Best Tablet for Animation in 2021: 11 Top Drawing Tablet Options

A drawing tablet on a desk
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Considering most of our lives are moving online, it was only a matter of time until art took the same turn. Digital art and animation have been around for many years, but they used to require large, expensive machines to handle the drawing and animation process. Now animators need to look into finding the best tablet for animation.

Those days have long since gone, and now we have many small, personal drawing tablets that allow every individual to take advantage of the technology, and express their skills. You don’t even need an office, just your tablet, desk, and imagination.

Below are our favorite drawing tablets that beginners can use to start with digital art and design, or professionals can use to continue projects or start new ones, from the comfort of their couch. For some of these tablets, you might need to invest in a monitor for graphic design.

Best Animation Tablet for Beginners

The best tablet for beginner animators is the Wacom Intuos Pro. This tablet is simple, yet powerful and reasonably priced, it is the perfect entry-level tablet.

It has 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity, allowing for a wide range of drawing and design opportunities. It is very customizable, and you can adjust almost all of the settings and buttons to your needs.

Best Tablet for Artists

Our favorite tablet for artists is the Huion H610X Tablet. It is ideal for artists on the go, and even though the tablet is incredibly compact and portable, it still has a large drawing surface.

The are multiple customizable buttons to adjust the tablet to your needs, and the tablet is designed to be used by left and right-handed users, ensuring the drag of your hand does not affect your work. It is without a doubt one of the best tablets for animation.

Best Drawing Tablet for Animation

The Huion Kamvas is our top pick for the best tablet for animation. The extremely high-resolution screen and the 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity make for a powerful and highly detailed tablet.

The fact that the tablet has its own screen ensures you can draw and work anywhere, and the powerful computer driving the tablet allows you to get incredibly detailed animations done without sacrificing speed or efficiency.

Best iPad for Animation

The best iPad for drawing and animation is the iPad Pro 12.9”. This tablet has a large screen, impressive features, and an unmatched performance. With the addition of a Magic keyboard, it can be converted into a laptop. The Apple Pencil makes for smooth and impressive drawing, especially when combined with the Procreate app and some amazing Procreate brushes.

Best Drawing Tablets For Animation Comparison Table

Wondering what tablet do animators use? Here is a table that shows some of the very best options.

TabletBest ForImageBudgetOverallCheck Price
Wacom Intuos Pro Beginners $$ 9.5/10 Click to Buy
Huion H420X USB Tablet Beginners $ 9/10 Click to Buy
Huion H610X Pro Tablet Beginners $ 9/10 Click to Buy
Wacom One All-Round $$$ 9/10 Click to Buy
Huion Kamvas 12 Animation Tablet All-Round $$$ 9/10 Click to Buy
XP-Pen Artist Pro 15.6" Tablet All-Round $$$ 9/10 Click to Buy
HUION H420X OSU Tablet Beginners $ 9/10 Click to Buy
Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 Tablet All-Round $$$ 9/10 Click to Buy
Apple iPad Pro 12.9" All-Round $$$ 9.5/10 Click to Buy
Apple iPad Pro 11" All-Round $$$ 9.5/10 Click to Buy
Simbans PicassoTab Tablet All-Round $$ 9/10 Click to Buy

Best Animation Tablets Reviews

Animation on drawing tablet

Whether you’re looking for the best animation tablet for beginners or the best display tablet for animation, the tablets listed below are the best in the business.

Wacom Intuos Pro Review

Pros
  • 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity
  • Compact and lightweight
Cons
  • No Major Cons

The Wacom Intuos Pro is a medium-sized, yet powerful tablet that is ideally suited for graphic artists of all kinds. The tablet is slim and lightweight but still has a large work surface, keeping the tablet compact, but not sacrificing any workspace.

The animation pad itself has multiple gesture capabilities that allow you to speed up your workflow. The tablet pen has natural tilt support and is battery-free. The tablet has customizable Express Keys, Radial Menus, and pen side switches. Wacom makes some of the best graphics tablets for animation so you won’t be disappointed.

  • 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity
  • Slim and compact
  • Large work surface
  • Very customizable
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Huion H420X USB Tablet Review

Pros
  • Compatible with all major graphics applications
  • Full kit
Cons
  • Slight sensor issues

The Huion H420 Tablet is a relatively cheap, budget tablet for animating with 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity. This means that this tablet is ideal for graphic artist beginners, but experts will find that it lacks a depth of functionality.

It is compact, lightweight and it is only 7mm thick and 105g. It also comes with three express keys. If you buy the tablet you get the pen, 4 replacement nibs, a USB cable, and a removal tool.

  • Great for beginners
  • Works with all major graphics programs and applications
  • Full starter kit
  • Very well priced
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Huion H610X Pro Tablet Review

Pros
  • Compact
  • Large drawing area
Cons
  • No Major Cons

The Huion H610X Tablet is a lightweight, but large animation tablet that is a great mix of size and functionality. The tablet itself has a matt surface, which not only makes you feel like you are drawing on paper, but it prevents your pen from slipping and compromising your work.

The tablet has 8 customizable buttons along the side. These buttons can be fully customized to suit your wants and needs. The stylus is battery-free and has 8182 levels of pressure sensitivity

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Large drawing area
  • Many customizable buttons
  • Full kit
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Wacom One Review

Pros
  • Full HD
  • Battery-free
  • Very well priced
  • Perfect for beginners
Cons
  • Limited license on the free software
  • No touch function

The Wacom One is one of the best beginner animation tablets on the market. Wacom is known as the leader of graphics tablets, and this one is no exception. If you are just starting in graphic art, this is the tablet for you.

This beginner-friendly tablet comes with a 13.3” Display and free creative software. This includes Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, Bamboo Paper Pro, Clip Studio Paint Pro, and Adobe Fresco.

  • Brilliant beginners tablet
  • Pressure-sensitive pen
  • Free software included
  • Connects to both Mac and PC easily
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Huion Kamvas 12 Animation Tablet Review

Pros
  • Anti glare glass
  • Works for both left and right-handers
  • 20 programmable keys
Cons
  • No Major Cons

The Huion Kamvas is a powerful and effective tablet for graphic artists. There are 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity, giving you just enough range to get into finer details.

The tablet has a 1920×1080 full HD screen with a digital pen that works just like a real one. It is relatively small and can easily fit into a laptop bag, a briefcase, or a carry-on for when you need it on the go.

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Very portable
  • Perfect for beginners
  • Customizable buttons
Click to Check Price on Amazon

XP-Pen Artist Pro 15.6″ Tablet Review

Pros
  • Great Price
  • Neither too big nor too small
Cons
  • No touch display
  • Pen can be pricey to replace

The XP-Pen Artist Pro is a high-end drawing tablet made for those who want to draw on-screen, such as dedicated and passionate artists and designers. It’s built for professionals with the utmost attention to detail and plenty of features to keep your workflow fresh and productive.

The tablet features a 200RPS display with full HD 1920×1080 resolution over a 344 x 193 mm active area. It’s a mere 11mm at its thinnest point, and features 8 shortcut keys, as well as arriving with a P05R Battery-free pen.

This pen has 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity, 60 degrees of tilt recognition, and a 200RPS rate to boot. The tablet also features 8 customizable shortcut keys, as well as a red dial interface that you can adapt to your workflow.

This tablet has a vivid color screen, with anti-glare and anti-scratch treatment, making it perfect to work on for hours at a time. It’s a great choice for the professional digital artist, ideal for everyday use, and comes with a whole host of cables and cords in the package to make setup a breeze.

  • Great for professionals
  • Customizable Shortcut Keys
  • Comes with a stand
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Huion 420X OSU Tablet Review

Pros
  • Well-priced
  • Compact and portable
Cons
  • Software sometimes glitchy
  • The pen is very delicate, breaks easily if dropped

The Huion 420 OSU Tablet is a simple, yet effective graphic art tablet that can easily be used by beginners and experts. It is compatible with all of the most popular art and graphics applications.

The tablet has a 4.17×2.6 inch active area. The tablet is very compact and light and can be easily transported wherever you may need it.

  • Compact but powerful
  • Perfect for beginners
  • Affordable
  • Works with all popular graphics applications
  • Compatible with Mac and PC
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 Tablet Review

Pros
  • Trusted brand and great quality
  • Highly customizable
  • Easily adjustable for left / right handers
Cons
  • Price point is quite steep

The Wacom Cintiq Pro 24 is made for professionals, or those looking for an animation drawing tablet. It does come in at a slightly higher price point than its larger alternative, but it’s got just as many features. It comes with a 4K resolution (3840 x 2160) over a 24” screen.

The included Pro Pen has 8192 levels of sensitivity, allowing you to accurately recreate hand-drawn styles.

It also features 17 programmable buttons within easy reach to speed up your workflow. The on-screen keypad and the radial menus offer a further touch shortcut.

Overall this is a top-quality, compact tablet that’s great to use flat on a desk, at an angle, or even in your lap, which won’t leave you feeling drained or strained after a hard day’s work with it.

  • 4K Resolution
  • Great response time
  • Customizable shortcut keys
  • Portable
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Apple iPad Pro 12.9″ Review

Pros
  • Powered by the Apple M1 chip
  • Up to 2TB of storage
  • Large yet portable
Cons
  • Price
  • Apple Pencil and Magic Keyboard sold separately

Like most Apple products, the iPad Pro is the next generation iPad that is changing the way graphic artists design. Not only does it have all the capabilities of an iPad, but the massive storage space allows you to download any design and animation application available.

The latest iPad Pro 12.9” comes in three options for storage size – all the way from 128GB to a whopping two terabytes. It has a 12.9-inch Liquid Retina XDR display with ProMotion, True Tone, and P3 wide color, all-day battery life, and a USB-C connector for charging and accessories. Its M1 chip is one of the fastest Apple can offer to date, and the performance shows it.

It works with a 2nd-generation Apple Pencil and is ideal for a home-computer workstation replacement for the professional animator or designer. The combination of high functionality and great performance makes it a great tool all around, which won’t soon become obsolete with such top-of-the-line specs.

  • One of the best displays on a tablet
  • Wifi enabled
  • All the usual iPad Bonuses
  • All day battery life
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Apple iPad Pro 11″ Review

Pros
  • Fast processor
  • All-day battery life
  • 4K Video Recording
Cons

The Apple iPad Pro 11-inch is the little brother to the 12.9-inch model. It’s got the same M1 chip, a 12MP camera, 4K video recording, and 2nd-generation Apple Pencil that the 12.9” is fitted with.

The iPad has all-day battery life and can be used on the go, whether you are at work, or on a plane. It works great, both stood on a desktop or for portable use. The storage size options range from 128GB to 2TB which is quite a feat for a tablet, and the Wi-Fi / LTE options make it great for on-the-go use as well.

It’s a great secondary option if the 12.9” iPad Pro isn’t for you, and will do all the same with just about as good performance. Leaving you stress-free and ready to get creative.

  • High Performance
  • Lightweight and Portable
  • Fantastic Display
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Simbans PicassoTab Tablet Review

Pros
  • 2GB Ram, 32GB Disk space
  • Incredibly versatile
Cons
  • Quality control inconsistent

The Simbans PicasoTab Tablet is a very versatile, all-in-one tablet that allows you to draw, design, watch movies, and be used as a regular tablet. If you are looking for something that does more than just allow you to draw or design, this is the tablet for you.

The storage capacity allows you to store large amounts of data, images, and videos. You can use the Google app store to download the design applications you need, as well as be able to draw on the tablet and save all of your work.

  • Versatile
  • Can be used as a general tablet
  • Huge storage capacity
  • Connects to the Google Play store
Click to Check Price on Amazon

Best Adjustable Tablet Stands Reviews

Although we have reviewed the best tablets for drawing and animation, it is essential to also consider ergonomics and that’s why we have included a tablet stand review.

Lamicall iPad Stand Review

The Lamicall iPad Stand is a very sturdy, and fully adjustable stand that can be used for every size iPad or animating tablet. It is also ideal for viewing photos, videos, and movies, and is perfect for drawing and animation, using it as an easel of sorts.

The stand is completely adjustable and allows for you to either use it horizontally or vertically, although we do suggest you use it horizontally for any tablet larger than 12 inches, to ensure it stays balanced.

Click to Check Price on Amazon

AmazonBasics Adjustable Tablet Stand Review

The AmazonBasics Tablet Stand is a simple, yet effective tablet stands that can fold up and fit into any bag, and then unfold to hold your iPad, tablet, or Kindle. Its simple design and sturdy materials ensure it’s long-lasting.

The stand can easily and effectively hold any tablet, with or without a sleeve or case, in a vertical or horizontal position, while the non-skid base ensures it stays stable, even when bumped.

Click to Check Price on Amazon

MoKo Smartphone Stand Review

The MoKo Smartphone Stand is a cheap, versatile, and very compact stand that can easily hold any smartphone or tablet. This stand is designed for smaller devices, as tablets larger than 11 inches will fall off.

The stand itself is lightweight and ultra-compact and folds flat to be stored in your pocket or bag. It has 6 adjustable slots for multiple viewing angles and can hold your tablet vertically or horizontally.

Click to Check Price on Amazon

Best Animation Tablet Buyers Guide

Astronaut on a drawing tablet

When purchasing a drawing tablet, there are a number of aspects to take into consideration. Namely, its functionality, and like always, its price. There are a number of other considerations, but the price to functionality ratio is usually the most important.

Size

First off, the size. The size of the animating tablet actually refers more to its functionality, and not so much how easy it is to carry, store, or the weight of it. The size of the tablet will determine its input capabilities, and whether or not it has a built-in screen.

Most smaller tablets require you to plug them into a screen, whether it be a budget monitor, TV, or laptop screen. The tablet itself acts more like a writing pad, with your work being displayed on the screen.

The bigger tablets most often come with a built-in screen, allowing you to use it as the input surface, as well as the display. These tablets are almost always more expensive, but they do have a lot more functionality.

Pressure Sensitivity

Pressure sensitivity refers to how much information is exchanged between the pressure of your pen or input, and the tablet itself. In simple terms, a tablet with pressure levels of 1024, will have less variation of input compared to a tablet with pressure levels of 8192.

For example, a tablet with pressure levels of 1024 will only produce a few line thicknesses, whereas a tablet with pressure levels of 8192 will give you many more line thickness options. It really just depends on how detailed you need your work to be.

Controls

The control capabilities of a tablet are mainly for personal preference and work speed. Some tablets have buttons on them that you can customize to improve your workflow and shortcuts. Some tablet pens also have buttons, once again, to improve your workflow.

These buttons are almost always customizable, allowing you to add any shortcuts you may need. The higher-end tablets will also have these buttons on their pens, which adds another, more in-depth level of customization.

Budget

What you have, and are willing to spend will obviously make a difference in which tablet you are able to purchase. The budget does play a huge part in buying a tablet that has all the functionality you need.

The cheaper models often don’t come with a screen, and they also usually come with less functionality with regards to how customizable they are and how in-depth you can get with your art or animation.

The more expensive models will often come with their own built-in screen, are bigger, have a higher sensitivity level, and almost always will have more powerful functionality. These tablets are more for experts, as a beginner wouldn’t use all the tablet’s capabilities.

Capabilities

The capabilities and functionality of the tablet are completely up to you. It depends on what you are going to be using the animation tablet for and how often, or in-depth, you will want to get with your animation or art.

Once again, the more expensive animating tablets will clearly have more functionality and capabilities, but if you are a beginner in graphic art, then you will not need every function a tablet can offer, you just need enough to start your journey.

Conclusion on the Best Tablet for Drawing and Animation

Animation tablets have very quickly come to the forefront for artists, animators, and designers alike. They are able to capture every detail you need them to, are powerful art tools, but still affordable enough to be accessible to everyone.

Whether you are a beginner or expert graphic artist, illustrator, or animator, these tablets will definitely take your art to the next level, even expose you to new methods and new ways of expressing your creativity.

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