Disclaimer: Huion sent me the WH1409 tablet for this review.
Huion Giano WH1409 wireless graphics tablet
The working surface area of this tablet measures 13.8 by 8.6 inches. It's huge! It measures around 17-inches diagonally. Drawing on such a large working area tires my hand faster than working on a smaller tablet (I use a Medium Wacom Intuos currently).
The highlight of this tablet is its wireless feature. The USB wireless receiver can be found behind the tablet, kept behind a latched holder. Throughout my usage, I did not encounter any lag or disconnection.
The wireless receiver also acts as a flash drive with 8GB of storage capacity. It's quite handy to store files in case you need to bring the tablet around. Transfer speed of the USB feels like USB 2.
Both the tablet and pen comes with built-in batteries that you can charge with the USB cables provided. I've been using the tablet for a few weeks with the initial charge. Even if the tablet or pen runs out of battery power, you can still draw by using them in wired mode.
These are the indicator lights that show you that the tablet is switched on, pen is working, and battery level.
The drawing surface has a matte texture with a feel that's similar to Wacom tablets. The pen draws with a good tactile feel and friction.
The pen has a nice comfortable non-slip grip and comes with two buttons. Weight is light but not too light. Just right.
A pen holder and four space nibs are provided. The replacement nibs are hidden inside the pen holder.
The pen has no eraser at the back. It's just a charging port.
Driver installation and features
Before you install the Huion drivers, make sure you uninstall all other tablet drivers first. e.g. Wacom drivers.
After installing the driver, you'll be able to get the pressure sensitivity to work and also customize the 12 shortcut keys on the tablet.
I've tested the tablet in Windows 7, 8.1, Windows 10 and Mac OS 10.10.5.
On Mac OS
On Mac OS, the tablet works perfectly.
Brush strokes on the Mac are almost flawless. Occasionally there will still be some jitter, but it's really a non issue and you really have to look out for it specifically to see it.
Here's a drawing using Photoshop (Mac). It's great. All the strokes turned out the way I want them to be.
My experience with Windows and the tablet isn't satisfactory. Actually my main issue is the compatibility when it comes to working with Photoshop.
There's slight jitter when it comes to using Photoshop (Windows) with the default Huion driver. The workaround is to install Lazy Nezumi Pro to make the jitter go away and create beautiful smooth strokes. However, Lazy Nezumi Pro cost USD $35. This is quite strange because there's no such issue with Photoshop on the Mac, and I'm using the same version of Photoshop with different OS.
Update 18 April 2016: I've installed the latest driver V12.2.14 and the result is what you see above. That was drawn without Lazy Nezumi and there's slight improvement to the jitter issue.
Drawn with Photoshop (Windows) with Lazy Nezumi Pro plugin.
If you have to work with Photoshop, you'll have to factor in the cost of Lazy Nezumi Pro.
Using with Illustrator (Windows) is satisfactory as it will smoothen out the brush strokes. The brush is able to detect pen pressure too.
Strokes in Mischief
Strokes in Krita
The jitter stroke issue seems to affect only Photoshop. I've tested the tablet with other Windows drawing applications without any problems, namely, Wacom Bamboo Paper, Mischief, Sketchable, Medibang Paint Pro, Krita and Autodesk Sketchbook (tablet version). In all these drawing apps, pressure sensitivity works perfectly and there is no line jitter.
I've tried Photoshop CS5, CS6 on Windows 7, 8 and 10 and there's the line jitter issue with all of them. So maybe this is more of a Photoshop issue than a problem with the tablet driver.
Possible solution to jitter in Photoshop: Open up Preferences. In the Performance panel, click GPU Settings Advanced Settings. Set it to Advanced.
If you're using a Mac OS and thinking of getting this tablet, I say go ahead without hesitation.
If you're a Windows user, if you use Photoshop, you have to factor in the additional cost of buying Lazy Nezumi Pro to remove the jitter from Photoshop brushes. If you use other Windows drawing softwares, there's no problem.
Below are the pros and cons at a glance.
+ Affordable compared to Wacom tablets at the same size
+ Wireless tablet
+ Wireless pen
+ 12 shortcut keys are useful
+ Pen pressure works well
+ Replacement pen nibs are included
+ Works perfectly with Mac OS
+ Works with most Windows drawing applications except Photoshop
+ Drivers has lots of customisation
- Windows Photoshop brush strokes have jitter
- Working on this huge tablet can be tiring
- No eraser on back of pen
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