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Canvas 27 – Dell’s New Drawing Surface for Creative Professionals

Dell Canvas 27

In 2016, Microsoft launched its Surface Studio and came across as a producer of serious hardware for content creators. Shortly after that, Dell gave us a preview of Canvas 27, which is more than just a Microsoft Surface Studio. People have been comparing Dell Canvas to that of Microsoft’s Surface Studio. But there are points of differentiation between the both.

How is it Different from Surface Studio?

Dell’s Canvas 27 is a specialized display announced last week at CES 2017 in Las Vegas, that can turn your Windows 10 PC into a creative powerhouse. Surface Studio is a standalone product, while the Canvas isn’t a standalone all-in-one, but something similar to an interactive tablet. Canvas 27 is like an interactive touchscreen display designed in order to pair with another large display.

QHD Smart Workspace

The built-in display is QHD, which means a 2,560×1,440-pixel resolution. The 27-inch QHD smart workspace is designed to be used at either an angle or flat on a desk allowing professionals to express their work as naturally as they want to. Using a mix of touch, a digital pen, and physical controls called totems, the Dell Canvas turns drawings into a digital workflow. The Canvas was designed for hand interaction, so the expected setup is to have one display for vertical viewing and the Canvas 27 for horizontal working.

Canvas 27 – Ideal for Artists

Dell’s 27-inch panel is pretty similar to Microsoft’s Surface Studio in the way it functions. But it is not a PC. It’s a display that connects to any PC and runs on its hardware. Canvas basically serves as an extension of your existing computer. The Canvas display is to be laid out in front of, and connected to, a large standard monitor instead of replacing your screen. This will provide you with a new area to work on for input, while the main monitor is your visual space. This is ideal for artists and other creatives.

Comes with Anti-glare Gorilla Glass

With audio or photo programs on the Canvas, you can place the scrub bar and other files on the bottom of Canvas screen. You can display the work in progress and other things on the main display. The tablet features a kickstand which only props it up to about a 45-degree angle. The Canvas comes with a Dial-like peripheral along with a stylus. It’s got a sharp display, covered in anti-glare Gorilla Glass.

Two Totems and a Smart Pen

You can connect the Canvas 27 to your existing computer, and it works as a second screen for pen and touch input, while you can keep other things, like reference materials or even email, on your laptop or desktop’s main monitor. Two different sizes of Totem will ship with the Canvas 27, along with a Digital Smart Pen for writing and drawing on the display.

Partnered with Microsoft

Dell has developed Canvas 27 in partnership with Microsoft and is powered by nearly any Windows 10 device. The Dell Canvas integrates directly into software solutions from partner companies Adobe, Autodesk, AVID, Dassault Systems, SolidWorks, and Microsoft.

Dell wants that the Canvas 27 should be easy to connect to your PC. Your cable choices include a USB-C to USB-C connection, USB-C to USB-A connection, mini-DP to mini-DP or DP connection, and mini-HDMI to HDMI. The Canvas 27 also comes with its own AC adapter.

Available in March

It will be available this year for $1,799 and is due to ship on March 30.


This kind of touch support for PCs feels like an evolution of computers, one that offers all the power and is also intuitive. The software and the working of the Canvas feel intuitive and the design seems easy to adapt. There is a lot in Canvas 27 that designers, artists, and other creative professionals will find appealing.