Digital Drawing Tablet: The Complete Guide to Choosing a Digital Drawing Pad

Whether you are a professional graphic artist or enjoy the arts in your spare time, a digital drawing tablet is a convenient tool and resource to compliment your artwork. Its compact size combined with powerful software and capabilities is a welcome addition to any artist's toolkit.

With technological advances and innovation in digital art widely available to consumers, it can be difficult to navigate and narrow down the best choices for a digital drawing pad for your needs.

What is a digital drawing tablet?

A digital drawing pad or tablet is a computer device with specialized graphic capabilities allowing users to create and edit their art with the use of a stylus directly on the face of the tablet. While the use of a digital drawing tablet is not a necessity for the creation of digital art, it is a convenient option for individuals looking to make art with more freedom, easier access, and intuitive design and capabilities with just a stroke or tap of a stylus versus the use of a computer and mouse.

Digital drawing tablet vs. Graphic tablet

It is important to understand the distinction between a graphics tablet and a digital drawing tablet when shopping for the best digital drawing pad. Unlike a digital drawing tablet where the user will see the artwork on the screen they are drawing on, a graphics tablet requires the use of an external screen in order to see the images being produced. For purposes of this guide, we will be focusing on how to choose a digital drawing pad.

How to choose the best digital drawing tablet?

The market for digital drawing pads is quite extensive, with powerful high-end options available to more budget-friendly devices; there are many digital drawing pads to consider when making your purchase. The first step in choosing the best digital drawing tablet for you is to think about your overall needs and budget. If you are a professional graphic artist, you may require more advanced features and capabilities, which will translate to higher costs than if you are looking to learn about digital art and refine your skills with a more basic model. There are certain features you should look out for when reviewing the specifications of a digital drawing pad.

Software Compatibility

If you are particular about the software you enjoy working with, make certain the tablet you are considering for purchase is compatible with the programs you require. While most reputable digital drawing tablets are compatible with big-name digital artist software, make no assumptions and confirm the programs you want and need are available with the device you choose before you buy.

Overall Size

This is really about your personal preferences; review the surface area dimensions of the digital drawing pads you are considering to determine if they will meet your comfort level and needs.


Variations in sensitivity on a digital drawing tablet allow for an artist to create different textures and lines within their work. However, the pressure sensitivity for each tablet and stylus can vary, which makes each device a bit of a learning curve when starting out.


A lag in drawing a line to its appearance on the screen can be extremely frustrating for an artist. If a device is limited in processing speed or memory, a delay in responsiveness can become an issue in the future.


For digital drawing pads, the resolution is usually linked to the size of the tablet. Often the larger the drawing area of a tablet, the higher the resolution will be of the device. This allows for the addition of finer details and more precision but can also make a device heavier and less compact.

The Stylus

A stylus is an important factor when considering a digital drawing tablet. Make sure you are comfortable with the design and feel of the stylus for your tablet.


The purchase of a digital drawing tablet is an exciting opportunity to take your digital art to the next level. Take your time to research your options and compare the specs on a variety of digital drawing devices to make the best choice for your needs and budget.

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