Wacom Cintiq 24HD Review


Key Specifications

  • Review Price: £1999.00
  • 24in 1920 x 1200 IPS display

Today is an exciting day for graphics-tablet fans in general

and Cintiq fans in particular. When we reviewed the 20in Wacom Cintiq 21UX recently, our biggest complaint was the screen’s 4:3 aspect

ratio and sub Full HD resolution. We recommended Wacom bring out a model with a

1,920 x 1,200 panel minimum, and that’s exactly what the company has done with

its brand new Cintiq 24HD.Wacom Cintiq 24HD 6

As its name suggests, the 24HD sports a 24in panel. But it’s

not just larger and with a higher resolution, Wacom has also upped the colour

gamut and increased contrast. Meanwhile the chassis is a complete, ground-up

redesign, with improved controls and an industrial stand that puts many

architects’ drafting tables to shame, as well as more connectivity options.

It’s basically on a whole other level to the 21UX, and

indeed both models will co-exist in the Cintiq range, rather than the 24HD

replacing its smaller sibling. Wacom doesn’t classify its 24HD as a graphics

tablet, but rather as a “digital workbench”. The only thing that

remains unchanged is that it still uses Intuos 4-equivalent technology, so you can draw on the glass-protected screen

using the included stylus, and the tablet part will pick up delicate lines or

hard strokes, pen angle and more. Wacom Cintiq 24HD 9

So let’s get into the nitty-gritty. Haters of glossy will be

glad to hear that the new Cintiq is mostly encased in matt black plastic, while

the tempered, etched glass front sports a reflection-killing semi-matt finish. Build

quality is superb, even better than on the already impressive 21UX. The stand

feels like it’s made from cast iron, featuring metal arms that provide enough

strength that you can lean on the tablet even in its raised position (handy if

you want to draw for a bit while standing up).

The impression of solidity isn’t harmed by the 24HD’s quite frankly

astonishing weight of 29kg! That’s nearly three times as heavy as the 21in

model, and confirms this Cintiq’s status as a permanent fixture on your desk (of

course, that’s a lot more viable now that the display is large enough, contains

enough pixels and is of a high enough level of quality that it does a great job

as your primary monitor). Wacom Cintiq 24HD

A lot of the 24HD’s weight is due to its 15.3kg stand, which

has been balanced so that you can put the base at the edge of your desk and

tilt the tablet/display over the edge at an angle. This is probably the most

comfortable working position available, and the 24HD has been designed so that

you can lean on it while working. Not only is the construction of this Cintiq

strong enough to take your entire upper body weight, but the bezel has been

significantly extended to give you plenty of area to rest your elbow(s) on. Wacom Cintiq 24HD 1

In fact, there’s almost as much bezel as screen this time

around, and Wacom has used the extra space to add more controls and make the

existing ones more accessible. The fully programmable eight control buttons

(called ExpressKeys) on each side are now variously positioned and of different

shapes and sizes to make it easier to know which one you’re pressing, which we

feel is a positive change. We also like that the touch-sensitive zoom strips – which

used to be behind the bezel at the sides on previous are now the same rings as

on the Intuos 4. Wacom Cintiq 24HD 2

The three shortcut buttons at the 24HD’s top are also

welcome, especially one that calls up a virtual onscreen keyboard – essential

for naming layers when you haven’t got a physical keyboard easily to hand. The

other two offer access to the onscreen overlay for the ExpressKey functions and

direct access to the software driver for easy fine-tuning.