I bought an Intuos 3 on Friday (off Kijiji), and spent a little bit of time Friday night playing around with it.
I had a Graphire for years, but I lost the pen a while ago, and I had heard there was a big difference between the Intuos line and the Graphires. Turns out they were right, there is indeed a big difference. The pen is just more responsive, and the larger surface (this is an 8×6) makes a big difference too. The buttons really help you out, and the touch strip which I have configured for zoom is a nice touch.
The little self-portrait on the left is my first drawing on the Intuos. The little dude on the right was a 15 minute exercise just now to keep myself in the drawing form.
This little combo will come into play pretty heavily for me with some stuff I’m playing around with, so keep watching for what I get up to next. Who knows, if this goes well enough, maybe there’s a Cintiq in my future!