I recently upgraded and purchased the Cintiq 24hd. I had a major problem with wobbly lines in Photoshop. The lines seemed to break up into small sections, especially curves. If you look around the net you will see Wacom claiming that this is largely due to interference issues from nearby equipment. As usual don’t believe them. I also called and they told me they never hear this issue about the 24hd – clearly baloney from a quick look around the net. (see my post on scratches on Cintiqs to understand why I have such a frenemy relationship with them) It’s possible that interference is the cause in some cases but it is clearly a driver-Photoshop-Windows related issue. After endless, and I mean endless, research, and trying everything on earth, I finally found what seemed to be an answer: http://forum.wacom.eu/viewtopic.php?t=16043
The thrust of the approach there is to do a thorough removal of current Wacom driver (more thorough than simply remove program) and then install a legacy driver -6.36
After more usage I noticed unfortunately that the 6.36 driver has a slight lag to it. I tried using the same total clean install for the latest driver 63.84 but it also has the wobbly problem although slightly better. So basically my choice seemed to be either 6.36 with slight lag or 63.84 with slight wobble. If you look at this screenshot of 63.84 you can see how it started of clean but if you look at the swirls on top the wobble returns ( in the 63.84)I also tried my Cintiq 24hd with an old Imac – no wobble at all but it is too slow for heavy usage. I have heard of people going the Hackintosh route because of this issue but it sounds extreme.
After a bit more experimentation I finally found the winning combo – smooth lines and super fast:
Important: Unplug the usb from cintiq to computer before you start uninstall process and plug it in only after installing new driver.
The basic approach is:
1) A thorough removal of current driver including all tablet related folders in program files and program files(x86) ( see the link above – I noticed that it is important to do this from an administration account because then it seems to remove all folders automatically, and probably other stuff too, just getting permission when you are still in a secondary account will not work. You might have to stop a process in order to do this. Just go to the process tab in task manager and make sure to click – “show process from all users” if necessary, and stop the process blocking it.
2) Turn off – tablet input service– in windows system, then step on it, burn it and scatter its ashes to the wind.3) Install driver – 6.2.0w5 (update: 6.3 6-3 is better, see later comment)- This is the winning driver! It is before they added windows ink option which I think has something to do with this. I tried this driver a while ago but it did not work consistently because I had not done it combined with the other steps.
4) Turn double click distance off or you will get occasional blotches:
5) Put your Cintiq screen on right side if you want to use it in a multi screen setup:
Bottom Line: This fix has solved it for me after lots of trying. I believe the issue is clearly related to windows ink-Photoshop-Wacom driver. Others have had success with other legacy drivers so I wonder if it depends on your system. However either way I could not solve it until I realized there were a few other factors such as the thorough removal issue, and the double click issue. It now works perfect on PS CS5 and CC. Surprisingly CS5 seems to work the slightest bit faster than CC but that might just be my settings.
Curious to hear anyone else’s experience with my combo fix.
Here are some of the sources I researched for this issue:
Update 5/30/14: I still have occasional skips and blotches with the 6.2.ow5.
Update 9/12/14: Because of the occasional blotches on the 6.2.0w5 driver I changed to legacy driver 6.3 6-3 which seems to give me both smoothness and almost no blotches.
Bottom line is that the legacy drivers seem to be the answer along with fixing the other variables mentioned above- experiment a bit if necessary till you find which legacy one works for your system, either 6.2.ow5, or 6.3 6-3 seem to be good candidates.
Let me quote Frenden:
“In Windows, be sure to install the drivers before plugging the tablet in. Windows has insidious default tablet drivers it will install otherwise. They don’t work well and you’ll swear there’s something wrong with your hardware. There isn’t. Deleting your HID stack in Device Manager is the only help here and even it may not work. You may have to reinstall a fresh copy of the OS. Additionally, in Windows 7 at least, disable Tablet PC services from the services menu. Uninstall Tablet PC components. Uncheck “Support Tablet PC Features” from the tablet driver icon in the system tray. Minimally, disable Pen Flicks. All of these things impact drawing performance.”
Basically: Always download drivers and install BEFORE plugging in a new tablet so Windows can’t vomit drivers at it.
If anyone comments on a similar experience please note which graphics card and system you have. I am curious if Nvidia has anything to do with this issue I have Quadro 2000.
At this point I decided to get a new computer and go with a mac because I never managed to perfectly fix Windows/Wacom so that I wouldn’t get occasional blotches and I always felt a slight disparity between my input and long lines in terms of wobble.
Overall I feel that OSX and Wacom drivers do much better together. The reason is probably that windows ink screwed everything up. Although recent Wacom driver update might have finally addressed the jagged issue.
There is an issue at this time with Yosemite-Photoshop compatibility and the shoe-lace effect where the end of the brush strokes do not taper smoothly. See my blog post here.