My android tablet of choice, the 2019 Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 is still a beast of a tablet for my needs, but unfortunately, I misplaced its S-Pen.
Looking at Amazon for some android stylus pens can also be overwhelming, considering the fact that there are a million different options to choose from.
So being in the market for some stylus pens anyways, I figured I should make this ultimate list of stylus pens you can buy for your Galaxy Tab A series in 2023.
The absolute best Active Stylus you can buy for your Samsung Galaxy Tab A series is the official Samsung S-Pen based on your model.
The best third-party active stylus alternative is the MEKO Fine Tip Universal Stylus and the best passive stylus for the Galaxy Tab A series is the MEKO 2nd gen Universal Disc Stylus.
Key Specifications of a Stylus Pen
Before we dive deep into the ultimate list of the best stylus pens for your Galaxy Tab A series, there are some key specifications you need to consider.
These specifications can drastically impact your buying decision based on the utility you require out of a stylus pen.
There are two types of stylus pens currently on the market, depending on their capabilities to communicate directly with your Galaxy A tab: Passive and Active stylus pens
Passive Stylus Pen
These pens are meant to emulate the touch of our fingers and hence have compatibility with a wide range of touchscreen-enabled products.
Passive stylus pens don't have an inbuilt battery and hence don't require any charging.
The older generation of Galaxy note S-pens (before 2018 specifically) is a great example of passive stylus pens.
Active Stylus Pen
These are meant to emulate the feel of a normal pen/pencil and have a lot of technology involved that restricts it to proprietary use between devices.
They constantly communicate with your Galaxy Tab A Series with the use of Bluetooth to relay information about your latency, refresh rate, etc for a better drawing experience.
The Apple Pencil and newer generations of Samsung Galaxy Note S-Pens (after 2018 specifically) are great examples of active stylus pens.
Active vs Passive Stylus Pens
Active and Passive styli are radically different from each other. I have made this comprehensive chart to help you understand the difference between the two types.
|Features||Active Stylus||Passive Stylus|
|Power Source||Incorporates a battery to power up the electronic components||Has no electronic components to power up and hence doesn't require a power source|
|Technology||Digitizing sensors on the nibs to communicate with the display||Electrostatic conduction, just like fingers on the touchscreen|
|Forms of communication with the device||Can communicate with direct touchscreen contact, as well as relay inbuilt sensors information via Bluetooth for better touch response and features||Only by direct contact via a touchscreen|
|Size of Nibs/Tips||Small and pointed for more precise and accurate strokes||Larger and rounded to conduct the charge for touch input.|
|Compatibility||Compatible only with select products the stylus is certified to be compatible with||Compatible across a wide range of touchscreen-enabled products, irrespective of their screen technology or operating system|
|Touch sensitivity||Can be incorporated, provided the pen has required sensors inbuilt||No sensitivity manipulation|
|Use cases||Digital art, handwritten work on a touchscreen||Daily use; a replacement for grubby finger input|
|Maintenance||Needs to be charged according to the specified power rating. Susceptible to damage via dust and water. Tips need to be replaced when worn out.||Only tips need to be replaced when worn out.|
|Life cycle||Can last only as long as the battery capacity lasts||Can last for a very long time|
Another great comparison that can be made regarding the type of stylus is between a Stylus and a Digital Pen.
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Best Stylus Pens You Can Buy for Your Galaxy Tab A Series
Now that you have a general gist of what you need to purchase based on your ideal use case, let's move on to my ultimate list of stylus pens you can buy in 2023.
Do note that I have curated this list specifically with the Samsung Galaxy Tab A series. These may or may not work with other devices depending on the technology.
For the sake of fairness and technology compatibility, I will be categorizing the list based on active stylus pens for the Galaxy A series tablets that Samsung currently sells.
Do note that only select Samsung galaxy A series tablets actually support S-Pens and hence third-party active stylus pens.
EDIVIA Electronic Stylus Pen: Best Active Stylus for Samsung Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019)
EDIVIA could be a relatively new or unfamiliar brand to most, but most third-party peripherals for phone and tablet accessories are made by similar companies.
What matters most is how they make their accessories and how the customers have perceived them since their inception into the stylus market.
The EDIVIA Electronic Stylus Pen passes the test of getting pretty great reviews on a trusted website like Amazon.
It boasts a 1.45mm nib with a buffer for greater accuracy and control while not damaging your Galaxy Tab A 10.1 's display glass in any form.
It also has a built-in battery that lasts 8 hours of use and charges via micro USB in just 60 minutes.
For $31, it is a decent buy for any budding artist, journalist, or pen user in general.
EVACH Digital Pencil: Best Active Stylus for Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.0 (2019):
EVACH is a company that has been making digital stylus pens that can work well with Samsung Galaxy Tab A series for a long time.
Although both EDIVIA and EVACH look and sound eerily similar, they are listed differently as they use the same OEM vendor for their designs.
It provides a 1.5mm buffer nib for your stroke work and is relatively lightweight too for better usability over time.
Similar to the EDIVIA, it has a battery that lasts 8 hours of use and charges via micro USB in an hour.
For $26, it is the cheapest on this list and can be a great and cheap alternative to your S-Pen on the Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.0.
MEKO Fine Tip Universal Stylus: Best Active Stylus for Samsung Galaxy Tab A Series:
Unfortunately, the Samsung Galaxy Tab A7, A7 Lite, and A 8.4 series devices don't support any form of active S-Pens as of writing this article.
This means they don't support any form of third-party active stylus pens. In such cases, the only option is to go for passive stylus pens.
It is an active stylus that works across a multitude of devices, from iPads to Android tablets, albeit with a generalized feature set.
The highlight of this stylus pen is the 1.6mm plastic POM fine tip it provides for precision drawing, which is key for any artist.
It is micro USB rechargeable with a rated 9 hours of use on a full charge. There is also a rounded tip at the other end for use cases where the battery isn't charged.
But unfortunately, since it is a "universal stylus pen", it does sacrifice some key features for its compatibility with a wide range of products.
The pen doesn't support native palm rejection and there are no pressure sensors that can determine the intensity of the stroke you want on the screen
But for the $30 asking price, you are getting quite a lot for your buck, and can be a great investment for any beginner digital artist.
MEKO 2nd Gen Universal Disc Stylus : Best Passive Stylus Pens for Samsung Galaxy Tab A Series:
Usually, I don't make my ultimate list surrounding a specific brand, but MEKO is one of the few brands that makes reliable stylus pen offerings.
The passive variant of MEKO stylus pens has genius disc-style passive models that offer great precision for a passive stylus.
It basically refers to a replaceable tip that has a plastic disc encompassing it that can precisely map your strokes while being transparent enough for easy visibility.
It has multiple tips directly in the box which you can switch between in case you don't need the extra precision of the disc-based tips.
Although there is a newer and cheaper 3rd generation series, I would not recommend it as it can be a bit flimsy when compared to the 2nd generation. This is the most valuable in my opinion.
Samsung Official S-Pen: Best Active Stylus for Supported Samsung Galaxy Tab A Series
When it comes to the sheer number of features and proper compatibility, nothing comes even close to the S-Pen that your Galaxy Tab A series model natively supports.
Due to the patented technology used and the fact that stylus features are mostly software-based features, S-Pen will always be the absolute best stylus for your tab.
Unfortunately, Samsung doesn't sell its S-Pen replacement parts online and if you lost the S-Pen that came with your device, you are out of luck.
The best solution is to book an appointment with Samsung Customer Care and ask for a replacement part, but that will cost you way more money than my alternatives below.
Another viable solution is to seek out a seller of the tablet on eBay and hopefully make a deal for just the S-Pen, it is not something every user requires to use the tablet.
But this is my recommended option and this is the way I personally went with it, as I prefer the extra features of the S-Pen more than just the artistic capabilities.
Another great device like the S-Pen is the Apple Pencil, which is similar to the S-Pen in many ways but also differs from its in more ways. One can compare the two devices to get to know which is the best at the game.
Prerequisites Before you Begin Use
Getting your own stylus for your artistic or writing habits on your Samsung Galaxy Tab A series can be great, but there are some factors you need to consider.
Disable the 'S-Pen Only/Finger Drawing' Mode
Samsung has an inbuilt feature across all their S-Pen-supported devices that make sure you can only use the S-Pen as an active means of input on your device.
This is a feature introduced so that during that time, hand inputs are usually ignored and hence can greatly reduce error in touch inputs.
Fortunately, you can disable it directly from your Galaxy Tab A series. you might need to do this first before you use your third-party stylus pen.
To disable this, simply follow the following steps:
- Open the S-Pen settings
- Open the 3-Dot menu on the top right
- You will find an option for finger drawing. Disable it.
Do note that you will have to enable this again if you want to have finger-touch inputs again. Some active stylus pens might only work with this option disabled.
Passive stylus pens will have no such issues and will work as intended.
For writing purposes, everything depends on the app that you select to do your writing. Make sure to check each and every aspect of the app before siding with one.
Not All Stylus Pens Are Created Equal
An important thing to consider is that active stylus pens typically only work with the specific brand they are meant to be compatible with.
This means that your Apple Pencil will only work with the specific set of Apple devices apple enables the Apple Pencil code for.
Samsung doesn't allow all its models to be universally compatible too, meaning you can't use your Galaxy Note Series S Pen on your Galaxy Tab A series.
This is mainly a marketing tactic to purchase specific accessories for specific products, but the tech improvements and newer patent implementations are to be blamed too.
Each screen can have different sensitivity and technology based on the model and companies leverage this to design custom settings for maximum efficiency.
So when you are in the market for an active stylus pen, make sure it supports your Galaxy Tab A series specifically to the model and year of release.
As I have mentioned before, there will be a severe lack of features when considering third-party solutions for your Galaxy Tab A.
None of the S-Pen-related functions can be used with third-party stylus offerings.
The USP of third-party stylus pens is that they are very cheap and can emulate the touch response necessary for simple stroke artwork and handwriting.
Stylus pens are a great peripheral to have on supported large-size tablets. They offer a great variety of how you can communicate with your Galaxy Tab A series.
Unfortunately, the Android tablet space is underappreciated and hence there is a severe lack of quality stylus pens that make use of the inputs.
Apple has a huge monopoly in the tablet space in this regard, and hence the Apple Pencil is the best commercial stylus you can get for your artwork.
Hopefully, with Android finally diving deeper into tablets with its new android 12L operating system, the demand for more stylus pens on android will rise in the future.
But as of writing this article, it is 2023 and I hope my ultimate list of the best Stylus Pens you can buy for your Samsung Galaxy tab A series has been fruitful knowledge.
Some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can I Use a Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Stylus on My Galaxy Tab A series Tab as a Passive Stylus?
The active stylus of Samsung Galaxy Note 10 won't work with a Galaxy Tab A8 even as a passive stylus, as it doesn't have an electrostatic tip like other passive stylus pens.
Are All Samsung Galaxy Tab A Series S-Pens the Same?
Mostly yes, but it wouldn't fit the slots across tablet models and you will be losing some features like Bluetooth, fast charging, pressure tips, etc depending on the model.
How Long Do Stylus Pens Last for the Samsung Galaxy A series?
The lifespan of Stylus Pens depends on how long their tips last. The average lifespan of a stylus pen is around two or three years, depending on use.
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