Graphics tablet/pen

Hi all, I am just wondering if many people are using Wacom style tablets with Photolab. I have gone through the forum search function and only found scattered comments.

I am interested in the user experience that others have had?
Pro’s and Con’s.
I am wondering if it allows for finer control of masking etc as using my mouse control can be a bit jumpy.


Yes, I’ve been using Wacom Intuos Pro with DxO PhotoLab since back when it was DxO Optics Pro (probably close to 10 years). Support used to be abysmal, but in version 3.2 it works quite well!

I just hope DxO Labs will add pressure sensitivity support into future versions because that would take editing with their proprietary U-Point adjustment layers to the next level! Still, even with out that, you can certainly paint adjustment masks & adjust tone curve with great precision.

There’s no cons to using a Wacom - only pros. Everything you can do with mouse you can do more precisely with a Wacom pen & tablet.

Don’t know what I’d do without one!


I’m still using a wireless keyboard and mouse from Logitech. To get them to perform smoothly, I’ve had to keep the Logitech drivers & control software off of my computer. The only control panel I have for these now is in Windows Settings. I’ve turned on the advanced setting for extra precision - it seems to help.

I’m very glad to hear that a Wacom tablet can offer a better solution. I’ve been fine without it, zooming in when I need greater precision - but must admit that as PhotoLab matures I’m making more and more local adjustments!

Can a tablet completely replace a mouse, including the scroll wheel?

Thanks for those incites!
Can I ask what size monitor you use your tablet with?
Also what size tablet do you use? Small medium large? I understand it’s probably user preference.
As Greg asked, how do you handle scrolling up and down, right and left mouse click etc?


I have been using DxO PhotoLab, which has extremely sophisticated local controls, for much of my raw processing and editing lately. The XP-PEN Deco MINI7 Graphics Tablet is an ideal companion for DxO, because it allows the photographer to place control points with unrivaled precision. It is also a great tool for dust-spotting and similar tasks. Anything that involves local control of any element of an image, from dodging and burning to cropping to retouching becomes almost magically easier with a pen and tablet.

I have been trying one as well ( MINI7) and it’s caused s lots of crashes. I am trying the beta drivers to see if better. For some off reason the keyboard short cuts for enlarge and reduce don’t do anything using the key board or this device. Some work but others nothing happens trying them?

Since using the beta drivers its been OK. Its many years since I used a pen and was disappointed that PL doesn’t use pen pressure which was always, I found, a very useful aspect of pen use. It was reported elsewhere that that someone found the sliders in adjustment. It may be the beta drivers but I have found no problem with the Mini 7 using them.

@ daveywilson

Two questions, if I may.

1 Which size tablet are you using? S, M, L?

2 If you use PL 4 now, what’s your verdict on this combination? Better or the same compared with PL3?



I had a medium one and I bought a small one for travel. I found I preferred the small one and have now given the medium one to my daughter. You can map the larger area to a smaller one on the medium if you wanted to work over a smaller area, and still be able to revert when desired.

I prefer making smaller movements and you can zoom in to the image if you want to be more precise. I think it’s personal preference and suspect if I was a graphics designer, I’d prefer a larger one.

I guess in this case, size does matter, compared to the screen size on which one is working with aswell. :thinking:

Buying online makes it difficult to actually see how large small or medium is in real life. Youtube gave me some ideas. After having read your (Bebop) post, I guess I made my decision.

Yes it’s tricky to decide and it is a personal thing really. I hadn’t thought about screen size, but that may well have a bearing. I only have a MacBook Pro 15 and I’m not always sat at a desk when editing which also makes the smaller one more convenient for me.

If you map the screen area to take up the whole of the tablet, then you will move your arm about more, the larger the tablet is. That may be good or bad. I guess if you need precision whilst being able to see the whole of the image, a larger one is better.

Good luck on making your decision!

Nick, apologies for my delayed reply. I had COVID in December and the notification for this message got lost in the shuffle.

I use a Medium size Wacom Intuos tablet, and it works great with PhotoLab 4, which in my opinion is the best edition of DxO Labs’ editing software yet!

@azkaz & @daveywilson @wenlai @John7 @NicKP @Bebop

please see
Contest: Can PL be used to simulate lighting from flash for portrait shots ?! - #30 by Wolfgang

I would like to use my Wacom tablet more often, but using Strg/CRTL + Touchring (set to scrolling
= equivalent to mouse scrolling) for to change Brush Size / Brush Feathering is a real pain.

When I used a tablet in the past, some years ago, the ability to use pressure to control the width/area was very useful. The inability of PL to allow this makes it very difficult, for me, to get to use a tablet now I have one again. It might be having been used to using it in one way and proving difficult to adjust, but to me the ability to use pressure sensitivity is the difference between PL using a tablet as a another mouse or as a tablet.

Hi @John7,
thank you for your input.

As described in the link, advanced masking options are needed to really make use of PL’s capabilities. With that I would like (better) support for the Wacom tablet. While it’s easy to set brush size and feathering ‘on the fly’ with mouse (CRTL / Shift + mouse wheel = use of both hands), it’s not at all comfortable to press a custom key on the tablet AND ‘turn’ the touchring simultaneously with one hand, while my right is holding the pen. Changing the settings, I don’t want to ‘leave’ the mask(s). The same is true for dodge & burn with PL.

In a pixel editor, when I do some retouching / painting, I use the pen’s pressure sensitivity, but for masking I prefer to pre-select a constant value.

have fun, Wolfgang

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I use a Wacom S. How satisfied are you with the sensitivity of the sliders in PL4? I find it difficult to grip a slider. Once it’s gripped, it works. The sliders in Affinity Photo are responsive immediately.
I have already tried several tables. The same problem occurred with all of them.

@OlyUser & all

See above and the link included – and YES, the usability with tablet needs to be improved!

  • same here with delay / slow responsive sliders

  • and with Local Adjustments, when I wanted to change a parameter for the brush, so often PL prevented me from doing so, creating a new brush instead

To improve, I already set the pen’s sensitivity to soft and double click to short. – Working with the mouse (click on the slider + drag) you don’t realize the delay, well not so much.

  • Then, the moment you paint a mask, you get a blue overlay, preventing you from instantly seeing (= controling) the effect, while it simply covers PL’s recalculation time. There is an option to activate the mask permanently, but you can’t deactivate it at wish.

With this, you don’t feel like using the tablet more often, which is a pity. – I really would like to do more (and precisely) at raw-level, using PL’s genotype far more better.

have fun, Wolfgang

I use this : CTRL = left clic on the pen and ALT = right clic on the pen. The wheel of the pentablet modify the brush.

Ok, I tried < CTRL > on the ‘lower’ button and could change the Brush Size with the tablet’s touchring,
but it confused me.
– Then at the end, I returned to < Right Mouse Click >, so that I can call the Local Adjustments’ menue.

Screen Shot 05-09-21 at 08.16 PM

But, I changed the ‘higher’ button to < ALT >, so that I can temporarily activate the Eraser when in Automask / Brush mode ( and vice versa ! ).

Screen Shot 05-09-21 at 07.57 PM

Like before, I change Brush / Eraser Size with the tablet’s touchring, while holding the hotkey < CTRL >
– and their Feathering with hotkey < SHIFT > (single hotkey for Eraser :slight_smile: ).

umschalt = SHIFT
strg = CTRL
leertaste = SPACE BAR
alt = ALT

Maybe one day, we get keystrokes to make it more comfortable – see Contest: Can PL be used to simulate lighting from flash for portrait shots ?! - #30 by Wolfgang