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Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphics Tablet Review

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphics Tablet Review - Here we test the Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless model which comes with a Meet the Masters 10 hour DVD.

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Category : Graphics Tablets and Mice
Product : Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet
Price : £77
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Features
Handling
Performance
Verdict
Specification

Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet

The Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless (Bluetooth) tablet is designed for photographers, designers, illustrators, graphic designers and even those who suffer from RSI from using a mouse. Here we test the Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless model which comes with a Meet the Masters 10 hour DVD.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Features


Settings DisplayedThe Wacom tablet features an ergonomic design with slopping wrist rests and a stylish matt black appearance, with the key area featuring a gloss black finish.

The Touch Ring can be setup to let you scroll, zoom, alter brush size, rotate the canvas or layer selection.

The tablet features Customisable ExpressKeys to enable individual, application-specific shortcuts – including OLED-displays to indicate the current function on M / Wireless, L and XL tablet models.

The pen stand stores a number of different pen nibs, and included in the box are personal colour identification rings.

The Wacom Tip Sensor has 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity for a natural feel while drawing or illustrating.

Designed to be as comfortable as possible, the graphics tablet is relatively slim and ergonomic, offering a sloping palm rest and complete hand support.

Its ambidextrous, reversible tablet design puts the ExpressKeys in the correct position at all times – regardless of whether you are right-handed or left-handed.

The contoured Grip Pen is designed to minimise grip effort significantly.

Dynamic ExpressKey displays show the current, application-specific functions of each key. Scrolling, zooming and brush adjustments are completed at the touch of a finger thanks to the multifunctional Touch Ring. Fine, detailed work at pixel level can be performed in the new Grip Pen precision mode. New radial menus enable structured and fast access to shortcuts – with just a pen stroke.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet
Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet Pen Holder

The Wacom offers integration with leading software applications from Adobe, Autodesk and Corel for realistic, pressure-sensitive pen controls. The Wacom Tip Sensor, is designed to capture the slightest nuance of pressure with outstanding precision and accuracy.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet
Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet USB
Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet
Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet Controls

Key Features

  • User-defined / multifunctional Touch Ring
  • Customisable ExpressKeys
  • Dynamic ExpressKey displays
  • Wacom Tip Sensor with stunning 2,048 levels of pressure sensitivity
  • Slim and ergonomic, sloping palm rest, complete hand support
  • Ambidextrous, reversible tablet design
  • Contoured Grip Pen, new precision mode
  • Customisable (New) radial menus, > side-switches not featured on Wireless model
  • Available in 5 sizes / flavours: S, Wireless, M, L, XL
  • Available with 7 different input devices: Grip Pen, Airbrush, Art Pen, Classic Pen, Inking Pen, Lens Cursor, Mouse
In the box we're testing is included a "Meet the Masters" DVD with over 10 hours of content.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet DVD Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet
Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet DVD Changeable rings

Other box contents include the: Pen / CD / Quick Start Manual / USB Cable / Pen Holder and Meet the Masters DVD. The wireless tablet includes a rechargeable battery and a USB Cable is provided and provides power for the unit.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Handling


Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet Buttons Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphic Tablet Buttons
 Upper Buttons  Lower buttons

Installation was quick taking less than 5 minutes, then the installation goes through the basics of using the tablet. USB cable is provided. The Wacom Tablet control panel - lets you set individual options for each application you add, and lets you customise the buttons:

Wacom Control Panel

Using the controls:

Wacom Wheel Button Press

The Touch ring / wheel: pressing the middle button brings up a screen overlay, letting you know what the wheel is used for in each setting. Shown below is the new radial menus overlay.


Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Performance

The best method I found using the tablet with two screens was to use the Display toggle button to switch between the screens, with Photoshop on one side used with the pen and then to use the first screen I used the normal mouse.

Photo Editing - Using Photoshop:


Before
Before After

I used the pen to create a selection so that I could remove the distracting dark grey from the background of this photo and the pen made it much easier to accurately draw around the model.

Drawing - example:


Wacom Doodle

I'm not the best artist in the world, but I found the pen much better for drawing compared to using the mouse. The pen gives you 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity, which is great, however I found that I have nowhere near that level of ability to control how hard I was pressing the pen, but it is good to know. I suspect if you're using Adobe Illustrator or generally better at drawing than me, then you'd be able to do a much better job.

Left handed / right handed use - You can set the tablet as left or right handed as well as set it so the buttons are at the top or the bottom for portrait work. The OLED display will automatically display the text the correct way round depending on which way round you have the tablet.

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) - I find most of the time I don't especially suffer from RSI when using a mouse, trackball or keyboard, but that by alternating between a mouse and a trackball that it helps avoid RSI. However, I do notice my hand becoming sore if I write with a pen and found I had some pain after using the Wacom pen after an extended time.

The tablet takes up much more space than a normal mouse would in use, and there is quite a large border around the pressure sensitive area, however the additional control and benefits should outweigh the negatives, as long as you have enough desk space for it in addition to your mouse, as you may find that you still need to use your mouse at times (although with extended use this should become a thing of the past).

Value For Money

The Wireless (A5) Tablet costs around £330, for the same price you can buy the wired A4 version which gives you much more working area, and would be recommended for people with larger than 22inch screens. However if you regularly use a laptop with built in bluetooth, then the Wireless model would be a good choice as it could free you from your laptop while you draw. The Wireless version isn't much more than the Medium A5 version, which is priced at £290.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Verdict

The Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphics Tablet is a great tool for image editing, illustrations and general photographic work including touching up images. The pen works really well and after becoming used to using it, it can become much easier to use than a mouse for graphics and photo work. Whether you'd be better off with the wireless bluetooth version, or a larger A4 version would depend on your use and whether you use a laptop with bluetooth or not. If you do, then this bluetooth version is definitely recommended.
 
  The Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Graphics Tablet works really well and is recommended if you want a bluetooth tablet.

Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Pros

Customisable buttons
Allows the use of Photoshop without having to use the keyboard
Precision mode works really well
Scroll / Rotary Wheel really useful
Doesn't take long to get used to


Wacom Intuos 4 Wireless Cons

Wireless model is the same price as the A4 model

FEATURES
HANDLING
PERFORMANCE
VALUE FOR MONEY
VERDICT

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Comments


16 Dec 2011 5:07PM
Does it work with windows 7?
I have just purchased a new PC with windows 7 and upgraded Photoshop from version 3 to 5.5 and whilst my usb wired Intuos 4 model PTK-640 work faultlessly on my old xp computer I now have the following problem. It works fine when first turned on but after about 2 hours the curser starts to stick and then refuses to movce at at all with the Wacom pen or mouse. However the Logitech wireless keyboard and mouse still function allowing you to save your picture and turn off the computer, once restarted the tablet works fine for about another 2 hours, when are Wacom going to find a solution to this problem?

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Podmore 4 20 United Kingdom
16 Dec 2011 5:29PM
It's a great piece of kit, but people in uk and Europe beware it doesn't come with the mouse as standard, unlike the states version.
Yay we get ripped off again for over here, the mouse then costs an extra 65.00
16 Dec 2011 8:05PM

Quote: It's a great piece of kit, but people in uk and Europe beware it doesn't come with the mouse as standard, unlike the states version.
Yay we get ripped off again for over here, the mouse then costs an extra 65.00

Yes and that makes it even more annoying that Wacom dont have a driver that works correctley with windows 7
Podmore 4 20 United Kingdom
17 Dec 2011 1:01PM
We had an pain getting it installed on mac
17 Dec 2011 3:29PM

Quote: We had an pain getting it installed on mac

Wacom need to to get their drivers sorted because 400 for something that does not function correctly is a pain

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