Graphic tablets are the new canvas. Although they have become equally popular as graphic software, digitizers or graphic tablets are still high-end products.
Luckily some companies have resorted to manufacturing a variety of these at affordable prices.
Gaomon is a Chinese brand that started off manufacturing graphic tablets and has entered the global market relatively recently.
The brand has had great success in China since 2011 and is now becoming popular worldwide.
This Gaomon PD1560 review dissects this model released in 2017 in detail. find out if this is actually the digital artist's best friend.
Is This Device For You?
The Gaomon PD1560 is a 15.6” (396 mm) drawing tablet or digitizer. If you make any kind of illustrations or designs, you probably already use one. If you don’t, you should consider buying one.
It is a much better alternative to drawing on a computer using a mouse. You can make more accurate strokes and honestly, some things just cannot be done using a mouse that you can do as easily with a pen.
Using a stylus or pen reduces pressure on your hand and fingers. Thus, it allows you to work without any extra strain and gives your drawings more life-like touches. An adjustable stand comes with the product so that you can set the display just like a canvas in front of you.
Graphic tablets come in various sizes and have different functions, thus their prices vary accordingly. Professional tablets often cost about $500 or more.
Gaomon PD1560 is a budget-friendly one. Even with its large screen size and advanced features, it doesn’t cost a lot. For the current price, this product is a great investment.
What You’re Getting
So if you do plan on giving this a shot, here is a brief look at what you can expect if you purchase the Gaomon PD1560.
In The Box
The tablet comes with a screen protector that has not been loved by all users. Along with the battery-powered pen, there are a bunch of other things that you will find in the box.
It comes with a pen stand (which doubles as a nib remover tool) and holds 8 extra nibs in it, drawing gloves for both hands, an adjustable stand, screwdriver and screws (to screw on the stand), charger, cables, as well as a carrying bag.
It is not the most durable or protective case, but hey, it’s free.
The device is quite slim and easy to carry, with 0.76” (19 mm) thickness. It looks nice and sleek with,
It comes with ArtPaint AP40 battery-powered pen. It has no eraser on the back, but two buttons on the side to switch from pen to eraser mode.
Some of the basic specs you need to know:
1920 x 1080
Pen Sensing Height
Pen pressure sensitivity
Operating system supported
Win 7 (or above) / MacOS 10.12 (or above)
Mini HDMI, Type-C
The device supports both Windows and macOS and is compatible with most painting software (works great with Photoshop, Illustrator, SketchBook Pro, and Clip Studio Paint).
Just go to the website, select your pen display and your computer’s operating system, and install the driver. For Windows users, it is recommended that you uninstall any other drivers (different brand) before installing the new one.
It comes with a 3-in-1 cable so it is easy to connect to your computer. However, the connectors are HDMI, so if you do not have an HDMI port on your computer, you will need to use an adapter.
The pen, ArtPaint AP40, is quite comfortable to work with – neither too bulky nor too slim. It performs quite smoothly with over 8000 levels of pressure sensitivity. Greater pressure produces thicker lines.
You can calibrate the pen using the driver software from their website. This makes the strokes more accurate, but you might still see some parallax.
However, this does not pose a problem once you get used to it. Also, the pen does not have tilt support. The stylus does need charging but has a battery life of 350 hours, so recharging would be the least of your worries.
Gaomon PD1560’s color calibration is quite satisfactory in the default settings, but you can use the buttons on the side to adjust them and match the colors to your computer or laptop.
You can even change the display settings and rotate the screen 180 degrees if you are left-handed. This feature is not available in every tablet (although some recent ones have included it) and is a great bonus.
Things You Might Like to Know
If you have done a fair amount of research on this, you may have read about some common issues found in the device. Let me clear them out for you:
- Pen not working – Initially, the pen may show some hiccups, if you sketch very lightly, but that is just because the driver takes some time to start operating smoothly. It fixes itself with continuous use.
- The screen protector – It is essentially present to protect the screen from scratching but some have found it useful during drawing too. This depends absolutely on preference. The protector that comes with the device is not very high quality. You can remove it if you want; some artists prefer to work directly on the glass screen. I would advise you to keep it on, but if it bothers you too much, you can always replace it.
- Pen recharging – It’s great fun and easy to use the wireless pen, but recharging takes some time. You can use it while on a charge, but the cable is short and interferes with free movement.
None of the issues are too immense and can easily be resolved. Most users have not had any major complaints about the usability of this tablet. It is easy to set up and customize. With the 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity on the pen, designing and drawing are a breeze.
There are some other options you can look at such as Wacom or XP-Pen, but it is unlikely that you will find anything as affordable as this.
The Huion Kamvas Pro 12 comes quite close, with the same resolution, contrast ratio, LCD type and pen pressure sensitivity as the Gaomon PD1560. It also comes with a pen holder, extra nibs, drawing gloves, and an adjustable stand. It also supports the same operating systems. It does have:
But the Huion Kamvas Pro 12 has:
This device is a good example of why Gaomon became such a popular name in China.
The initial price of the product was about $400 but it can now be bought for even less. The overall specs are great and the product has been well-loved by users since it has been on the market. For this price, this is probably the best you will find.
Have you used this product already? We would love to hear your views. Leave a comment below!