the best all around. The biggest "XL" intuos4 is ~750-800 and the "Large" is half the prize and I wouldn't even bother with a "Small" or "Medium" one. With any tablet your looking at ~$200-800 USD. BTW Tablets are WELL worth it, you basically draw right on the screen and the hotkeys/macros are extremely convenient...I can't wait to get one myself.
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Postby xonenine » April 14th, 2009, 12:37 am

thanks, Winston and Jikaru, I will read about those models. :)
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Postby OfficerMike07 » April 14th, 2009, 5:21 am

Jikaru Wrote:BTW Tablets are WELL worth it, you basically draw right on the screen and the hotkeys/macros are extremely convenient...I can't wait to get one myself.


I've been interested in tablets, but I get turned away because the only ones that are within my budget don't appear to have screens. How is drawing on a blank tablet with a pen so much more effective than drawing on my blank desk with my mouse that it's worth my money?
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Postby SLoB » April 14th, 2009, 5:59 am

I would say it depends on your drawing style, for example if you were a cartoonist, getting your characters drawn realtime would easily be more productive (rather than sketching them out on paper, then scanning in, using the mighty pen tool on top) plus it would easily get the strokes/lines/flow in more so increasing the style into the designs.

One thing I'm not too keen on is the resolutions do not mimic the normal screen resolutions unless your spending many thousands of dollars for a top one, but I suppose you learn to deal with it as you progress.

Need more desk space if I want one of those lol, I can add in another 30cm on the end of my desk so could get one in lol. just need the money for it lol
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Postby xonenine » April 14th, 2009, 6:06 am

Hehe, yeah, it's like they can see in my pockets, $300 is about max for me. :) Cartoony stuff suits me, I will try a tablet, although I will have some desk rearranging to do, also:)
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Postby Jikaru » April 14th, 2009, 9:32 am

xonenine Wrote:Hehe, yeah, it's like they can see in my pockets, $300 is about max for me. :) Cartoony stuff suits me, I will try a tablet, although I will have some desk rearranging to do, also:)


No need, get a triangle stand and have it one it when your not using it, I would imagine using it in your lap would be easiest. AND intuos tablets can also be used as mouse pads with the intuos mouse. Intuos4 if you research Wacom.com comes with mouse/pen/tablet which tablet alone would be worth $400 pen alone is worth $70 and mouse worth $70 and the mouse is wireless and DOESNT need a battery...which is fucking amazing. So over-all I would buy the large one, which is only like $470 for all of the pieces.

So to summarize, if you have a $300 budget, save $170 more and get the intuos4 large...its your best bet...

And to OfficerMike07: I said nothing about tablets without screens...they just simply SUCK...the only way to tablet is with a screen, otherwise it useless to try to guess where you are on-screen with the pen....
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Postby WinstonGFX » April 14th, 2009, 10:11 am

The reason one would use a tablet without a screen as opposed to a mouse is the 1000 levels of sensitivity you get with the touch of the pen in photoshop etc. If you press harder, the line you draw gets manipulated according to the setting you choose, increase brush size, or opacity of spread or anything.

I completely disagree that tablets without screens suck. It takes a bit to get used to the feel of it, but so does anything in the design world. I got the hang of it after only 3 days of use. Plus who has $1200 to blow on a Cintiq?

Regarding the tablet not being monitor resolution size, I have the wide Intuos3 (6x11) that matches widescreen resolutions, so that is incorrect.
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Postby OfficerMike07 » April 14th, 2009, 10:39 am

Jikaru Wrote:And to OfficerMike07: I said nothing about tablets without screens...they just simply SUCK...the only way to tablet is with a screen, otherwise it useless to try to guess where you are on-screen with the pen....


It's my understanding that the Intuos tablets do not have screens... and your entire post was Intuos-focused.

WinstonGFX Wrote:The reason one would use a tablet without a screen as opposed to a mouse is the 1000 levels of sensitivity you get with the touch of the pen in photoshop etc. If you press harder, the line you draw gets manipulated according to the setting you choose, increase brush size, or opacity of spread or anything.


Ahh, I knew that. I don't see myself using pressure sensitivity for any of my kind of PhotoShop work. My main desire is to be able to draw on the image I'm working with... something that I could most likely accomplish with my existing computer and projector, plus a web cam (and an IR pen I made for my experiments with a Wii controller http://johnnylee.net/projects/wii/).
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Postby xonenine » April 14th, 2009, 11:43 am

I'm certainly glad I asked, it doesn't seem as simple a choice as I first thought.

The medium intuos actually seems ok, although it's about $50 more than my budget. I can see working an extra 2 Saturdays in my future, hehe. :)
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Postby SLoB » April 14th, 2009, 7:33 pm

As with all these extra add ons, they're kinda faddy, get em out of yer system type things

I mean who still uses their foot accelerator and steering wheel lol, that stopped being used and was sold on, joysticks gathering dust, various other things.

Although I think the tablet has a lot more to offer than some of those things it's still something you will either love or hate, if you're a designer then u gotta love it and persevere with the trials and tribulations and time it takes to get used to it.

Deffo worth researching this kind of thing as if you buy the wrong one then I'm pretty sure you won't buy another one. This is why I think it's a false economy to buy the cheapest, sure it kind of does the same thing but it might not be as good as the upper range tablets.

Might also be worth seeing if any m8s have one you can look at and have a go with.

My mention of the resolution was kinda right, there are different ones out there, so you should pick one that has the same as the monitor you are using otherwise your ratios are kinda screwed in translation from different resolutions.
I would want a 1:1 pixel strokes from tablet to screen and then you are talking a bit of money for something that size.
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Postby Jikaru » April 15th, 2009, 3:01 am

WinstonGFX Wrote:The reason one would use a tablet without a screen as opposed to a mouse is the 1000 levels of sensitivity you get with the touch of the pen in photoshop etc. If you press harder, the line you draw gets manipulated according to the setting you choose, increase brush size, or opacity of spread or anything.

I completely disagree that tablets without screens suck. It takes a bit to get used to the feel of it, but so does anything in the design world. I got the hang of it after only 3 days of use. Plus who has $1200 to blow on a Cintiq?

Regarding the tablet not being monitor resolution size, I have the wide Intuos3 (6x11) that matches widescreen resolutions, so that is incorrect.


Sorry wrong again there Winston, the intuos series has over 2000 levels of sensitivity. And i've tried using a tablet without a screen and it is nowhere near as friendly as a intuos WITH screens, BTW officermike all Intuos4's have screens...even the smallest one...the medium+ ones are all as big as laptop screens or bigger. If your going to get a tablet I suggest, hell I impede that you get an Intuos4.

Slob: I still love using a pedal/steering wheel while playing games, you should watch Sci-Fi channel, they had a game-somp on PGR4 and they had to use pedals/wheels.

Joysticks are still used quite popularly as well for competitive gaming for arcade games.

Also you mentioned resolution, if your resolution is bigger than the resolution of the tablet, it will always keep your 1:1 ratio...you will just have to move around with the button on the side and zoom out/in more often, which isnt a bad thing considering photoshop can do this separately...as well as the tablet.

So in all, you can trust me that Tablets (mostly Wacom!!!) are the best thing to happen to designers since...well photoshop itself. :D (or painter if you like that better)
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Postby OfficerMike07 » April 15th, 2009, 5:20 am

Jikaru, where are you seeing that the Intuos4's have screens? I know they have little displays by each of the buttons (of which the small one does not), but I haven't seen anything that suggests there's a screen under the drawing surface.
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Postby xonenine » April 15th, 2009, 6:07 am

I read reviews for like an hour today. I am very impressed by the intuos 4 reviews, but no, theres no screen on them. Nevertheless, I'm quite satisfied w/ the mediums' range of sensitivity (2048 layers) and the pen tool. Everyone says the mouse sucks, but I doubt I'd try to use the mouse much.

Apparently you can also have a proper ratio in windowed mode, if you're willing to sacrifice some screen area, at least w/ the medium Intuos4. Or there's also the 1:1 ratio, which as Jikaru mentioned, is windowed.

Since it will take at least a couple of extra days pay, in the next two weeks, I will doubtless read more. :)

Edit: what wasn't clear, that I will check now, is the contents of the software bundle. :)
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