One of my artist pals in Lansing, Steve Jencks, let me try out Manga Studio on his Wacom Cintiq (NOTE: I think Steve owns a different version than the one I’m considering, but it is pretty much the same thing).
There is one main difference between the Wacom Cintiq and the Motion Computing LE1700 and the Microsoft Surface Pro 3: it is not a computer, it is only an external monitor. Yes, there is the Cintiq Companion which is a computer, but it costs almost as much as all the three combined.
Note: this post originally appeared on my other website, Clattertron.
Wacom Cintiq: What Every Tablet Wants to Be
Wacom Cintiq Stats:
Cost: Around $999.
Weight: about 2.6 lbs.
Screen size: 13.3”, HD.
Screen Resolution: 1920 x 1080.
- Processor: None, it acts as a monitor.
- RAM: None, it acts as a monitor.
- 2048 levels of pressure.
Wacom Cintiq Pros:
- Wacom is one of the best at drawing tablet technology. The Motion Computing LE1700 and Microsoft Surface Pro 2 (not the 3) both used Wacom technology.
- The Cintiq acts as an external monitor, so there is no concern about software compatibility.
- Handy buttons built into the side, which can be customized.
- Popular among many, many artists.
- Different pen nibs allow you to customize the ‘feel.’
- Excellent pen response. I didn’t notice any kind of lag at all–which makes sense, as the Cintiq runs off the attached computer.
- Could be used with another machine if something happened to my current laptop.
Wacom Cintiq Cons:
- Cost. The 13″ Wacom Cintiq is the lowest priced model.
- Set up. This Cintiq requires the use of another computer, which means being chained to a table or a desk. Not ideal if you have limited space.
- Portability is pretty much zero. Sure, you could carry a Cintiq and a laptop somewhere, but you still need a lot of space to set everything up. Not ideal, as I like being portable.
- Cords, cords, cords. The newest Cintiq features a simplified cord set-up, but you still have to run a bunch of cords between the Cintiq and your other computer. This is not an issue for those unconcerned about portability, but it is worth noting.
- Unlike the Motion Computing LE1700 or the Surface Pro 3, the Wacom Cintiq is not a computer–it can only be used for drawing. Again, this is fine for most folks, but I would like something I can use for writing and website maintenance too.
- Like the Motion Computing LE1700, I would have to order the Wacom Cintiq online and have it shipped to my home. This isn’t a dealbreaker, but I prefer to buy these kind of items in person.
If I want the best possible drawing experience, the Wacom Cintiq is the way to go. I really enjoyed using Steve’s Cintiq, and it was easy to see why Wacom has such a loyal following.
But, where the Wacom Cintiq lacks is in the portability category. Again, this isn’t an issue for everyone, but it is something I’m very interested in when it comes to a drawing tablet.
For the price of the Wacom Cintiq, I could get a Microsoft Surface Pro 3, which is a drawing tablet and a fully functional computer. I will talk more about the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 in tomorrow’s post.