capsule review

Wacom Bamboo Stylus is sleek and stylish

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[Editor's note: For reviews of other touchscreen styluses, see our review roundup.]

As one of the pricier offerings on the market, some may accuse Wacom’s Bamboo Stylus ( ; $30) of attempting to rest on the laurels of its brand recognition—the company’s pressure-sensitive Intuos and Cintiq tablets have long been favored by the digital illustration community. But that’s simply not so.

While the Bamboo resembles many of the other rubber-nib tools on the market, once you pick it up, it’s obvious how much care and craftsmanship the company has put into this stylus. The pen is perfectly balanced—and I do mean perfectly—in your hand, with just the right amount of weight distributed along the metal-framed body. And unlike with other well-balanced styluses I've tried, the folks at Wacom have managed to give the Bamboo the necessary heft while keeping it as slim as a ballpoint pen.

Drawing with this stylus is lovely, as it employs the same smaller (6mm) silicone-rubber tip as the SGP Kuel H10. But writing takes the prize here, without a doubt. I was able to jot down notes at several angles without ever needing to rest my hand on the iPad’s bezel to be comfortable.

In addition, while this procedure probably isn’t sanctioned by Wacom, you can get even better angles by unscrewing the metal shaft around the tip of the stylus to expose more of the sides of the nib. If you’re drawing, this trick is invaluable for shading.

Overall, I found this stylus to be a pleasure to test, and would recommend it highly for those interested in drawing or writing. However, if you’re looking for a simple navigation device, or you don’t have $30 to blow on a stylus, this may not be the tool for you.

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