Wednesday, January 7th, 2015 Posted by Jim Thacker

Wacom announces Cintiq 27QHD and Companion 2

Wacom has unveiled two new additions to its Cintiq product line, the Cintiq 27QHD and Cintiq Companion 2: its highest-resolution – and, in the case of the 27QHD, its largest – pen displays to date.

Whereas previous Cintiqs had a maximum resolution of 1,920 x 1,080, both new models boast 2.5K (2,560 x 1,440) displays.

The 27QHD: bigger, higher-resolution and lighter
Aside from its size (27 inches, naturally) and resolution, the main change between the Cintiq 27QHD and its predecessor, the 24-inch Cintiq 24HD, is its chassis design.

Whereas the 24HD put its ExpressKeys down the sides of the display, the 27QHD frees up space on the base unit by locating the hotkeys on a separate remote, meaning the two devices have the same desktop footprint.

The 24HD’s stand is also now an optional extra, with the 27QHD coming by default with two small fold-out legs.

That cuts the weight to 9kg (19.8lb), down from the 24HD’s back-breaking 28.6kg (63.8lb). If you want a more robust mounting, you can still buy the stand, but it will cost you $399 extra.

Connectivity is also much better: no less than five USB 3.0 ports, instead of one.

Other than that, it’s as high-spec as you’d expect from a Cintiq: 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity, and the colour gamut is actually up, from 92% Adobe RGB to 97% Adobe RGB.

Wacom lists the 27QHD as compatible with Maya, Mudbox, ZBrush, Photoshop, Illustrator and Painter.

The Companion 2: more ExpressKeys and connectivity
The second new Cintiq, the Companion 2 tablet, is no larger than its 13-inch predecessor, but boasts the same 2.5K maximum resolution, and six ExpressKeys instead of four.

Again, Wacom says that it’s lighter than the original Companion – although we can’t find any figures on that yet – and there are more connectivity options: three USB 3.0 ports instead of two, plus an extra SD slot.

As well as the exisiting MiniDP, you also now get the option of HDMI for connecting an external display.

Pricing and availability
The Cintiq 27QHD comes in standard and touch-enabled versions. So far, Wacom’s site only lists a price for the 27QHD Touch: $2,799 – down $200 on the 24HD Touch (or up $199 if you also want the stand).

However, CNET reports the price of the standard edition as $2,300, and the shipping date for both models as the end of January.

The price of the Cintiq Companion 2 depends on which of the five new editions you want, which range from the $1,299.99 ‘Value’ (we use the term advisedly) to the $2,699.99 Enterprise edition.

For comparison, the MSRP of the 256GB and 512GB models has remained the same ($1,999.99 and $2,499.99 respectively), although you now get newer and faster Intel Core i7 CPUs for your money.

You can find more detailed specs in the blog post linked below, which lists the shipping date for all five Companion 2 models as “spring”.

Read Wacom’s blog post announcing the Cintiq 27QHD and Companion 2

Read full specifications for the Cintiq 27QHD on Wacom’s website