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How Wacom Tablets Work

        Tech | Tablet PCs

Bamboo for Beginners
Digital art newbies might dig the Bamboo Splash.
Digital art newbies might dig the Bamboo Splash.

This is the tablet for your average design geek or burgeoning artist. The Bamboo line is designed (and priced, from $79-$200) for someone who is just starting out with digital design or a hobbyist. The line has four different models, and while Intuos and Cintiq were designed to be used in many ways, the Bamboo tablets are fairly tailored to specific areas of interest.

For those who are a bit more interested in capturing their art or design digitally, both the Splash and the Connect would be a simple, bare-bones tablet. The Bamboo Connect is as basic as you can get: It lets you sketch, write and generally work with what Wacom refers to as "visual communication" tools. The Bamboo Splash is nearly the same; in fact, apart from a different application that comes with it -- the painting and drawing software AirRage -- it's identical. Having an extra application probably makes the Splash a better deal, as the price point of the Connect and Splash is exactly the same.

The Bamboo Capture is attempting to, well, capture the photography audience. With Adobe Photoshop and multi-touch capability, this tablet is designed to easily zoom, airbrush, correct or modify digital images. While it does have features like Nik Color Filters that are helpful for photography and digital images as well as SketchBook, it doesn't include the painting and drawing software that the Splash is more focused on.

The Bamboo Create is like the wise leader of the Bamboo team. With an active area of almost 9 inches (compared to the 6 inches the other models offer), it's physically larger. It combines most of the features in the other Bamboo applications (Adobe Photoshop and Sketchbook Express) with some extras of its own (Corel Painter). With multi-touch capability, it's the tablet for someone who knows their digital stuff but maybe doesn't need some of the more professional features of the Intuos. (Or the added cost.)