Cin­tiq 13HD Touch

This pint-sized Cin­tiq tablet of­fers a sub­lime dig­i­tal draw­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, at a price that won’t make you swear

ImagineFX - - Art Tools Hardware -

Price £720 here are few peo­ple who would use the words ‘Cin­tiq’ and ‘af­ford­able’ in the same sen­tence, but you might be sur­prised to learn that the small­est model in Wa­com’s de­sir­able screen-based tablet range ac­tu­ally qual­i­fies for that la­bel. The aim of the Cin­tiq 13HD Touch is to de­liver the first-rate draw­ing ex­pe­ri­ence of its big­ger sib­lings for a price that most ac­tive artists could jus­tify.

A Cin­tiq is es­sen­tially a mon­i­tor you can draw on: plug it into your Win­dows

TCom­pany Wa­com Web www.wa­ or Mac com­puter and you’ve got a sec­ond screen that recog­nises the nib of the sup­plied pen and, to a lim­ited ex­tent, the touch of your fin­gers as well. This 13-inch dis­play gives you a draw­ing area of roughly an A4 sheet: plenty for ev­ery­day sketch­ing and paint­ing, al­though any­one in the habit of cre­at­ing large-scale dig­i­tal paint­ings may find the size a con­straint.

The build qual­ity of the screen unit is very good, al­though the ca­ble con­nec­tion feels a lit­tle del­i­cate. The ca­ble it­self is a hand­ful: at one end, it splits into three to ac­com­mo­date the power con­nec­tion, USB 2.0 for the pen feed­back and HDMI for the video link. (If your com­puter isn’t new enough to of­fer a built-in HDMI port, HDMI adap­tors for your con­nec­tion type are read­ily avail­able.)

The sty­lus is Wa­com’s Pro Pen de­sign, and it feels solid and bal­anced. Nine re­place­ment tips and a pen holder are in­cluded. Wa­com’s stan­dard driver and soft­ware en­able you to cal­i­brate the pen and ad­just its feel: you can also cus­tomise the hand­ful of but­tons to one side of the dis­play to trig­ger favourite com­mands in each art pro­gram that you use.

Al­though this Cin­tiq costs far more than a sim­i­larly sized In­tuos tablet, the dif­fer­ence in your ex­pe­ri­ence is like night and day. Screen-less tablets like the In­tuos al­ways re­quire you to re­learn how to draw: look­ing ahead at a screen while your hand is be­low never feels en­tirely nat­u­ral. Draw­ing on a Cin­tiq is as care­free as us­ing a sheet of pa­per. You can pur­chase a Cin­tiq 13HD with­out touch-sen­si­tiv­ity for about £140 less, but the first time you use two fin­gers to zoom into or ro­tate your dig­i­tal can­vas, you’ll know the ex­tra ex­pense was worth it. July 2016

The pen pro­vided with the 13HD Touch is nicely weighted, mak­ing it a plea­sure to draw with.

Cus­tomise the func­tions of the Touch’s Ex­pressKeys to avoid switch­ing back to your key­board.

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