It's been a while since I've gotten the 13HD in the mail, so I'm a little late to write up this review
of sorts, but better late than never.
So, as it has been explained in my previous entries, the secondhand Wacom Companion I had bought failed spectacularly. Since art is something I don't think I could live without, I needed to get a replacement...
Enter the Cintiq 13HD. If you've familiarized yourself with the pictures of my old Companion, you'll immediately notice that this looks completely identical to it, as you can observe below.
Well, the Companion was fashioned after the 13HD. Where they differ is in the guts.
The 13HD is merely a tablet monitor that you connect to your computer through USB and HDMI, essentially combining a regular Wacom tablet with your computer monitor.
The Wacom Companion (1st Generation) is virtually the same thing as a 13HD, except that it is, itself, a portable computer. Because of that, the Companion is a bit more feature-rich in comparison to its more basic counterpart. It's touch enabled (can use your fingers on the screen), can detect when it's been rotated and flip the screen accordingly, boasts a rear and front-facing camera, has a decent battery, and is, as stated, a self contained portable computer that doesn't need to be connected to any external hardware to function.
So, how does the 13HD model stack up to that? Well... It's certainly not as feature-rich, but it doesn't need to be. It's purpose is simple -- it's a monitor that you can draw on. Sure, you need to hook it up to a computer of your choice, finagle with the drivers and run some calibrations, but then you're golden. It works, and it works well. The screen is bright, vibrant, and clear. The pen is responsive, and the weight of the unit itself is comfortable. The provided stand does well enough, and the cord that connects it to the computer is long, convenient, and funnels the USB, HDMI, and power all into a single port that locks into the side of the unit.
Right now, on Amazon, the Wacom 13HD is going for $799.95 brand new, straight from Wacom themselves. That's where I ordered it from. I didn't feel like taking another chance with a used unit.
The old Companion I had bought was around $1,200 used. I really wish the 13HD was a bit cheaper -- it has no excusable reason to be that expensive, but Wacom is a luxury brand, I suppose. There are alternatives out there, such as the Huion KAMVAS GT-191, which is a significantly larger tablet monitor that sits at a lower price of $499 on Amazon. I'm beginning to regret not going for that, but really, I think it's too
big. I wouldn't have any space left on my desk.
Either way, the 13HD is a good, albeit greedy
product. I haven't had any complaints with it yet other than the price tag.