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I have owned the Wacom Bamboo Pen and Touch for 3 or 4 years now and my experience only ever gets better. The first time I used the tablet I found it clumsy and hard to perform simple tasks without pushing buttons accidentally but after a few hours of practise I got used to it and found it much easier than using the conventional mouse.
I have the A5 tablet size and have never wished for a bigger size as I need portability - A5 is perfect for me.
The tablet is extremely responsive and especially so when using the pen to write or instead of a mouse. It is also pressure sensitive and after practising I managed to produce artwork not dissimilar to a pencil drawing.
The touch feature can be easily turned off using the four programmable buttons down the side of the tablet (I only ever use the touch feature when I am word processing as I am not a fan if track pads - however it's a cool feature when collaborating on one piece of work).
You can also use multi-touch gestures to spin stuff around and zoom in and out, but the best use I have found for this is being able to flick backward and forward through web browsing history in every browser I have tried!
If you are going to go for a tablet to use as a hobby for te odd bit of design work this is a good one as it is small and pretty well priced. However the touch feature isn't that useful.