Over the past two weeks we have been extensively testing a brand new drawing pad, the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium. Since it’s an innovative tablet that focuses on convenience and intuitive use, we just had to try it out.
We will explore all the essential and advanced features of the latest Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium: from the shortcut keys and software drivers to the pressure sensitivity and design.
It’s important to note that Xencelabs is doing something quite unique with their product as the quality of their products compete very closely with Wacom.
We’re all thinking it… how does a Xencelabs compare to Wacom for artists?
Well, when you grab a Wacom device, you don’t get many extras that come along with the device (only the pen tablet)… however, the Xencelabs actually provides the artist all the extra essentials that Wacom lacks (like a glove, pen case, sleeve, and more)
Full Pros and cons of the xencelabs tablet are displayed towards the core of this post!
By the end of this read, you will have all the necessary information about this Xencelabs device. Is it a good choice for you as an artist, designer or photographer? Let us find out!
Quick Glance at the Xencelabs Pen Tablet (Medium) Bundle
The Xencelabs brand is clearly sensitive to the needs of professional digital artists of all types (Which is truly refreshing after trying many of the subpar alternatives).
It’s safe to say this product was far more intuitive to use than my XP-Pen (and significantly more smooth overall than the Huion models I’ve tested)
Here’s what stands out to us at an initial glance out of the box:
- Buttons on the top instead of the side.
- Wireless via USB dongle (big plus), and usb-c-usb A adapter.
- A Stylus Pen Case! (this is quickly becoming my favorite extra feature)
- Software Driver is impressive overall
- Customized LED lights (Unique feature)
- Provided a bundle of extras along with the pen tablet (Like a glove, dongle, sleeve, adapters, and cables).
- 16.5 hour battery
- The Quick keys remote is highly functional
Artists can change the LED colors, I’ve used many graphics tablets, ex. Gaomon), but the additional color options one really won me over.
Pros and cons – Xencelabs Pen Tablet
Xencelabs quickly became a very popular choice as a primary drawing tablet amongst artists. The brand’s devices compete with Wacom, as they have unique, and trendy features any artist would be excited to harness.
Starting with the advantages of this tablet, we have very tailored features towards the artist, such as shortcut keys and customized LED colors (this was a really unique, cool feature to have).
These are just a few of the reasons why this device outperforms many others on the market. To be precise, the tablet has a pen pressure control button that allows you to adjust the sensitivity in real time.
Also, the pen has three customizable shortcut keys and an eraser. In fact, this one of the very few drawing tablets we tested that actually comes with an external remote to provide you the ideal drawing and editing experience.
Through the quick keys remote you’ll have ultimate control over the creative process. The remote features an OLED display, customizable buttons and a physical wheel dial.
Ultimate control over your drawing experience
In a few words, if you want ultimate control over scrolling, zooming and rotating, changing colors and brush sizes, there’s few updated devices that allow for an experience better than this remote.
Apart from that, Xencelabs has included plenty of accessories. Everything from 10 extra nibs to a glove and all the cables are included in the box. Finally, the drawing experience is great and the active area is big enough for professionals.
On the flip side, Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium does not have a built-in screen. Considering this tablet costs almost 10 times as much as other drawing tablets without a screen, that’s odd.
However, due to the quality build and fully wireless setup, we can justify the lack of a screen. In a few words, this is a drawing tablet for professionals. There are many designers and artists who prefer tabs without an integrated display. If that applies to you, Medium is the tablet for you.
What is the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium?
To answer this question briefly, the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium is a premium drawing tablet designed for creatives.
The package includes a wireless drawing pad, 2 active pens, and an innovative shortcut key remote that lets you access and customize numerous shortcut keys while drawing with your pen.
Although the lack of a display led us to believe that this was a pretty basic pad, that’s not the case at all. The technology behind this pen tablet is fascinating. Let us take a closer look at it.
The technology behind the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium
The first thing to mention is that Xencelabs included a dongle that allows you to wirelessly connect the tablet and remote to your computer.
The Express Key remote uses the same driver software as the tablet itself. So you can control everything from the same control panel. In fact Xencelabs gives you ultimate control: from dial sensitivity to color to adjusting the buttons on both pens, there’s nothing left out.
It becomes clear that the wireless remote and the 2 pens are what sets this device apart from all others on the market. We feel that this pen tablet is unrivaled in terms of convenience and intuitive operation.
But how does it perform compared to other Wacom and XP Pen devices?
How does the Xencelabs Pen Tablet compare to Wacom and XP-Pen?
Since the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium does not have an integrated screen, we compared it to similar devices from Wacom and XP-Pen.
The first thing we noticed was that this device was slightly more expensive than other digital art pads of it’s caliber, but provided superior quality to the Wacom Intuos Pro. This is, of course, very reasonable. In fact, apart from the display, the latest Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium is not lacking in advanced features.
See our take on the Wacom One Creative Pen Tablet 13.3 – Students and Designers
Overall, this device offered a much better drawing experience than any other entry-level (or even mid-range) drawing pad we tested. The remote gave us the ultimate freedom over the design process and the Xencelabs software is one of the best on the market.
In a few words, we can say that the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium has just created a new mid-range category. If you want the ultimate control over a drawing tablet without a screen, this is the device for you.
Pros and cons – Hands on testing of the XenceLabs Pen Tablet Bundle
During our testing, we had no problems connecting and using the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium with our computer. The remote works great with any software such as Krita, Illustrator, Photoshop, etc.
As for the drawbacks of the Medium, we can safely say that the biggest drawback is the lack of a screen. but this is something artists typically understand when shopping for different tiers of graphics tablets.
Some artists may feel that if you buy a device that costs around $300, you expect an integrated screen, but you’re on the other hand you’re receiving a premium device here.
But the overall experience and the device itself is so innovative that it actually outshines any small perceived drawbacks. The main advantages and disadvantages of the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium are as follows…
|Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium Pros||Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium Cons|
|Solidly built device||Not a standalone device (as expected)|
|Many accessories and extras included (adaptors, 10 extra nibs, drawing glove, extension cord, and more)||No built-in screen (expected, as its a graphics tablet)|
|Ultimately portable and wireless|
|8192 levels of pressure sensitivity|
|Comes with 2 pens and an innovative quick keys remote|
|Numerous customizable shortcuts buttons|
Below, I cover my hands on testing results based on the features of this drawing tablet.
Pen Pressure sensitivity
The Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium comes with 2 different pens. Both the 3-button pen and the thin pen offer an excellent experience when it comes to applying pressure. Both pens have a pressure sensitivity of 8192 and a tilt range of 60 degrees.
In conclusion, the Pen Tablet Medium proves to be a very reliable solution for those who need a great experience when applying low and high pressure to the tablet.
Design & Size
The size of the device is 320 x 232 x 8 mm and the active area is 262 x 147 mm. This means that this device is very light and therefore ultimately portable. In fact, the product weighs only 700 grams.
As for the design of the device, it is simply amazing. We really enjoyed using the active area and the materials feel very high quality. Lastly, the wireless remote gives the whole set a more minimalist and unique look.
The brand new Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium has two active pens. The first is a nice thin pen that reminds us of the simple Wacom pens.
The second pen is the so-called 3 Buttons Pen. This pen is larger than the thin pen and has an extra shortcut key (3 instead of 2). Both pens have an eraser that works perfectly with every software we tested.
Since this is not a budget device, we expected the pens to have adequate pressure sensitivity and tilt support. Fortunately, both pens have 8192 levels of pressure sensitivity and a tilt range of 60 degrees.
In short, the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium has two of the best active pens we have tested.
Button & Shortcut keys
If you are a professional artist, designer or photographer, you definitely need shortcut buttons. Well, this is the best aspect of the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium. With an amazing shortcut key remote, you can set more than 10 shortcut keys at once with this device.
Also, both pens have additional shortcut buttons and an eraser that you can use. In conclusion, Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium is a must have device if having a lot of shortcut buttons is a priority for you.
As with most Xencelabs devices, Medium can be connected to more than one OS. In fact, the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium is fully compatible with devices that run on:
- Windows (7 or later)
- MacOS (X 10.12 or later)
Is Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium good for graphic design and drawing?
Since the brand new Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium provides a comfortable workflow, we can safely say that this is a great choice for graphic design and drawing. The wireless quick key remote control has proven to be very handy.
In fact, after working with this device and its advanced physical wheel dial for a few days, we found it hard to go back to another drawing tablet.
Once you get to grips with the whole system, you find out that this is the perfect choice for professional creatives looking to take their work to the next level.
How to use the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium
The installation process of Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium software is very simple. Since it is not a standalone drawing tablet, you need to connect it to a Windows, Mac or Linux PC.
After that, all you need to do is download and install the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium software. For this, you need to:
- Visit the official Xencelabs website
- From the Menu on the top go to Support and press on Download drivers
- Download the correct version depending on your PC’s OS
- Install the software. You are all set.
If you do not know how to connect your tablet to your computer, you have nothing to worry about. Let us take a look at the best way to do it.
How to Connect the Xencelabs Pen Tablet Medium to your computer or laptop
Since Xencelab’s Pen Tablet Medium is a wireless device, all you have to do is plug the USB dongle into your computer. During our testing, we had no problems connecting the pad wirelessly to our Windows and MacOS PCs.
However, if you do not want to connect it via the dongle, Xencelabs has you covered. That’s because a USB cable and a USB-A to USB-C adapter are also included in the box.