So after a delay and two posts deletions due to computer restarts, here is my review of the Huion Kamvas GT 191 v1.
I’ve been a fan of huion since my first experience with them, a fantastic Huion L4S LED Light Box A4 Ultra-thin. So when my hubby (who’d also bought me the lightbox) was looking for a tablet for me for Christmas, he went right back to the same brand he knew I liked and got me the HUION H610PRO Painting Drawing Pen Graphics Tablet and which promptly sat beside my desk for 2, no 3 years… but once I did pull it out was so smooth and amazing. I found I LOVED the hotkeys, but with fibromyalgia, I wasn’t getting the control I needed from my hand to the screen. So since I already had commissions lining up, we splurged and got the Huion KAMVAS GT-191 Drawing Tablet which is what I’m reviewing today.
So I am a bit biased, but I am not being paid for my opinion. I like to share it freely with the internet, just like everyone else. XP
All joking aside, huion, in general, has proven to me to be a very solid quality company. Seriously, their graphics tablet set in a box for 3 years and was pretty much plug and play. I know when I did have a Wacom back in the day; it was not user-friendly at all. And it is definitely more budget-friendly, so onto the actual review.
I loved that the GT-191 came with not one, but two pens (I was bound to lose one if not both on a regular basis), as well as other neat little extras (OMG who knew about those gloves AH MAZ ING), lots of nibs, and even a screen protector. Plus the standard cords and the like that you’ll need with instructions. So let’s break those down first.
The pens are very nice and feel very comfortable in my hands. When I do non-digital work, I use very lightweight mechanical pencils, so these do not feel too heavy to my fingers. I do wish there was an option for no buttons because I catch myself constantly pushing them. Luckily, you can turn it off so that helps, I just always have a moment of “ack did I do something still!” when I hear/feel the click. I can see how they feel ‘cheap’ to some of the other reviewers since they are made of plastic, but I find them perfect for gripping. The surplus nibs are great since I don’t have to worry about suddenly being out in the middle of a project and freak out. You would not like to see me deadline cranky. It’s not a pretty picture.
If you couldn’t tell by my earlier comments, I love the gloves! I’ve never used the gloves or even seen them used by any other artists that I follow but I gave them a whirl and my lines became so smooth it was like slicing a hot knife through butter. I ended up buying several more to make sure I don’t lose them too.
One thing I wasn’t thrilled with was the screen protector. I understand those screen protectors are a pain in the butt to apply to a small screen like my cell phone so of course it’d be tougher to do to a bigger screen but come on huion, you’re so generous with the other stuff, at least supply a second screen protector because the first one will mess up no matter how closely you follow the directions. You need to be in a windless room (No fan, no AC, no window. Vacuum would have been better) and honestly, I think it might have been easier to apply from the top – bottom then side to side it fought me every step of the way, and it still didn’t work. Then because huion’s screen protectors were so expensive (4% of the price of the entire machine), I went with another brand who at least offered me 2 screen protectors for that price. So another few days till I could try the actual tablet out.
So once that was situated, it was time to get down to the nitty-gritty. Got everything installed, and fought with the cords, that for some reason are right behind the adjustable easel for the tablet. Talk about poor design, you put pressure on the cords bending sideways, have them go through the hole at the base of the easel and not be able to adjust it as easily, or you lay the easel base on the cords which is a nightmare. So we fixed it but putting the easel on upside down and adjusting the resolution on the monitor so that we could put it upside down and now the cords come out the top and are no issue at all. Well, excepting that I lose that extra inch of space at the bottom where the non-sliding footrests. Better design can fix this and hey, this is only version 1. So we may see things eventually. The machine itself is sturdy without being hefty. It’s definitely not an on the go tablet, but it’s great for desk work.
Now on to the experience with the monitor, software and service support.
I know I’m being a bit long-winded here, but my camera just didn’t want to work today so I’m having to type out all the things I wanted to say. The first picture I did with my huion display tablet was well…not safe for work, but the ease of use was amazing. Everything was where I wanted it to be and I didn’t have to go over them time and time again to ease the shaking of my hands. The biggest problem I found was actually not Huion’s fault so much but Adobe’s. I use Photoshop and every single week, it feels like Adobe has an update of some kind coming out that messes with the way that Huion handshakes with it and so I went back and forth with both huion and Adobe to get them happy with each other, only to have it happen again the next time it updated.
I miss the buttons I learned to love with the H610Pro and if I could go back(and had the money), I’d probably have splurged on the Kamvas GT-221Pro with some hotkey buttons, but it’s far from a dealbreaker, especially now that Adobe has updated some of my more common time-consuming issues (Ctrl-z). I probably wouldn’t know what to do with that much canvas space anyways. (Who am I kidding; I’d love that much space to draw on and still have every window I use in PS).
Luckily, huion has been really responsive with my frequent frustration at the monopoly Wacom and Adobe have with each other’s drivers and the like. And this is with them being like 10 times zones difference. They don’t seem to be in on the weekends which can be frustrating, but once they are back, they are like BOOM! Here’s your solution. I wish they (and many other companies) had chat options or the like to fix things that go wrong; especially when it’s with tech stuff. That stuff can be vital. I also wish huion had more videos of common things that can go wrong with their things and how to fix them" when I was first starting out, there was so much junk out there and so few solutions that I was ready to throw it through a window. And every time there’s a new update to Adobe, I visit that feeling again, but I remind myself that huion’s support team is there for me and I got this.
So TL;DR I think the Kamvas GT-191 v1 Drawing Tablet is a great buy at $499, although, it is currently on sale on Amazon with an Early Black Friday Deal for $394.00. It’s got a few minor annoyances, but I’d definitely give it a 9/10 for a professional or not Display Tablet. And I swear once you go graphics tablet, you'll never go back willingly.