The Best Wacom Cintiq Alternatives

Cintiq alternatives have come a long way over the last few years. This year I’ve been trying to review some of them and there are some really good ones out there.

Wacom Cintiq Pro 13″ and 16″

The 13 and 16 inch Cintiq’s are the top of the line graphic tablets out there right now. What makes them special are the screens, especially on the 16 inch. They have reduced the space between the glass and the screen reducing parallax and making drawing much more accurate in the process. That and the general quality of the pen are what separates Wacom from all the imitators.

Price: $999.99 + See it on Amazon

Cintiq 22HD and 27QHD

These used to be top of the line, they are still very very nice. But they will be updated early next year. Many of the alternatives out there have come very close to catching up to these tablets from a spec perspective. Because of the price tag it’s probably worth waiting a few months before investing in one of these.

Price: $1699.99 + See it on Amazon

Favorite 13" and 12" I’ve Tested

the xp-pen artist 12

1. XP-Pen Artist 12

Really good price and really great pen. The only real drawback for me is I prefer a less glossy screen but the pen feels so good it trumps everything else.

Price: $249.99 See it on Amazon

Huion Kamvas Pro 12

2. Huion Kamvas Pro 12

This display is a mixed bag. I'm putting it at number two because it's a great value. It's on of the only displays with a laminated display, it's also one of the only displays with tild support on the pen. The down side? it has wavy lines. It doesn't fit my inking work but for a lot of folks this is going to be a great display tablet.

Price: $279.99 See it on Amazon

3. Artisul D13

I reviewed this tablet well over a year ago but it still really stands up. The initial activation force was better than some of the other tablets on this list and overall one of the better built alternatives out there.

Price: $399.99 See it on Amazon

4. Parblo Coast 13

I was pleasantly surprised by the Coast 13. It's one of the better 13" pen displays out there. It does everything really well. A really well rounded drawing device.

Price: $345.00 See it on Amazon

5. Huion Kamvas Pro 13

A great laminated screen at a great price but what holds it back are the wavy lines that the pen gives off when drawing. Hopefully Huion can fix this with future driver updates. This display deserves better and should be number one on this list.

Price: $340.00 See it on Amazon

6. XP-Pen Artist 13.3

Usually I love what XP-Pen is doing but this was a rare miss for them. I had problems with the pen. Even after receiving a replacement device to review I fount the pen pressure to be to inconsistent and mixed with some line wobble it did some pretty inconsistent things. If you're looking for something by XP-Pen check out the 15.6, a little bigger but about the same price.

Price: $360.00 See it on Amazon

Favorite 15.6" I’ve Tested

Gaomon PD1560

Tie 1. Artisul D16

The pen on this display feels about as close to the Wacom pen as you can get in an alternative device. The initial activation force is really good, light sketching shows up well. Also the lines are super smooth. That's the number one thing I look for when drawing so that's why this one tops my list.

Price: $499.99 See it on Amazon

XP-Pen Artist 16 Pro

Tie 1. XP-Pen Artist 16 Pro

This is very close to the Artisul above it and the Huion below this. If you need acurate color go with this tablet. If you want a slightly smoother pen go with the Artisul d16. They are both among the best Wacom alternatives I've tested.

Price: $459.99 See it on Amazon

Huion Kamvas GT-156 v2

Tie 1. Huion Kamvas GT-156 v2

I love how it feels to draw on this the lines were really smooth and it just felt really natural. I also was impressed with the little details in the build quality it feels really solid and the button layout and slider along the side are great. The one thing holding this back from being alone at number one is the scree. The XP-Pen and Artisul screens look better and have better color.

Price: $483.99 See it on Amazon

Gaomon PD1560

4. Gaomon PD1560

This is neck and neck with the XP-Pen Artist 16 (see below). The reason this edges it out is that the colors are better out of the ox and the pen is smoother on angled lines. It’s also about $70 less. It really exceeded my expectations. There arn’t many downsides. I did have to fiddle with the drivers a bit to get it all working well but that may have just been me. Also the build quality doesn’t feel as firm. The screen protector feels cheap and the buttons wiggle.

Price: $409.99 See it on Amazon

5. Veikk VK1560

This is a pretty good first entry. The pen lines have a little jitter to them but the colors are really good and is generally a nice pen display at a good price.

Price: $329.00 See it on Amazon

6. XP-Pen Artist 15.6

I liked the Artisul D16 better, but this is significantly cheaper. The pen has a little wobble and the screen seems to scratch easily but the 15.6 is all around a really good drawing experience.

Price: $360.00 See it on Amazon

7. XP-Pen Artist 16

I really liked this tablet when it came out but you can find the new version for less money and better pen pressure. one upside is that this device comes with a stand and the new 15.6 does not.

Price: $489.99 See it on Amazon

Favorite Large Screens I’ve Tested

XP-Pen Artist 22E Pro

This new version of this display has fixed many of the problems that last year's model had. The initial activation rate has improved. The pressure curve has improved. It now has the matte screen pre-applied. I had a hard time getting it applied last year. The only downside is that fast strokes now have some fishhooking going on. Overall I really like the changes XP-Pen has made and they have even reduced the price.

Price: $499.99 See it on Amazon

Huion KAMVAS 22 Pro

More expensive than the others but I really like it. The main difference here between this and the XP-Pen above it is that the pen is not battery powered and so the lines are slightly better, but just slightly. The big difference is that I don't get fishhooks at the end of my lines like I do on the XP-Pen. In my review I do talk about the drivers which I have had a problem with on the Mac.

Price: $809.10 See it on Amazon

Huion KAMVAS GT-191

Really nice screen. There are some minor drawbacks to this tablet, but they are all minor. It cuts the price by not having shortcut buttons on the tablet’s face like some of the others on this list. For some folks that’s no problem, it doesn’t fit well into my workflow because of that but if you don’t need the shortcut buttons it’s a good way to save some money and get a good tablet.

Price: $449.99 See it on Amazon

Artisul D22

Good on Windows, not so much on the Mac, as much as I love the stand and how it sit on my desk the line quality just wasn't good enough on the Mac, if you're using Windows this might be worth checking out.

Price: $649.99 See it on Amazon

Other’s I’ve Tried

Ugee 1910b

It’s an older tablet and has some of the issues that many of these alternatives used to have. The biggest problem being the viewing angles. If you prop it up at certain angles the color just looks horrible, it’s to dark. If you look at it straight on it’s fine, but a drawing tablet is meant to be seen from an angle.

Price: $409.99 + See it on Amazon

Yiynova mvp20u+FE

Not a horrible tablet. For its size it’s one of the cheapest tablets you’re going to find. Unfortunately there are some things that held me back. The main one being lost of wobble on slower strokes. It’s not uncommon to get some on other tablets, but there was too much here

Price: $399.99 + See it on Amazon

Drawing Tablet Guides

Trying to figure out what's out there? What's good, what's bad? Check out the categories below

The Best Pen Tablets

The Best Screen Based Tablets

The Best All In One Tablets

Drawing Software