How Do I Get My Hand On Every Digital Artist's Dream, a Wacom Cintiq?

in #technology4 years ago (edited)

The title has to be great and catchy isn't it?

Well, maybe it's not really every digital artist's dream...maybe it is just my personal preference...maybe?

This is a long post, keep reading if you'd like to know how i get my hand on this monster with a CHEAP price!


WACOM is a trusted brand for graphic tablet widely used by digital artist around the world. Around 10 years ago, in 2007, i bought my very 1st graphic tablet by WACOM, it's called Bamboo Fun. It comes in 2 sizes, small and medium. Mine is a small one because i can't afford to buy the medium size at that time. Most Malaysian artist are poor u know, including me. People doesn't appreciate art so much in this country. Sad but true.

At that time, i have 2 options, either Bamboo Fun or the cheaper Genius graphic tablet. I've had an experience in using Genius in the company i previously working at, so i know how it's performance. At first i'm planning to buy the Genius, however it's out of stock at the shop i went to. No choice, i have to buy the Bamboo Fun after doing some calculations.

However, after using the Bamboo Fun, i know where the extra money goes to. It's really great and worth every penny i've spent! I'm not saying the Genius aren't good, but the Bamboo Fun is much more better. The design, the pen pressure, the pen itself are all great! I've made thousands of artworks using this little monster.

WACOM Bamboo Fun Small - Mine is exactly like this!


To cut it short, after years of using WACOM brand, i'm now officially a Wacom fan. It's the only brand for graphic tablet that i trusted. Until today, i have 6 model of Wacom Tablet in my possessions. They're Bamboo Fun, Intuos 3 Wide, Intuos 3 Large, Bamboo Pen Small, Intuos Pen Small and the latest is WACOM CINTIQ 21UX 2nd Gen. The Cintiq is different to other model because it was an on-screen tablet. Means, we can directly draw on the screen like we draw on paper. We will get the most control of our line work in creating arts.


Yeah, why i bought Cintiq? Is the other Wacom Tablet not that good?

It's not like that, the other Wacom in my possesions are all good, even the 1st Wacom i bought, the Bamboo Fun are still working great until today BUT, i found out that it's really hard to produce a smooth and steady line art using another tablets other than Cintiq, it's possible but not easy. For another tablet, when we draw, our eyes are looking on the screen while our hand holding pen is moving on the tablet board, it's not natural. Cintiq in the other hand are not working like that because we can draw directly on the screen, our eyes and hands and pen are all on the screen. As mentioned above, it's like we draw on paper. More natural and more control over line art.

I'm also a concept artist for animations, film & games. Its no problem for me to produce regular digital painting using a regular tablets, in fact i'm still using them when i need to travel while doing my job. They're easy to carry because of their small size.

BUT lately, i need to do some jobs that required a neat line art and i need to do it fast. Long before digital, i did this kind of job traditionally, using pencil & pens on paper and i'm really good at that. I can sketch and inked hundreds of simple illustrations in a day. But when using regular tablets, i realize that my speed are all gone. It takes me all day long to finish the jobs. So that's why i've decided to buy Cintiq, because i believe i can do it faster when using it.


It's been months now that i'm using Cintiq, it works great and did what i expected. The Cintiq i bought was 2012 model, the name is Wacom Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen. It's the last model before the HD line-ups went to the market. But why i bought it instead of the latest HD line-up?

OBVIOUSLY because it's CHEAPER! But, how cheaper it is?

At first it is a hard decision for me to choose which model to buy. As stated in my bio, i'm also a tutor in local college here in Malaysia, one of the subject i taught is Digital Art. In class, i'm using a Cintiq 22HD Touch as my main tablet. It is at this point i realize that i can produce some good line art using it. So, i did some research about the on-screen tablets by Wacom. They're all comes with high price tags, i will not buy them even if i can afford them. So i've expand my research to another brands. Now in 2017, there're many alternatives to Cintiq, so we have many options to choose. They're many brand out there like UGEE, YIYNOVA, HUION and such that offered alternatives to Cintiq.

After days of research and watching some reviews, i found out that the brand second to Wacom is Yiynova with the price tags of half a Cintiq with nearly similar specs. The problem is, there's not many dealers here in Malaysia and if there is, they have no tester units, so i can't test it out myself before buying. At this point, i really let go my ego as a Wacom user, i really want to buy this Yiynova, the model is MVP22U V3. It's also a HD model with 22 inch display, what a good deal compare to Cintiq.


Fortunately, after a few chats with my buddy, he said that he has bought the latest Yiynova a few months back, he is also a good guy to refer about the tech things. He said that the model he owned is the V3 model, he also said that he was surprise by how much the improvements compare to V2 model. What a good opportunity to test it out. So i went to his studio and test the Yiynova MVP22U V3 myself. Well, my opinion is, the feeling of using Cintiq is not there (of course, because it's not Cintiq!). So how now? Do i need to buy the expensive Cintiq? I'm willing to spent for the 13HD's Cintiq but it's too small for me, i need a bigger one but it's too expensive!

Then, this idea come up to my mind, even the Bamboo Fun that i bought in 2007 is still working great, why not i just buy the older model of Cintiq? The 1st model came up to my mind was a Wacom Cintiq 21UX, it's one of the older model in Cintiq's line-up. After doing some research, i found out that it has a brother, which is the Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen. The difference is, of course the design, pen pressure, buttons, etc (u can Google it yourself). But the main difference is, the 1st Gen using Intuos 3 technology while the 2nd Gen using Intuos 4 technology. At this point, i've decided that this is the right choice! It's older model but it's a WACOM, a trusted brand for graphic tablets!

WACOM Cintiq 21UX 1st Gen

WACOM Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen

I went to eBay and looking for it, and to make it short, i've found a very good deal there. In fact there's many good deals there. I've successfully bought a used Wacom Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen in a great condition for only USD500 (it's around MYR2200) plus USD158 for postage (around MYR650) plus USD40 for import charges (around MYR160). The total is USD698 (MYR3100++ at that time, depends on currency rate). Good deal isn't it? It's about 1/4 of the Cintiq 22HD price.

This is how i get my hands on Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen for ONLY USD500 (around MYR2100++ excluding postage & import charges). The rest is history...;)

Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen VS Cintiq 22HD Touch

I ONLY can compare this 2 models because i'm currently using them, 21UX in my studio and 22HD Touch in class.

The main difference is of course the resolutions. One is regular and one is HD. The screen size? 21UX and 22HD Touch are both comes with 21.5 inch working space. However the 21UX screen ratio is 4:3 while the 22HD is 16:9...if measured by overall working space, the 21UX got a bigger area to work on.

The other big difference is, 21UX is non-touch, only working with pen, but the 22HD Touch comes with options to turn ON/OFF the touch input, so u can use it with your fingers like using iPad. Nevermind, i'm not using the touch function anyway.

At first, i found out that my 21UX produce a jitterly line art, but after installing the latest driver, it's all gone.

Trust me, it's not much difference in terms of feel & performance of using this 2 tablets. They're both by WACOM, only the specs and technology used are different. I'm not saying that my 21UX is better than 22HD Touch, of course NOT. The 22HD Touch is one of the latest line-up of Cintiqs, so it should be so much better. As for me, both are good products, it's depends on your wallet to choose which one to suits your need. Cintiq 21UX 2nd Gen is more than enough for me...;)

Before anyone said that i am a Pro-Wacom, i want to tell u NO, it's not. I'm using Wacom product mainly because it's good and all my opinion is based on experience of using & testing the units, but i REALLY hope that other brands can catch-up the Wacom technologies or do it better. The Wacom prices are outrageous for now, we need a real competitor to find balance on the market prices.

Last but not least, if u're using graphic tablets of any kind, don't forget to use this glove, other than to avoid the tablet surface from scratching, it can also cleaning up the surface at the same time while u draw.'s really a long post, i have no potato to give u but i hope that u can make the right decisions before buying a graphic tablets, because every penny's count! Hope it'll helps!

If u have any questions regarding graphic tablets, just let me know in your comments, maybe i can answer... ;)

Don't forget to upvote & follow me if u like my post!




Hi, really nice review post. It would be great to put references on some photos/videos that might not be of free use online, that will be a great plus factor in posting on Steemit. Have a nice day. :)

Hi @zazarina ,

Noted and thanks for your really helps...cheers...:)

I agree that Cintiqs are really awesome tools, I did use one for a while, in a company that provided it. But I've never really had the urge to splurge and get one at home... I think it's because

  1. the heat factor. I live in a warm country and my Wacom is cooler to touch.
  2. ergonomics. I like leaning back while working, and also resting my elbow, lower arm or even wrist on the table or tablet.
  3. I'm very used to my Wacom after nearly 20 years lol
  4. of course the lower price, and lighter weight :)

but that's just me. I hear that Cintiqs are extremely popular with most artists, so your post is very useful. Thanks!

Hi @stahlberg ,

It's great to finally see someone replying here according to the topic discussed. And for sure u are in the creative industries same like me...:)

As for your points:-

  1. Heat Factor - Yeah, it's getting warm by hours of using it, my country also warm, but fortunately i'm working in the air-conditioning space, so it's not a big deal for me.

  2. Ergonomics - For Cintiq users, there're product called ERGOTRON to mount their tablets. This mount can suits any positions u need for the tablets, u can even bring down the tablet to your lap. But the price are not cheap, i'm just using a standard stand that come up with the Cintiq for now.

  3. This is personal preferences, as long as it's good for u, then keep on rocking! ;)

  4. I agree on this, me too were thinking about it deeply before investing into the Cintiq because of it's price. I also agree that the other models are light-weight, i'm still using Intuos 3 when travel...:)

Anyway, im really welcome your comments here! Thanks for passing-by!

Thanks @zen1982, ERGOTRON sounds interesting, didn't know about that.
Oh I just remembered, for a tablet even cheaper than Intuos 3 check out Huion, I never used those myself yet but I hear good things. They even have Cintiq-style, about 400 up to 900 usd on Amazon.

really nice review..

I personally reccomend you to go for any XP-PEN Artist series drawing display tablet ( 12"~24"), they're under 1000 bucks and they work the same quality as a wacom cintiq if not better from what majority of my art friends tell me, Some cool features like battery-free stylus , fully laminated display and pen pressure & tilt is also supported, It's cheaper and just as good .

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NIce and eleborate blog :D To be honest I'm a fan of the intuos series.. I had a cintiq for a little while but I just couldnt get used to drawing on it.. Maybe for lineworkand stuff it is nice, but painting on it just felt strange :D

So i stick to my cheap intuos pro L ;D

Welcome to steem btw ;)

Hi @beekart ,

Thanks for ur comments, intuos line-up are also a great product by Wacom...maybe using Cintiq is just my personal preference.. will amend my post later concerning it...btw, nice art u got there sir!

Thank you very much :D
Imo, wacom is just the brand to go with if you want to draw/paint digitally.. especially for home devices.. i hear the ipad+ipen thing is quite nice on the go . ^^'s just a brand...whatever the brand is, the skills are more important right? Hehe...

As for iPad + Apple's not in my wishlist for now since i don't like to do outdoor sketches while on-the-go...but maybe will get one if needed...haha

Totally.. No skills.. no cool arts .. whatever the size of your cintiq or ipad ;D

I bought the new surface pro and eventhough drawing on the screen isnt super (at least for me) the thing is powerful enough to easily run photoshop and hook up an intuos so its a great mobile workstation which i occasionally need for in house gigs :)

i just say to be honest i just surprised and i loved ur review post

Hey cool post, I also bought a used Wacom Cintiq and I'm still using it, never had any problem with it. Those Cintiqs though. Damn, they're expensive even second hand. I'm not using it often enough to justify buying one. It will be looking at me the whole time, from my table with it's accusive looks. I aleady have keyboards, instruments, books and MIDI controllers doing that to me Oh the pains of waisted potential... :D

Also it occupies so much space right?

But maybe I'll buy a Huion. They catched up I heard, in terms of technology.

Anyway. Nice article. :)

hey thanks @justgoscha

i wonder why u wanna get huion when u already have cintiq?

Great story! I share your excitement for the tablet. I remember when I got my first one for a birthday present. I spent hours playing with it. It really does open a new world for your brain to explore.

Yeah @vilmore ...i remember that too! It's one of the great moment when i get my hands on my 1st Wacom tablet 10 years ago! :)

yep, the statement is absolutely true, got a cintiq as my design partner is my dream too. but, my earnings is not enought yet to buy it for now ^^.
let's talk at discord, i need an advice from the real wacom fan ;)

Hey @aranda

Thanks for agreeing to my opinion..haha...someday, u'll get what u want, a also took me 10 years to get 1 u know... ;)

The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls.
Eye catching arts.
Because i am also artists.

Very interesting post about new methods of creating patterns. I really liked it.

I really dont know where to start. I wish to have one too....and budget is an issue.

@perennial - if the budget is tight, i suggest u go for a cheapest one first, maybe can find a used one online or u can try a regular tablet (not on-screen tablet) from another brand like HUION (it's cheaper than WACOM), i have test it a while ago, it's got an 'OK' from me...when ur skills got better then u can upgrade anytime...;)

Yeah definitely going for a 2nd hand.

Great info @zen ... love your post here... I'm using Cintiq Companion 2... upgraded myself from ugee... lucky for me... i didn't buy it ... its been given to me from the funding I did and collabs with my Uni... Fyi...I've been drawing manual since 15 years ago and started went digital after realize its time for me to evolve (about few months ago... haha)... i'm not a tech person and your writings help me to understand the technical part of dif specs and devices... thanks!

Hi Mr @sireh , thanks..glad u like it...;)

I never had a chance to try the cintiq companion till now..but i trust wacom products, they're usually great...

btw, i believe ur experiences in traditional arts is more than 15 years sir, i read your cartoon since in middle school...and it was 20+ years ago! who doesn't know u sir...haha...when u already got a strong basic in traditional art, i believe u'll be mastering the digital art in no's just a matter of understanding how the software's works....

Hahaha... this proves the fact that i'm not a math and tech person... always forget numbers... and i always believe I stop aging and forever in 30s... hahaha...

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I have a Wacom Graphire tablet and I agree with the "not natural" feeling that you mentioned. I tried using my Kindle Fire table for drawing but it's not pressure-sensitive. Someday, I too will get a Cintiq. Happy drawing!

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