The best drawing tablets combine the fluidity and versatility of freehand drawing with the precision of digital graphics. You need a tablet with the right stylus, pressure sensitivity, multi-touch display, screen size, low latency, and other specs to make your drawing experience as effortless as possible. We’ve chosen the most popular and well-reviewed models, both for specialized drawing tablets and all-around excellent tablets that support drawing apps.
Here’s the perfect solution for budding artists. Although it’s not quite as large and impressive as some professional options, the Wacom One model is a simplified version of an advanced drawing monitor that lets you draw directly on the screen. This is a great starter tablet for beginners.
Not for the faint of pen, this is the best drawing tablet if your budget can stomach it: It’s big, precise, and pricey. The top-of-the-line Wacom Cintiq is a 22-inch powerhouse of HD graphic creation. The big monitor offers gorgeous graphics alongside 8,192 pen pressure levels for the most intuitive, responsive digital drawing experience on the market.
Aching to start drawing but low on budget? You’ll want to consider downsizing to a Huion. This one is smaller and more basic than other tablets but fulfills most drawing needs of a designer or illustrator. This works with Android devices as well as computers.
If the Huion H430P is a bit too simple for you, try a step up and go with the H640P. This one is a bit larger with more pen sensitivity, as well as a range of shortcut buttons that are not featured on other models.
If you love the quality of a Wacom but don’t want to break the bank with a drawing monitor, the Wacom Intuos Pro is a nice in-between. The classic drawing tablet provides excellent precision and sensitivity and can be used with any computer to create instant graphics.
If you’d like a larger drawing monitor at a more affordable price point, the XP-PEN is an excellent alternative to the Wacom Cintiq. The 15.6-inch monitor is large enough to display impressive HD graphics, and with 8,192 levels of pen sensitivity, it is precise enough to produce outstanding illustrations.
For those that appreciate a good package deal, you’ll love the Parblo line of drawing tablets. Not only do these tablets come with an ultra-sensitive LCD monitor for precision graphics — they also come with lots of handy accessories. This one includes a wool carry case, a four-port USB hub, a two-finger digital drawing glove, and a protective sleeve for the included stylus.
Perfect for sketching and taking notes during meetings, the ReMarkable 2 tablet is paper-thin (0.19in) and has the tactile feel of paper against a stylus pen that no other tablet can replicate. It’s an expensive e-ink device with no color or backlight but fulfills its main purpose well if you want to ditch notepads for digital notes for good. It has storage for 100,000 pages, 226 DPI, 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity, and two weeks of battery life, plus it converts your handwriting into text and lets you draw in the margins of ebooks and PDFs.
Even if a drawing tablet accessory or monitor connects via USB, it won’t work with a Chromebook unless it’s specifically compatible — and so far, only the One by Wacom has been officially optimized for Chrome OS. The pressure-sensitive pad connects via USB-A and supports 2,048 pressure levels, which isn’t great compared to the Wacom Cintiq 22’s 8,192 but is fair for the bargain price.
With a 12.4-inch AMOLED display with 2800×1752 resolution, your digital sketches will look gorgeous on the screen. Even better, the S Pen stylus only has 9ms of latency, which combined with the 120Hz refresh rate means your drawings will appear near-instantaneously when the S Pen nib touches the laminated screen.
Of course, Apple lovers will want to stick with their tried-and-true iPad. The iPad Pro paired with an Apple Pencil 2 makes for a pretty nifty drawing tablet. For design and illustration purposes, we suggest the 12.9-inch edition.
Microsoft is not to be out-doodled. Its Surface Book is much more than a drawing tablet, however. The vibrant 13.5-inch monitor can be used with a Surface Pen and any graphics program to create beautiful illustrations, and it can also be attached to a laptop keyboard to be used as a fully functional Windows PC.
Draw on with these great drawing tablets
The best drawing tablets for one reader will differ from the next, depending on your seriousness as an artist, your budget, and whether or not you’ll want to use it for non-artistic purposes.
For a dedicated tablet for doodling or professional art, Wacom is a reliable brand to being your search. The Wacom One is simple yet intuitive — perfect for beginners and intermediate graphic artists. The stylus doesn’t need to be charged, so no unexpected delays when inspiration strikes, and the surface friction will make the 13.3-inch display feel like a true paper canvas. Professionals, meanwhile, will probably prefer the more robust Wacom Cintiq with a massive 22-inch display, improved pen tech for more accurate pressure sensing, and a wider color gamut. Plus, register either tablet and you’ll get access to free trials of some of the best drawing apps.
If you want to explore your artistic talent but aren’t sure if you want a tablet just for art, we recommend picking one of the best Android tablets, which usually have beautiful displays, accurate styluses, and the processing power to easily handle high-end graphic design apps—but are also designed for casual use. Our Samsung Galaxy Tab S7 review shows the power and versatility of the Tab lineup in general, but we recommend the Galaxy Tab S7 Plus for the simple reason that the upgrade gives you an extra 1.4 inches of screen space for your sketches.
Then again, some artists would prefer an accessory to their current devices than a whole new device for drawing. If you want something to connect to a PC or Mac, the XP-Pen IPS Drawing Monitor sports great pen pressure sensitivity and transmits your drawings to the connected computer. If you’d prefer something that’s not quite so expensive, you can pair the Huion 420 with a computer or phone, or the One By Wacom with a Chromebook.
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