Inside Dental Technology
July 2017
Volume 8, Issue 7

New Tools for Today’s Digital Dental Designer

Larry Stites

At the beginning of our digital journey, digital design was limited to simple copings and framework designs. But even as other aspects evolved, the interfacing tool—the computer mouse—has largely remained the same. A mouse may be fine for general computer use, but it is not the specialized instrument we need for detail-intensive dental design. Creative professionals in many other fields use interactive pen display technology rather than the computer mouse. So why are laboratory technicians still designing with point-and-click devices? Alongside using a digital workflow, laboratories need a digital pen that allows technicians to draw, paint or design. That's why Wacom invented Cintiq.

Cintiq is a touch-sensitive, interactive pen display that allows the user to manipulate what they see on-screen. The Pro Pen reacts on the digital canvas just like a natural brush or pen would on paper or other media, creating the same effects and textures. Our laboratory has found that designing with a display tablet pen offers more artistic freedom while integrating seamlessly with a digital workflow.

Wacom tablets have up to 2,400 different levels of pressure sensitivity. The traditional mouse has only two levels of pressure sensitivity: clicked and not clicked. This gives the tablet-pen system a huge advantage over a mouse, especially for detail-oriented image editing and design applications. With a Wacom Pro Pen, you can tilt the pen and move your hand and wrist into a natural drawing position. It allows much more control over strokes or movements and can be customized to each user.

After many years of dissatisfaction with conventional design tools, we have adopted Cintiq in our laboratory. We train our new CAD technicians to use it, and they have all noticed improved comfort and artistic experience when designing. Using Cintiq in our daily design over the last 5 years, we’ve found we work more efficiently and comfortably, with less physical strain and discomfort associated with using a mouse. Time needed to complete our designs has decreased, meaning we can be even more detailed. Our connection to our design gives us greater artistic freedom and expression. Finally we have a design tool that’s perfectly fit to our trade.

For more information about Wacom’s technology, visit wacom.com.

About the Author

Larry Stites, CDT, is the co-founder of Allure Dental Studio in Tracy, California.











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