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Customer Review

188 of 196 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good value, easy to use, 3 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: Wacom Bamboo Pen Graphics Tablet (Accessory)
I've been using a Wacom Intuos pen/tablet on my desktop computer for several years now, and no longer use a mouse at all, for anything. When I bought a Macbook, I really missed my tablet; the Macbook trackpad is OK, but nothing like as precise and (to me) intuitive as the pen and tablet, and no way could I go back to a clumsy and awkward mouse. So after some research, I decided to give the Wacom Bamboo Pen tablet a try. Installation was very easy indeed - plug it in, run the installation disk, and from then on, it just works. I have customised the settings a little, e.g. to set the button on the pen to a right mouse hover click, and it is worth investigating the different settings to find the arrangement that best suits you. Compared to my Intuos tablet, the Bamboo is only a little less precise, a little less pressure sensitive, and I'm quite satisfied with its performance. It does have a scratchier feel when drawing/writing - personally I prefer the smoother feel of the Intuos tablet, but that might be personal preference. The Bamboo tablet sits on my lap when I'm using the laptop, and the pen tucks away neatly in a little loop at the side of the pad when not in use; the tablet is small enough to be portable and not too cumbersome, while still allowing you to navigate accurately.

If you're new to a tablet/pen, it takes a little getting used to. The tablet maps to the screen, so if you point to the top right of the tablet, the pointer goes to the top right of the screen - unlike a mouse. It's worth investing that time getting used to it if you're doing any sort of work that requires precision - including drawing, handwriting, editing images in e.g. Photoshop, or even some games where you need to aim accurately. You can write with this pen in a drawing package, and what appears on the screen looks like your handwriting (very difficult to achieve with a mouse). The only thing I really miss, and occasionally go back to the trackpad for, is easy scrolling. I don't know about Windows, but on a Mac, you can still use the mouse/trackpad while the tablet is connected, just switch between them as you prefer.
The tablet comes with an art package and utilities, but I haven't investigated this as I use Photoshop.

Overall I'd recommend this tablet for general use, drawing, image editing like touching up photos, games etc.; if you're into heavy professional Photoshop work or serious artwork, then I think you'll want a larger tablet with more functionality like the Wacom Intuos range.
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Showing 1-10 of 14 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 4 Jan 2012 13:23:37 GMT
Very helpful review, appreciated.

Posted on 15 Mar 2012 08:45:14 GMT
jsm999 says:
A note for any Mac users - there was a bug in iTunes 10.4 and 10.5 which affected the ability to drag items into playlists using any of the Wacom tablets, including this one. The bug was fixed in iTunes version 10.6, so if you notice this problem, check your iTunes version.

Posted on 14 Jun 2012 00:17:05 BDT
hello, my laptop hasn't a harddrive for me to insert discs. Would i be able to use this tablet without being able to install?

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Jun 2012 08:49:03 BDT
jsm999 says:
Cathal Donnelly: You do need a driver for this tablet, but I think you should be OK, as the drivers are available to download from the Wacom website. There is no obvious indication that you need to install from the original DVD rather than just downloading from the website. You might not get all the extras (drawing software etc.) without using the DVD that comes with the tablet - would it be possible for you to borrow a DVD drive, plug it into your USB port, just long enough to install? But if you're just using the tablet as a mouse substitute (as I do), you don't actually need the extras.
I don't know what Wacom's customer service is like, whether you'll be able to get advice if you contact them through the website to confirm?

Posted on 25 Jun 2012 06:51:48 BDT
John Edwards says:
Hey this is a real good review I have just purchased this item...however can anyone jump in on more Intel on the replaceable pen tips?

Posted on 19 Jul 2012 20:27:31 BDT
Flowerscat says:

Any ideas if a pen is enough to draw images with Sketchbook express, or if I need to buy the more expensive Pen & Touch?


In reply to an earlier post on 19 Jul 2012 21:21:17 BDT
jsm999 says:
Flowerscat: I think the main difference between this and the Pen & Touch is that the Bamboo Pen just responds to the pen. The more expensive Pen & Touch has sensors for the pen and for touch, so you can use your finger or a pen to click, drag to scroll etc., and has customisable 'ExpressKeys' for functions. If you just want to use the pad to draw, then I'm not sure the extra functionality of the Touch would be necessary, though you might find it useful for navigating, scrolling etc. Although I don't know Sketchbook, I've used the Bamboo Pen to draw and edit in Photoshop and Illustrator, including some quite detailed work, and it's been quite adequate. Hope this helps.

In reply to an earlier post on 20 Jul 2012 23:14:29 BDT
Last edited by the author on 20 Jul 2012 23:16:32 BDT
Flowerscat says:
Yes, this is great, just the information I needed. Will stick to the pen for now as I just need it for basic drawing applications. Thank you for taking the time to reply.

Posted on 2 Oct 2012 16:06:23 BDT
Alex says:
Hi, Is the graphic tablet plug and play? I am planning to use it on my home PC and Uni's PC

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Oct 2012 16:40:37 BDT
jsm999 says:
Alex: I haven't used it on a PC (not quite sure what plug & play means, sorry!), but think you should be able to use it on both your PCs - you will need to install drivers (from the DVD supplied with the tablet) on the PCs, and then it just connects via USB. Does this help?
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