I am loving my Tab 2 7.0. In fact, I have purchased several Android tablets looking for that right one, and I think I have deduced that none are really iPad killers, but the Tab 2 7.0 comes as close to being the ideal Android Tablet there is. I like it so much that I will more than likely sell my Xoom Wifi, and perhaps Transformer Prime and pick up the Tab 2 10.1.
PROS: size and feel, battery life it great (I charge about every other day with moderate us - now if you streamed video constantly, I would say you would charge every day). Speed is very nice. Browsing with no lag - very zippy. GPS works great. I have a 7" car mount and use it for Navigation and it works great. Good sound from the dual speakers (at least for this size of tablet). Screen is sharp. It has a power saving mode available in the settings that may extend your battery life a bit.
CONS: Of course, Touchwiz, but it sounds like you would customize, anyway. I just put Apex Launcher on it for now (I have no plans to root it and flash custom ROM at this time). The automatic brightness setting is almost always too dim for my tastes. This sounds wierd, but it is the hardest tablet to clean that I own - the screen is very "slimy" for lack of a better term. I can take microfiber cloths to any of my other tablets, and will little effort have them mirror shined, but it takes work on the Tab 2 7.0 - everything just smears really bad. Never experienced this before with a tablet. The last con is the backing - though it looks cool, the plastic is hard and slick - prone to scratches and dropping as it can slide out of your hands.
You have another option in the Kindle Fire. Head over to the Kindle Fire Development thread and check out some of the wonderful ROMS available there - I use GedeROM 1.55. If times are tight, you can pick up a Fire for next to nothing, root it and have a nearly pure ICS experience on it. I actually like the Fire's form factor better than the Tab 2 7.0. Cons of course are no Bluetooth, GPS, or Camera - which may be a killer for most. I would consider it the ultimate secondary cheap tablet to play with.