This review of the Wacom Intuous 4 is based on my impressions so I will start to give you some background information of me as a rookie Wacom user.
First of all I have never used a pen tablet before so this is my first experience and I will try to add to this review as I learn to use the tablet.
I think this is a good thing for all of you that have been thinking of getting
your own tablet, but hesitate because you are unsure if the learning curve will be to step and it will take long time to learn, I will now make all the mistakes for you and I'm a slow learner so if I can you can :0)
I do like to edit photos and are familiar with several photo editing applications like PS and Gimp, I also occasionally use simple CAD app's like Google SketchUp so I will refer to those programs during my review.
The Wacom Intuous 4 came bundled with some software for sketching so I might try that to if I get time for it.
Unwrapping the Intuos 4 medium box will get you the following.
The Wacom tablet itself
A nice pen to use with it (Art pen)
An equally nice pen stand containing 10 extra pen
tips in 4 different flavors
A wireless mouse to use with the tablet (May not be included in some country's)
A long USB wire
CD with manual and Wacom software
A download voucher for bundled software
Optional pens and even an airbrush is available but not included.
My first impressing is ´Wooooow this is something different to a mouse.
Not only a positive
feeling but also a feeling of how to be a rookie again.
While writing this review I'm sitting at a hotel with my tiny 12" screen and using my medium sized tablet in conjunction with a 1280x800 resolution.
This seams to me like a bit overkill unless you need extreme precision during your work.
With this resolution and size of screen it feels like i have to move my arm way to much to cover the screen but there is a solution :0)
The solution was found in the software Wacom Tablet Properties
Under the "portion of tablet" tab
I was able to define an active area of the tablet to cover my screen and that way adjust it to suit my screen size/resolution and my personal taste.
It is also possible to adjust the tablet
to cover a portion of your screen in case you have a very large screen and only like to work on a part of it.
So now I feel much more confident and can start to work :0)
First I will try to make some masking, a task that can be quite cumbersome to do, with a mouse it requires time and patience to do high quality masking.
Now I starting to get addicted to my new toy, masking is much easier, the result is better and time spent shorter.
I start with the quick select tool then change over to mask mode to paint as close as I dear with a
suitable brush. Then I chose a small brush to do the final work in "Precision Mode" that I enter by holding one of the "Express keys" at the edge of the tablet (I chose to have them to my left as I work with my right hand) By holding this key the pen has to be moved a longer distance and accelerates slower to get to the target and hereby the precision increases, simple isn't it :0)
Image to the right shows the mask and the masked rail on the small bridge.
I could have done this with a mouse to but I would have spent more time and would have been forced into the mouse settings menu to change sensitivity and acceleration to do some of the precision work, with the Wacom Tablet it was a pleasure to do :0)
Fur by the ear and neck of the bear has ben touched up since he is a bit worn by love!
Retouching is pure fun and can be done in a more precision kind of way.
At the moment I'm not able to do this kind of simple retouching any faster
than I would have done with a mouse in my hand, but soon I will get hang of it and then maybe I also will increase my productivity.
Soo does it work with Gimp?
Some like to ask what in earth is Gimp? Well it is in short, the only open source image editing software worth to mention and it is quite nice and more than sufficient and contains more advanced features then most people would need.
Still, in some aspects it feels like Photoshop
ano CS or even version 6 but that not too bad for a free software is it :0)