Xencelabs first demo drawing tablet already competes with Wacom Cintiq

Graphics equipment manufacturer Xencelabs has introduced the Pen Display 24 Studio Series, a new on-screen drawing tablet designed for creative professionals. The 24-inch display is the company’s first drawing tablet with a built-in screen, joining its line of standard pen tablets and packed with features to rival Wacom’s Cintiq line.

Xencelabs’ biggest advantage over Wacom is affordability; At $1,899, the Pen Display 24 is significantly cheaper than the $3,500 Wacom Cintiq Pro 27 and includes accessories like a stand and shortcut remote that Wacom doesn’t include as standard.

Like the Cintiq Pro 27, Xencelabs’ Pen Display 24 features edge-to-edge tempered glass that’s etched to provide contact for a more natural drawing experience and reduces glare in brightly lit environments. The glass screen is connected to the sensor without an air gap to reduce parallax (the gap between the pen tip and the cursor), and there are three buttons with customizable LED lighting located above the otherwise seamless surface of the tablet, each of which can be programmed to quickly access device settings. , such as pen sensitivity.

The screen has a resolution of 3840 x 2160, a refresh rate of 60 Hz and a brightness of 330 nits. It is capable of rendering up to 1.07 billion colors with 99 percent Adobe RGB and 93 percent DCI-P3 color gamut coverage. That’s reasonably close to what’s offered in the Wacom Cintiq Pro 27, making this a decent alternative for people on a tighter budget. Color accuracy and Pantone support may also mean that some creatives can get away with not having a dedicated reference monitor. And like the Cintiq Pro 27, the Xencelabs Pen Display 24 is also Pantone and Pantone SkinTone certified for accuracy in reproducing Pantone colors and various skin tones.

The large bezels around the screen aren’t exactly sexy compared to modern standalone fingerprint monitors, but they serve an important purpose by providing substantial wrist rest and allowing users to press the included Quick Keys accessory, Xencelabs’ alternative to Wacom’s ExpressKey. Remote control — on any side of the tablet without covering the workspace. Xencelabs Quick Keys is essentially a specialized, portable macro platform that features an OLED display, eight programmable keys, and a programmable dial that can scroll up to 40 shortcuts in creative applications.

Xencelabs Quick Keys accessory is included free with Pro Display 24. It is also available for purchase separately for $99.99 and can be used with other Xencelabs drawing tablets.
Image: Xencelabs

Also included in the box are two different pens to accommodate different hand sizes and drawing preferences: the 3-Button Pen v2, which is similar to the Wacom Pro pen, and the Thin Pen v2, which has a slimmer design that’s closer to the design : the Apple Pencil. Both pens have a built-in rubber tip, 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity, with an initial actuation pressure that can be adjusted down to three grams.

The Pen Display 24 is fanless, relatively light (13 pounds versus the Cintiq Pro 27’s 16 pounds), and comes with a tilt stand that can be independently adjusted between 16 and 72 degrees. The tablet can also be mounted on a standard VESA mounting arm, and Xencelabs says a versatile stand that can freely orient the tablet vertically or horizontally will be available for purchase separately (though no price or release date has been specified). Ports are on the back and include both HDMI and DisplayPort connections. Drivers are available for Windows, Mac and Linux.

Xencelabs’ versatile stand (pictured) will be sold separately and can be used to angle the tablet for your desired orientation.
Image: Xencelabs

Nothing particularly innovative here. The Xencelabs Pen Display 24 shares many of the same features as the Wacom Cintiq Pro 27, and Wacom has been setting the industry standard for on-screen graphics tablets for years since it first launched the Cintiq line. Since then, competitors have tried to match Wacom in quality, usually more affordably, but no enough as reliable or packaged properties.

But Xencelabs is worth following. Its standard pen drawing tablets have been extremely well received, and if its first display tablet can deliver similar results, Wacom may finally have a real market competitor to contend with. The Xencelabs Pen Display 24 is priced at $1,899 and can be pre-ordered today, with full availability and shipping expected in the second quarter of 2023.

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