The XP-Pen Star03 is a tablet by XP-Pen aimed at beginners and seasoned art veterans looking for a tablet with many customization options at a fair price.
Let's see if this really is a good option or if maybe another tablet in this price-range would be a better fit.
XP-Pen Star03 Specifications
|Minimum System Requirements||Windows XP or OS X 1.6.x|
|Size||15.0 x 9.5 in|
|Active Area||10.0 x 6.0 in|
|Express Keys||Yes, 8|
|Pen Reading Speed||230 rps|
The XP-Pen Star03 came packaged with the tablet itself, stylus, USB cable, pen holder and tablet documentation.
The setup for the tablet was very easy but I should mention something fairly important.
Other buyers have noted that the drivers for the XP-Pen Star03 are incompatible with drivers from other tablets. This means that if you've installed drivers from other tablets onto your computer then you'll need to uninstall them before you set this tablet up or you could run into issues.
Don't say I didn't warn you! Let's get into the review.
The XP-Pen Star03 comes with an active area of 10.0 x 6.0 inches, which I think is a pretty good size and enough for most people.
The tablet surface is a little rougher than some tablets and the plastic has a cheap-ish to it, but these things are common in tablets in this price-range.
The tablet also has a nice simplified port system with just one microUSB connection needed to be plugged in order to begin using the tablet.
The XP-Pen Star03 came with 8 programmable express keys for you to use for whatever you need. This is the perfect amount of express keys for me personally and they were very easy to set up and reach while drawing. I'd say this was a healthy tablet option for tablet users who feel that express keys are a necessity for them. You won't be disappointed with these.
This review of the XP-Pen Star03 wouldn't be complete if I just reviewed the tablet, though.
Let's see what the stylus included with the XP-Pen Star03 has to offer.
The stylus that came with the XP-Pen Star03 was for the most part nice to work with.
You can easily tell that this pen has 2048 levels of pressure when you first put it down. The line variety is great!
I did notice, however that sometimes there was an issue with the pen suddenly not responding when a line was being drawn. This meant that there would sometimes be spaces between lines and I'd end up with two line segments instead of one continuous line.
I tried tweaking both the tablet settings and the settings of the programs I was using the tablet on but nothing seemed to help mitigate this problem.
Something that was really great to see was that XP-Pen seems have taken a note from Wacom and made this stylus battery-free. This means that you can set this pen down and go to sleep knowing that you won't have to worry about your stylus being out of battery when you go to draw with it in the morning. I'm getting teared up just thinking about it.
Lastly, the stylus has two programmable buttons that can be used to execute certain commands while drawing. These were easy to set up like the express keys and I experienced no problems when trying to use them.
The XP-Pen Star03 really surprised me with how much it truly had to offer.
The active area on the tablet is a good 10.0 x 6.0 inches, which I think is a drawing area that works for most people. The tablet also came with 8 programmable express keys. These were easy to program and were very helpful when drawing.
The stylus that came with the XP-Pen Star03 had good pressure sensitivity. You can feel those 2048 levels. It does, however sometimes "skip" lines when drawing, meaning you'll have to draw over certain lines sometimes.
The XP-Pen Star03 has some great customization options and a good drawing space, with only a few quirks to worry about. This is definitely a good option if you're looking for a tablet that's reliable without having to break the bank.
4.2 out of 5.0 – Fantastic