View Full Version : Inexpensive graphics tablet?

08-06-2003, 02:06 PM
Hi folks! I'm new to LightWave and to computer graphics in general, tho I'm an old-timer in other computer applications. My budget is limited at present, as I've blown most of it acquiring LightWave...

I note that many people use a graphics tablet with LightWave. Is it worth the expense? Will a low-end tablet like the Graphire give me most of the benefits, or do I really have to spend the bucks for an Intuos if I'm going to bother? Is there any other manufacturer besides Wacom to consider?

Thanks in advance for your help!

08-06-2003, 02:55 PM
go for the wacom intuos!!
Very serious.
I tried a graphire and an other board from trust, never again.
ofcourse this is my personal opinion.

08-06-2003, 03:24 PM
i love my intous(12x12)....but not for LW. i am sure you will get many opinions here, after all, its really about what you get used to. i have several friends
that use the 6x9 intous and love them(still about $200)
the graphire really doesnt cut it next to the intous, just not the same for drawing/painting, less levels of pressure sensitivity(not important for LW anyway)
there used to be other manufacturers(calcomp) but they sunk, i think.
for LW, i think i would rather sink my "limited bucks" on a multi button mouse
or track ball(which is what i prefer for LW)Kensington makes some nice ones
and i have not had troubles with them. people always whine about track balls
and they do take a day or to to get used to, but once you get the hang of it their
pretty cool. Good luck!

08-06-2003, 03:42 PM
The smaller Graphire tablets are very cheap. If you have a really large screen or twin CRT monitors you may find it's hard to get fine control.

You can do it with a small Graphire, but you might need to switch to the mouse every now and then when fine tweaking a model.

Tablets allow you to rest your wrist in a more natural position, so they can reduce muscle strain.

08-06-2003, 07:24 PM
I've got the 6x8 Intuos tablet, and it is one of the best investments I've made. I've never used it for LightWave though. I agree with paintboy, if you want to spend money on a new peripheral to use with LightWave invest in a multi-button optical mouse. The tablet though is indispensable when used with Photoshop; I'd highly recommend one if you spend any quality time in Photoshop.

08-06-2003, 08:21 PM
But some people may need to use a tablet to avoid the strain issues I mentioned above. If I use a mouse all day and night for weeks on end I start getting muscle strain. If I switch to a tablet it goes away.

As I said, if you've got a large screen area then a larger tablet is worthwhile. I guess you can only buy the biggest one that you can afford.

08-07-2003, 01:17 AM
Thanks to everyone who posted information! Since I will be spending - quality? - time in Photoshop, I will save my pennies until I can get a used Intuos on eBay.

08-07-2003, 03:09 AM
Forgot to mention, i do use the pen for modeling in Lw and it rocks.
For layout i use the mouse.
Especialy when u are tweaking some point/polygons the pen is a must have.

08-07-2003, 07:43 AM
i vote for the 6x9 intuos2. especially if your gonna use photoshop at all. i've used a pen for years and would never even touch the mouse. once you get comfortable with it, you'll never go back. in fact, i think mine has fallen off behind my desk right now, i can't see it.

08-07-2003, 02:58 PM
Absolutly get the 6x9 intous! I used to use the big ones and I was convinced I'd hate switching to the smaller ones. After using the smaller ones I very quickly came to prefer them! And I use two very large moniters. True you grow comfortable with what you use. In my experience however I have used many different configurations and even with alot of screen real estate I prefer the 6x9.

08-07-2003, 05:29 PM
I myself bought the 9 by 12 intuos platinum fairly recently... I think its a little too big and an A5 size would be perfect. I use it for photoshop and painter but havnt really used it for lightwave yet. It works well if you wanna model with splines...Might I add..essential for texture mapping, it's made my life so much easier

08-07-2003, 05:40 PM
I have the 9x12 intuos also. One thing that is really nice about it is you can set the surface to 2 drawing areas. One small one similar to the smaller pads and one big one that will allow you to do more detailed work.

I wouldn't buy anything other than a Wacom right now.

08-08-2003, 02:53 AM
If you ar in usa you could buy a refurb one at the wacom site.
Cheaper and work wll, and you have on year of warranty