Adesso CyberTablet Z12 Review

By Dave

First, I want to say that I am not an artist, and my drawing talents are really very weak, but I enjoyed being able to use a drawing tablet on more than one occassion since receiving it.

The Adesso Z12 is a twelve inch by ten inch tablet with a ten inch by six and a quarter inch drawing area. The whole unit is very lightweight, and I found it to have a very solid build quality, especially for how thin it is.

While I probably won’t use over half of the features it includes, the Z12 has 1024 level pressure sensitivity and 2000 LPI resolution with twenty-eight programmable hot keys.

The Z12 comes with a software package for Windows XP and Vista users, but installing it on my Windows 7 computer was easy. I plugged it in via USB, and immediately it started working. Of course the hot keys weren’t functioning, but it was easy enough to install the drivers that came with the package.

Other items in the package included the stylus pen, AAA size battery for the pen, two extra pen tips, a solid rubber pen holder, and various disks including drivers, Adesso’s own software, and a copy Corel’s Ulead PhotoImpact 12 SE.

I decided to use Paint.NET, a free drawing application. The tablet worked well. It took me some time to get used to how a tablet functions as it is very different from a mouse. When I picked up the stylus from the tablet, and moved it to the right or left, and placed it back down, it was though I was drawing on a paper, and so the drawing would start in a new area, rather than where I “left” the mouse cursor. There was also a disconnect for me, as I continued to look down at my position, only to not have any real information without looking at what I was doing on the screen. I think this would change after some use, but for me, it was a strange feeling.

There is a toggle button on the pen that allowed me to stop it from drawing, so I could keep my strokes fairly consistent. I found the reaction time of the tablet to be amazing, and it didn’t show any signs of lagging behind or having any issues with my rapid strokes. I tried a few times to throw it off without issue.

I was also worried about the amount of pressure I could put on the pen. I have a fairly light touch when it comes to writing and drawing because I am left handed, and get annoyed when pencil or pen ink smears on the page. I wasn’t worrying about this with the tablet, and found myself having to remember to push a little harder than I am used to to create thicker lines. This pressure difference though makes controlling the thinness and thickness of lines much easier.

If you can draw, design, or otherwise create art, this tablet is a must have. If you enjoy taking notes by hand, or love to mock-up user interface sketches, this tablet is also a great accessory to have.

While I’ve only tried and tested a few other tablets before, I find myself being very impressed with the versatility, build quality and overall simplicity of this tablet. I wouldn’t go so far as to say the sensitivity and precision beats competition, but it is definitely equivalent. If you are interested in the Z12, it currently retails for $129.99.

Other products in the Adesso tablet line include: CyberTablet M14, with a larger drawing area, the CyberPad A4, made for handwritten note taking on the go, the CyberTablet 12000, a tablet that can also be portable, the CyberTablet 6400, a smaller tablet, and the CyberTablet M17, a 17″ LCD Graphic Tablet monitor.

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