In 2019, the launch of the Wacom One Creative Pen Display introduced the world to an entry-level 13.3" pen display that allowed users to make precise photo edits and draw detailed illustrations directly on a Full HD color display. Four years later, the Wacom One 13 touch Pen Display and the Wacom One 12 Pen Display expand the lineup with updated features and an increased emphasis on portability and conserving desktop space.
Both of the new creative pen displays provide artists with the feel of pen and paper when working on content. They have smooth, Full HD, optically bonded, anti-glare color screens and include a two-button pen that supports 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity, allowing you to draw thick or thin lines quickly by pressing harder or lighter, while the 60-degree tilt makes for easy shading.
However, apart from being a little smaller and lighter, the design differs significantly from the 2019 model with the inclusion of USB-C connectivity. That might sound like a relatively small change, but it means that connecting the pen display to your compatible laptop allows you to work with video and data, and it provides power over a single cable, reducing desktop clutter and making things easier to pack up and carry. A convenient power adapter and a second USB-C cable is included if your port doesn't provide enough power. And don't worry if you don't have a display-compatible USB-C port. You can pick up a 3-in-1 cable separately to connect the new displays with HDMI-compatible computers.
Getting in Touch with the Wacom One 13 touch
In addition to the previously mentioned changes, the Wacom One 13 touch enhances workflows with the inclusion of multi-touch capabilities, which can be turned on or off with a physical switch. By using gestures such as pinching on the 13.3" display, you can quickly zoom in and out of images, while pressing with two fingers lets you move the image around. This frees you to customize the pen buttons with other frequently used shortcuts such as increasing and decreasing the brush size. Advanced and custom gestures, such as using a three-finger tap to bring up a radial menu, may be configured in the Wacom Center software. You can also use the software to set up the pen's firmness so that it can draw thin lines like a real-world pen or soft, broad ones that are more similar to brush or pencil.
I was happy to discover that the screen features excellent palm rejection and fingerprint resistance. So, I was free to lean in as I worked without having to put on a two-finger drawing glove. Touch control became a natural fit to my workflow. It significantly cut down the time it would usually take me to composite images in Photoshop by allowing me to zoom in on spots and make pixel-precise edits without having to change tools. I also noticed that I didn't have to reach for my keyboard as often for shortcuts and adjustments.
You can also enhance your productivity more generally by using the Wacom One 13 touch as a second screen to view more content. Touch control allows you to scroll naturally through documents and web pages, as you would on a tablet. Additionally, the Wacom Pen can be used to make highlights or jot down handwritten notes with supported applications, which expands the display's utility beyond creative projects.
Getting Ahead with the Wacom One 12
Those who have very limited desk space or travel frequently may be interested in picking up a Wacom One 12. Although there's no touchscreen model, the smaller 11.6" screen size makes it easier to carry alongside a notebook when commuting. Otherwise, it offers all the same features as the Wacom One 13, including the one USB-C cable design. Additionally, the anti-glare screen was just bright enough to work with under some harsh overhead lights.
The smaller size gave me plenty of room to keep a compact keyboard and a mouse close at hand while I worked. Unlike the original Wacom One, the 2023 models don't include folding legs. Instead, you can purchase a pair of semicircular stands separately. These stands unfold and lie under the top edge of the display. The rounded form allows you to move the display up farther if you need more tilt, and I was able to find a comfortable angle quickly. You can also use the stands to set the pen display in portrait mode, which can save a great deal of desktop space.
When you're ready to pack up, the two stands fold flat and snap together magnetically into a small disc that can be easily tucked into a bag, pocket, or Wacom One Carrying Case.
Both the 13 touch model with touch control and the 12 pen display are excellent starting points for those who are interested in creative displays, but aren't ready to commit to more advanced models. Personally, I prefer the convenience of having touch controls alongside the pressure-sensitive pen, which saved me a lot of time while giving me more precision than I would usually have when using a mouse.
However, the Wacom 12 is an easy choice if you have a small desk or frequently work at locations such as cafés. None of the Wacom One creative displays have built-in Express keys, but you can use devices like the Wacom ExpressKey Remote or on-screen shortcuts found in the Wacom Center software for quick access to customizable shortcuts.
For more information about the new creative displays, including additional features, specs, and highlights, be sure to check out the detailed product pages for the Wacom One 13 touch Pen Display and Wacom One 12 Pen Display. Or drop us a line below, and we'll do our best to reply to your comments and questions.