Configuring Pens and Tablets




This page list multiple recommendations to configure a graphic tablet pen on Windows in order to improve its compatibility with Substance Painter.

What is Windows Ink ?

Windows Ink is a software/service that handles Pens such as stylus or pens from graphic tablets. It offers various application such as Sticky Notes and Sketchpad to interact with a pen on the computer.

Substance Painter since its version 2019.3 relies on it to handle graphic tablets. Before this version Substance Painter relied on Wintab (older service that is not supported by all graphic tablets models).

How to access Windows Ink settings

Windows Ink settings can be accessed in the general Windows settings:

  1. Open the Start menu.

  2. Click on the Settings icon.


  3. In the Settings window, click on Devices.


  4. In the Devices window, click on Pen & Windows Ink (only available if a graphic tablet is connected).

Recommended Windows Ink settings

Below are the Windows Ink settings and the recommended configuration for each of them.

If you have a Wacom tablet with its drivers installed, make sure that "Use Windows Ink" is enabled in its settings.

Pen Settings

Setting Description
Choose which hand to write with

Recommended: Right hand

This settings control how the pen orientation is recognized. Setting this setting to Left Hand can lead to some UI freeze when tweaking parameters.

Show visual effects

Recommended: Disabled

This settings controls visual effects that are displayed during various Pen interaction. Disabling it allow to hide the ripple circle effect when clicking:

Show cursorsRecommended: Disabled
Let me use my pen as a mouse in some desktop apps

Recommended: Enabled

This settings allow the graphic tablet pen to send regular mouse inputs. If disabled, this setting can lead to some interaction issues with UI parameters.

Handwriting Settings

Setting Description
Size of font when writing directly into text field

Recommended: Medium (default)

Font when using handwritingRecommended: Segoe UI (default)
When I tap a text field with my pen, use handwriting to input text

Recommended: Only in tablet mode

This settings controls how and when the handwriting text input window appears. If not set to "only in tablet mode", the window will appear everytime a text field is selected in the UI. For example when typing a specific value into a slider.

Let me use my pen as a mouse in some desktop apps

Recommended: Enabled

This settings allow the graphic tablet pen to send regular mouse inputs. If disabled, this setting can lead to some interaction issues with UI parameters.

Write in the handwriting panel with your fingertipRecommended: Disabled

Pen Shortcuts Settings

Setting Description
Click once

Recommended: Nothing

Double-clickRecommended: Nothing
Press and hold (only supported on some pens)Recommended: Nothing
Allow apps to override the shortcut button behaviorRecommended: Enabled
When available, show Ink Workspace after I remove my pen from storageRecommended: Disabled

How to access Pen and Touch settings

Pen and Touch settings can be accessed in the Control Panel:

  1. Open the Start menu.

  2. Type Control Panel and click on the search result.

  3. Switch the Control Panel display mode to small icon.


  4. Click on Pen and Touch settings.

Recommended Pen and Touch settings

The following settings are recommended to improve the painting behavior and camera manipulation.

 To access the settings, click on one of the pen action in the window and then click on the settings button.

Setting Description
Single-tap

No parameters.

Double-tapRecommended: Default values.
Press and hold

Recommended: Disable the setting"Enable press and hold for right-clicking"

Disabling this setting will allow to drag any element normally without activating the Windows drag circle:

Use the pen button as a right-click equivalentRecommended: Enabled
Use the top of the pen to erase ink (where available)Recommended: Enabled