The Tangent Wave is the older model to the Tangent Element and I don't think you will like the wobbly shuttle wheels and loud plastic clicking button sounds of the Tangent Wave. The Tangent Element also suffers with the loud clicking buttons which make it seem cheap and session clients would likely think the same. The Tangent Element is also pretty pricey at $3,295 USD from B&H.
I would suggest looking into the Avid Artist Color Control Surface (formally MC Color) instead. It looks more professional, has softer buttons, better track balls, and is quiet. You can get an Avid Artist Color Control Surface from B&H or eBay for a price range close to what you already want to spend $1,200 to $1,400 USD. You could also later expand the Artist Color by adding the Artist Transport control.
[Daniel Hill]"I would suggest looking into the Avid Artist Color Control Surface (formally MC Color) instead."
Just a quick thumbs up to what Daniel said. I use the Avid Artist Color and I love it. It's build quality is excellent, and like Daniel says the buttons are soft and the track balls are exceptional at this price point. I also like how small the Avid Artist is compared to Tangent's design. I have limited desk space and it allows me room with my tablet, keyboard, and mouse to all fit comfortably. Besides build quality the other difference is ethernet based connection (Avid Artist Color) versus USB (Tangent Wave). Depending on computer and configuration that may or may not be a big deal.
I'd like to throw a bit of a defense for the Wave - ultimately at this price point I have found it to be a faster instrument. I have personally found the trackballs to be less smooth (plastic, vs the metal bearings on the wave). The luminance rings are nice and smooth on the Artist Color, but the resistance is inconsistent, at least on the units I've tried (eg: my highlight wheel is slightly looser than the midtone one). The loss of 3 rotary knobs is extremely felt, especially when working with qualifiers. And the buttons are tiny and squishy - they might present themselves more sophisticated than the click clack of the Wave, but the big loud buttons felt faster to work with.
Also, I have personally found the ergonomics of the wave absolutely brilliant. I ended up trading my wave for Artist Color because my Wave had the problem with wheels not tracking at higher speeds (a problem I know they fixed in later units), but have since come to regret it for all the aforementioned reasons. So, if anyone's wanting to sell their wave or trade for the Color let me know!