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Hone Your Artistic Skills With the Best Drawing Tablet

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Hone Your Artistic Skills With the Best Drawing Tablet

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Buying Guide: Drawing Tablets

When it comes to creating digital art, a mouse and keyboard aren’t always ideal. Some people prefer a device with a tactile input that resembles a pen or pencil, and a drawing tablet does just that. These devices are specifically made for artists and illustrators who want to make creating digital art feel as natural as sketching on canvas or paper. These devices were initially costly and exclusive to professional artists, but over the last decade they’ve come down in price to fit the budget and needs of just about anyone. Whether you’re a novice, a dedicated pro, or a hobbyist looking for a good bargain, you can find a range of options available. The most efficient drawing tablets stand out from the crowd by meeting certain specifications that allow them to offer excellent performance in various applications. Let’s keep things short and unveil some of the top-rated drawing tablets of 2023 to level up your artistic skills.

When buying drawing tablets, you should know whether you need a high-end model or something more budget-friendly. It’s also important to know how many inches of the screen you’ll be able to use, as well as if you’d like a stylus. If you’re not careful while shopping, you may end up spending all of your money on a tablet that doesn’t suit your needs. That’s why we’ve put together this buying guide to help you choose the drawing tablet that’s right for you in 2023.

Things to Consider

Screen size

Drawing tablets come with different-sized screens, and you can choose one depending on the format you want to work in. The smallest screens are better to connect to a smartphone, while larger ones are suitable to connect with PCs or laptops for use on an artist’s table.

Screen resolution

Although you likely won’t be working with a large resolution while drawing on your tablet, high-end ones can boast up to a 4K UHD display. As a rule of thumb, the more pixels per inch, the sharper your lines and images will appear. If you end up buying a drawing tablet with low screen resolution, the colors won’t be very vivid and the overall quality of your sketches might not meet your expectations.

The pen

High-end drawing tablets have pens that are generally pressure-sensitive. A good pen should mimic the experience of drawing on paper and allow for precise line thickness, control, and texture variation. With a pressure-sensitive pen, you can seamlessly create sharper, crisper lines on your drawing tablet by applying light pressure, and also create thicker lines with a bit more pressure. 


You typically need to install specific software to use a graphics or drawing tablet with a computer or mobile applications. Make sure the tablet you choose is compatible with the programs you already use (or want to use), as well as the drivers of your computer.

Active surface

A drawing tablet’s “active surface” refers to its physical display (not the area surrounding the screen) where you can write, paint, or annotate with a stylus — in short, its active area is the flat surface where the stylus actually makes contact with the tablet. There might also be buttons or dials around the drawing surface, allowing you to customize different functions for added convenience while using it.

Using a Tablet for Drawing — What You Need to Know

Using a drawing tablet requires some level of precision, but it’s a lot easier than it sounds. If you’re a beginner, you should start by using your finger to draw over the images you’ve created on your tablet and slowly build a routine that includes more of your fingers, a tape measure, and even pencils. When you’re more comfortable and get a hold of your lines’ accuracy, you can incorporate other tools, such as erasers and colored pencils, to enhance your skills.  You can also use various drawing and photo editing programs to suit your needs. These programs will depend on your needs and personal preferences, though, so you may have to experiment with different applications before finding one that makes you happy.

01 XP-Pen Drawing Tablet

The XP-Pen Drawing Tablet is a full-size drawing monitor with an impressive screen and advanced stylus performance. The screen is large enough that it’s ideal for photo editing, design work, and other projects, and with its fully-laminated technology and passive pen design, this drawing tablet helps create a more streamlined, almost parallax-free working experience. 

This drawing tablet’s battery-free stylus has fine pen nibs, allowing for greater accuracy and a smoother experience overall. You can use the tilt feature to tilt the pen up to 60 degrees, eliminating the need to constantly change the brush in the program you’re working in. Shading your artwork is as easy as tilting the pen, helping you achieve more fluid and realistic transitions in your work. With its amazing responsiveness, anti-glare optical film, and user-friendly design, this drawing tablet is the top choice on our list.


  • Customizable interface for a smoother workflow
  • Highly transparent and scratch-resistant surface
  • Wide viewing angle — 178 degrees


  • Its stand isn’t adjustable
XP-Pen Drawing Tablet

02 Wacom Drawing Tablet

The Wacom Drawing Tablet offers an excellent way for aspiring artists to learn the ropes or for veteran designers to keep their skills sharp. Although not a professional-level tablet, this device is still excellent for personal use at home, in the classroom, or even as a secondary tablet. Because it’s been certified for use with Chromebooks, this drawing tablet is ideal for students, educators, and creators. 

This drawing tablet’s advanced pen technology can seamlessly integrate your movements into your work with its advanced electro-magnetic pen technology. The accompanying battery-free pressure-sensitive pen is also ergonomic, responsive, and feels natural to use. You can seamlessly connect this drawing tablet with your PC or laptop via a USB cable to start creating your designs and sketches in no time at all.


  • Highly precise and accurate
  • Pressure-sensitive pen offers better control 
  • Ergonomic design for ease of use
  • Includes 3-Month Clip Studio Paint Pro trial


  • May not work with older operating systems
Wacom Drawing Tablet

03 Ugee Drawing Tablet

The Ugee Drawing Tablet boasts a 10 x 6-inch active drawing area that mimics the texture of paper. This makes for a smooth drawing experience, allowing you to create digital art with no noticeable interruptions. Whether you’re using it for artistic design or a one-of-a-kind brush effect in picture editing, this drawing tablet’s passive stylus technology offers over 8,000 levels of pressure sensitivity for ideal results. 

This drawing tablet makes it possible to draw precise lines, no matter their weight and opacity, based on the pressure you apply while using its stylus. With its eight express keys, you can easily customize different functions like scroll, erase, and undo to save time and improve your productivity, and even better is that this feature-packed drawing tablet comes with an affordable price tag, making it ideal for anyone on a budget.


  • Ideal for both left and right-handed users
  • Upgraded pen doesn’t require charging
  • Eight customizable express keys
  • No lag while sketching


  • Instructions can be unclear
Ugee Drawing Tablet

04 Huion Inspiroy Drawing Tablet

The Huion Inspiroy Drawing Tablet has six customizable hotkeys to help you navigate software and make working with it easier. The customizable hotkeys also have an assigned shortcut for each program, allowing you to switch between tools with a single click instead of having to scroll back and forth on your mouse. 

This drawing tablet is sleek and compact, with an active workspace of 6.3 x 3.9 inches which makes it ideal for those with limited work areas. It’s also extremely easy to store and carry around, allowing you to showcase your creativity or get to work no matter where you are. You can also turn your Android phone into a digital drawing canvas with the OTG adapter, and this drawing tablet’s responsive, easy-to-use pen can make sketching, design work, and photo-editing a breeze.


  • Lightweight, compact design
  • Comes with eight extra pen nibs 
  • Battery-free, no-lag pen


  • Brush shortcuts may not work in Photoshop
Huion Inspiroy Drawing Tablet

05 Gaomon Drawing Tablet

The Gaomon Drawing Tablet is the ideal choice for artists and illustrators who have been searching for a device with amazing responsiveness. This drawing tablet has a large, 1920×1080 resolution in-plane switching (IPS) screen, offering you a one-of-a-kind, high-quality drawing and sketching experience.  

You can tilt this drawing tablet’s pen up to 60 degrees to draw lines or shade without having to change the device’s settings. It allows you to draw from any angle you choose with just a little bit of pressure, and any changes you make will instantly appear onscreen with virtually no lag. This drawing tablet’s pen also features two customizable shortcut keys for a hassle-free drawing experience, with “erase” and “mouse right click” set as its defaults.


  • Eco-friendly tablet and pen design
  • Type-C port for fast connectivity
  • Comes with eight replacement pen nibs


  • Some programs aren’t pressure sensitive
Gaomon Drawing Tablet

People Also Asked

Will my drawing tablet come with a pre-installed drawing program?

Yes, most drawing tablets come with pre-installed drawing programs, but you can use them with many other programs as well. If your tablet doesn’t have a drawing program installed, you can find one on the manufacturer’s website or online.

How do I know if a drawing tablet is compatible with my software?

Most drawing tablets are compatible with almost all popular programs. Refer to the product description or manufacturer’s website to make sure that the drawing tablet you’re looking at will work with your system and software before finalizing your purchase.

Who should buy drawing tablets?

Anyone who wants to draw and paint using their computer should buy a drawing tablet, as they are extremely versatile devices. Some professional artists use them to draw at different angles, in different styles, and with textures that can’t be achieved with pencils or other art programs. They’re also great for times when you want to illustrate preexisting creations, as you can draw over them with ease for your desired results.

Do drawing tablets ruin my computer?

Drawing tablets have extremely low power consumption levels and won’t affect your computer’s performance. They require less processing power to operate than the average laptop, so there’s no reason that they should slow down your device.

Alex Baum

Aug 7, 2022

37 Articles Published

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