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Whether you’re a digital artist or just taking notes during a meeting, anyone who’s used a stylus pen knows how easy (and frustrating) it can be to ruin your work when your hand touches the screen of your tablet. That’s where the best new stylus pens come in. Getting perfect palm rejection takes a few steps within your application or OS, and they’re easy and fast to put in place. But how do you know which one is right for you and your device? Read on for our complete guide to the best palm rejection stylus pens that are worth buying right now.
Buying Guide: What to Know About Palm Rejection Stylus Pens
First, take note of the difference between an active and a passive stylus pen. In short, an active stylus pen has built-in electronic components. It’s also generally larger, and it has features like touch sensitivity, input buttons, and even electronic erasers. A passive pen, meantime, can be used to write directly on the screen. But generally speaking, it won’t have as many features as its active counterpart.
You’ll also want to check if the app you’re using has “Palm Rejection,” “Strict Palm Rejection,” or something similar as a feature, like Microsoft OneNote, where you can simply switch off “Draw With Touch.” This really is what makes a difference, as the screen will no longer register the heat of your hand, while still being able to use navigation movements.
Here are a few other points to consider:
Connection: Unlike other wireless devices, not all of these need to connect via Bluetooth. In fact, they don’t need to connect to WiFi or anything — just start writing or drawing and you’re all set. An active stylus will still have the option for a Bluetooth connection though, primarily on tablets. The advantage here is that the tablet itself knows you’re using the stylus and not your finger, and will recognize the pen’s position even as you hover it over the screen. But having no connection to the tablet also means less drain on the battery, and a simple on/off button on the pen itself lets you switch it instantly when you’re ready to start or stop for the day.
Weight: None of these are too heavy, but even among its small weight class, a few grams can make a difference in how comfortable it is to hold and maneuver. if you’re looking for a mid-weight stylus, 14 grams is a safe bet.
Battery Life: These all clocked in at around 7-9 hours, give or take, which is enough for a full workday. However, we still recommend charging them up overnight.
Extras: Stylus pens also can have a removable cap and replaceable tip, as well as a button on the body and a small port for USB-based charging. Having a pen that’s magnetic helps too, particularly with a flat side, so you can snap it on to a surface when you’re all done and then easily pick it back up again.
Finally, make sure the pen you want is supported by your brand of tablet or laptop (and favorite application) before ordering it.
What Are the Best Stylus Pens?
We picked the best stylus pens worth buying right now, from brands including Apple, Adonit, and our other favorites.
1. Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)
The Apple Pencil tested best when it came to palm rejection, leaving no trace of any scrapes, smears, or unwanted lines anywhere on the page. Pressure sensitivity was also excellent here, and lag time was barely there. Charging it up took about 30 minutes during our testing, and netted around 12 hours of usage. Handwriting recognition was nearly perfect. When you’re done, magnetically snap it to your iPad so it never gets lost.
2. Adonit Dash 4 Smart Universal Dual Pen
Adonit is a major player when it comes to the stylus pen game. This dual-use pen doesn’t even need Bluetooth to connect, cutting way down on lag and latency. It’s excellent even if your device is a few years old, too. Palm rejection is fully supported, and charging it back up via the included stand fills it to to 100 percent in only an hour (and can be used up to 15). This is easy to maneuver too thanks to its lightweight build, and the pen tip is replaceable when it’s worn down.
3. Menkarwhy Active Stylus Digital Pen
This affordable option proved to keep up with the palm rejection and pressure sensitivity every digital artist needs. The gold-plated, high-conductivity tip responds well to even delicate pressing, whether drawing or taking notes. Charging up via USB took about two hours, and netted around as much as 10 hours of usage. It’s fully compatible with iOS, Windows, and Android devices.
4. Adonit Neo Duo Magnetically Attachable Universal Stylus
This Lithium-Ion powered alternate option from Adonit worked well with palm rejection, and was compatible with even older model touchscreens. An on/off button lets you easily save battery when not in use, but a full charge takes just under two hours. Two extra tips are included, and it’s magnetically attachable to your iPad so you’ll never lose it again.
Wacom Bamboo Ink Plus Smart Stylus for Windows
Bamboo’s Ink Plus worked beautifully with Windows 10-enabled devices, whether you need it for note-taking, sketching, or digital art. The Pressure Sensitivity is responsive without being overly touchy and shaky, and pairing with Bluetooth was quick and simple. Plus it’s rechargeable via USB even while using it.
Users of the previous generation’s Bamboo Ink will notice the biggest improvement here, particularly the smoothness of your strokes and comfortable feel in your hand even after long periods.