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Difference Between iPad and Cintiq

iPad vs Cintiq

Although the iPad is not the first tablet computer in the market, it surely ushered the form factor into mainstream use. A lot of other manufacturers soon followed suit and created tablet computers that had the same form factor. Another relatively obscure product is the Cintiq from Wacom, which looks quite similar to the iPad as it looks like a tablet with a big touch screen interface up front. Unlike the iPad, which is a portable computer and multimedia device, the Cintiq is simply an interactive pen display. It is not an entire computer but just the combination of an input and output devices. In order for the Cintiq to function, it needs to be connected to a separate computer.

Although they are both touch screen devices, there is a major difference in how they operate. The iPad uses a capacitive touch screen and users can use their fingers in order to click on something on screen. On the other hand, Cintiq utilizes both the screen and a pen with a pressure sensor point. It can determine not only where you are pointing, but also how hard you are pressing on it. Aside from the pressure, the pen also has buttons and can be tilted for even more control.

The difference in the interface, although seemingly insignificant, translates to a world of difference. The interface of the iPad works very well as a mouse and you can control the device with no problem at all. The level of control provided by Cintiq goes far beyond simulating a mouse. Artists and graphic designers are the ones who can truly appreciate the Cintiq as it allows them to draw on the screen as if they are actually using pen and paper. The pressure sensitive tip of the pen can easily simulate a soft or hard stroke of a brush and drawing seems more natural. Since the Cintiq only responds to the pen, there is no worry about accidentally touching parts of the screen. Because of that, the Cintiq is mostly used only by professionals who truly need its capabilities. The price of Cintiqs is also a major factor why it is not as common as iPads.

1. The iPad is a multimedia device while the Cintiq is an interactive pen display
2. The iPad is a discrete device while the Cintiq is meant to be used with a computer
3. The Cintiq screen only responds to the pen while the iPad screen only responds to skin contact
4. The iPad is quite suited for everyday computing while the Cintiq is for specialized uses

Apple iPad (first generation) MB292LL/A Tablet (16GB, Wifi)

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1 Comment

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