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Microsoft Intellimouse Optical

Up until a short time ago I had a Microsoft Intellimouse with their Intellieye technology.  As most of you might be aware the optical mice samples mouse movement at 1500 times a second.  Now Microsoft have released a new range of mice based on the Intellieye technology that samples movement at a much higher rate.

They now come in 3 flavours.  The standard two button mouse, the new four button mouse (the Intellimouse Optical) and the Explorer which has five buttons.  All come with PS2/USB connectors.  The review here will concentrate on the four button mouse.

The new mice now sample images under the mouse at 2000 times a second now instead of the old 1500/sec.  This means the mouse is now much more responsive to sudden movements than the old one.  There were a few times when using my old mouse in a game I would jerk it to the left or right only to be too fast for the mouse to detect I had moved it.  So far with the new mouse this has not happened.

The only problem I have had so far with the mouse if the software that came with it.  The Intellimouse software that ships is version 3.1 but this does not work under Windows ME.  This means you will have to do a 4.5mb download to get the buttons working properly.  This is ridiculous really as ME has been available for a few months now and this should not have happened as the mice are only just showing up here in the UK.

The only other thing that caused me some annoyance was the positioning of the two buttons on the side of the mouse.  I kept clicking them by mistake for the first few hours of use until I started getting used to it. 

These buttons though can be configured to most keystroke's.  However they are not recognised by games as buttons 3 & 4.  In had to change the keyboard mapping on games to be the same keystrokes the mouse buttons were set to.

Microsoft have also hardened up the feet on the bottom of the mouse for those people who use it directly on their desk.  I found my old mouse's feet tended to wear very quickly when used on my wooden desk.  So a thumbs up to Microsoft for build quality.

After using the mouse now for a couple of weeks would I recommend it???  The answer has to be yes I would.  For games it is now a lot better than the old Intellieye mouse.  For general desktop use the mouse is fine.  And the biggest plus point of all is you don't have to clean that rubber ball every week anymore....

So overall scores:-

Build Quality A
Usefulness A
Software C


Reviewed by Wolfman (aka Simon Longman).


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