Mouse Buyers Guide

by Reads (18,106)

Tired of using the touchpad on your brand new notebook? Want to upgrade from the ancient mouse that came with your home computer? Well, look no further!

In this guide, the different styles of mice will be described and examples, pros and cons, price ranges, and links to reviews and manufacturers will be provided.

Basically, we’re trying to help you find the perfect mouse!

Overview of Mouse Types

Wired

These traditional mice may not be cutting edge technology but they never run out of batteries or lose signal. If you don’t mind a wire, these are your best bet for stability and performance. They come in different colors, sizes and prices so you can find the perfect accessory for your computer.

Saitek Optical Mouse Review – $19.95
The Notebook Optical Mouse is simple to use, has a good response time, comes in multiple colors and for $20 this mouse won’t break the bank. Also, did I mention it illuminates?


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Wireless

Wireless mice are the ideal accessory for a laptop. They are portable, small, and there are no distracting wires to get in the users way. Like wired mice, they can be found in a multitude of colors, sizes and prices so it’s easy to find one that suits you.

Logitech VX Nano Cordless Laser Mouse Review – $69
The Logitech VX Nano packs impressive performance and convenience into a tiny mouse. Although there are smaller mouse designs on the market, none of the smaller mice are as comfortable to use or offer such a convenient USB receiver.

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Kensington Ci70LE and Ci75m Wireless Mouse Review – $35-40
These Kensington mice offer a sleek, compact design and are great for traveling. Although they aren’t as rugged as other mice, they are responsive, comfortable to use, and come in many eye catching colors.


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Bluetooth

Bluetooth mice are great for traveling. They have no pesky wires or USB receivers. Pair them once with your notebook and you’re ready to roll. They can be more expensive than their counterparts, but they are definitely more fun.

Razer Pro Click Mobile Mouse Review – $60
The Pro Click Mobile may seem like an average mouse but the Bluetooth technology definitely gives the Pro Click an edge. Not only is it simple to use but your USB ports are free for other devices. Did I mention it comes in Nice White, Naughty Black, Sugar Pink or Spice Red?


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Gaming

Gaming mice are more specialized and more expensive than the previous types mentioned. Gamers expect better response times and higher performance in these mice than a typical wireless mouse.

Microsoft SideWinder Mouse Review – $79.95
Microsoft packs plenty of performance, durability and features into the SideWinder and notebook users willing to put up with the size and weight (and the lengthy cord) will be very pleased.


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Razer Deathadder Mouse Review – $60
The Deathadder is the ultimate gaming mouse with 1800 DPI, 3G infrared sensor and movement up to 2.25 xs faster than a standard optical mouse. Left-handers: Watch out for the ergonomic right-handed design, you might want to choose a different mouse.


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Multi-functional

We dubbed the mice in this category, multi-functional, for lack of a better term. These are the mice that have the coolest new features and can be used in a variety of settings but may cost you an arm and leg.

Logitech MX Air Mouse Review – $150
If you are in the market for a single controller to replace both your mouse and your media center remote then the MX Air is a great choice. However, given the price tag, you might want to wait to see what they come up with next.

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Kensington SlimBlade Presenter Media Mouse review – $80
The SlimBlade Presenter Media Mouse is small and wireless, keeping your workspace clutter free and making it great for travel. The media features are extremely handy and would be great for anyone that presents at work, businessmen and college professors alike.


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Price Ranges

All mice range in price depending on the style, features, and brand name. All five of the manufacturers I included in this guide have affordable mice on the market if you just want a traditional mouse with no bells or whistles.

All the prices I listed next to the reviewed products were manufacturer’s suggested selling prices. Many, if not all, can be found at retail stores or through online bargain shopping for less than the manufacturer is selling it. If money is an issue, it’s important to look around before purchasing a mouse.

Honestly, you can find great mice for affordable prices. When you find the one you want try looking around for it and comparing prices. You shouldn’t have to pay $70+ for a mouse.

Important Features and Possible Problems

Wired

These traditional mice are perfect for desktops/notebooks that only need a mouse for what it was originally intended for; to scroll and click your way around a computer.

The best part about a wired mouse is it runs without batteries. You plug it and it works. Also, a wired mouse is normally going to be cheaper than its counterparts, so if you’re on a budget consider this type of mouse.

What the bad part then? They are attached to your computer which clutters your workspace and limits your reach. They aren’t ideal for travel compared to a wireless or Bluetooth mouse.

Wireless

Wireless mice are great additions to notebooks because they keep the space clutter free and are easy to pack up and travel with.

Many take AA or AAA batteries but have sleep timers and low battery indicators to help you manage battery life.

The biggest problem with these mice is that they block valuable USB ports.

Bluetooth

These mice are similar to wireless mice; they are great for travel, reduce clutter, and need batteries to run. The big difference is that they won’t block a USB port because they pair with your computer through Bluetooth.

But they aren’t perfect. Bluetooth mice have response issues due to the Bluetooth signal dropping – some more than others – so research any Bluetooth mouse you’re considering buying carefully.

Gaming

Gaming mice are pretty self explanatory. They are made for gamers who want to get the most out of their games and mice. They vary over the three previous categories: they can be wired or wireless, some have Bluetooth.

These mice usually boast high DPI and response times, plenty come with cool features you won’t find on a typical mouse. Other things to look for are the durability of the mice, and whether they have weights. When a mouse has super high DPI, they will move at the slightest touch. Some of these gaming mice come with weights to slow down the mouse for certain games/functions.

Gaming mice can be used for ordinary purposes but if you’re going to spend the money on a gaming mouse, let’s hope you’re a gamer.

Multi-functional

As mentioned above, I made up this category for lack of a better one. Multi-functional is basically the super cool mice that have the latest technologies built in, and can be used to run presentations or media centers or both.

The major problems with these mice don’t usually have anything to with the mice themselves but with the hefty price tags that accompany them. But if you have extra cash to blow, or want to give someone a pretty cool Christmas present, these mice are definitely worth a look!

Trackball mice

A less common type of mouse that we don’t see too often is the trackball. Trackball mice are designed to allow the user to move the cursor by moving a ball with the thumb or finger tips.

The major benefit of trackballs is that your hand and wrist remain motionless and all the movement is done with the fingers. This makes trackball mice a perfect solution for people who are prone to repetitive stress injury.

The only "problems" with these types of mice is that they take a while to get used to and the ball mechanism tends to get clogged with dust and dirt from your hands over time … similar to older ball mice that we all used before optical mice came around.

Conclusion

This mouse guide came about because of user interest. It is by no means the be all, end all of mice. I highlighted the five major brands that we have actually reviewed in hopes to clear up the different styles and features. But there are other manufactures and other styles of mice.

And with all of the different styles, companies, colors, prices, etc. purchasing a mouse can become a confusing decision when it began as a simple accessory purchase. Just remember two things when searching for mouse: how much you are willing to spend and what you plan to do with the mouse.

If you’re looking for a more responsive mouse because you want to play the cool new game you just got, head for the gaming section. But don’t forget to remember that price range. Some of the mice have pretty sweet features that might seem to justify spending over your budget, don’t fall into that trap!

It’s hard to go wrong if you just remember your goal; to find a mouse that completes your computer!

Review Links

Here are links to other mice we’ve reviewed on Notebookreview.com:

 

Manufacturer Links

Kensington
Logitech
Microsoft

Razer
Saitek

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