Best Drawing Tablet with Screen for Beginners

drawing a cat on a drawing tablet

The world of digital drawing is just as immersive as the tools used to design them.

Whether you are an amateur starter, enthusiast, or professional, you will need a proper drawing tablet for the work.

A lot of good things can be said about the XP-Pen Artist 12 Pro regarding its specs and price, and I believe it is the best option for most beginners.

However, everyone has their own style and requirements, so below you will find a list of the best drawing tablets with screens for beginners to choose from.

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Wacom Cintiq 22

Specs Details
Weight 12.3 lbs.
Resolution 1920 x 1080 (FHD)
Active area 18.7 x 10.5 in.
Response 14 ms
Viewing Angle 178°
Levels of Pen Pressure Sensitivity 8192
Lines Per Square Inch 5080 LPI
Tilt Recognition ±60 levels
Stylus Requires Battery No
Standalone product? No.


The Wacom Cintiq 22 drawing tablet is a favorite for professionals and is often listed as the most well-rounded model for professional work.

It compensates well for what it lacks in portability. With a huge active drawing area of 19.5 x 11.5 inches, it easily qualifies as one of the larger models available on the market.

Its pen pressure sensitivity of 8,192 levels makes it so much easier to draw brush strokes. Combined with a tilt recognition of ±60 levels, 6 standards, 3 felt and 1 stroke nibs, it easily gives you everything you need to draw to your heart’s desire.

The screen is scratch-resistant and coated with anti-glare to prevent reflections from messing up your work. The FHD 1920 x 1080 display boasts 16.7 million colors and 178° degrees of horizontal and vertical viewing.

You can tilt the view almost parallel to the screen and still get awesome viewing of your work. Its Pro Pen 2 relies on patented electromagnetic resonance technology to power itself, which means you get all of its functionality without a battery.

The 16 programmable keys are open for you to customize and bind shortcuts to efficiently work your way through any project.

The Wacom Cintiq 22 drawing tablet works well with both Windows and Mac OS. It is among Wacom’s most popular drawing tablets for beginners and professionals alike. While on the expensive side, it can be worth the investment if you are looking to pursue digital design.

Check out the Wacom on Amazon by clicking here.

Gaomon PD1560

Specs Details
Weight 3.48 lbs.
Resolution 1920 x 1080 (FHD)
Active area 13.5 x 7.62 inches
Response 25 ms
Viewing Angle 178°
Levels of Pen Pressure Sensitivity 8192
Lines Per Square Inch 5080 LPI
Tilt Recognition No
Stylus Requires Battery Yes
Battery Life 5 hours
Standalone product? No


The Gaomon PD1560 is an excellent drawing tablet with a screen for beginners. It balances performance and features with the price, making it a worthy contender for first consideration.

The graphics tablet has a 15.6-inch display with FHD 1920 x 1080p resolution. The 178° wide view angle provides crisp quality from wherever almost anywhere you look at the screen. It comes with an operational time of 5 hours and a charging time of 2.5 hours when drained.

The Gaomon PD1560 comes with 10 programmable keys for binding shortcuts to work efficiently. The 4 menu keys on the left add more functionality to work with.

It is compatible with both Windows and Mac OS and thus is popular between both OS users. The integrated signal interface is designed to prevent signal cable dropping by keeping a check on movements.

Check out the Gaomon on Amazon by clicking here.

XP-Pen Artist 12 Pro

Specs Details
Weight 5.41 pounds
Resolution 1920 x 1080 (FHD)
Active area 10 x 5.67 inches
Response 14 ms
Viewing Angle 178°
Levels of Pen Pressure Sensitivity 8192 LPI
Lines Per Square Inch 5080 LPI
Tilt Recognition ±60 levels
Stylus Requires Battery No
Battery Life 2 hours
Standalone product? No


When it comes to portability, few drawing tablets beat the XP-Pen Artist 12 Pro. It’s sleek, stylish, and gets the job done right.

The tablet doesn’t compromise on features and its compact frame carries more than what you can expect. The 11.6-inch screen has a 178° degree viewing angle and an anti-reflective coating. You can work without being distracted by glinting light and view your tablet from various angles without any change to the display quality.

The XP-Pen Artist 12 comes with 8 programmable keys, including a roller wheel to ease your tasks. It has a very low response time of just 14 ms, meaning your movements will reflect almost simultaneously on the tablet.

The stylus does not need a battery and can be used indefinitely without interrupting your work. It also has an eraser at the end which comes real handy to make quick edits on your work.

The XP-Pen Artist 12 Pro is compatible with all the major software, including Photoshop, Blender, Illustrator Adobe and works with both Windows and Mac OS.

It has a decent LPI of 5,080 and tilt-recognition of ±60 degrees. Its 3 in 1 cable design eliminates the need for converters and allows you to quickly plug it into a workstation when needed.

Check out the XP-Pen on Amazon by clicking here.

Apple iPad Pro 12.9 (2021)

Specs Details
Weight 1.5 lbs
Resolution 2048 x 2732
Active area 11.04 x 8.4 inches
Response 24.4 ms
Viewing Liquid Retina XDR
Levels of Pen Pressure Sensitivity Not explicitly specified, works
Lines Per Square Inch Not explicitly specified
Tilt Recognition Not explicitly specified, works
Stylus Requires Battery Yes
Battery Life 10 hours
Standalone product? Yes


The list would be incomplete without mentioning the Apple iPad Pro 12.9. Built with perfection in mind, it is actively used by industry professionals and just an awesome drawing tablet.

Unlike the drawing tablets mentioned above the iPad does not require you to connect to a computer to work, but you probably already knew that.

The Apple iPad Pro 12.9 boasts the latest M1 chip that is optimized to deliver superior graphics performance. It has a better thermal architecture and GPU optimization combined with lower power consumption that results in better battery life and lower temperature.

It is specially designed for graphics-intensive workloads and tasks that span over 4k video editing, 3D designing, and augmented reality domains.

The signature liquid retina display has a 2,732 x 2,048 resolution and 264 PPI. It is incredibly immersive and lets you enjoy looking at what you are working on.

The anti-reflective coating protects from light glinting off the screen and interfering with your work. The 10.32 x 7.74 inches active drawing area is sufficient for a portable tablet, though some may complain that it is smaller than what is expected.

The WiFi + cellular model weighs in at a light 643 grams, letting you carry it anywhere you want. It has a huge 10-hour battery life that is more than sufficient when working without access to power.

The Apple Pencil holds true to its performance and is simply a delight to work with. A bit on the expensive side, but worth buying if you have the budget to spare.

Check out the iPad Pro on Amazon by clicking here.

Learning the Basics About Drawing Tablets

Drawing tablets come with and without a screen. The ones without screens are plugged into a computer and drawn on with a stylus. Drawing tablets with screens are more expensive (sometimes significantly more expensive) but they can be worth the investment.

They are easier to work on, enable you to directly look at what you are working on for easier hand-to-eye coordination. One thing to keep in mind is that not all drawing tablets with screens are standalone products, some will still need to connect to a computer to work.

Don’t get me wrong – connecting to a computer helps a lot, but in some situations, you might prefer to not have it connected.

The following features are what you need to look out for:

  • Software Support: Always research the drivers and software support that comes with your tablet. You should know how well it will work with the rest of your setup so you can work effectively. Good driver and software support will significantly increase available software it can run with, reduce input lag, and sync completely with your PC.
  • Pressure Sensitivity: Your drawing tablet translates the exerted pressure from the stylus as input and uses it for many features, such as line weight. A tablet with 2,048 levels is enough. For comparison, just imagine that you are working with 2,000 different shades of every color.
  • Resolution: The resolution for drawing tablets is measured in Lined Per square Inch (LPI). It defines the detail you can add to the activity area of the tablet.
  • Size: The size of conventional tablets’ activity area roughly translates to small (6 x 4 inches), medium (8 x 5 inches), and large (10 x 6 inches). These come in all shapes, sizes, and configurations, so you are free to choose what suits you best. However, do check the screen resolution that comes with them. Also, a smaller screen size means fewer hand movements and less fatigue. At the same time, a larger screen size makes it so much easier to zoom in and add details to your work.
  • Standalone: Can the tablet be used by itself or are you required to connect it to a computer.
  • The Stylus: Your tablet pen has quite an impact on your work. They come in battery-free and rechargeable battery (replaceable and internal) configurations as well as other features. Battery-operated ones come with more specifications as they can power complex hardware.
  • Tablet Buttons and Features: Drawing tablets come with programmable buttons that enable the binding of keyboard shortcuts. For beginners, streamlined software is more important than buttons, but they help you become very efficient once you get a hang of them.
  • Tilt Recognition and Multitouch: Tilt recognition adds a whole new level of brush strokes and control by recognizing how you hold the stylus and translating its input to the tablet. Multitouch enables features such as pinching for zooming in and out. They are incredible for professionals and just as useful for beginners.

Take your time when making the final decision to settle for a drawing tablet. Weigh your options carefully and settle for a drawing tablet that balances your requirements optimally. The following are the best drawing tablets with screens for beginners that I recommend:

Choosing Your Drawing Tablet

Selecting the right drawing tablet for beginners can become a real pain without a proper guideline to know what to look for. With these points in mind and our recommendations to get started, you can be assured to pick a drawing tablet that exactly suits your requirements.

As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. At no cost to you, I may receive a commission if you buy through a link on this page. Read more here.

About the author: My name is Marcus, I am a lawyer (LL.M.) and the founder of this website. Besides sometimes doing lawyer stuff, I like to draw and improve my skills as a “digital artist”, and I write about what I learn on this website. If you want to know more about me or reach out, then you can click here.

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