Have you played Osu?
Then, you definitely know how fun and addictive the game is.
Osu is all about speed, music and colors. If you have a twitchy nervous system like a war veteran, then this game is for you.
However, after playing Osu for some time, you will quickly realize that the average mouse does not just cut it if you want to reach your full potential.
To improve your skills, you should play Osu on a graphic tablet for its excellent tracking. If you would also want to write or draw with the tablet, then other features such as pressure sensitivity, active area size and RPS will be important.
In this guide, we present our top tablets for Osu based on performance.
Osu Tablet Guide – Introduction
I play Osu but not to a level that I’d considered myself a master. However, I’m confident that I know the features that make a good Osu tablet. I’ve used the tablets below to play Osu and know how they perform.
Before we start off, I usually use a tablet + keyboard or a mouse + keyboard when playing Osu. My choice really depends on how I’m feeling at the particular time. I usually map my active and hover with the pen instead of dragging.
What to Consider When Choosing an Osu Tablet
In my quest to find the best Osu tablet, I tested the various tablets when they had their drivers installed and without the drivers.
When choosing an Osu tablet, consider the following features:
- Hover distance
- Active area configurability
- Cursor delay
The type and shape of the pen you use are also somewhat important, depending on your preferences. However, the two won’t really matter if the four aspects mentioned above are poor.
Generally, most recent tablets have a suitable hover distance. However, the ranges vary from tablet to tablet.
When I was researching by reading other Osu tablet reviews, I realized most bloggers do not talk of the inbuilt cursor delay of the tablets. In this guide, I’ve presented what I believe are the best tablets for Osu by covering as much as I can.
Features of the Best Osu Tablets
Below is an overview of the main features you should be looking for in an Osu tablet, and the ‘ideal’ for each.
Hover distance refers to the distance over which the pen can be held above the tablet and still be sensed. In this guide, the distance is taken to be from the surface of the tablet to the tip of the pen nib.
The ideal hover distance is more than 15 mm above the tablet surface. However, most tablets have a hover distance of between 13 mm to 15 mm.
You can know a tablet’s hover distance by looking at its spec sheet. However, keep in mind that the distance indicated on the sheet may be a rough estimate and that the actual measured distance could be different.
For example, the Wacom Intuos CTL-480 spec sheet indicates that the tablet has a hover distance of 7 mm. However, when using the tablet, I got a distance ranging from 14 mm to 17 mm.
In this guide, I’ve listed the hover distances in ranges because the tablets can sense the pen at the lowest number and start losing track as the distance increases.
For example, the Intuos CTL-480 senses the pen at around 14 mm up to 17 mm. As you go past 17 mm, the sensing becomes weaker. This is why I’ve indicated its hover distance to be 14 mm to 17 mm.
Active Area Configurability
This refers to the extent to which the drawing area can be configured.
Ideally, you want a tablet whose active area can be adjusted to be as comfortable as you wish.
NB: You can’t adjust the active area size when you haven’t installed the tablet drivers.
In this Osu tablets review, all the tablets we tested allow you to change the active area by clicking and dragging a rectangular shape on the tablet monitor. Therefore, the main thing you will want to consider is not whether you can change the active area but how you will change it.
This is just the way I do my setup and it’s not the “official” or “best” method for everyone. Practice and experiment with your tablet to find the best active area for you.
When playing Osu, smaller is better. With less space, you will spend less time moving your arm and this will help you earn more points. However, you still need to find the optimal active area for scoring points, especially on tight corners where a higher resolution and larger active area would be ideal.
When you make any motion, the cursor should move. The time it takes for the cursor to move is known as “cursor delay”.
Ideally, your Osu tablet should move the cursor immediately you move the pen.
Cursor delay in an important feature to consider as most tablets for Osu are made for art and not Osu gameplay! Therefore, the cursor delay is set for optimal results when drawing. Most drawing tablets have inbuilt cursor delay that helps to create smoother lines. However, when playing Osu, you do not want this cursor delay as every millisecond counts.
One way around this problem is to use the tablet without installing the drawing drivers. However, this will also mean you won’t be able to adjust the active area size.
If you have no problem playing Osu at the full tablet area, that’s fine. But most Osu players I know prefer adjusting the active area before starting to play.
During my research for the best Osu tablet, I did not find any Osu whose drivers can allow the inbuilt cursor delay to be turned off. For this reason, I suggest you go for a tablet that does not have any inbuilt cursor delay. This way, you won’t have to try to turn off the inbuilt cursor delay through regedit or other complicated methods.
(Note: I’ve not tried the Fix My Pen! tool as I don’t want to mess with my tablets just for Osu. I mostly use my tablets for drawing and would not want their settings changed.)
I came across this Reddit thread by a user that has tested the cursor delay of various tablets. Here is the link: https://www.reddit.com/r/osugame/comments/80pft7/measuring_tablet_performance_by_using_a_3d_printer
From the thread, the user tested the actual performance of the tablets using a 3D printer. I concur with the results he got. Generally, the XP-Pen is good, the Huion is bad due to its longer cursor delay, and the Wacom CTL-490 is good when dragging but bad while hovering.
Note: If you have just bought a tablet for the first time, you may not notice cursor delay. Yes, tablets with cursor delay are great for drawing. However, for gaming, you want a tablet with minimum or no cursor delay.
Accuracy refers to how accurate a tablet is. When you label a point on the tablet, the cursor should be in the exact spot on the screen each time the pen goes to that point. This is the “ideal” accuracy of an Osu tablet.
Top 7 Tablets for Osu 2020
1. Wacom Intuos CTL-480/CTH-480 Series
The Wacom CTL-480/CTH-480 Series has really good accuracy. The thin rubber grip pen has no battery and its hover distance is about 14 mm to 17 mm.
Without the drivers, you cannot configure the active area and the cursor doesn’t react. When you install the tablet drivers, the cursor delay is good (i.e., no delay) and you can configure the active area.
The Intuos CTL-480 series is a great tablet for playing Osu. The tablet is comfortable and its rubber grip pen is durable. I also love the tablet’s hover distance and the pen’s accuracy. So far, this is the best tablet for Osu on the market. However, it comes at a premium price (check price on Amazon).
One thing you should know is that the Intuos CTL-480 is no longer being produced by the manufacturer. Therefore, it is difficult to get it online at a cheap price. Generally, you should expect to pay from USD 80 to USD 120 for the tablet.
2. Wacom Intuos Draw (CTL-4.90/CTH-4.90 Series)
The Wacom CTL -490 has excellent accuracy, a hover distance of 10 mm to 11 mm and comes with a plastic stick pen that is battery-free.
Without the drivers, you cannot configure the active play area and the cursor does not react. When you install the tablet drivers, the cursor delay is good while dragging but bad while hovering. Moreover, the active area becomes configurable.
In some forums, I’ve come across Osu players that use a Wacom Intuos Draw tablet to play. However, I wouldn’t suggest you use this tablet as you cannot turn off the cursor delay with a simple ON/OFF switch. Moreover, the cursor delay will prevent you from earning more points at higher levels of the game. Finally, the tablet has a rather small hover distance.
One thing I discovered with this Wacom tablet is that the cursor delay only occur when hovering but disappears when you are dragging. From other Osu tablet reviews online, some players say that the cursor does not lag for them when hovering. So, I guess this is a matter of maybe the hovering will or won’t happen for you.
3. Wacom Intuos 2018 (CTL4100 Series)
The Wacom Intuos CTL4100 has good accuracy and its hover distance averages at around 13 mm to 14 mm. The tablet comes with a battery-free pen that has a thin rubber grip.
When the tablet has no drivers, you cannot configure the active play area and the cursor does not react. When you install the tablet drivers, you can configure the active area and there is no noticeable cursor delay.
The Wacom CTL4100 has no cursor delay and, hence, is great for playing Osu. The pen offers a good grip through its firm rubber grip. The only thing I would have loved to see more from the tablet is a higher hover distance.
Coming to playing, I noticed that the CTL4100’s surface is a little bit rough. Therefore, I would recommend this tablet for artists who drag rather than those who hover.
The CTL4100 is another tablet I recommend for playing Osu if you are fine with the higher price tag. (Check current price). The tablet would also be excellent if you would be buying it for drawing purposes.
4. Huion Inspiroy H430P
The Huion Inspiroy is accurate, has a hover distance of between 9 mm to 12 mm and comes with a battery-free plastic stick pen.
When used without installing the tablet drives, its cursor delay is really good and there is no delay. However, you cannot configure the active area.
When you install the drivers, the cursor delay becomes really bad, i.e., it is high. The only good thing with installing the drivers is that the active area can then be configured.
The Huion Inspiroy H430 is marketed as an Osu tablet. However, I do not like the inbuilt cursor delay as you cannot turn it off. Moreover, the hover distance is quite small compared to the other Osu tablets I’ve recommended above.
If you want to play Osu with the Huion H430, don’t install the drivers. However, this will also mean you cannot configure the active playing area.
5. Huion Inspiroy H640
This Osu tablet has excellent accuracy, a hover distance of between 17 mm to 24 mm and comes with a battery-free pen with a rubber grip.
When used without the tablet drivers installed, the H640 does not show any cursor delay. However, you cannot configure the active area.
When used with drivers installed, you can configure the active area but there is a lot of cursor delay.
I love the rubber grip of this tablet’s pen. However, when you install the drivers, you cannot turn off the cursor delay. Therefore, I wouldn’t recommend this as my best Osu tablet. On the flipside, this is an average drawing tablet.
The Huion H640 stands out for its high hover distance range.
Overall, you can play Osu with the H640 without installing the drivers and not have to worry about cursor delay. However, this will also mean you cannot configure the active area. Apart from this, the pen will not have enough pressure for drawing.
6. Huion H420 Osu
Now, you may be wondering why Wacom products top this list of the best Osu tablets. The reason is that Huion and XP-Pen, while both are reliable companies, their tablets tend to have some driver problems. With Wacom tablets, it’s mostly plug and play.
While you can use Huion tablets with pen-enabled software, you won’t get the best out of them without their right drivers.
The Huion is another tablet that will work well for Osu with the right drivers. The tablet has no cursor delay if you install the old drivers on them (you can get the drivers here).
However, the tablet uses battery-powered pens. Moreover, from Osu reviews online, most users indicate that the pens are not very durable.
7. XP-Pen G640 6×4
The XP-Pen G640 has good accuracy and a hover range of 10 mm to 11 mm. The tablet comes with a battery-free plastic stick pen.
When the tablet drivers are not installed, the cursor delay is good i.e. there is almost no delay. However, you cannot configure the play area.
When you install the drivers, the cursor delay is still good and you can now configure the play area.
Among the Osu tablets we have reviewed, the XP-Pen G640 is the only one that does not experience significant cursor delay when you install the drivers. If you want to play Osu as well as draw, this is the best Osu tablet to buy.
The XP-Pen can be used both for drawing and Osu gameplay since it does not have cursor delay.
My only issue with the tablet is that its hover distance is small. Therefore, this may not be the tablet for you if you usually hover over a great distance.
The XP-Pen Star G430 uses the same drivers as the G640 and therefore has no cursor delay. However, I would recommend the G430 only if you will be playing Osu but not drawing as its screen size is slightly small for drawing.
Best Tablets for Osu – My Top 3 Recommendations
From my testing, the following are my top 3 tablets for Osu that I recommend:
XP-Pen Star G640
If you need a tablet for playing Osu as well as drawing, the XP-Pen Star G640 is my top recommendations. Check current price on Amazon.
XP- Pen Star G430
The XP-Pen Star G430 is a great tablet if you will solely be playing Osu. However, I don’t recommend it if you would also want to do some drawing. Check price on Amazon.
Wacom Intuos CTL-480/CTH-480
This tablet has been discontinued but is amazing for playing Osu. I found it from some third party sellers on Amazon (check here) and had a run with it. This tablet is a little pricey compared to others on this review but it’s worth it given that you can also use it for drawing.
While I’m just at around 100k, I believe the above are the best Osu tablets on the market. I had the best experience with the XP-Pen and this is evident from the stats. However, the Wacom Intuos CTL 480 also performed well.
Keep in mind that most tablet manufacturers simply make their gadgets for drawing and note-taking but then add the word “Osu’ on them just to sell more units. Therefore, when looking for the best Osu tablet, do not simply choose a particular tablet because it has the word “Osu”. Instead, consider the hover distance, resolution and cursor delay to find the best option.
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