New Wacom Intuos5 Tablets Offer Multi-Touch Gesture Support


Wacom’s new Intuos5 digital tablets have been announced. Similar to the Intuos4 models, the new Intuos5 tablets offer new features and functionality. Anyone who was a fan of the Intuos4 tablets will like the Intuos5 models even more. They all feature a bold new look with a slim profile and a matte black soft-touch finish with illuminated accents. But that’s just scratching the surface.

Wacom tablets are commonly used by digital artists and photographers to enhance the productivity of imaging applications such as Corel Painter and Adobe Photoshop. They allow digital images to be manipulated with a digital pen, in the same ergonomic way that artists would use traditional pens, pencils, brushes and markers. The controls are located on one side of the Wacom tablets, allowing them to be rotated 180° for equally comfortable use by lefties or righties.

Three new Intuos5 tablets have been announced: the PTH450, PTH650 and PTH850. They’re basically the same, just in different sizes. New features in all three models include multi-touch gesture support to zoom, scroll, pan and rotate content being worked on. In addition to recognizing standard Windows and Mac gestures, the Intuos5 tablets also support custom gestures created in supporting applications. This lets you create intuitive gestures that will execute whatever commands you like, such as commonly used functions in your favorite programs.

Like the Intuos4 tablets, the Intuos5 models that replace them feature programmable ExpressKeys that can provide access to the functions you use the most. But a new feature in the Intuos5 tablets called Express View presents a Heads-Up Display (HUD) of the current settings of the programmable ExpressKeys. Lightly resting a finger on one of the ExpressKeys produces an on-screen display of its settings, which then fades out within a few seconds. It’s just like hovering your mouse cursor over software buttons.

The Intuos5 tablets are normally connected to a computer via USB, but they can be converted for wireless connectivity with the addition of an optional Wireless Accessory kit. That way you can work comfortably at your desk or from your favorite easy chair without being tethered to the computer by a USB cable.

The PTH450 is a small Intuos5 tablet will replace the PTK440. It has an active area measuring 6.2 x 3.9 inches and the entire tablet is 12.6 inches long by 8.18 inches wide by 0.453 inch in thickness. It features six ExpressKeys and a user-defined Touch Ring that can control up to four functions. It weighs 1.46 pounds and has a tilt range of +/-50 degrees.

The medium-size PTH650 Intuos5 will replace the PTK640. The PTH650 has an active area measuring 8.8 x 5.5 inches and the tablet has a footprint of 14.96 by 9.9 inches and a thickness of 0.453 inch. This model has eight ExpressKeys along with the 4-function Touch Ring and tilt range of +/-60 degrees. It weighs 2.18 pounds.

The large-size PTH850 Intuos5 will replace the PTK840. The pen-active area of the PTH850 measures 12.8 by 8 inches, while its touch active area measures 11.8 by 7.5 inches. The tablet’s overall dimensions are 19.18 inches long by 12.51 inches wide by 0.472 inches thick. It weighs 3.97 pounds. Like the medium-size tablet, the PTH850 has a tilt range of +/-60 degrees, eight ExpressKeys and a 4-function Touch Ring.

Regardless of the size you choose, all of the Intuos5 tablets support Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP2 and Windows 7 SP1, as well as Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later running on an Intel processor. Your system also needs a free USB port, a color display, a CD/DVD drive and Internet access.

The Intuos5 tablets have a resolution of 5,080 lines per inch, a pen accuracy of 0.01 inch and they recognize 2,048 Pen Pressure Levels. Each tablet comes with an Intuos5 Grip Pen, a pen stand, ten replacement pen nibs in different shapes and sizes, a pen nib removal tool, a USB cable and an installation CD.

  Intuos5 PTH450 Intuos5 PTH650 Intuos5 PTH850
Active Area 6.2 x 3.9 in. (157.48 x 98.43mm) 8.8 x 5.5 in. (223.52 x 139.7mm) Pen: 12.8 x 8.0 in. (325.12 x 203.2mm) / Touch: 11.8 x 7.5 in. (298.58 x 189.51mm)
Multi-Touch Gesture Support Yes Yes Yes
Custom Gesture Support Yes Yes Yes
ExpressView HUD Yes Yes Yes
Programmable ExpressKeys 6 8 8
Four-Function Touch Ring Yes Yes Yes
Tilt Range +/-50 degrees +/-60 degrees +/-60 degrees
Resolution 5,080 lines per inch 5,080 lines per inch 5,080 lines per inch
Pen Accuracy +/- 0.25 mm (0.010 in.) +/- 0.25 mm (0.010 in.) +/- 0.25 mm (0.010 in.)
Pen Pressure Levels 2,048 2,048 2,048
Maximum Data Rate 197 pps 197 pps 197 pps
Interface USB 2.0 USB 2.0 USB 2.0
Wi-Fi Connectivity Optional Optional Optional
System Requirements Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP2, or Windows 7 SP1; or Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later running on an Intel processor; USB port; color display; CD/DVD drive; Internet access Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP2, or Windows 7 SP1; or Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later running on an Intel processor; USB port; color display; CD/DVD drive; Internet access Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista SP2, or Windows 7 SP1; or Mac OS X 10.5.8 or later running on an Intel processor; USB port; color display; CD/DVD drive; Internet access
Dimensions 12.6 x 8.18 x 0.453 in.  (320.1 x 207.8 x 11.5mm) 14.96 x 9.9 x 0.453 in.  (379.9 x 251.4 x 11.5mm) 19.18 x 12.51 x 0.472 in.  (487.1 x 317.7 x 12mm)
Weight 1.46 lb  (660 g) 2.18 lb (990 g) 3.97 lb (1,800 g)

Discussion 4

Add new comment

Add comment Cancel

I am searching for videos on how to actually use the tablet for editing photos, not just videos that show the features, programmable buttons, etc. Are there any actual editing videos using the Intuos 5 out there? Thanks.

The review was well written.  It would have been better if the author had included approximate costs of these devices.


The items are hyper links to our product web pages. We generally do not list pricing because it is subject to change.

Wacom Intuos5 Small Pen & Touch Tablet

Wacom Intuos5 Medium Pen & Touch Tablet

Wacom Intuos5 Large Pen & Touch Tablet 

I agree...approximate cost should be included. Thanks. :D