Fixing tablet pressure problems for FireAlpaca
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obtusity's avatar
By obtusity   |   Watch
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Published: January 30, 2015
FireAlpaca has great pressure responsiveness, but sometimes individual users don't get pressure sensitivity. 

FireAlapaca uses the slightly older Wintab pressure/location interface, which requires a Wintab implementation by the tablet manufacturer (in addition to the purely hardware driver). A number of art programs have changed to using the Microsoft Ink pressure/location interface (also known as Tablet PC API, although it applies to graphics tablets as well, not just tablet PCs), which now comes built into Windows, so you may see different behaviour in different software.

My collected tips so far:

Update your tablet software:

Firstly download and install the latest pen/tablet driver/software from the manufacture's website (warning: some tablet brands are just rebadged from another company's product, and the latest driver may not always be under the rebadged name).
Always restart your computer after installing hardware drivers.

Earlier Genius tablet drivers (which may be the ones on the CD in the box) have known Wintab pressure problems. For Genius tablets, install a 2013 or 2014 tablet driver from the Genius website, which seems to have fixed most pressure problems (many of the Genius models use the same driver, so if the update isn't listed under your model you may be able to use the driver from another similar model). 

Surface Pro 3 users need the Wintab driver from here: www.microsoft.com/en-us/downlo…
(All you need is the Wintab download. Get the 64-bit download, not the 32-bit download) 

Surface Pro 4 Wintab drivers available here: www.microsoft.com/en-us/downlo…
(All you need is the Wintab download. Get the 64-bit download, not the 32-bit download) 

Surface Pro 1 and 2 use the Wacom Feel driver (hopefully already installed): us.wacom.com/en/feeldriver/

Turn off Microsoft/Windows Ink:

If you've installed the latest driver, and you're on Windows, the most likely cause of no pressure is the new Ink pressure system in Windows (used now by some graphics programs) stealing the pressure information before it gets to the Wintab pressure system used by FireAlpaca and several other graphics programs.

For Wacom tablets, see this to turn off Ink and only work with Wintab: forum.wacom.eu/viewtopic.php?f… and viziblr.com/news/2013/6/23/the… (but some art programs require Microsoft Ink for pressure, so if possible create a FireAlpaca profile)
For Huion tablets: Open the system tray app that installed with your Huion tablet driver/software and, if there is a checkbox on the first tab labeled "Support Tablet PC Feature", make sure it's unchecked.

Clean up old driver remnants:

If you have had a previous tablet, sometimes they don't uninstall all their software cleanly, which can interfere with another tablet later. Did you have a previous tablet? If so, see this post from Wacom: forum.wacom.eu/viewtopic.php?t…  The wintab files in particular will probably apply to non-Wacom tablets also. Uninstall your current driver using these steps and reinstall.

Turn off conflicting features:

Some Windows services can interfere with the Wintab pressure signals reaching FireAlpaca (it may only show up as a problem in FireAlpaca because other programs may be using the newer Microsoft Ink pressure system, while FireAlpaca is using the older Wintab pressure system, and this only seems to interfere with Wintab). Try turning off Windows services such as pen flick macros, pen to text input, press and hold for right mouse button, etc. Your pen driver/utility/software may have options to change these settings, or you may be able to change some settings from other Control Panel utilities such as Pen and Touch or Tablet PC Settings (may control some tablet/pen behaviour even if you don't have a tablet PC).

If that still doesn't work, this program can check and turn off those services: viziblr.com/news/2011/8/13/fix… (although it says for Wacom tablets, it should work with other brands too, as it is turning off generic Windows programs, not tablet-specific settings). Warning : you may lose long press for right mouse button, etc. (you can set a side button on the pen to right-click if you need it).

Other tips:

- sometimes a computer restart is enough to fix it
- From the Adobe forums: try opening FireAlpaca by double-clicking with the pen, not the mouse.
- If the newest pen/tablet driver doesn't work, try installing an older one
- some USB ports don't supply enough power for proper tablet functionality, try plugging it into another USB port
- restarting the tablet service can also help: zeico.tumblr.com/post/39457145…

If pressure worked earlier in FireAlpaca, but has stopped working:

Try this: 
  1. Open task manager (Ctrl-Shift-Esc on Windows 7 and up, or Ctrl-Alt-Del and select Task Manager, or search for and run it from the Windows search box)
  2. Click on the Services tab
  3. Find the “Wacom Professional Service” or WTabletServicePro (for some, not all, Wacom tablets - depending on your brand, driver version, and tablet version, it might have other names - try searching for your brand name or the word tablet).
  4. Right click the service and Stop it
  5. Right click the service and Start it
  6. You may also have to restart the “Touch Keyboard and Handwriting Panel Service”, or “TabletInputService”

If that doesn't work, try this (Wacom tablets only):
Start All programs > open the Wacom Tablet folder > select Wacom Tablet Preference File Utility > click on Remove under All User Preferences. (Also documented here: siosism.com/how-to-fix-wacom-p… )
Restart your PC.

[On my little low-powered Thinkpad 10 tablet, the preference utility doesn't show up on the Start menu, but the PrefUtil program is hiding in Program Files > Tablet > ISD > Setup. For non-tablets, it might be some other folder e.g. Wacom rather than Tablet, and will not be ISD]
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Comments212
anonymous's avatar
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butterscs's avatar
butterscsProfessional Digital Artist
turns out i had a bunch of drivers from my old wacom tablet and uninstalling them made pen pressure work with my new huion tablet!!! tysm!!!
Idktodraw's avatar
i had problems with this for around 1 month and i didn`t draw cause of this but ooh boy was i stupid. i just needed to open firealpaca with the pen
not the mouse.
PS:I had this problem only with the brush.
pandatron03's avatar
pandatron03Hobbyist General Artist
know anything for these issues but for Gaomon M106K?
I feel like I'm the only person with one lmao
Troll--cat's avatar
Troll--catHobbyist General Artist
Hello, I have an xp pen artist 13, i was using fire alpaca the other day. It worked fine now it doesn't feel the pen pressure?? I tested to see if it would pick up on medibang, and it did pick up and im not sure what happened???? I've tried turning off windows ink and restarting but that doesn't seem to worrk?
JaiKawaii's avatar
Guy................................ hELP me please i have Parblo A160 AND SAI DOESENT WORKS
ShiibaWeeba's avatar
ShiibaWeebaHobbyist Filmographer
if you have a pen pressure sensitivity test and the pressure does work, troubleshoot the program it's not working in and see if that fixes it
ShiibaWeeba's avatar
ShiibaWeebaHobbyist Filmographer
all americans are white
all tablets are wacom

why am i oddly deeply offended everybody assumes everybody uses wacom
YusukeKunn's avatar
YusukeKunnStudent Digital Artist
No FireAlpaca or Medingbang brush They work, can not draw, can you solve?
LeEvilDewer's avatar
LeEvilDewerHobbyist General Artist
it won't let me stop the service. It says access denied  
YourOnlyDrPepper's avatar
Hey, I am having a bit of trouble with this whole wintab drive. I installed and set it up, do I have to do anything else after that? I'm trying to work on fire alpaca but my pen pressure still isn't working. I am just confused by the whole thing. If anyone can help it would be appreciated, thanks!
the1toastgod's avatar
the1toastgodStudent Digital Artist
Do you think you can help me with this?

www.youtube.com/watch?v=olWQP0…

I put all info in the description of the video I've tried looking up a way to fix it but I'm new and can't understand the big words... if you can please help me I just want to art again :(
abby5268's avatar
abby5268Hobbyist Artist
For me, the pen keeps drawing even after I've lifted it up. I really like Fire Alpaca, adn I'm sad that I cannot use it anymore because of this one detail.
GothGirl456's avatar
GothGirl456Hobbyist General Artist
Hey, I'm having this same problem, which tablet are you using?
magenta1234567's avatar
Hey! All you have to do is take out your pen nib and place it back in. Should help with any tablet!
NeoIsAnArtist's avatar
NeoIsAnArtistHobbyist General Artist
meh doesn't work with mine i have tryed it over and over buuuut it doesn't help. the lines just don't show up in certain places when they should ;-;
magenta1234567's avatar
What do you mean? Like when you draw a line it'll draw it somewhere else on the page?
NeoIsAnArtist's avatar
NeoIsAnArtistHobbyist General Artist
nah it just doesn't show up then the line comes back in a diff part 
magenta1234567's avatar
Try and recalibrate it? I don't know if that'll help
Emerald-Nightmare's avatar
Emerald-NightmareHobbyist Digital Artist
No fix works for me. I have pen lag, which creates a short straight line. I don't have pen pressure, and its hard to fix since i can't tell what my tablet's name is on the computer. It's a monoprice (Extra info: www.monoprice.com/product?p_id…) but yet I can't find its name on the computer. Any possible ways?
Chenor-of-Wishes's avatar
Chenor-of-WishesHobbyist Artist
This is late but mess with the correction options in FireAlpaca.

Correction is used to make lines smoother even if you have shaky hands, but creates a delay the higher the setting is. On the other hand, a very low correction creates lines that are extremely shaky.

I have mine at 6. For lineart a little higher is good, a little lower for sketches. But a high correction means a very big delay.
LatulaSings's avatar
LatulaSingsProfessional General Artist
I have a touch screen 2 in 1 laptop that doesn't seem to work with any tablet I own. Do you know of any way to get the pressure sensitivity to work on a touch screen computer with firealpaca? I've tried contacting the actual support from the company but they just hang up on me and Google isn't helping either.
HZPenblade's avatar
HZPenbladeHobbyist Digital Artist
So I downloaded the wintab driver, I think, and the pen pressure sort of works except that it will almost always make a huge dot on the end of my lines, any solutions?
Imtheaura's avatar
ImtheauraStudent General Artist
I smack my pen til it works
HZPenblade's avatar
HZPenbladeHobbyist Digital Artist
nvm-- I swapped it from mouse to tablet coordinates and it stopped! :DDDD
I CAN ANIMATE STUFF THAT LOOKS GOOD NOW :3
anonymous's avatar
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