I've had the Yiynova for around a year or so now, meaning I think it's time to do a review on how it's holding up. I'm happy to say, even admid all of my other new drawing gadgets, this one is still my favourite.
The battery life in the main pen (I've been using duracell AAA) is still fantastic, I think I've only replaced it three times, and one of those was due to a leaking battery, which was entirely my own fault! I use my screen at least ten hours a week minimum, and I don't take the battery out when not in use. And, as a bonus, the nib still looks brand new. I haven't needed to change it at all!
However - a small point about the pen - I had a few issues with the design of the pen. While it is lightweight, and a comfy shape, the rubbed tends to rotate over the button. But you know what, I found a small dab of superglue did just the trick and I haven't had any problems since. Although, if you try it yourself I'd make sure you'll still be able to open the pen to change the battery. Also it's entirely on you (I'm not recommending it, I'm just saying what worked for me). Who knows, they may have changed the design by now?!
Since last year, I also invested in an extra screen, and I now have it set up on windows 7 with three screens. If you choose to do it yourself, check your graphics card supports it, as windows 7 only supports a maximum of two. When using three I use the Yiynova monitor with the VGA to mini USB adapter, one screen through HDMI and another through DVI. The pen works absolutely fine, as well as the touch and calibration.
However, I do seem to be getting a recurring problem. The VGA is a delicate connection, and I find running it through the adapter only makes the problem worse. I'd also like to point out that I find this problem a lot on a VGA connections, not just Yiynova. The pins don't fit in the adapter to secure it correctly, meaning the connection routinely needs plugging pack in straight. I did buy a new, more expensive adapter, which only improved the matter a little. If the VGA isn't exactly plugged into the adapter straight I get a horrible diagonal wavy line down the middle. Also, I think I may have caused permanent damage, as now there is always a faint wavy line, which annoyingly, I can't capture on camera to show you. It doesn't affect the calibration at all, but it is very distracting. A VGA plugged straight into your computer is best, but again I find the connection still works it's way loose after a while. I'm thinking I may have to get the tape out! I'm also sure that this is probably covered under the two year warranty Yiynova provides, so I'm not really too concerned.
Also, I knew this when I purchased the original, and as a student at the time it was a sacrifice I was willing to take, but I do really miss the ability to use tilt. According to Yiynova they are working on that now, so who knows, I may invest in another one! Compared to the Cintiq, I do really love the smaller frame, and eight buttons is perfect for me. After all, with three screens I really wouldn't have room with the giant cintiq frame! So even over the small problems, I still love everything about my Yiynova as when I first brought it. The colours on the screen are still a strong match (if not a little better) than my Mac Book Pro, and the large screen is amazingly fast to draw on. At around a £600 difference (if I remember correctly) between the Yiynova 22HD and the cintiq, it seems more than a reasonable price difference to accommodate.
Compared to a smaller tablet you can really go all out on brush strokes, and really get into the small detailed parts.
Feel free to ask me questions if there's anything I've missed! and make sure you take a look at my first review of my Yiynova 22HD which can be found here: Yiynova 22HD review
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