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As a multi-touch device the Bamboo leaves us a little cold. There are times when it simply doesn't work reliably enough, and it's a rare computer user who claims a touchpad is a good alternative to a proper mouse. Even with Windows 7 supporting multi-touch this isn't the product to bring it to the masses.
Working with the pen is intuitive and natural, despite the stylus' lack of weight.
The pad is incredibly sensitive – with a bit of practice, drawing on the pad feels natural. It's much easier than attempting to sketch lines with a mouse.
The 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity help, and the price is keen as well – this the perfect beginner or hobbyist's graphics tablet.
The multi-touch aspect is over-hyped and under-realised. A lot of the time it simply doesn't work as well as advertised.
We certainly can't see it being as useful in Photoshop as the ability to draw natural-looking lines straight onto a piece of digital canvas.
The small pressure-sensitive area can be a bit restrictive too, although this is something that will only truly niggle if you've already got experience using graphics tablets. A final annoyance is that the Bamboo Pen & Touch only comes with one style of nib for the pen, and even beginners are likely to want to try something new.
As a graphics tablet, the Wacom is a superb first step for those getting into digital art. The pad may not be enormous, but there's plenty of sensitivity, and at comfortably under £100, the Pen & Touch could mark the beginning of a new artistic direction for beginners.
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Dave is a professional photographer whose work has appeared everywhere from National Geographic to the Guardian. Along the way he’s been commissioned to shoot zoo animals, luxury tech, the occasional car, countless headshots and the Northern Lights. As a videographer he’s filmed gorillas, talking heads, corporate events and the occasional penguin. He loves a good gadget but his favourite bit of kit (at the moment) is a Canon EOS T80 35mm film camera he picked up on eBay for £18.