If you’re looking to do more on the go, you need either a tablet or a laptop. But you don’t have to have a laptop. Tablets are becoming more powerful than ever. Here’s our guide to the best creator tablets around.
These power slates are great for functions including illustration, photo editing, video work and more. They’re not cheap, but they will set you in great stead to be more productive.
Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra
There’s no getting away from the fact that the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra is a bit of a niche device, but it’s one that’s brilliant for creators thanks to its huge 14.6in display. That pushes the boundaries of portability (remember the largest iPad is 12.9in) but there’s no doubt it makes for a useful and stunningly large creative canvas.
Its screen is mesmerizing because it uses AMOLED tech rather than LCD. With 240 pixels per inch it’s nicely crisp – and thanks to a 120Hz refresh rate, menus glide fluidly. The only strike against it is good but not great brightness. Unlike any iPad, the Tab S8 Ultra ships with an S Pen stylus that delivers the lowest latency of any Samsung tablet to date – 2.8ms – so it’s also an impressive art and note-taking tool.
As well as productivity, this is also a great option for consuming other people’s content – such as watching movies on the go. The tablet’s speakers are excellent; and while this implementation of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor might not slay the very latest smartphones out there, its performance definitely isn’t lacking.
The Tab S8 Ultra is a top-quality tablet that’s easy to recommend to a power user who wants the finest slate that Samsung has released to date and so without a doubt it’s one of the best creator tablets.
Microsoft Surface Go 3
If you’re in the market for an affordable touchscreen tablet that can handle sketching and content creation, Microsoft’s cheapest Surface tablet is a good choice. It’s not majorly powerful and at 10.5in it’s quite small compared to rivals, but it’s quick and portable, and works well with the Surface Pen (sold separately, see below).
Wacom Cintiq 16
Wacom’s legendary graphics tablets have been the choice for generations of illustrators, and its Cintiq tabs are superb extensions for your existing PC. Even the relatively small Cintiq 16 is bigger than most laptops’ displays, and its sensitive pen is an absolute dream to draw with. This isn’t a standalone tablet, though.
Apple iPad Pro
Apple’s tabs are pricey – the larger 12.9in model tops out at £1999 if you go for the full 2TB of storage – but they’re beautifully made with superb Mini LED displays, powerful processors and all-day battery life. And of course, they can run any apps from the App Store including the likes of Photoshop.
Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio
At the other end of the scale from the Surface Go 3, this Microsoft tablet is aimed at the pros – with second-gen Nvidia RTX graphics, a smooth 14.4in 120Hz display, 11th-gen Intel Core H series processors and up to 32GB of R.A.M. It also has Dolby Vision for excellent HDR visuals.
Now add these…
The wonderful Apple Pencil is £89 for the first-gen model and £119 for the sequel; check compatibility, as not every iPad works with every Pencil. An essential tool for some of the best creator tablets.
Microsoft Surface Pen
Microsoft’s stylus for Surface devices has a useful tilt-shading feature and better sensitivity than the previous version. Again you need to check which Surface Pen works with your device.
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
Samsung’s flagship phone takes amazing photos, shoots great video and includes the excellent S Pen stylus.