Review: Wacom Intuos 2015 tablet: Draw Art Photo Comic

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Wacom has just refreshed their Intuos product line in September 2015 with the release of 4 new tablets, namely Intuos Draw, Art, Photo and Comic.

Note that Wacom has the Intuos Pro and Intuos product lines. Intuos is more budget friendly while the Intuos Pro is more expensive and targeted at professional digital artists.

I bought the Intuos Art tablet and it arrived the next day as they had it in stock here in Singapore.

Comparison between Draw, Art, Photo & Comic

Before we get into the actual review, let's take a look at the differences between the Intuos Draw, Art, Photo and Comic using this comparison table below.

Model Software Size Multi-touch Colours Official price
Draw ArtRage Lite Small, medium No White, Blue $70, £55 / $150
Art Corel Painter Essentials Small, medium Yes Black, Blue $100, £75 / $200, £150
Photo Corel PaintShop Pro, AfterShot Pro (Windows);
Macphun Creative Kit, Corel AfterShot Pro (Mac)
Small Yes White $100, £75
Comic Clip Studio Paint Pro, Anime Studio Small, medium Yes Black, Blue $100, £75 / $200, £150

Three things to note.

1. The names of the models are related to the software they are bundled with
2. Intuos Draw does not have the Multi-touch feature
3. Intuos Photo only has one size which is Small (6 by 3.7 inch working surface)

If you use your own drawing software and don't need multi-touch, you can just get the Intuos Draw which cost USD $70 and $150 for Small and Medium. That would be the cheapest option.

Specifications

Here are the key specifications

  • Small size: 6 by 3.7 inches working surface
  • Medium size: 8.5 by 5.5 inches working surface
  • ExpressKeys: 4
  • Pressure levels: 1024
  • Tilt: No
  • Spare nibs: 3
  • Resolution: 2540 lpi
  • Reading speed (pen): 133pps
  • Connection: USB
  • Wireless support: Sold separately
  • OS: Windows 7,8,10, Mac 10.8.5 or newer
  • Warranty: 2 years in Europe, 1 year everywhere else

It supports 1024 levels of pressure sensitivity and the pen does not support tilt recognition. If you need 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity or tilt recognition, then you have to go with the Intuos Pro.

The Intuos line is for beginners and budget conscious people. Personally, I think they are good enough for production work as well, but that's just me.

What's in the box

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Included in the box are the tablet, USB cable, stylus, manual and driver CD. I would advise you to download and install the latest drive from Wacom's software while waiting for your tablet to be shipped.

The password for the bundled software is pasted on a sticker on the box.

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The tablet design is quite cute with the placement of the 4 ExpressKeys. You can set the button functions in the Wacom settings panel.

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Buttons are functional and has a nice click to them.

The overall build quality is good even though it is plastic throughout. The blue coloured top part has a nice rougher textured surface while the working area is smooth. In addition to Mint Blue, you can also choose from white or black coloured tablets. Colour availability depends on which model you're getting.

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That's my old Intuos3 with rather similar specifications compared to the Intuos Art.

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The new Intuos 2015 is smaller, thinner and lighter. By smaller, I mean the areas outside the working areas are reduced. I like that because my table space is limited.

The tablet is also thin and light. It weighs about 480g. It's as thin and light as an 10-inch iPad. This means it's convenient to pack up the tablet to bring to your office, school or home. The USB wire is detachable for packing.

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The tablet's back is textured and there's a rubber feet at each corner.

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You can slide open the top flap to reveal the internals.

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Under the flap, you can put in the optional wireless module and a battery to power the tablet in wireless mode. There are instructions carved onto the surface so you'll know exactly what is what.

The spare nibs are also located under the flap, so is that little round metal nib extractor.

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All the ports are located at the top of the tablet. At the top right of the tablet is the hole for you to physically lock the tablet and the switch for the Multi-touch function.

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At the top left is the USB port.

Stylus

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The stylus has two buttons by the side. There's no eraser and to me it's not really a big deal.

The stylus is thinner than the usual Intuos Pro ones. There's no rubber grip but the textured surface throughout ensures that it's not slippery even if you have sweaty hands. It has a nice weight and comfortable to hold and draw with.

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That's the setup on my table.

Performance


The new Intuos 2015 tablet performs well and predictably, as expected from a Wacom tablet. Installation of the tablet drivers is effortless. Wacom is usually very good with their driver support for Mac and Windows.

The 1024 levels of pressure sensitivity is a joy to work with. At no time did I feel restrained because it did not have 2048 pressure levels. The pressure curve is similar to other Intuos/Pro tablets that I've worked with. If you have used other Intuos tablets before, you'll feel right at home.

There's a nice tactile feel to the nib as it glides on the working area. There's no lag to speak of. Strokes appear instantly as dictated by the stylus movement. Quick strokes are smooth and have no jitter.

Excellent performance overall.

Multi-touch

Multi-touch feature is available. Wacom has their own preset gestures for certain functions. You might already know some of these gestures because they are quite similar to gestures that you would use on a tablet or smartphone. For example, you can pinch to zoom in, or pinch out to zoom out. Moving two fingers around will pan the drawing area, like the Hand tool in Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator. Rotating two fingers will rotate the canvas, but your software must have that Canvas Rotate feature in the first place, e.g. Illustrator doesn't.


There are many other gestures, you can also set your own gestures. Whether or not the gesture will work depends on whether your software has that particular feature.

When you're in the drawing applications, the software will not register your finger taps or swipes as strokes to draw. You still have to use the stylus to draw. Personally, I prefer to use the keyboard for shortcuts and functions because I've been using them for years and more used to using the keyboard.

Drivers

There are two places for you to change the settings.


After you installed the drivers, when you first plug in the tablet, the Wacom Desktop Center application will open. This is where you can control the more general settings, basically settings not related to drawing, such as backing up your settings, checking for updates, etc.

Under System Preferences, you get a whole lot of other settings. You can adjust the pressure curve, assign functions to shortcut buttons or gestures, and many other things. It will take a while to figure things out because there are really many things you can setup. Or you can also leave them to default in which case the tablet will work perfectly fine too.

Wireless

The wireless accessory kit is optional. I did not buy it so I can't really say anything much. You can read the many reviews for it at www.amazon.com/Wacom-Wireless-Accessory-Tablets-ACK40401/dp/B006MRAVFE

Video review

Conclusion

I think releasing the Intuos 2015 in so many models is a smart move because people can get to choose the software they want to use it with.

It's a great tablet. It performs predictably and well just like most Wacom tablets I've tried. There's nothing bad that I can say about it.

5 out of 5 stars.

Availability

You can find more reviews and the tablet from these product links below:

Intuos Draw:
Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr | Amazon.it | Amazon.es | Amazon.co.jp

Intuos Art:
Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr | Amazon.it | Amazon.es | Amazon.co.jp

Intuos Photo:
Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr | Amazon.it | Amazon.es | Amazon.co.jp

Intuos Comic:
Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr | Amazon.it | Amazon.es | Amazon.co.jp

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