December 04, 2007

Wacom’s Cintiq monitor/tablet gets smaller, more affordable

I’ve long admired Wacom’s Cintiq line of pressure-sensitive flat-panel monitors, and I’ve watched professional animators and retouchers really rock out on them.  At 20"/$1999 and up, however, they’ve remained mostly in the league of dedicated pros.  Whenever I’d see Wacom folks, I’d encourage them to find a way to make the technology more broadly accessible–only to get a knowing, "Patience, grasshopper," smile and wave.

That’s why I’m really happy to see the Cintiq 12WX debut.  It’s built around a 12.1" LCD, and its $999 price should help make on-screen drawing a reality for many more artists.  The tablet weighs 4.4lbs–roughly 2/3rds the weight of my MacBook Pro–and the 1,280 x 800 pixel resolution should make it useful as a secondary monitor.

PhotoshopSupport.com has more info, specs, and photos.  On the whole it’s great to see this new option for digital artists.

Posted by John Nack at 10:36 PM on December 04, 2007

Comments

  • BJ Nicholls — 4:37 PM on December 05, 2007

    As an illustrator and designer, I’ll have to try it to believe it. I’m sure some folks find it easier to draw directly on an image, but after decades of using a tablet I can’t imagine having my fingers, hand and arm in the way while I work with my pen and paint tools. Getting comfortable with a tablet doesn’t take long and with an embedded display, you’re working on either a fraction of a vertical composition or it’s only a tiny 800 pixels high on this display. I’ll stick with a wide format Wacom tablet and dual 20″ 1200 x 1600 displays personally. Do you know if you can set a Cintiq hot key for autorotation? The tablet wouldn’t be very comfortable used in a portrait orientation, but it would be a lot more useful with portrait images and layouts.

  • Mattias — 1:55 PM on December 06, 2007

    I’m still waiting for motorized faders (the sort musicians have as controllers) for Lightroom and Camera RAW…

  • David — 3:03 AM on December 08, 2007

    I use a Cintiq at work, and it works great, but I wish Photoshop supported it better.
    Photoshop only supports pixel-level precision with a stylus, while the tablet supports 5,080 lpi. If you draw a line with a one pixel brush at 100% zoom, the stroke snaps to individual pixels.
    The tablet also supports about 200 inputs per second, while Photoshop updates at the screen refresh rate.
    A brush cursor that rotates with the pen rotation/tilt would be nice.
    The brush cursor is exactly 1/2 pixel to the left and 1/2 up from the actual painting location. This is frustrating when doing detail work at high zoom percentages.

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