Intuos Creative Stylus
join the cl ub Graphics tablet king Wacom yields to the iPad with a dedicated, professional stylus Price £85 Company Wacom Web www.wacom.com Contact 020 7744 0831
Wacom yields to the iPad with the release of a dedicated, professional stylus. But how good is it?
The iPad has established itself as the de facto electronic sketchpad for many artists, because it’s more versatile than a graphics tablet and cheaper and more portable than a laptop. So it’s no wonder that Wacom has finally launched a professional-grade stylus for the iPad 3, 4 and later models.
It’s made of rubber and aluminium, making it pleasingly light without being insubstantial, and comes with a carry case and two spare nibs. There’s 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity (in supported apps) and the familiar Wacom dual-shortcut buttons, which can be customised to perform whatever app functions you like.
The stylus works via Bluetooth, running off one standard AAAA battery, so it needs to be paired with the iPad to begin with. Oddly, it doesn’t show up as a standard Bluetooth device in the iPad’s system settings; you need to pair it with each supported app individually using whatever method it employs, which is easy to forget when you’ve just downloaded a new one.
At the moment, 15 apps provide specific support for the stylus, including ArtRage, Procreate, SketchBook and Wacom’s own Bamboo Paper – although not all of these apps support all the features of
The biggest bone of contention for seasoned iPad stylus users is likely to be the squashy, bulbous rubber nib
the stylus. A further six apps are promised to have integration soon.
The biggest bone of contention for seasoned iPad stylus users is likely to be the squashy, bulbous rubber nib, especially when compared to the clear, fine-tipped nib of something like the Adonit Jot Touch. Presumably this is necessary to support pressure sensitivity, but it does sometimes obscure smaller details on the screen, and can make drawing finer details more difficult than it needs to be.
Meanwhile, the rocker switches that act as definable buttons are easily accessible with your finger. However, their action is so loose that it’s all too easy to press one by mistake – sometimes just brushing it with your fingertip activates it. It’s not a massive bother, but for a stylus costing this much, you’d expect such little details to be ironed out.
That said, the stylus is a joy to use generally, with flowing lines and a predictable response to pressure, and palm rejection works well in most apps. Zooming in and out of your image usually takes care of any problems with the larger nib, while the battery seems to last forever – and is cheap to replace.
If you own a newer iPad and want a Cintiq-style experience minus the extra expense, this is the closest you’re going to get. However, the relative lack of app support, its high price and that squishy tip should be borne in mind.
The pressure-sensitive Intuos stylus comes with a carry case that contains two spare nibs.
The stylus uses Bluetooth and requires one standard AAAA battery that seems
to last forever.