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Wacom Inkling Digital Sketch Pen (MDP123)
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- Sketch your ideas on standard paper or sketchbooks while capturing a digital likeness of your sketch in raster for use in Photoshop or vector format for use in Illustrator.
- Store hundreds of sketches on the Inkling receiver before transferring them to your Mac or PC via USB
- Export your layered sketches from the included Inkling Sketch Manager software into Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator (CS3+) or Autodesk SketchBook Pro (2011+)
- Save your sketches from the Inkling Sketch Manager in the following formats; JPG, BMP, TIFF, PNG, SVG or PDF
- Layers button on the receiver allows you to add layers to the digital file while sketching on paper
- The rechargeable Inkling pen and receiver charge and store in compact carrying case
- Inkling Sketch Manager software allows you to add, delete or modify layers after a sketch is transferred to your computer
- Inkling is a great tool for capturing ideas and concepts for later refinement on your computer using Wacom Intuos pen tablets
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|Item Dimensions||6 x 2 x 8.4 in||1.63 x 6.25 x 9.31 in||2.5 x 8.5 x 6.8 in||11.13 x 10.25 x 2 in|
The inkling sketch pen captures a digital likeness of your work while you sketch with its ballpoint tip on standard paper or sketchbooks. If you use sketching to capture your creative ideas and rough concepts, and you want to have your sketches in digital format for emailing, archiving or further refining on your computer, then inkling is the product for you.
From the Manufacturer
Capture your ideas and rough concept sketches in digital format for further refining on your computer, emailing, or archiving. Inking is a highly portable sketching tool that allows you to sketch with a pressure sensitive ink pen on your favorite sketchbook or paper while at the same time capturing a digital version of your sketch. Inkling enables you to sketch away from your computer--at your favorite coffee shop, in brainstorming meetings, or on the train to work. When you finish sketching, you can plug the Inkling into your computer and transfer your sketches for further development on your computer.
While you sketch on paper, your ideas go digital. View larger.
Pen and receiver charge in case and connect to computer via USB. View larger.
Included: pen, receiver, USB cable, charging / storage case with spare pen ink cartridges.
Designed for Rough Concepting and Creative Brainstorming
Inkling is designed for those who sketch as part of the creative workflow or hobby. Because Inkling is compact and mobile, you can use it to capture your ideas whenever you have them and then transfer them to your computer for further refinement in popular creative software applications, emailing, or project archiving.
The ballpoint pen uses Wacom pressure-sensing technology to detect how hard the pen is being pressed onto the paper, and these variations appear in the digital version of your drawing. Refill your pen with any standard mini-ballpoint ink refill cartridge (1-millimeter ball size).
Portable and Easy to Use
The pen and receiver both store and recharge in a compact case, making it easy to transport the Inkling between home, office, meeting room, and any other workspace. The receiver can be clipped to the edge of any standard paper or sketchbook, and the position can be adjusted for left- or right-handed users. Store thousands of high-resolution sketches on the receiver before transferring them via USB to your Mac or PC.
What's in the Box
Inkling digital pen, rechargeable pen battery, pen ink cartridge plus four spare cartridges, charging case, receiver (with rechargeable battery), USB cable, Inkling sketch manager application (located on the Inkling receiver), quick start guide, and electronic user manual.
|Supported Paper Sizes||Maximum paper size is A4 paper, 8.27" x 11.69" (210 x 297 mm). Inkling can be used on larger paper sizes but will only record a drawing area of this size. Inkling will not record strokes made within 0.8 inches (2cm) of the receiver.|
|Paper Type||Inkling does not require any specialized paper. It is intended to be uses with standard paper or Sketchbooks on flat, rigid drawing surfaces.|
|Charging||USB (powered port). Pen and receiver charge inside Inkling case.|
|Tracking Technology||Inkling uses ultrasonic and infrared technologies. Infrared technology requires an unobstructed line of sight between the pen tip and the receiver when drawing.|
|Working Time||>8 hours|
|Charging Time||3 hours|
|Accuracy|| Main area of A4 paper: +/- 0.1 inches (2.5 mm)|
Margins of A4 paper: +/- 0.2 inches (5.0 mm)
At a Glance:
- Sketch your ideas on paper while capturing a digital likeness
- Add layers to your sketches
- Save your sketches in the following formats: JPG, BMP, TIFF, PNG, SVG, and PDF
- Export your sketches into Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator (CS3+), Autodesk SketchBook Pro (2011+), and Autodesk SketchBook Designer
The designer's tool on the go.
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Top Customer Reviews
In all fairness to Wacom, the Inkling does do what it is advertised to do. It is a "tool for capturing ideas and concepts for later refinement on your computer using Wacom Intuos pen tablets." I just didn't expect that the line art would need as much "refining" as it does.
I have drawn over 40 sketches with the Inkling and I've found that it works at an acceptable level of accuracy when I draw relatively close to the receiver (a couple inches below it). In fact, a few drawings have been remarkably accurate--but many have been way off, especially when I draw near the lower portions of a letter size sheet. If you watch the video you can see this.
The pen is wider than a normal pen or pencil. The lower grip area is almost identical to my Cintiq pen, but the weight and balance is different and it will take me a while to get used to it. Also, I normally sketch on paper with a pencil or sometimes a marker, so sketching with a ball-point pen is a big change for me.
The Sketch Manager software works well on my Windows 7 (64-bit) computer and I can easily export images to Photoshop and Illustrator. However, when I export layered images to SketchBook Pro things looked terrible--the layers don't line up. It is possible to use the Inkling Sketch Manager software to first save your image and then open it directly in SketchBook Pro rather than "exporting" it. However, when you use this approach all of the layers are flattened even if you save it as a tiff file. Inkling images without layers open fine in Sketchbook Pro.
As for pressure sensitivity--I've done several tests on this by drawing rows of parallel lines with various pen pressures. I've found that there is only a slight difference in the darkness or the thickness of the line between drawing very light and pressing quite hard.
From the very beginning I have been extremely careful about making sure that nothing was blocking the pathway between the pen and the receiver. I feel confident that the inaccuracies I am experiencing are not due to a physical obstruction between the receiver and pen.
An unexpected feature is when the Inkling is connected to the computer it is able to control the cursor on the computer. This feature is included so that you can adjust the "Click Threshold" of the pen. The "unadvertised" benefit of this is that the Inkling pen can be used in a way very similar to how Wacom's digital tablets work. I can use the Inkling to draw directly in Photoshop. Unfortunately, the pressure sensitivity of the pen doesn't seem to be active when it is being used inside a program. I was unable to control the thickness of my lines or the opacity of the stoke by applying more pressure when drawing directly in Photoshop or Sketchbook Pro. If the pressure sensitivity did work inside Photoshop--I would add an additional star to my review.
Bottom line: The accuracy of this pen ranges from fairly decent to poor depending on the distance from the receiver, the use of layers (layers seem to throw the accuracy off a bit), and if you add lines to previously drawn areas. I just wish it was more accurate.
Updated 11/28/2011: I have now drawn over 90 drawings with the Inkling. I've added a couple minutes to the original video. I've found that if I attach the receiver to the left side of the paper (I'm right handed) it works better than at the top because no area of the paper is farther than 6 or 7 inches away. Make sure you change the Inkling setting when you do this.
Updated 01/01/2012: I've added another few minutes to the original video that shows the accuracy of the Inkling when drawing some simple faces. In addition, I have included a short section on how the Inkling's drawings compare to drawings produced by the Livescribe pen. I purchased a Livescribe pen after my initial disappointment with the Inkling. For me, the Livescribe pen has been much more accurate, and since I don't use vectors, and I can live without layers in my line art, I actually prefer using the Livescribe pen (sorry Wacom).
Updated 2/17/2012: My Inkling stopped working properly at the beginning of January after it froze up and would not respond for several minutes. The next day it started working again, but I still contacted Wacom about it. They offered to replace it and I took them up on the offer. Unfortunately, the replacement works terribly. It is only accurate within a very small area near the receiver. Anything drawn farther than 3 or 4 inches from the receiver looks terrible with so many missing lines and misalignments that the drawings are almost unrecognizable. Fortunately, I still have my first one which I intend to keep. I had been wondering if perhaps the accuracy of the Inkling varied from pen to pen. That might explain the wide range of reviews here. Based on my experience the accuracy does vary and that is unfortunate.
Updated 4/17/2012: I never use this. It just isn't accurate enough for my type of drawing. I'm going to list it for sale on Amazon for half price ($99) and at least get some of my money back. There was one time in January where it froze for about 15 minutes but other than that it has worked the same as shown in my videos. The reason I'm selling it at half price is that the 2-year warranty only covers the initial buyer.
Update 4/18/2012: Sold!
I received this product in the mail yesterday, and returned it today.
The verdict is simply heart breaking...
I had been extremely excited with the hype behind the inkling. The idea is genius. The execution is fundamentally flawed.
The product does not work. Wacom released a product that does not work.
What do I mean it does not work? The inkling DOES digitize your paper sketch, but does not do so accurately. It does so with gross and noticeable mis-alignments in your digitized drawings. This really renders the product absolutely useless. I thought that maybe I was bumping the paper or receiver so I placed weights upon the paper. I also made certain that the receiver was not obstructed in any way. I purposefully drew each line with care. It did not help.
I was so looking forward to the inkling and now I just feel let down.
I really hope Wacom tightens up their product and re-releases it. The Inkling really is an amazing idea.
The device does a lot of things for not a lot of $. Ultrasonic+infrared to track the pen location, and it will also store the paths into files on an internal memory when used alone, separate from a PC. And it saves the pressure readings. Even saves to multiple layers in one file if you want. And there's a rechargeable battery in the clip/base and also another rechargeable battery in the Pen, and a fairly nice mechanism for charging the pen when put into its case. Lots of engineering for a sub-$100 device which I'd assume has a fairly small market.
The tracking quality is fairly accurate within page range. What must be realized is that it does NOT track the tip of the pen, it tracks about 1/4" or so above the tip of the pen. What this means, is that the tracking will be fairly good IF you keep the pen at one particular angle/orientation while you write or draw.
To see how large this effect of changing the pen's orientation is on tracking, you can hold the tip of the pen at one spot and then move the pen in a circle without moving the tip of the pen -- and it will "draw" a small circle.
Additionally, you can use the pen as a mouse while connected to a PC, and there's not much lag. This was actually one of my intended purposes. However, in this mode it does not provide pressure sensitivity. Also, I was hoping in this mode there would be a way to configure the mapping area between pen and the screen like the intuos tablet I have from a few years ago, but I did not find these settings anywhere. There's a set area it uses for mouse tracking and maps to your screen, which I didn't find that great. And, the mouse tracking area doesn't seem to change when you change what size/type of "page" the pen's calibrated for.
Pros: Cool tech. Great tracking accuracy and precision, considering. Can be used as a mouse/drawing input.
Cons: Pen is a little bulky and awkward to hold. Tracks further above tip of pen than would be nice, resulting in inaccuracies if much care is not taken to keep pen tilted in a constant angle while drawing/writing.