Wacom Bamboo Pen & Touch Tablet

Been lucky enough this Christmas to be given a new piece of computer hardware: Wacom Bamboo Pen and Touch. Here is a bit of deboxing excitement to share with you.

The packaging is nicely designed.  Since this tool is meant to be for the graphically inclined customers, the packaging does speak a bit about the product.

The back of the packing explains the benefits of this product.  The most interesting part of this product is, of course, the multi-touch feature.

With multi-touch, the tablet doubles as an extra large touchpad for your computer.

Imagine you can perform the convenient gestures found on the Macbooks and Macbook Pros on a regular PC or Mac that did not come with multi-touch hardware.

Now you can do scrolling, photo pinching and zooming, navigate front and back, all via two finger gestures.

After peeling layers and layers of packing, finally, we can see the product.  It comes with a fabric holder for the pen, and 4 configurable buttons on the left side of the drawing surface.  Actually, you can also configure the orientation of the tablet via software so that it works with the buttons on the right side (rotated 180 degrees).

Under the tablet are 4 rubber feet, an expected and essential feature.

Other than the tablet and the pen, the package also comes with some software for both Windows and Mac.

Bundled software includes Adobe Photoshop Elements and Nik Color.  There is also a driver disk, just in case.

Also included are some replacement tips for the pen and a tool to remove and reinstall the pen tip.

For the price ($80 on sale from NCIX), I think it is a pretty good bundle that gives me a drawing surface, a multi-touch pad for alternative input, and some software.

I used to have a very old Wacom tablet for my PC days.  It was so old that it uses the RS-232 serial port connection.  Because it was a serial port device, the connection speed was horrible.  It also uses a lot of CPU cycles to process the input.  So drawing with it was a bit of a pain regardless which software I used.  That experience was not very good so I never got the benefit of the tablet, and it cost $250 10+ years ago.  And as soon as serial ports are phased out in PCs, I stopped using the tablet.

Now with this new product, I am again able to enjoy pen input.  I tried it briefly and it was very smooth and easy to use.  I didn’t have as much of a hand-to-screen orientation problem as my previous experience.  So far so good!  The touch functionality works as advertised.  You can optionally toggle it on and off depends on how you like to use the tablet.  As mentioned, all the buttons are configurable to perform a set of functions.  Wacom seems to have put a lot of thought into this product.  If I have to be picky, the only thing I wish Wacom did is to make the USB cable detachable.  With cats in the house, it would have been a pretty good feature to be able to replace the cable if it got chewed and damaged ^^;

If you are interested in this product.  Here is a Wacom promo video that illustrates its features concisely.

And if you enjoy British accents, here is a review video that illustrates the Bamboo Fun Pen and Touch version of the tablet with OSX.  It goes through some of the configurations that are available through System Preferences.  You can also see how davomrmac from Geekanoids.co.uk works with the tablet.

Did you get some new gadgets for Christmas?  Hope you all had a wonderful holiday and are all rested up for more New Year’s celebrations!

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