Genius EasyPen F610E Graphics Tablet

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Provided By: Genius
Price: ~$95 Online at time of publication

 

Introduction:

We have just received the Genius EasyPen F610E Pen Tablet to review and after using Wacom products for years, I was pretty skeptical about how a budget company like Genius can compete in the high-end Pen Tablet market.  Let’s get things straight, I say Genius is a “budget” company, but that does not mean they make poor products.  Genius has some very good products that we’ve looked at in the past, and what makes them even better is the fact that they are super affordable.

The F610E is a mid-sized drawing tablet that measures in at 6.25-in x 10-in and comes with a battery operated pen.  This pen seems to last a long time, but because of the battery in it (one AAA), it does have a bit more bulk than a Wacom pen.

Genius has included some great features including customizable macros and shortcut buttons on the tablet that can be set up to help maximize your productivity.  This is a nice feature to offer on a sub-$100 tablet for sure.

The EasyPen F610E is a wired tablet that boasts the most pressure levels, report rate and resolution of any of the Pen Tablets from Genius as well as much of the competition.  Certainly in this price range Genius has all but declared victory – in terms of specs at least.

 

First Look:

As you can see in the images below, the EasyPen F610E comes is a very stylish box that is a little flashy, but is not over the top.  The box graphics contain all the relevant information you’ll need to help make your buying decision.  On the rear of the box is a list of contents and a lot of information and examples as to the use of the product.

Box Front Box Back

 

Inside the box we find all the goodies that we need to get going and keep going.  The EasyPen F610E uses a pen that requires a battery as opposed to Wacom tablets that power the pen using an NFC-type technology.  Also in this package is a few extra tips, a tip puller, user manual, drives, software, a battery, a pen stand and of course the tablet itself.

In The Box

 

The tablet itself is much larger than the small ones I’ve been using over the past years.  The active surface area is a 6.25” x 10” area that has 4000 lines per inch of sensitivity – making it a very viable solution for some professional work.  The pen operates with 2048 pressure sensitivity levels and offers a great feel for your digital artwork applications.

On the side of the tablet are a few “soft buttons” that can be configured for keyboard shortcuts, keystrokes or application functions that can save you some time.  There aren’t labeled, so you’ll have to remember what function corresponds to the button.

Tablet Top Tablet Bottom

The rear of the tablet has six rubber feet that help keep it in place on a desk.  They work well as the soft rubber seems to keep the tablet stationary.

You’ll notice in the pictures above that the USB cable is permanently attached to the tablet.  This could be a large drawback if you want to use a longer cable or if you ever have cable issues.  You’ll have to either pull the EasyPen apart to repair it yourself, or just buy a new tablet.

Now that we’ve covered our initial impressions, let’s head on to the next page and take a look at the features and specifications of this tablet.

 


Overview:

The following information has been pulled from the Genius product page and posted here for your convenience.  For all the information and for up to date specifications and software downloads, make sure you check out the manufacturer’s site for all the details.

The EasyPen F610E, an extra slim graphic tablet from Genius, gives you the creative freedom to express yourself. This 6.25”x 10” graphic tablet has a wide working area for the most popular monitor sizes. With 2048 levels of pen pressure, the lightweight cordless pen gives you intuitive control just like a real pen - draw, paint, sketch and sign easily. The high 4000 LPI is great for PC or Mac users. In addition, eight macro keys provide instant access and are programmable for paint or office functions.

The EasyPen F610E bundles Corel Painter Essentials 4, a leading graphics program, where you can easily sketch, paint and turn your photos into paintings with this creative home digital art studio. A wide selection of brushes, paints, pens and paper textures let you add unique touches to photos, create cards and scrapbooks, and complete other fun projects.

Functions:

Functions

Specifications:

Specs

On the next page, we’ll cover installation before we jump into testing.

 


Installation:

Installation and setup is a two-part process.  First, we installed the driver software from the CD and this went very well.  With 64-bit Windows 7, there was absolutely no issues and everything installed quickly and easily – including the application that allows you to customize the “hotkeys” on the side of the tablet.  Immediately it worked in all of our applications as a mouse replacement and allowed great precision and control in PhotoShop.

The Genius EasyPen F610E also included some bundled software.  This software will help new users get accustomed to the Pen, but for many consumers, the purchase of the Pen Tablet is to accompany what they already have.  I did install FreeNote, Office Ink and Corel Painter Essentials 4 and these all worked well enough.  I still prefer my applications, but if you don’t have any drawing or editing applications, this is a nice bonus.  I think including PhotoShop Elements of some sort would be a better value though.  I know that a year-old version is often included with ~$100 Wacom products and this is a much better bundle in my opinion.

Testing:

Testing a product like the EasyPen F610E is a lot about subjectivity.  I currently own a couple of Wacom products – the small and very portable Bamboo MTE-450A as well as the Bamboo Fun Tablet.  Both of these products have served me very well over the years.  In fact, a few years back I bought MTE-450A’s for everyone that worked for BCCHardware and edited some of their own images.

The Genius EasyPen F610E is just as handy as these – albeit it is a bit larger.  If you like a nice small tablet, this one is probably not for you.  That being said, the larger surface area does allow for greater control of your pen and therefore a lot more precision when editing photos or drawing in your favorite applications.

The EasyPen claims to have 4000 LPI (Lines Per Inch) and 2048 pressure sensitivity levels and while I cannot actually test these claims out completely, it does offer a lot of precision and variation to the pressure sensitivity.  I used this extensively through the past few weeks and I’ve got no complaints as far as precision and overall feel.

One thing I do appreciate is that you can specify the Tablet to only work on one screen.  On my main workstation (Thinkpad T430), I have a total of three displays and by default, this presents a weird arrangement for the tablet.  Thankfully, I can specify that the F610E works only on the 30” Samsung 305T display and therefor it offers great precision without screen jumping during editing.  This is a nice touch and can be enabled in the provided software with a quick drop-down for which screen you want the pen locked to.

Speaking of the pen, it’s an interesting mix.  It is a bit fatter than a Wacom pen and while the part you hold is pretty much the same size, the fact that the Genius pen contains an “AAA” battery, makes the pen a bit top-heavy.  It’s not a huge deal, but it does make it a little unwieldy for some light-touch applications.  I have no idea how long the battery will last, but so far it’s been top-notch.  If you use it constantly, I can imagine that the battery will become a bit of an issue, but for casual users, I’m sure it won’t be a problem.

On the last page, we’ll cover a few of our final thoughts as we wrap up this review.

 


 

Conclusion:

At the end of the day there really isn’t too much to dislike about the Genius EasyPen F610E Pen Tablet.  It’s a pretty solid product that has a lot of features, good performance and a decent-sized area for a good price.  I was very impressed with the quality of the product overall.  Even though this is one of the thinnest tablets I’ve used, it still has a nice rigid feel to it and doesn’t flex much.  This allows you to use it on a desk or on your knee with ease.  The only downside to the quality is the fixed USB cable.  It would be great if this could be disconnected and replaced with a different one if need be.

The bundled accessories are more than adequate to accompany a tablet of this price range and size.  It has everything you need to get going and stay going as it includes some extra pen-tips and a puller.  The software bundle is decent – but not great.  It’s a bit of mixed bag in this category as I simply don’t ever see myself using Corel Painter Essentials.

Installation was a breeze and the software features are handy as you can customize the screen the tablet works on as well as buttons on the side.  This is a nice touch for sure and makes it a little more useable on systems with multiple displays.

In terms of performance, there is a lot to be happy about.  The tablet works well, is light and the pen is very responsive.  It worked seamlessly in all of the applications I used and even for general Windows OS navigation, it works well.  If you are doing a lot of photo editing or drawing, the EasyPen F610E can help you navigate your OS without the need to grab another input device for a few simple tasks.  It does it quickly and easily.

The Genius EasyPeb F610E is a bargain at $99 and you can find it even cheaper than that online.  It seems to have good quality, excellent performance and an average software bundle.  When you combine this with a bargain price-tag, you have a winner.  While the Genius name may not inspire as much confidence as Wacom, we’ve had no issues with this tablet during our review and the support from Genius seems to be getting better and better here in North America.  I see no reason why you should grab a more expensive tablet from another company – if you need a 6”+ x 10” tablet.  This one does very well.

I can easily recommend this tablet to anyone looking for a tablet that is one a budget.  The EasyPen F610E offers great performance without breaking the bank.  Other than a couple of small issues, it’s a winner.

 

Pros:
  • Affordable Tablet
  • Decent Bundle
  • Sensitive & Precise
  • Lots of features for price

 

 

Cons:

 

  • USB Cable doesn’t detach
  • Battery operated pen is top-heavy

BCCRating

Silver

 

I’d like to thank Genius for sending the EasyPen F610E for review.  This is a very decent Pen Tablet that can offer you a lot of features for a small price.