Thursday, October 6th, 2016 Posted by Jim Thacker

Wacom unveils MobileStudio Pro 13 and 16 pen displays

Wacom has unveiled the MobileStudio Pro 13 and 16, its latest range of touch-enabled pen displays.

The Windows 10 devices run full desktop versions of graphics software, like Photoshop and ZBrush, at up to 4K display resolution, and include Wacom’s next-gen Pro Pen 2 stylus.

The power of a desktop workstation in a pen display
The MobileStudio Pro displays complement Wacom’s original Cintiq Companion range of multi-touch devices, which were first released in 2013, and updated again last year.

Whereas the original Companion had one foot in the mobile world and one in desktop computing – it came in both Android and Windows 8 editions – the new MobileStudio Pros are definitely portable workstations.

There are four editions of the 13-inch MobileStudio Pro 13 and two of the 16-inch MobileStudio Pro 16 – and all of them run Windows 10 on Intel Core-i5 or Core-i7 CPUs.

The MobileStudio Pro 13 uses integrated graphics, in the shape of the Intel Iris 550 processor, but the Mobile Studio Pro 16 uses Nvidia’s professional mobile GPUs, albeit the low-end Quadro M600M and M1000M.

Both models offer up to 16GB RAM, which puts them on a par with an typical professional graphics laptop.

Hard drive capacity is more limited, as you would expect, but both models offer up to 512GB of SSD storage.

So how does that work with 3D software?
Without any benchmark figures, it’s hard to say how that translates into software performance, but Wacom’s marketing blurb namechecks “seven million vertices” in a ZBrush sculpt.

That sounds specific enough to refer to an asset the company has actually tested, so we assume that’s the upper limit of complexity for a model if you want reasonable real-time performance.

Better styluses and displays than previous Wacom devices
Although their other hardware specs aren’t actually that different to a top-end Cintiq Companion 2, the MobileStudio Pro displays score over their predecessor when it comes to pen sensitivity and display quality.

Whereas the Cintiq Companion 2 range uses Wacom’s original Pro Pen, which offers 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity, the MobileStudio Pro range’s Pro Pen 2 quadruples that to 8,192 levels.

Display resolution is also up: whereas the Cintiq Companion 2 range supports QHD resolution (2,560 x 1,440 pixels), the MobileStudio Pros extend that to 4K resolution and 96% of the Adobe RGB colour gamut.

Bonus options include RealSense 3D cameras
The MobileStudio Pro displays themselves come with the controls you’d expect, including Wacom’s standard ExpressKeys and Touch Ring, and you can buy an optional Bluetooth keyboard.

You can also connect your display to your desktop machine – including Mac workstations – using Wacom’s Link add-on.

And an interesting new feature, available only in the top-end editions of both the MobileStudio Pro 13 and 16, is Intel’s RealSense 3D camera and scanning software, providing a quick-and-dirty means of object capture.

Pricing and availability
Wacom expects users to pay top dollar for its products, and the MobileStudio Pro range is no exception.

According to the firm’s press release, the MobileStudio Pro 13 will start at $1,499 for 64GB of storage, rising to $1,799 for 128GB, $1,999 for 256GB and $2,499 for 512GB.

(For comparison, that’s $200 more than the current MSRP of an equivalently-specced Cintiq Companion 2 for the 128GB model, but actually the same price for the 256GB model.)

The MobileStudio Pro 16 costs $2,399 with 256GB of storage, or $2,999 with 512GB. As well as storage capacity, the edition you choose affects other specs: you can find details via the link below.

Both devices are due to ship at the end of November, so you’ve got a few weeks to gather your savings.

Read full specs for the MobileStudio Pro 13 and 16 pen displays on Wacom’s website