Bamboo Fun Pen & Touch review
With each update graphics-tablet specialist Wacom faces a tricky task of convincing users to upgrade to the latest model. Built to last, a Wacom tablet should outlive several computers. The snappily named Bamboo Fun Pen & Touch, which offers the addition of wireless connectivity, could, however, have you reaching into your pockets.
Sold separately, the wireless accessory kit consists of two neat USB dongles and a battery for the base of the tablet unit. Freed from the tyranny of desktop cables, you can use the Fun just about anywhere within view of your computer screen. Sketching with the Fun balanced on your knee is no problem, as is sitting across the room on a more comfortable chair.
As well as wireless connectivity, the Fun comes with a new silver and black look, which Wacom describes, rather ambitiously, as 'MacBook-esque'. While some may prefer the all-black appearance of previous models it's still an attractive addition to any desk.
Typically, the build feels solid and dependable with a detachable USB cable and useful tab to store the supplied pen when not in use. Four customisable express keys run down one side of the Fun, designed to speed up workflow. The Fun's lustrous pen design has also been improved; a new softer grip feels comfortable and tactile and benefits greatly from 1,024 pressure levels.
Wacom's new Bamboo tablet comes with an optional wireless accessory kit
The optional wireless accessory kit costs £35, which along with the tablet – £90 for the small Fun, £170 for the medium model – may put Wacom's entry-level tablet out of the reach of the very people it's aimed at, namely enthusiasts. For added value, the small Bamboo Fun Pen & Touch comes with Adobe Photoshop Elements, ArtRage and Bamboo apps, while the larger tablet adds Corel Painter Essentials 4. Additional 'free and fun' Bamboo apps are available to download from Wacom.
Wacom has another hit on its hands with the revamped Bamboo range. The option of a wireless accessory kit is most welcome, although it adds not insignificantly to the overhaul cost of your creative endeavours. That said, the freedom to use the Bamboo Fun without cables is a real treat that should let your imagination, and tablet, run free.