I drooled over and pondered getting this hammer for a year before I finally took the plunge — and it was well worth the very high price tag. This hammer really absorbs the vibrations as you pound it. I have been framing for about 14 years and have been swinging an Estwing 25-oz. California-style framing hammer for most of that time. My elbow is almost shot from the vibrations of using those all-steel hammers. Since buying the much lighter titanium T-bone (15 oz.), I have noticed a dramatic difference in my elbow.
All-around it’s an absolutely wonderful hammer. The magnetic nail starter isn’t a new invention, but it’s handy, and I use the side nail puller every chance I get instead of relying on the claw. The hammer also features a removable steel head (or face), which can be replaced with a milled waffle or smooth head (depending on which face you purchase to begin with). Stiletto makes other cheaper hammers with a titanium head and a wooden or fiberglass handle. They absorb a lot of shock, too, but tend to break fairly easily – unlike this model, which has a titanium handle covered in rubber.
If you are serious about building and/or want to lessen the impact on your elbow, arm, etc., this hammer is certainly worth the investment. I don’t know offhand what a shot of cortisone costs, but they probably add up. I wouldn’t recommend this hammer for the average Joe, but if you use a hammer a lot, this is the one to get. They come with a curved or straight handle. I have one with a curved handle, which just feels right.