Need a new mouse
August 31, 2004 10:42 AM   Subscribe

I need a new mouse. My MS Intellimouse Explorer has served me well, with its 4 buttons, scroll wheel, and optical tracking, but is dying a slow (and annoying) death due to its cable connection coming loose somewhere. What's your mouse of choice? [MI] for some more specific requirements...

Aside from it dying, my only complaint about the Intellimouse is that the scrollwheel tends to become sluggish. I owned a Kensington trackball a ways back, and liked it (I especially liked their software, which let you configure button chording), but I live in NYC with cats, so the bearings were constantly getting gunked up. In addition, other trackball form factors really hurt my hand after a while, so I think they're pretty much a non-starter. I play a lot of games, but don't need any l33t h@x0r game-specific models. I like the form factor of the MS Mouse as well as the 4 buttons. Should I get another one, or is there a great alternative I'm missing?
posted by mkultra to Computers & Internet (18 answers total)
Logitech's new one, the MX1000, looks awesome. I have two MX700s that I adore, and they also have a tethered version of that (MX500) if you don't want to go cordless.
posted by kindall at 10:53 AM on August 31, 2004

I use a Logitech MX900 and a Microsoft Optical Trackball. No serious complaints about either one.
posted by mosch at 11:03 AM on August 31, 2004

Are cordless mice still problematic for gamers?
posted by jpoulos at 11:15 AM on August 31, 2004

I dislike cordless mice because the batteries make them so massy the initial resistance to movement is high.
posted by Mitheral at 11:21 AM on August 31, 2004

Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer 4 (the corded USB version)
posted by riffola at 11:25 AM on August 31, 2004

Are cordless mice still problematic for gamers?

I don't find mine a problem for single-player Doom3 / RTCW / Half-Life.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:54 AM on August 31, 2004

Another vote for Logitech cordless. Unlike Mitheral, I *love* that my mouse has some mass to it.
posted by falconred at 12:38 PM on August 31, 2004

got a pair of intellimouse explorers (rev. 1.1A) opical, USB, that i use at home and at work. 4-button (well, 5 if you count the scroll button) jobbies. enough buttons for me, and they work well - nice size & weight, etc.

i do wanna point out that the newer MS software - the stuff you MUST install to support the fancier side-scroll mice - doesn't allow custom key settings. you need either the old (4.1) software and an older or simpler mouse, or go with logitech (personally i like the design of the MS hardware better, but the removal of features in newer software versions pisses me off. how'm i gonna beat my buddies at QuakeIIIArena if i can't count on mapping my side buttons to jump'n'crouch?)

oh and cordless seems silly to me. the cord doesn't bother me, and using a portable energy source when i don't need to seems weird... do we need more batteries in the landfill? first time i get a student who says "didn't do my homework 'cause my mouse batteries died" i'm handing them an old-ass PS2 two-button heap (with a gunky ball to boot) and sending them back home.
posted by caution live frogs at 12:59 PM on August 31, 2004

I've been exceedingly happy using the Logitech First Mouse Optical -- the cheesy blue one that glows and goes for about $14 -- as a general-purpose and gaming mouse. It's corded, which I consider an advantage, and does both USB and PS/2 ports.

At work I use a Kensington trackball of rather ancient vintage, and I consider it well worth the hassle of de-gunking. I understand the more recent models offer some sort of optical tracking that reduces the number of moving parts.
posted by majick at 1:03 PM on August 31, 2004

Try a trackball. I love my Logitech "Marble Mouse USB". WOOHOO!
posted by shepd at 1:04 PM on August 31, 2004

Response by poster: shepd- I actually owned Kensington's version of that, briefly. I found the awkward finger arching required to use the trackball effectively while retaining the "mouse form-factor" painful.
posted by mkultra at 1:14 PM on August 31, 2004

caution live frogs -- the newer cordless mice use rechargeable batteries and charge in a cradle. And once you get rid of the cord you'd be surprised how much the mousing experience is improved.

I would second the Logitech -- I, too, like the 'massy' feel of their mice, and the scroll wheel is more pleasant than the MSFT model.
posted by josh at 1:36 PM on August 31, 2004

Response by poster: I must say, the MX1000 looks pretty sweet. There goes the slush fund from the next paycheck. Thanks for the advice!
posted by mkultra at 1:40 PM on August 31, 2004

Here's some pics of the Logitech MX1000, the mouse with a "fricken laser attached". I want one too, have to replace the $10 knock-off optical mouse (the H3003) i got in Chinatown. Works great except the mouse wheel doesn't register "up" very well.
posted by bobo123 at 3:08 PM on August 31, 2004

I used to have a Razer Boomslang 1000 with my old comp. Best mouse-grip ever.
posted by Gyan at 3:14 PM on August 31, 2004

I second any recommendations for cordless Logitech MX700. I'm a designer and gamer, and have 3 at home and 1 at work. I'd take a look at the MX1000 too, to see if it's even better.
posted by robbie01 at 3:28 PM on August 31, 2004

avoid this year's crop of MS Mice. While prior Intellimouse products were quite good, they're making them cheaply now, and for reasons they won't explain, they stripped all the nice features from v4 of their drivers out of v. 5.

Anyone know why MS would dumb down a driver like this? its not like v4 was buggy...
posted by Fupped Duck at 4:06 PM on August 31, 2004

I love my cordless Intellimouse. The scroll wheel is really nice—it rolls up and down smoothly instead of in increments. It also does side to side scrolling. Downside: middle clicking is awkward. If it weren't for this, this would be the absolutely perfect mouse.

Oh, and I've had it for six months and haven't yet had to change the battery.
posted by Khalad at 6:57 AM on September 1, 2004

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