The best drawing tablets combine the fluidity and versatility of freehand drawing with the precision of digital graphics. You need a tablet with the right stylus, pressure sensitivity, multi-touch display, screen size, low latency, and other specs to make your drawing experience as effortless as possible. We've chosen the most popular and well-reviewed models, both for specialized drawing tablets and all-around excellent tablets that support drawing apps.
For casual artists and distinguished professionals alike
Here's the perfect solution for budding artists. Although it's not quite as large and impressive as some professional options, this one is a simplified version of an advanced drawing monitor that lets you draw directly on the screen. This is a great starter tablet for beginners. Speaking from experience, we can vouch for the excellence of a Wacom stylus.
Not for the faint of pen, this is the best drawing tablet if your budget can stomach it: It's big, precise, and pricey. The top-of-the-line is a powerhouse of HD graphic creation. The big monitor offers gorgeous graphics alongside 8,192 pen pressure levels for the most intuitive, responsive digital drawing experience on the market. If you want to go bigger, the Cintiq 24HD will do you good.
Tablet of all trades
Why spend so much money on a tablet that only serves one purpose? As stated in our review, the overpowered Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is the best Android tablet period. On top of a full-blown Android experience, you get an excellent drawing device thanks to the gigantic 14.6-inch AMOLED display. Then there's the brilliant S Pen in tow, complete with air gestures and everything you could want from a stylus.
Aching to start drawing but low on budget? You'll want to consider downsizing to this option. This one is smaller and more basic than other tablets but fulfills most drawing needs of a designer or illustrator. This works with Mac and Windows PCs as well as Chromebooks.
If other tablets are a bit too simple for you, try a step up and go with an upgraded model. This one is a bit larger, with more pen sensitivity and a range of shortcut buttons not featured on other models. Unlike the XP-PEN, this supports Android devices too.
If you love the quality of a Wacom but don't want to break the bank with a drawing monitor, this tablet is a nice in-between. The classic drawing tablet provides excellent precision and sensitivity and can be used with any computer to create instant graphics.
Best midline drawing monitor
If you'd like a larger drawing monitor at a more affordable price point, the XP-PEN is an excellent alternative to the Wacom Cintiq. The 15.6-inch monitor is large enough to display impressive HD graphics, and with 8,192 levels of pen sensitivity, it is precise enough to produce outstanding illustrations. Our sister site also tested the smaller XP-Pen Artist 12 and found it more than capable.
Note-taking made easy
For those who like to see as they draw but have a tight budget, this makes an excellent companion. This 11.6-inch tablet offers 8,192 pressure sensitivity levels, eight customizable shortcut keys, and tilting support. You can hook it up to various devices via USB Type-C and HDMI and save handwritten notes in various formats such as PDF, WORD, Excel, and PowerPoint.
Works with Chromebook
Even if a drawing tablet accessory or monitor connects via USB, it won't work with a Chromebook unless it's specifically compatible — and so far, only the One by Wacom has been officially optimized for Chrome OS. The pressure-sensitive pad connects via USB-A and supports 2,048 pressure levels, which isn't great compared to the Wacom Cintiq 22's 8,192 but is fair for the bargain price.
With a 12.4-inch AMOLED display with 2800x1752 resolution, your digital sketches will look gorgeous on the screen. Even better, the S Pen only has 2.8ms of latency, which, combined with the 120Hz refresh rate, means your drawings will appear near-instantaneously when the S Pen nib touches the laminated screen. It isn't for naught that our very own Michael Hicks described the Tab S8+'s stylus to be "better than ever" in his review.
For Apple geeks
Of course, Apple lovers will want to stick with their tried-and-true iPad. In the words of our former editor-in-chief, this iPad Pro is MacBook-powerful and tablet-versatile. So of course, the Pro paired with an Apple Pencil (2nd generation) makes for a pretty nifty drawing tablet. For design and illustration purposes, we suggest the 12.9-inch edition.
Laptop + tablet combo
Microsoft's 13.5-inch Surface Book 3 is not to be out-doodled. This machine is much more than a drawing tablet, however. The vibrant 13.5-inch monitor can be used with a Surface Pen and any graphics program to create beautiful illustrations. It can also be attached to a laptop keyboard to be used as a fully functional Windows PC.
Draw on with these great drawing tablets
The best drawing tablet for one person will differ from the next, depending on your seriousness as an artist, your budget, and whether or not you'll want to use it for non-artistic purposes. For a dedicated tablet for doodling or professional art, Wacom is a reliable brand to being your search.
The Wacom One is simple yet intuitive — perfect for beginners and intermediate graphic artists. The stylus doesn't need to be charged, so no unexpected delays when inspiration strikes, and the surface friction will make the 13.3-inch display feel like a true paper canvas. Professionals, meanwhile, will probably prefer the more robust Wacom Cintiq with a massive 22-inch display, improved pen tech for more accurate pressure sensing, and a wider color gamut. Plus, register either tablet and you'll get access to free trials of some of the best drawing apps.
If you want to explore your artistic talent but aren't sure if you want a tablet just for art, we recommend picking one of the best Android tablets, which usually have beautiful displays, accurate styluses, and the processing power to handle high-end graphic design apps easily—but are also designed for casual use. Our Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra review shows the power and versatility of this beastly tablet. Though we recommend the Galaxy Tab S8 Plus for most people, serious artists will benefit from the Tab S8 Ultra for the simple reason that the upgrade gives you an extra 2.2 inches of screen space for your sketches.
Then again, some artists would prefer an accessory to their current devices over a whole new device for drawing. If you want something to connect to a PC or Mac, the XP-Pen IPS Drawing Monitor sports great pen pressure sensitivity and transmits your drawings to the connected computer. If you'd prefer something that's not quite so expensive, you can pair the XP-PEN Star G640 with a computer or a phone, or the One By Wacom with a Chromebook.