To describe the amount of excitement for video games this weekend as crazy would be an understatement. The excitement from each person in the Hynes Convention Center was contagious. One piece of digital content creation equipment that caught my eye immediately at this weekend’s first annual Penny Arcade Expo East though was Wacom Technology’s all-new third generation Cintiq 21UX. This device actually pulled me away from the seemingly endless supply of intense video game experiences being offered throughout PAX. Read more for the full details on this new color Liquid Crystal Display pen input touchpad that will surely bring a new level of productivity to many aspects of the game development industry.
The Wacom Cintiq is all about precision. I took some time out at PAX to test the screen out on a popular image editing program running on an Apple computer and was blown away by not only the near 1:1 replications of my drawing in real-time on the pad but also by the detail of display on the screen. This tool embodies the perfect touch pad with 2,048 detectable levels of pressure sensitivity that can be applied to the pen making for a truly great drawing experience.
This sexy looking, impressively advanced piece of machinery can even edit three dimensional projects and is compatible with over one hundred applications including Adobe Photoshop. The fact that the Cintiq is also compatible with virtually any PC sporting one of the last three windows installments or Mac OS X 10.4.8 and above with an available USB port and CD drive means that this baby will be an investment likely to stick with you through multiple computers.
The Cintiq is already taking off within the educational and development industries, especially video game design. The third generation of the product has made many improvements over its predecessors from convenience and productivity boosts to reducing minor annoyances like accidently hitting the wrong button. The ExpressKey buttons on either side of the Cintiq as well as Touch Strip controls are also a great way to get more usability out of the device and are capable of custom assignable uses as well as application specific ones.
With 22.1” x 16.5” color LCD screen displaying 1600 x 1200 (near 1080p) native resolution and coming with adjustable heavy duty tilt-stand, this is one touch pad that stands apart from the pack. This device is a serious device for animators, graphic designers, and game art creators on the rise in the professional, amateur, and independent sectors alike. The investment of $1,999 may seem a little steep but believe me when you are met face to face with this device you will be negotiating with organ dealers for your left kidney. There was also a $1,000 Cintiq 12WX on display that looks worth looking in to for those who have not yet stepped into digital sultan status.