What is a graphic tablet? How to choose the best graphic tablet

Do you want to know what a graphic tablet and how to choose the best graphic tablet? If you are thinking of buying a tablet and do not know very well which to acquire, read on.

If you’re starting in the field of digital drawing or illustration, perhaps you’ve wondered what a graphic tablet is and what to keep in mind to choose the most suitable to you. Thanks to the use of graphic tablets to draw, you will feel the freedom of movement and accuracy difficult to achieve with a mouse. We’re going to give you a few tips and, of course, we’ll explain what a graphic tablet is and how to choose the best tablet.

What is a graphic tablet?

A digitizing tablet, also called graphic tablet or drawing tablet is a peripheral that allows users to enter graphics or drawings by hand, just as you would with pen and paper. It also allows you to point and point to objects on the screen. It consists of a flat surface on which the user can draw an image using the stylus (pen) that comes next to the tablet. The image does not appear on the tablet but is displayed on the computer screen. Some digitizing tablets are designed to be used by replacing the mouse as the primary pointing device.
How to choose the best graphic tablet what is graphic tablet
Buy a tablet for drawing has many advantages, especially for the digital artist. It allows you to create an endless number of illustrations or drawings without spending a bundle on materials (such as watercolors, oils …). And if you make mistakes you can easily erase.

Choosing a Graphic Tablet

You must know the points of choosing a graphics tablet since it is an article that you will use for a long time and, in most cases, is not cheap.
Here we leave a number of issues to consider before buying a digitizing tablet. Let’s start.

The size of the graphics tablet

One aspect to consider is the size of the graphics tablet you want to buy. Normally the same models of tablet graphics will be available in various sizes. These usually range from a paper size DIN A5 (half a folio) to a DIN A3 (twice a folio).
Obviously, the size of the tablet will influence its price but in addition to this, you must take into account the space where you are going to place it. If your desktop is small, a 48 cm graphic tablet is going to be excessive and you should not have it.
You also need to think about whether you’re going to travel a lot with the tablet or what you’re going to use it for. If you are a realistic illustrator, for example, a large graphic tablet will be very useful. Instead, if you are a graphic designer and you just want to make a few logos or simple design, with a small graphics tablet you will have more than enough.

The pressure levels (NDP) of the digitizer tablet

Pressure levels (NDP) of digitizing tablet are one of the most important things you should look. A higher pressure level, higher sensitivity will have a graphics tablet and more accurately can handle the pencil on the canvas.
If you are going to use your graphic tablet to draw or paint you will need high-pressure levels.
Currently, tablet pressure levels range from 1024 NDP to 2048 NDP. This last number is the best and if you can buy a tablet with this amount of pressure levels, do not hesitate.

Type of connection to the PC

You can connect graphics tablets to the computer via USB cable or via Bluetooth. USB tablets on average are cheaper and have the advantage of not having to be powered by external batteries. They take energy from the USB cable. Bluetooth ones have the advantage of being wireless, so you can use them comfortably while away from your computer, but you must feed with external batteries (batteries or rechargeable batteries) and require a computer with Bluetooth support (or appropriate adapter).

The reading speed (RPS / PPS)

The reading speed is also very important. You can find it defined as Reports Per Second (RPS), or, as with the Wacom tablets, as Points Per Second (PPS).
This figure simply represents the frequency with which the data are transmitted from the device to the computer. The higher the frequency, the better the direct correspondence between the tablet and screen.
A low reading speed indicates a probable effect of “dragging” of the line or the area active pen is moving faster than it appears on the screen.

Supplied software

Graphics tablets can be used with various software, from Photoshop to applications, for technical drawing. However, in many cases, they are provided with the device that allows you to fully exploit their full potential. If you can not decide between two digitizers with the same technical characteristics, choose the one that comes with the software that you think is best suited to your need.


The pen is the main instrument through which we interact with the tablet. Its quality is of paramount importance to achieve good designs. Fortunately, it is almost always included in the price of the tablet, but can be of various types. More advanced ones, for example, in addition to being ergonomic and easy to grip, have programmable buttons that allow you to call up specific functions, change the line thickness etc. To underline that some nibs must be powered with AAA batteries, which are hardly included in the product box.

The best brand of graphic tablets

Anyone who understands a little of this will tell you that the best brand of the graphics tablet is Wacom. In fact, Wacom has practically the monopoly and for that reason, its prices are more expensive than those of the competition.
However, there are equally valid but less well-known alternatives like Huion or Ugee.

Price of tablet

It is certainly the most important aspect. Prices of touchpads are varied and there are some that are not suitable for all budgets. Our advice is to first think about how much you want to spend and then choose the best within that budget.


At this point, you should have quite clear ideas of what a tablet is, how it works and what are the technical characteristics that you should consider. Now, what you can do? Obviously take a look at the tablets currently available and find the tablet that best suits your needs. If you want to buy one, you can look at this list of the best tablets to draw and design. It is a comparative of functionalities and prices.
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