Decades ago, when computers came into existence, keyboards were the main interaction tools between them and users. But then, so much has changed along the way, and now there are multiple ways to send commands and do many things on your computer.
Now, you can use the keyboard, a mouse, or a trackpad to do anything on your computer. Well, each of these interaction tools has its pros and cons. Depending on the work you do, you’ll find a certain tool more useful than the other.
With many jobs requiring computers to work, it helps to learn about how every tool works. Trackpads are easy to use and do not require any previous knowledge experience. But knowing what works for you on a professional level is a whole different story.
Graphic designers use keyboards, mice, and trackpads alike. But this article focuses on trackpads for graphic designers. By the end of it, you’ll have known what a trackpad is, why graphic designers use it and whether it is better than a computer mouse.
Here’s all the information you need.
What is a Trackpad?
It is a device on your laptop that allows you to manipulate or control different functions using figure gestures. It reads and translates your finger movements then moves the cursor on the screen. That makes it possible to interact with applications on your laptop.
Also known as a touchpad, this device acts as a replacement for the computer mouse. Typically, laptops do not come with mice on purchase but are still easy to operate using the trackpad. As a graphic designer, you need a trackpad for many reasons despite having a mouse (more on that later).
You can find trackpads on different devices used by graphic design professionals. For instance, Chromebooks, MacBooks, and Surface Laptops all come with trackpads. It is also possible to buy a separate trackpad and use it with your desktop.
There are multiple ways that you can use trackpads. They can move cursors, open programs, scroll up and down, zoom in and out, etc. Some trackpads come with one or two buttons that work like those found on mice. Trackpads require great care and maintenance, especially if used daily.
Why Use Trackpads for Graphic Designing?
Graphic designers need mice and touchpads to work smoothly. But then, you must have a trackpad even though you have a mouse, especially if using a laptop. First, graphic designers working from an office or home may have limited working spaces.
If you do not have enough space on your workstation, a mouse can be difficult to use. Remember, you’ll need extra space on your table, but that’s not the case with a trackpad. Trackpads are great space savers and make it easy for people to work even in small office spaces.
Graphic design work can be cumbersome at times. A trackpad will be easier to use even when you’re most tired as you do not need to apply any pressure for it to respond. That helps to reduce the strain on your wrist, making the long working days much easier.
As a graphic designer, you also need something durable enough. Although a computer mouse is durable, it comes with some moving parts. It can easily get damaged if it drops from your workstation to the floor. On the other hand, Trackpads can’t fall, and most of them are scratch, dirt, and moisture resistant.
Although a mouse will guarantee you better accuracy, some trackpads do too. A trackpad can only fail you if it loses sensitivity, but that is easy to adjust. It must translate gestures accurately, especially for graphic design work that often requires high precision levels.
Graphic design is a creative job, and it should be entertaining. Trackpads make the experience even better compared to traditional computer mice. You should consider a trackpad for graphic design if you want to have the best experience at work.
Computer Mouse vs Touchpad
There’re various pros and cons of using either trackpads or mice, as mentioned earlier. As a graphic designer, deciding what works for you will be crucial. We’ll look into why a trackpad is a better option and why you should consider using it.
Graphic designers sometimes work remotely. You can work from a café as you enjoy your coffee or while far away on vacation. Forgetting to pack your mouse when you do not have a trackpad on your laptop. A trackpad saves you the stress as it starts working immediately after your laptop boots up.
You may also need to use all the USB ports available on your computer. A mouse requires you to plug in one of its components, which ties up one port for you. A trackpad is just a surface that doesn’t need any plugging. That leaves you with all the ports to plug in USB drives that contain your projects.
If you’re starting graphic design, you may not have a lot of money to spend on equipment. Buying a mouse separately can be costly compared to buying a laptop with a trackpad. That makes trackpads less expensive and perfect for a beginner.
In short, a touchpad works just like a mouse but then comes with more benefits than the latter. As mentioned earlier, you do not need to plug anything when using a trackpad. Besides, you’re ready to go with a trackpad while mice require you to install some software or drives to use.
Which is the Best Touchpad for Graphic Designing?
Everyone wants the best, especially when it comes to electronic gadgets. In fact, graphic designers are quite selective in the electronic items they use for their work. Picking a good graphic design trackpad becomes a challenge if you’re too picky as the market has too many options.
However, there’s no standard for the best touchpad to use. You can buy any touchpad so long as it meets your needs perfectly. Thus, it would help if you focused on performance, functionality, features, and other elements that affect how a trackpad works.
If you’re looking for price, your best pick will, of course, be the cheapest trackpad in the market. In that case, functionality, features, and performance will not be part of your considerations. Another designer may focus on performance and could be willing to spend any amount for a trackpad.
In short, ‘best’ is relative when it comes to buying electronic items. What’s best for one graphic designer may not be for another. It would be best to write a checklist of the features you want before you go window shopping. Thankfully, we have listed some of those features below to help you get the best.
Features to Consider When Choosing a Trackpad
Depending on your laptop, you may have to purchase an external touchpad. There are magic trackpads that work perfectly with Apple laptops and some perfect for many other brands. Picking the best for your work needs can be a daunting task.
As a graphic designer, you need to be sure that you’re using the correct trackpad. However, trackpads will appear to provide the same value; it is never similar for professionals. You will be looking for one that’s durable, easy to use, and compatible with your laptop.
Below are some features that will help you pick the best.
As you strive to pick the best, the trackpad brand will be a key factor to consider. You may have a favorite brand, but taking your time to research can save you a lot. Besides, not falling for popular brands can also help you find a trackpad that meets your needs.
It would be best if you researched brands and their USPs before committing to one. An ideal brand should focus on quality and should price its products reasonably. Once you settle on a specific brand, you can now look into the trackpads they’ve on offer.
It is not easy to find a good graphic designing trackpad. It is not as easy as walking into an electronics shop and picking one. It would be best if you had thorough background checks, as mentioned above. Online reviews are a great resource for anyone researching products.
It will also help if you can join an online graphic designers’ community. You’ll easily get genuine reviews about trackpads and find the best match for your needs. That will help you find the right products and save you a lot of valuable time.
Indeed, you cannot find the best electronics at low prices. You have to pay more for quality, and that’s what happens with graphic design trackpads. It is vital to compare prices before you settle on one trackpad. Select a wide variety and choose one that meets your needs and is affordable for you.
The best thing about such gadgets is that expensive doesn’t always mean quality. You should research properly and find what meets your quality needs and costs within your budget. The best thing is to buy something that will get the job done for you.
- Ease of Use
You may find some trackpads difficult to use, especially if they require configuring. But then, even the most tech-savvy people do not want things that are difficult to use. As a graphic designer, you should go for a trackpad that’s easy to configure and use.
You can also find such information on online reviews. Although you could be tech-savvy, you may not be the only person using it in the future. Pick a trackpad that your kids can use or anyone else in your office.
It isn’t advisable to judge products by their looks, but sometimes you have to do it. Design is an important factor for graphic designers looking for trackpads. A good trackpad needs to look sleek, modern, shiny, etc., to add some color to your workstation.
The design will concern you more if you’re keen on small details. For instance, you’ll want a well-designed trackpad with a color that matches your laptop or desktop. But then, design may be the least of your concerns if you only need functionality and a great price.
Many things in the world are now becoming connected. However, it is not surprising to find gadgets like trackpads that aren’t compatible with laptops and desktops. That makes it vital to confirm that a trackpad will work with your main device before purchasing it.
Most of the trackpads in the market work with almost every laptop brand. But you should never panic if it doesn’t work on yours as experts can show you how to go about that. The good news is that you’ll always find what fits your computer.
- Wireless vs Wired
It would be best to consider what will fit your needs better between a wired and wireless trackpad. Although wired devices are slowly getting phased out, they’re still handy. Wired trackpads do not need charging or batteries; thus, you do not have to suspend your work because your batteries died.
Wireless trackpads are an excellent choice for many because they’re futuristic. They do not get damaged easily and save on desk space. There’s no one to decide what’s best for you when picking either wired or wireless trackpads. Choose what you’d love most between the two.
Graphic Designing Trackpads: Final Thoughts
You can choose either a mouse or trackpad or use both in your work. But then, what you use depends on the work you’re doing and what’s most comfortable for you. The ideal pick should be comfortable, easy to use, and have many more features.
A graphic designer’s job requires a lot of precision. In this case, one would be tempted to go with a mouse rather than a trackpad. Thankfully most touchpads can provide similar results if in perfect working conditions. It all boils down to how you care for the touchpad.
You’ll also realize that touchpads are easier to use for some graphic design work. For instance, painting a drawing on the screen using the touchpad will be easier. A mouse may not give the same results because it isn’t as natural as a finger.