The Good: A very comfortable design with plenty of functionality to make your workflow more efficient.
The Bad: The plastic ‘metallic’ trim scratches relatively easily, and is quite pricey at just under £70 (although it can now be found cheaper).
The Bottom Line: The MX is a strong upgrade for anybody serious about improving their workflow and their level of comfort when working at a computer.
Since buying my first Mac, Apple’s Magic Trackpad has become an integral part of my daily workflow. In fact, it’s probably fair to say that I rely on its clever pinching and swiping functionality to get my work done as efficiently as possible.
My issue with the Magic Trackpad is with comfort; it doesn’t take long for my fingers to start feeling tired and considering I spend the whole day at a desk, that’s not a good thing.
That’s where Logitech’s £69.99 Performance MX comes in — a mouse compatible with Mac & Windows that has been around since 2009 and has impressed ever since. I wanted to get my hands on it to see whether it lived up to the hype, and most importantly, to see whether it could really improve the way I work.
Design & Build Quality
When it comes to ergonomic design, the Performance MX is right up there as one of the best mice I’ve used. Its curvaceous and arched design gives it a very snug feel in the hand, and the thumb rest makes it really comfortable to use over a full day’s use.
For a mouse, I don’t think there’s a better complement than that.
The mouse has a comfortable rubbery thumb-rest with 4 quickly accessible buttons.
The top of the Performance Mouse MX is covered in a soft matte plastic, which fortunately means that it doesn’t attract fingerprints and smudges like some of the glossy (and generally lower end) alternatives on the market. And while it feels nice, my favourite part of the mouse — when it comes to design and materials at least — has to be the dimpled rubbery material used on the inside of the thumb rest. It’s super comfortable to rest on and feels great to the touch too.
Surrounding the thumb rest, Logitech have designed a silver trim which seems to be attempting a ‘metallic’ look. Although it’s just plastic (as you can tell by the light scratches), it adds a lot to the visual appeal of the mouse. I think a real metal trim would look and feel amazing, but then, maybe that’s asking too much from a mouse.
In comparison to the out-of-the-box mice you’ll normally get with a PC, this Logitech mouse has a satisfying heft to it; heavy enough that it feels sturdy and well constructed, yet light enough that you won’t feel like you’re doing a wrist workout every time you use it.
Besides its really great construction and design, the Logitech Performance Mouse MX boasts some really great features and functionality.
Around the thumb rest alone, Logitech have been able to squeeze in 4 quickly accessible buttons: a couple for scrolling forwards & backwards on webpages, one button for zooming in and out, and the last button is positioned on the thumb rest itself and allows you to open up mission control on Mac OS X.
All of these buttons have a satisfying and firm press to them, which in comparison to buttons on lower-end mice that bobble from side-to-side gives the MX a strong and durable feel. To top it off, their convenient placement above the thumb rest has made me far more efficient with simple tasks like going back & forth in the browser window.
Scrolling wheel can be configured for precise click-to-click scrolling, or a fast frictionless option with the touch of a button.
On top of the Performance Mouse MX you’ll find the scrolling wheel along with an accompanying button which can be used to alternate between traditional ‘click-to-click’ scrolling, and a fast-paced ‘frictionless’ scrolling that’s ideal for longer documents and webpages you want to skim through. Both options work really well (although click-to-click was my preferred option), and if you tilt the scrolling wheel from side-to-side it even scrolls horizontally across webpages or documents, albeit at a slower pace.
In terms of connectivity, the Performance Mouse MX comes with a rechargeable battery for wireless usage, although you’re also able to use Logitech’s supplied micro-USB cable for a wired connection instead. I’ve found wireless usage to work well for me with around 2-3 weeks of use before needing to plug it in for charging again, but it’s worth noting that I turn it off at the end of every day to preserve battery life.
Going wireless means that you’ll need to connect Logitech’s small USB “unifying receiver” in to your computer, but that single receiver essentially lets you connect up to six different wireless devices to it without the need for dedicated receivers for each — convenient if you’re using lots of peripherals at once.
Bottom of Logitech Performance Mouse MX with on/off button and Darkfield laser sensor.
One of the most impressive features on Logitech’s mouse is the “Darkfield Laser Tracking” technology. Darkfield tracking has basically been designed in such a way that it’s usable on whatever surface you work on, so whether you’re using the mouse on top of bed sheets or a clear glass table (where many mice usually struggle), the MX offers flawless cursor control.
Lastly, all of the mouse’s feature can be customised via the Logitech Control Centre, a downloadable piece of software that allows you to configure what actions each button on your mouse performs, adjust tracking sensitivity, DPI levels (mainly for design work) and more. It’s really useful and clever because it allows each individual to tailor the mouse to their own use case.
Logitech are well known for their peripherals — especially keyboard and mice — and at least for me, the Performance Mouse MX is really one of their finest products. It’s well constructed and designed, feels incredibly comfortable over a day’s use and offers plenty of functionality that has improved my workflow.
Yes, the Apple Trackpad has more gesture controls for Mac OS X, but for a traditional mouse experience that feels comfortable over day-to-day use, I’ll take the Logitech MX instead every time.