Habits worth breaking
It was really hard after years of using keyboard shortcuts to get used to these alternatives. Yet after a few hours I was already beginning to adjust to a different way of working. Part of the reason working on the Cintiq is so special is its enormous size. Worlds away from working on a cheap A5 tablet.
Reunited: the pen and... virtual paper
One thing creative types moan about, with good reason, is colour accuracy and Wacom has taken this on board. The Cintiq boasts the ability to reproduce 92 per cent of the Adobe RGB colour space/gamut, this was much more important to my photographic retoucher mate who came round to use it and worked on it with a slightly different range of digital imaging skills and techniques. Like me, he found being able to draw directly onto the image akin to a workbench and hugely appealing. Yet even with this intuitive approach, he wasn't convinced productivity would be that different to having an A3 tablet. So, not quite ready to be taking out a payday loan for one.
As a user experience, the Wacom Cintiq 24HD is awe inspiring. It's an excellent match for concept art or creating digital watercolours in Corel Painter, as it's the feeling of sweeping your brush across a digital canvas that makes this tablet special. It is responsive, well-built and of a superior quality to anything else I have tried during my time working in the creative industry. ®
More Peripheral Reviews
Wacom Cintiq 24HD interactive pen display
It's not a resistive panel. All Wacom tablets use the same technology (patented of course :p), based around electromagnetic resonance.
I have a the 21UX sibling (2010 model), and I tell you now, if you're an illustrator or you do artwork on computer in any volume, you have no idea what you're missing.
They're not perfect, calibration is a bit annoying sometimes, especially when Wacom release new drivers that muck everything up, but for speed of working, and just getting into the art of it, Cintiqs are awesome. I'll be entombed with mine.
The only downer is software support. They're great with Painter and Photoshop, but Sketchbook Pro (and Design) should be amazing - and they are to a point, but because neither Sketchbook has customisable controls, you can't set up the screen's shortcuts at all, and it they have no Cintiq profiles of their own (brush size rotates the screen, wtf...).
The only thing stopping me from getting a 24HD is the weight and the fact that you can't mount it on an arm (21UX can be, and the standard base allows for rotation...important when drawing on paper). So it should be mentioned that 24HD is more like a draught board...much more suited to anyone working on a board.
Not a mistake
Did you see where it needed two people to get it out of the shipping carton?
digital drawing board
This absolutely needs the mechanical drawing board machinery (draughting machine) to be _the_ CAD input device. What's 24" -- about A3. When will there be an A0 mode?
Cintiq v iPad v Intuos
I have the 13" Cintiq. Don't obsess about screen resolution - it's just techy nonsense for those who like to read the brochure rather than do any artwork. I find the lag and the need to reset periodically more of a nuisance, plus the power brick and cables which make an already overcrowded desk a snake pit.
I'm also not thrilled at staring into a computer screen all the time I draw, which can be tiring (but others may have different experience).
For these reasons, I still use the Intuos more. After 12 years of using a Wacom, the draw-here-look-there thing is second nature (it felt natural after 30 minutes, tbh).
The iPad looks very interesting, especially after seeing the way Hockney and others use it (search YouTube for demo examples). It doesn't overcome the screen glare but it gets rid of the cables. I just need a way of getting the final drawing off the iPad once it is finished which doesn't necessarily involve wireless or another computer. Never mind HD, retina displays etc - I'll settle for a USB socket on the iPad 3.