The best animation tablet: 9 amazing options to consider today!
An animation tablet is a valuable tool in a graphic designer’s arsenal.
In today’s digital world, a professional graphic designer needs a selection of tools to help them hone their craft. These solutions can range from state-of-the-art PCs or Mac computers, to a simple and ergonomic keyboard.
An animation tablet (or drawing tablet) is a valuable device for creating logos, animations, and other graphics, without relying too heavily on using a mouse.
With a drawing tablet, you can draw just like you would with a pen or pencil, on a surface which feels like paper. This allows for far more creative control than you’d get with a mouse and keyboard (or even a touchpad).
Animation tablet technology has evolved drastically over the years, to the point where we now have advanced solutions with built-in screens and battery-free pens.
Today, we’re going to be looking at some of the best animation tablet options on the market.
Our picks for the top animation tablets are:
Huion KAMVAS 16 Drawing Display (best for beginners)
Wacom DTC133W0A One (best with software)
GAOMON PD146PRO (best versatility)
Wacom Cintiq 22 (best luxury choice)
2020 Huion KAMVAS Pro 24 (best large screen)
Wacom Intuos Pro (best for capturing paper sketches)
Artisul D22S 21.5-inch (best with adjustable stand)
If you’ve heard of animation tablets, then you’ve heard of Wacom. The two go together like tea and biscuits, with Wacom earning the top spot in the hearts of many designers.
This 13.3-inch graphics display might be small, but it’s fantastic for a beginner animator. The display delivers just enough friction to make it feel like you’re drawing on paper, and the pen feels real too, with no batteries.
With absolute digital freedom, you can sketch and paint on the screen, and watch your art come to life.
There’s also access to creative software built in. You get Baboo Paper Pro, Clip Studio, and Adobe Photoshop, among other things, for a few months for free.
Natural surface friction
Creative software included
Works with Mac, PC, and Android
Bonus software trials for teachers
True-to-life color gamut
Lightweight and portable design
The Wacom animation tablet is a fantastic piece of tech for someone keen to get into the higher end of the animation tablet market.
You’ll need to attach the screen to a computer to use it, but once you do, there’s no limit to what you can create.
For those getting started with animation, this is fantastic choice, but the connection cable isn’t great, and you may notice the screen breaks easily.
Sometimes, you’ve got to invest in your career. For a graphic designer, this might mean upgrading your printer or purchasing a new laptop. It could also mean investing in something like the Wacom Cintiq 22.
This sensational drawing tablet is by far one of the best on the market from Wacom. The device comes with Pro Pen 2 technology, a low activation force, and various tilt recognition levels.
Reduced parallax and access to 192 pressure levels make this one of the most natural drawing experiences you can get from an animation tablet with screen performance.
The screen itself shows more than 16.7 million colors, and the anti-glare, and scratch-resistant screen helps to protect your work.
HDMI and USB connections
16.7 million colors
Battery free pen
1,920 x 1,080 HD display
Pro Pen 2 technology
192 pressure levels
Low activation force
Tilt recognition and reduced parallax
Scratch and water-resistant screen
Access to leading animation software
This Wacom animation tablet is the kind of animation tablet you’d buy as a true professional, looking to show off your skills.
You can access all the market leading software you might need on it, including Photoshop, and you can access a host of tilt and pressure levels.
One issue is it’s quite difficult to set up the drivers if you haven’t had a Wacom before.
Why struggle with a tiny computer animation tablet when you could have perhaps the largest drawing monitor on the market. The KAMVAS Pro 24 comes with a sensational 23.8-inch screen, and an unbeatable 2.5k resolution.
The QHD screen shows you everything you need to make really detailed animations come to life.
There’s 120% sRGB color with a 16.7 million color display so you can present your work like never before.
On top of a fantastic display experience, you get a powerful 5080 LPI pen capable of managing all kinds of movements.
The fully laminated screen lacks any significant parallax, so you can get a more beautiful, clear view as you work. There’s also no air inside the screen, so you don’t have to worry about dust either.
2.5k HD resolution
Tilt option for easier drawing
120% sRGB color gamut
16.7 million display colors
5080 LPI pen resolution
High-quality laminated screen
Anti-glare glass to reduce eye strain
The battery free pen included with the KAMVAS Pro 24 offers up to 8,192 levels of pressure sensitivity, as well as 60-degree tilt support.
A 266 PPS report rate is excellent for quick feedback, and there’s no battery to weigh you down either.
One slight issue is the display might not be as bright as necessary for some.
The Wacom Intuos Pro Paper is a great animation tablet that also lets you capture editable versions of your pen-on-paper sketches, completely digital from start to finish and export as raster or vector files.
7. Artisul D22S 21.5-inch (best with adjustable stand)
As animation tablet technology continues to evolve, it’s becoming much easier to find a device which feels as natural to draw on as a piece of paper.
It may still be difficult to find the right angle for the best drawing experience. This is why the Artisul D22S 21.5-inch comes with a special adjustable stand which allows you to alter your angle to the most comfortable position.
Aside from a great tool for angling, the Artisul also comes with a battery-free stylus with 60-degree tilt function to help you get the perfect depth in all your designs.
There’s support for 8,192 levels of pen pressure, and an anti-glare film which helps to reduce the interference of ambient light, improve the quality of picture presentation, and makes the image clearer.
21.5-inch size for plenty of drawing space
8,192 levels of pen pressure
60-degree pen tilt
Anti-glare film for natural drawing
Anti-corrosion and anti-scratch coating
Adjustable stand up to 80 degrees
Compatible with Mac and Windows
Notably, the Artisul isn’t a standalone tablet. You will need to keep the device hooked up to a laptop or PC when you’re using it.
It’s also worth noting the resolution on this device isn’t quite as impressive as what you may get from a brand like Huion or Wacom.
The Parblo is a well built drawing tablet made for portable use. On a device like the Parblo Coast10 the ergonomic design is strong buying-factor, in addition to the extra accessories that come with it.
Ready for drawing, taking notes, or sketching, this computer animation tablet from Simbans is a versatile choice for the beginner artist.
If you’re looking for something small and easy to use, the Simbans can quickly become the go-to solution you use for quick and convenient design.
There’s a pre-installed Autodesk sketchbook app, so you don’t have to download any extra software to get started.
Equipped with a quad-core processor, this device is surprisingly fast for its price, and it comes with a decent HD screen resolution too. With 64GB of disk space, you can save and download all kinds of apps from the app store.
The Simbans also features Wi-Fi connectivity, a HDMI port, Bluetooth, and more.
Android 10 processing
IPS HD crystal clear screen
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
You don’t need to keep this device plugged into a computer or laptop to use it, which is convenient for people who like to design and draw on the move.
It’s also extremely easy to download any extra tools you might need to use to design with.
There’s also space to upgrade your file storage, and a set of 2 cameras back and front. Some people feel these tablets aren’t built to last, however.
Graphic designers do their best work when they have access to the tools, they need to let their creativity flow.
An animation tablet is a valuable piece of equipment in a graphic artist’s arsenal, offering an excellent and convenient place to sketch digital ideas.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for choosing the perfect tablet, there are a few things you can consider to boost your chances of making the right choice. For instance:
Size: The more complicated the project, the bigger the animation tablet may need to be. If you need to work on a large piece of work, and you don’t want to have to sketch one section at a time, consider a slightly bigger tablet.
Display: The display of any animation tablet with screen access should be good enough, so you can appreciate all the details contained within your drawings. Try to look for something with a good display resolution and a decent amount of brightness too.
Functionality: Your animation tablet may come as a standalone product with its own operating system, or it may need to plug into an accompanying computer or device. If you want your device to be more portable, choose something with a standalone OS.
Compatibility: If you are going to plug your animation tablet into a device, then you’ll need to ensure everything will work seamlessly with the tools and operating systems you already use. Find out if your tablet works with Mac as well as Windows devices, and whether you can download popular software for it.
Usability: How comfortable and convenient is it for you to use your animation tablet? Do you have a way to angle or tilt the screen if necessary? Is the pen battery-free, so you don’t have it weighing you down as you sketch? What does the screen feel like to draw on?
Budget: Although there’s more to making an important purchase for your career than budget, we all have financial restraints to think about. Remember, don’t look at price alone, try to ask yourself what kind of value you’re getting for the cost.
An animation tablet is a valuable investment for today’s graphic artist, offering endless opportunities for sketching and practicing your skills. Hopefully, this list has given you some excellent options to consider.
Don’t forget to check out our other review lists for more guidance too.