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Bamboo vs Intuos vs Mouse - tools of drawing! by ziptofaf Bamboo vs Intuos vs Mouse - tools of drawing! by ziptofaf
Since I've recently got to use Intuos 4 M tablet. Simply put – it's AWESOME. So I've decided to compare it to my previous Bamboo and, partially for fun and partially cuz I was curious, to a typical mouse. Results...you can see them above on this INSANELY big pile of drawings. But if you are interested in my own view on them, here you go:

Test #1:
Intuos 4 rubber actually has pressure levels while Bamboo does not. That's why you can see that erased parts on Intuos get bigger and bigger while on it's cheaper brother they stay the same.
As for the eye – Intuos is bigger (A5 so good for drawing) and has 2048 pressure levels compared to 512 of Bamboo. That's why it looks a bit more fluent. Last test was just trying to draw smaller and smaller lines.
Mouse... it simply looks terrible.

Test #2 – Circles:
I would once again give an edge to Intuous. More succesfully drawn circles, no „spirals”. Mouse, again, is useless.

Test #3 – Lines:
Comparable, I liked both of them. Unless you use mouse.

Test #4 – Squares, wings, spirals:
Squares are basically the same for both, for wings – I would rate Intuos 4 higher as it's a bit smoother compared to Bamboo. Same with spirals.

Test #5 – Join the dots:
Single fast lines from one point to another. As you can see, Intuos is having advantage cuz it's twice as big and you don't make lines too long or too short (or at least, not to the same extent). To be honest though, only Cintiq gets perfect score on that if we are using harder test than 11 simple lines...

Test #6 – Writing:
Yes, i know that my handwriting is terrible. Once and for all though – Intuos. Letters are easier to keep up in the line. Mouse is of course useless.

FAQ and my final view:
„But I draw something awesome even on a simple mouse” - Yes, you do. But you do it... slower. Much slower. To be honest, even a difference between Intuos and Bamboo is gigantic for me. Lines are naturally smoother, you have more pressure levels, eraser is more accurate. A big part of it is the fact that Bamboo is A6 while Intuos 4 M is A5 (there are A5 Bamboo's though I have yet to test one).

So size matters. To a certain margin – A5 is optimum imho. Going for A4 will make your hand tire a lot. On the other hand – A6 isn't so bad. I've used it for a long time and it's not impossible to work with it.

As for the mouse – it's like trolling. Sure you can. But what's better – having multiple pressure levels so you can accurately place lines, make them smooth or use something that isn't really designed for drawing that can only put full size line or none at all?

So if you seriously want to draw digital stuff – get a tablet. As you could see even the cheapest Bamboo is INFINITELY times better than mouse. It's like comparing beginner swimmer to a dolphin.
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:iconalicesacco:
AliceSacco Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2014
I have a bamboo, and the quality of the lines is just like you show.
For long I tough I was slow because i'm not used to it yet, but I can draw with stabilizer 0 (I use it often).
Insead looking around, I'm understanding more and more that I've reach the limit. Of bamboo.
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:iconziptofaf:
ziptofaf Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well yes, that's why Bamboos are the cheapest of all Wacom tablets after all. They are neat for sure and for their price nothing beats them... but there's a good reason why pros generally go with Intuos/Cintiq - it simply allows for better results faster. I personally often have to firstly draw a sketch with a pencil, scan it in high resolution and then redo it on a Bamboo. Whereas on Intuos it was easier for me to just draw directly on tablet, even without need for crazy resolutions. 

I am planning to redo this comparison soon again, this time using borrowed Cintiq 12WX which is the absolute high-end for Wacom and see how THAT one will match up to get the full spectrum of drawing tools, starting from 10$ mouse up to 1000€ tablet. 
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:iconalicesacco:
AliceSacco Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2014
On Bamboo I fell very comfortable at inking (even when using Stabilizer 0), but not at drawing.
I'm glad to discover is not fault of my hand(s) (they're very steady on paper).
I was worried something was wrong with me, but doing researches make me think is not the case.

I wish to have a cintiq
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:iconpridark:
pridark Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2013  Student Digital Artist
so intuos is the best :O?
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:iconziptofaf:
ziptofaf Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Depends. 
Best one is Cintiq, preferably 24" FullHD. Costs something around 2500$. Can't really compare anything to it cuz it's actual pressure screen. That you work DIRECTLY on. Every other tablet still requires you to have hand-tablet-screen abilities, Cintiq is the same as paper, only hand-screen coordination needed. Comes with a nice set of disadvantages too, biggest one being 20kg weight. Not really portable :P

Intuos is 2nd best, also for professional artists but no longer inaccessible to anyone who isn't quite rich (you can get new Intuos 5M Pen for ~350$, used ones, like Intuos 4M, sometimes can go as low as 200$). Very neat drawing surface, 2048 pressure levels, can buy different types of pen to it, reacts to angles, programmable buttons etc. 

Bamboos are entry level for Wacom. They are still better than 90% of different brands (I've used Pentagram Tablet, it... somehow flew out of the window one day) and are a good choice for someone who doesn't NEED professional tablet but they are undeniably worse than Intuos. On the other hand - also at least 2 times cheaper than them if we were to compare models of same size. 

In general, better tablet most likely won't make you draw BETTER. It WILL make you faster though. 
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:iconpridark:
pridark Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I'm still doing the sketch with pencils and later do the lineart with the tablet xD mine is genius don't know if this one sell in u.s but is kind of regular one... still need a lot of practice with drawing just with the tablet.. that is kind of the tablet problem or mine becouse I'm out of practice? I just got mine 4 mouths ago so I'm really new with this
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:iconziptofaf:
ziptofaf Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Genius G-Pen? It is inferior to most Bamboos - all Wacom tablets have very nice surface to draw on, kind of resembling actual paper - a bit slippery yet showing some resistance when needed let's say. Also, they all electromagnetic induction types of pens - you don't need any batteries. Pen just needs to be close to the surface of the tablet to work :P Though Genius IS cheaper and generally considered a nice choice for a first tablet if you can't afford Wacom one. 

As for your problem - I sometimes also prefer to do sketch with pencil, scan it, and draw with tablet on top of it. As i've said before, tablets DO require more coordination and so it's a bit harder to draw with them, especially before you get yourself proper software that will allow you to draw nice 'pencil-type' sketches instead of going into instant linearts what never really worked for me either. Depends on artist personal style though, a friend of mine refuses to draw anything on paper, goes straight for digital and somehow she succeeds so I guess it's mostly a matter of preferences and style you are using ;P
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:iconlildeadkitty:
LilDeadKitty Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Student Digital Artist
About the eraser test, what program to draw this test on? I use a bamboo tablet on SAI and the eraser works just like the Intuos one does in the test.
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:iconziptofaf:
ziptofaf Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
There are many types of Wacom Bamboo. Newest ones don't have eraser at all. By 'eraser' i mean the one on top of the pen, not tip of it that you usually use for drawing ([link]. As far as i know latest and cheapest Bamboos do not have it at all, Bamboo Fun still does, all Intuos-es do too. The one I used was the first generation Bamboo with 512 pressure levels of the tip and 2 of the eraser.
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:iconlildeadkitty:
LilDeadKitty Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I have the bamboo Fun (newest version, bought it in december) and it has an eraser (though my cat keeps playing with the pen and now the eraser side doesn't work so I need a new pen).
Do the others really not have erasers? That's really stupid actually.

The pressure sensitivity also depends on what program you're using. I usually use SAI and my tablet works great on it. What program do you use?

I don't see any point in upgrading to a intuos since my bamboo's fine for what I do, but I would absolutely LOVE a cintiq!
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