Thursday, March 27, 2008

Wacom Woes

WHEN GOOD IDEAS GO BAD

UPDATE: Problem solved!

I purchased a Wacom Graphire 4 tablet last year and within a couple of weeks of using it, I filed my mouse in the bottom drawer. Driving graphics programs, especially painting applications, with a pen just makes sense but I was surprised how the pen also makes even mundane tasks like menu selection and shifting files around easier. It's just more comfortable than any mouse I've ever used - and, unlike a lot of mice with more than one button, the pen doesn't care that I'm left-handed.

BUT - and it's a big but (and, unlike Sir Mixalot, I don't particularly like "big buts") - the pen has one major failing. The Graphire 4 pen comes with a comfy rubber grip that supposedly makes it superior to older Wacom pens - but it is too flimsy to do the job.

At first I thought it was just a matter of me getting used to holding the pen in such a way as to make the buttons accessible but, as time went by, it became apparent the rubber grip was too loose to stay put. Eventually it has become so loose that it actually twists around the body and on more than one occasion it's covered the buttons, holding them depressed (I know how they feel). This week I've also noticed that the very thin slip of rubber between the buttons is starting to split.

EDITED

UPDATE

After a few emails to Wacom, I received a replacement pen from them this week. The new pen is a different model with a single toggle switch and no rubber grip. After one night, I already love this pen whereas I never was comfortable with the grip pen. Thanks Wacom.

4 comments:

Dimentional said...

damned lucky, Ive had my wacom graphire 4 since '06 I think,
and probably too late to try and get a replacement now. :(

I had the same problem, think it surfaced already within a few month's usage,
but never bothered to try and get a replacement...

So now I'm the fool, working away with a pen that has a rubber grip,
thats easily slips off the pen. :)

xxx said...

hey, another one with the same problem?

mine used to look like this.

the rubber slowly turned to a sort of slimy something with the consistency of a very hard plasticine. It kept getting thinner in places and thicker in others, until it finally got torn off while I was modeling it back in place for the n-th time.

The guys at Wacom were really nice though, and sent me a new pen... of the same kind.

Lilli said...

I have the same problem! And no-one sells the replacement pens anymore! Contacted Wacom support. We'll see...

Andy said...

Wacom Australia offers accessories here.

I assume other Wacom dealers offer similar products.

Hopefully Wacom Support will come to the party and offer you a replacement since this is a well documented problem.