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REVIEW AFTER USING THE WACOM CINTIQ 22 FOR A YEAR

I was using the Wacom Intuos pen tablet. I liked it but wanted to be able to draw directly on my screen. When I saw that Wacom released their pen display Cintiq 16 and 22 tablets, I was very intrigued. At the beginning of 2020, I decided to upgrade to the Wacom Cintiq 22 pen display tablet. I’ve been using it for a year now. Here is my honest review, in hopes that it will help you decide on whether this tablet is the right one for you or not.

This review is not sponsored by Wacom (they don’t know I exist!) and the tablet was purchased with my own money. These opinions are therefore my own.

WHAT IS THE CINTIQ 22?

A pen display tablet is a device where you can connect to your computer or laptop and use it to draw directly on the screen with the included pen. As we all know, Wacom pen display tablets have always been very pricey since they only carried their Pro line. In 2019, Wacom decided to release a new line of pen display tablets that was more entry-level friendly. These tablets are more affordable since they removed some of the features found in the Pro line. The importance of these features will determine if this tablet is the one for you.

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HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?

The Cintiq 22 is priced at $1600 (USD 1150). This is still a big investment but if we compare it to the Cintiq Pro 24 at $2500 (USD 2000), the affordability is way higher. Non-professionals might be more interested to splurge on the Cintiq 22 instead of the Pro line, especially if they never had a pen display tablet before and want to try it out.

WHAT DOES IT INCLUDE?

When you buy the Cintiq 22, you’ll get the tablet, the stand (that goes from a 16 to 82 degrees angle), the cables, a little pen holder attached to the side of the tablet with pen tips and the Wacom Pro Pen 2. It’s good to know that the stand is not included when you purchase the 16 inches version. Also, one of the key features is that the pen is the same as their Pro line. It’s an exceptional pen with 8192 pressure levels and tilt support.

When I purchased the tablet, it came with licenses to different programs, like Clip Studio Paint. These licenses are very useful because you don’t need to buy a new program if you don’t already have one. You can try the program and see if you like it. I fell in love with Clip Studio Paint when I first purchased my Intuos tablet, so I was happy to have another 12 months license with my new Cintiq 22 tablet.

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WHAT ARE THE SPECIFICATIONS AND FEATURES?

Here are some of the important ones :

  • HD screen (1920×1080)
  • Not laminated screen
  • 21,5 inches of drawing space
  • Anti-glare surface
  • 72% NTSC
  • 16.7 millions of colours 
  • Uses USB-B/HDMI cables
  • Weights 12.35lbs (5.6kg) without the stand
  • No shortcut buttons included (work with keyboard or remote – both aren’t included)

The Cintiq 16 and 22 have pretty much the same specifications except for the size. However, if you compare it with the Cintiq Pro 24, the differences are very noticeable. The Pro line has a resolution of 4K (3840×2160), has a laminated screen, uses USB-C and comes with the Wacom remote. These features make a huge price difference.

HOW DOES IT FEEL?

I haven’t tried the Pro line so I can only compare the technical specifications on paper. On the other hand, I can confirm that, after using the Cintiq 22 for a year, it is amazing. The size is perfect, where you have plenty of space to draw comfortably even with the programs’ UI open. The parallax (the space between the pen and the screen) is barely noticeable and there is no delay between the pen and the lines drawn. The lines are precise and the colours are vibrant. The surface is not glossy so it feels very good to draw on. The tablet is very big and no shortcut buttons are included so using a keyboard can be uncomfortable if you don’t have big desk space. There is a little time needed to get used to it but I got the hang of it very quickly.

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PROS & CONS

PROS

  • More affordable than the Pro line of Wacom’s pen display
  • The Wacom Pro Pen 2 is one of the best pen you can have and it’s included
  • The stand is included
  • The size of the tablet is perfect to draw comfortably
  • Supports the Wacom remote
  • Supports other Wacom pens (if you want to buy another one / upgrade)
  • The mount can be changed to a VESA mounted stand if you have the desk that permits it

CONS

  • Not 4K
  • Does not have a laminated screen (most competitors have already included laminated screen on their models)
  • It’s pretty heavy
  • Not portable (not meant to be but you have to keep it in mind if it’s a feature you’re looking for)

I haven’t tried the Pro line so I can only compare the technical specifications on paper. On the other hand, I can confirm that, after using the Cintiq 22 for a year, it is amazing. The size is perfect, where you have plenty of space to draw comfortably even with the programs’ UI open. The parallax (the space between the pen and the screen) is barely noticeable and there is no delay between the pen and the lines drawn. The lines are precise and the colours are vibrant. The surface is not glossy so it feels very good to draw on. The tablet is very big and no shortcut buttons are included so using a keyboard can be uncomfortable if you don’t have big desk space. There is a little time needed to get used to it but I got the hang of it very quickly.

IS IT THE RIGHT TABLET FOR YOU?

The Cintiq 22 is a great entry-level tablet for whoever wants to try using a pen display for their digital artwork. I recommend this tablet to all of the serious hobbyists that want to invest in a good quality tablet with one of the best pens you can use on the market right now. I recommend the 22 over the 16 because the size gives the user more space to draw. The programs’ UI takes space on the screen so using the 22 gives you more drawing space and is way more comfortable.

If you’re looking into a portable tablet, I do not recommend this one since it’s a big and heavy tablet that is meant to stay put on your desk. With the size of the tablet, make sure you have a big enough desk because you will need to use a keyboard for all of the shortcuts. Although not included, the Wacom remote is a great add-on if you want a more ergonomic alternative for the keyboard. 

This tablet will be the one for you if you don’t need the 4K display of the Pro line and if you don’t want to pay the extra money. The Cintiq 22 is an amazing tablet and I do not regret purchasing it a year ago.

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